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‘It’s easier to sell a dream than reality’: Inside Canada’s cannabis crash

Canada cannabis

Marijuana was set to be Canada’s next multi-billion-dollar industry. Four years post-legalization, stocks are down, production has stalled and the illegal market is thriving. How did we get weed so wrong?

Jennifer Danyluk moved from small town New Brunswick to Edmonton in 2007, joining nearly 19,000 Maritimers who’d been beckoned by the booming oil economy. Back then, there was demand for literally everyone—pipe fitters, homebuilders, store clerks. For a young and ambitious accountant like Danyluk, Alberta was the land of opportunity.

The only home Danyluk, her then husband and their two young children could find to rent was shared with another family who had also moved over from across the country.

“We knew it was going to be worth it,” she says.


Sproutly receives research license from Heath Canada


Sproutly Canada, Inc. (CSE: SPR) (OTCQB: SRUTF) (FSE: 38G) ("Sproutly" or the "Company"), is pleased to announce that the company's wholly-owned subsidiary, Toronto Herbal Remedies Inc. ("THR"), a licenced producer under the Cannabis Act, has received a research licence from Health Canada effective April 11, 2022. The licence allows THR to evaluate the ingredients produced by the proprietary APP technology and product formulations incorporating these ingredients.

"We are pleased to receive this license since we can now evaluate our proprietary extracts and the unique 2.0 product formulations before moving them forward to manufacturing and sale to Canadian consumers." said Arup Sen, CEO & Director.


springbig announces loyalty integration with Greenline, Canada's premier POS system


 springbig, a leading provider of SaaS-based marketing solutions, consumer mobile app experiences, and omnichannel loyalty programs to the cannabis industry, today announced a new integration with Greenline POS, one of Canada's largest fully-compliant cannabis retail point-of-sale (POS) platforms. This integration provides springbig with real-time consumer and retail insights at checkout and will allow retailers using Greenline's services to seamlessly access springbig's customer loyalty features.


Cirona Labs' Cam MacNeil on why product quality is key in cannabis


Plus, his work with Guardian Athletic and innovation in the beverage space

Cam MacNeil is a seasoned marketing and sales professional, with experience working on global consumer brands such as Coors Light, Cheerios and Jose Cuervo.

In 2018, Cam joined the cannabis industry, leading the development of Canada's first THC-infused cannabis drink at Canopy Growth Corporation. He became director of global product development for Canopy's Beverages & Edibles division, overseeing 30-plus product launches from brands such as Houseplant, Quatreau and Martha Stewart CBD. He currently serves as chief commercial officer of Cirona Labs, a U.S.-based biotech company that uses scientific research to create more effective cannabinoid ingredients.


Said 'cannabis' nine times

Chrystia Freeland


Cannabis mentions in federal budget a sign of friendlier relations

It may not seem like a lot, but cannabis was mentioned a total of nine times in the 2022 federal budget document. That’s eight more times than in 2021.

The proposed budget, unveiled Thursday in Ottawa by the Liberal government, hints toward a more open and productive relationship with the cannabis industry.

In the nearly four years since legalization in 2018, the Liberals have practically worn oven mitts while handling the hot potato of pot policy. Cannabis has been seen only through the lenses of public health and crime.

This latest budget puts the growing weed industry as an important economic consideration, nationally and internationally.


Canadian cannabis copacking group joint venture


Canadian Cannabis Copacking Group Ltd., a packaging technology services company, has recently formed a joint venture for the purposes of contract manufacturing and copacking services for dry flower and pre-roll production.

The joint venture is registered as Craft Cannabis Copacking Services Ltd. (C3) and is fully operational as of April 1st, 2022, for production runs in bottles both glass and plastic and flexible packaging (child-proof bags) plus pre-rolls in various configurations. The fully licensed facility is located in Nisku, Alberta and will service Western Canada in 2022 and nationally in 2023.


Canada’s 2022 federal budget aims to engage cannabis sector

Parliament Hill


Proposed budget includes launching a new cannabis strategy table to increase dialogue between government and stakeholders

This year’s Canadian federal budget shows a more collaborative relationship with the cannabis industry, including the launch of a new cannabis strategy table to increase dialogue between government and stakeholders in the growing sector.

Last week, the federal government released the proposed budget for 2022 which outlines a series of new investments in several areas — including public health, housing and infrastructure — and includes a section titled “Engaging the Cannabis Sector.”


Hygrovest outperforms benchmark Canadian cannabis market in FY2022

man holding graph

Hygrovest has funds available to deploy in new investments and will also seek to realise existing investments to recycle capital into opportunities having greater potential for growth.

Hygrovest Ltd (ASX:HGV) has significantly outperformed a declining Canadian cannabis market, with the investment holding group’s net asset value (NAV) decreasing just 14% for the financial year to 31 March 2022, compared to a 60% decline in the benchmark over the same period.

The company also saw its NAV increase by 7% during March 2022.

Outlined in the table below is the current strategy for Hygrovest’s portfolio of investments:

Hygrovest's portfolio companies are continuing to achieve sales growth, with recent highlights outlined below:


Building cannabis brands with creativity and innovation

There is a popular narrative in Canada’s cannabis industry, which says that government regulations make it almost impossible for licensed producers to brand their products. However, many LPs are finding creative and innovative ways to get their story out, which suggests that much of the doom and gloom has been overblown.
“I believe the regulations today actually favour brands like us,” says Chris Marmion,  Head of Sales & Marketing at Carmel Cannabis, which has a 150-acre property in Oro-Medonte, Ontario.


“When you have your brand promise anchored in quality, you don’t need celebrity endorsements and billboards.”


Canadian cannabis operators have no clear road to US


When will Canadian cannabis companies be allowed to tap into the US marketplace?

As chatter about cannabis legalization below the border heats up, when will Canadian producers be able to tap into the opportunity in the booming US marketplace?

Operators in Canada have for the most part fallen out of favor, thanks in large part to poor financial results and a clear ceiling on what the domestic market can offer — especially compared to opportunities for US stocks.

While Canadian companies have targets in their sights and are talking about what their plays in the US could be, experts are cautioning market participants about the realities of the market.


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