Two-thirds of current pot users will switch to legal retailers, survey suggests

Findings were drawn from an online survey of 1,500 Canadians

Canadians who currently use cannabis expect to buy nearly two-thirds of their pot from legal retailers once recreational marijuana becomes legal in Canada, a new survey suggests.

Moreover, respondents to the survey say they expect to buy cannabis more often and are prepared to pay more for the legal product, generating up to $4.34 billion in total sales next year.

The findings were drawn from an online survey of 1,500 Canadians, conducted by Asking Canadians from March 6-20.

It was commissioned by accounting giant Deloitte, which provides audit, consulting, financial advisory, risk management and tax services for its clients.

“What is certain is that legalization will open the doors to a dynamic and sophisticated industry that will create new jobs, new opportunities for businesses and new revenue for government,” Deloitte concludes in a report on the survey.

“Executed well, legalization will also help shift a considerable proportion of cannabis consumption to legal channels in the years to come.”

The Trudeau government intends to have retail sales of cannabis up and running by late summer, assuming the legalization bill is passed by the Senate in a vote scheduled for June 7.

Overall, the survey suggests 63 per cent of respondents expect to move from illegal suppliers to legal retailers. That includes 47 per cent of frequent users and 69 per cent of periodic users.

READ MORE: 39% of pot users say they drive after smoking, says Health Canada survey

VIDEO: Smokers talk pot rules at annual 4-20 event

“Legalization alone won’t persuade most current cannabis consumers to completely abandon their existing suppliers,” the report says. “But our research suggests the right mix of quality, price and safety could just do the trick.”

Among the things that would persuade current users to switch to legal retailers, 55 per cent of respondents cited better quality products, 54 per cent cited a range of prices, 47 per cent cited products with a range of potency and 41 per cent cited products certified to be safe.

Based on the survey, Deloitte says the current average price for illegal cannabis is $8.24 per gram. Respondents said they’re willing to pay a bit more — an average of $8.98 per gram — for legal weed.

Current consumers said the price would have to rise to almost $14 per gram before they’d stop buying while respondents who said they’re likely to become consumers once cannabis is legalized said they’d stop buying at about $11 per gram.

“Being responsive to consumers’ price sensitivities is essential if producers, manufacturers and retailers are to be successful — and if governments are going to persuade a rising number of Canadians to purchase through legal retailers,” the report concludes.

According to the survey, frequent users expect to make 22 per cent more purchases of cannabis under the legalized regime, although they expect to spend about the same each month as they do now — just less than $100.

However, respondents who are currently infrequent users expect their purchases to rise by 121 per cent, with their total spending increasing by almost 70 per cent to roughly $28 every three months.

While Canadians may purchase cannabis more often, the survey suggests they still won’t necessarily indulge all that often: 41 per cent of cannabis consumers said they’ll use it less than once a month. Just 20 per cent said they’ll use it every day — unchanged from current usage.

Joan Bryden , The Canadian Press


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

WCPS uses cannabis legislation to fully review drug, alcohol and tobacco policies

Cannabis is not permitted in schools; WCPS focused on providing education and support

Puff, puff, pass: Cannabis is officially legal across Canada

Alberta readies itself for cannabis sales with 17 stores (for now) and a new provincial website

Lacombe Mayor Creasey says enforcement of cannabis bylaws dependant upon adherence

Recreational cannabis becomes legal this week in Canada

UPDATE: Lacombe Generals split weekend games after losing in Stony Plain

Lacombe shows off offensive repertoire against Ft. Sask; comes up just short against the Eagles

Darrell Paulovich remembered after accident claims his life

A tragic accident claimed the life of a rodeo advocate over the weekend

WATCH: Ground-breaking ceromony held for Charis Village Seniors Housing project

$22 million development will include 10 duplexes and 46-unit complex

Jagmeet Singh says marijuana pardons are not enough

Trudeau government will streamline pardon process for Canadians convicted of simple possession of marijuana in the past

Test case challenges a politician’s right to block people from Twitter account

3 people say Watson infringed their constitutional right to freedom of expression by blocking them

After 50 years, ‘Sesame Street’ Big Bird puppeteer retiring

The puppeteer who has played Big Bird on “Sesame Street” is retiring after nearly 50 years on the show.

Britain, EU decide to take some time in getting Brexit right

Brexit negotiator Michel Barnier said “we need much time, much more time and we continue to work in the next weeks.”

Parole denied for convicted killer-rapist Paul Bernardo after 25 years in prison

Paul Bernardo plead for release on Wednesday by arguing he has done what he could to improve himself during his 25 years in prison.

B.C. Lions look to cement CFL playoff spot with victory over Eskimos

B.C. can cement a post-season berth in the wild West Division on Friday night with a home win over the Edmonton Eskimos

Canada ban on asbestos takes effect but mining residues are exempt

Environment Minister Catherine McKenna plans to announce the new regulations implementing the ban on Thursday in Ottawa

UPDATE: Aurora Rafer has been found unharmed

RCMP have a man in custody and continue to investigate

Most Read