Cannabis In Ontario & The LCBO Updates

Are you interested in learning more about the cannabis legalization process in Ontario, Canada? You’ve come to the right place to read more about the Liquor and control board in Ontario (LCBO), who had previously managed the regulatory aspects for the sale of recreational Cannabis, and any associated updates in Ontario.

Regardless if you’re looking for medicinal or recreational products, you can find what you need in Ontario via the LCBO developed Ontario Cannabis Store.

Table of Contents

LCBO Cannabis History

The liquor and control board has managed the sale of alcohol in Ontario, Canada since 1927. Right after the legalization of recreational Cannabis in Canada, it was determined that the LCBO would be the appropriate avenue to manage the distribution of marijuana throughout the province of Ontario. As a result, the LCBO spearheaded all Ontario marijuana legalization laws throughout 2017 to prep the province for the legal consumption of marijuana.

Critically, the LCBO asserted that all Cannabis sold throughout the province for recreational use would be traded via a newly formed entity called the Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation (OCRC). This was via the trading name of The Ontario Cannabis Store (OCS) on the front end.

lcbo logos for OCS

It’s essential to note that the formation of the OCS naturally created the segregation of recreational marijuana from liquor, and it was sanctioned that Cannabis was to be sold exclusively in Ontario via the OCS. The deployment of 40 retail stores in the region for the first year of trading would help demand meet supply, with the locations of the first stores announced in late 2017.

However, after elections in 2018, the newly elected Premier of the province Doug Ford, issued a press release that the OCS would no longer set up 40 stores in 2018 (150 by 2020), and these would be privatized, with the OCRC acting as the wholesaler for offline sales. Consequently, entrepreneurs drew up plans for cannabis stores  with iPads and computers to manage ordering and make the process more efficient as privately owned businesses. 

As a result, the Ontario Cannabis Store would only retail direct to consumers via a website developed via a partnership with the Canadian tech giant Shopify.

However, shortly after, the OCRC shifted from under the authority of the LCBO to the Ministry of Finance. Offline sales of Cannabis in Ontario were instead now managed via an extended remit granted to The Alcohol and Gaming Commission of Ontario (AGCO). The ORC still managed recreational cannabis sales in Ontario online exclusively.

LCBO Cannabis Updates

The first stage of cannabis legalization in Ontario in 2018 was pretty much a disaster.

The launch of private cannabis stores was slow via the AGCO management, and most of the stores didn’t open on time, and the 25 open ones on launch in April 2018 were inefficient.

With the private cannabis stores failing to meet demand, it was urged that the LCBO intervene with a much-needed update and launch a parallel set of LCBO cannabis stores instead.

It was clear that Premier Doug Ford had failed to increase competition in recreational Cannabis sales in Ontario via privatization. Looking at other provinces who had developed regulations that permitted public and private stores in the same region successfully, it was clear it was a hasty move to leave the sale of Cannabis to private stores only.

We can only hope as time progresses demand is met by adequate supply and at a reasonable price. 

Latest Ontario Cannabis News

The first stage of cannabis legalization in Ontario in 2018 was pretty much a disaster.

The launch of private cannabis stores was slow via the AGCO management, and most of the stores didn’t open on time, and the 25 open ones on launch in April 2018 were inefficient.

With the private cannabis stores failing to meet demand, it was urged that the LCBO intervene with a much-needed update and launch a parallel set of LCBO cannabis stores instead.

It was clear that Premier Doug Ford had failed to increase competition in recreational Cannabis sales in Ontario via privatization. Looking at other provinces who had developed regulations that permitted public and private stores in the same region successfully, it was evident leaving the sale of Cannabis to private stores only was a hasty move.

Nonetheless, looking ahead things are looking brighter for Ontario Marijuana. With stage two of the recreational cannabis legalization process in effect with the launch of concentrates and other new cannabis products to market. 

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