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In Quebec, 70% of cannabis purchases come from the legal market

The number of illegal suppliers in the province has also decreased, according to the report.

The Quebec Ministry of Health and Social Services today released a report on the progress of cannabis legalization in the province.

Le rapport concludes that the legalization approach adopted by Quebec in matters of public health and safety has made it possible to prevent young people from consuming cannabis while encouraging adults to switch from the black market to the legal market.

According to the report at least 70% of cannabis sales come from the legal market made through the SQDC, the distributor and retailer in Quebec. This figure is higher than the national average estimated by Statistics Canada, which indicates that the average legal sale across Canada is just over 50%.

This figure for Quebec is up from the 45% of users who bought cannabis from the SQDC in 2019. The report also indicates that illegal suppliers have also decreased in the province.

The proceeds from the SQDC's legal cannabis sales went to two different funds, the Sale Income Fund and the Cannabis Prevention and Research Fund (FPRMC) in which nearly $ 57 million was been invested since its creation in 2018.

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Although overall adult consumption rates in Quebec have increased since legalization, from 14% in 2018 and 16% in 2019 to 20% in 2021, consumption among young people has decreased.

The consumption trends reported among high school-aged Quebecers who tried cannabis in the past 12 months decreased by 6%, as did students who reported using cannabis often (from 8% in 2013 to 5% in 2019).

Quebec has the highest legal age for access to cannabis in Canada, at 21 years old. In most provinces, it is 19 years. The federal limit is 18 years. All cannabis sales in the province are made through the provincial cannabis stores, the SQDCs. There are currently 56 provincial stores, plus the online portal of the SQDC.

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Evolution of the prevalence of cannabis use over the past 12 months among high school youth in Quebec from 2000 to 2019.

Evolution of the prevalence of cannabis use over the past 12 months among high school youth in Quebec from 2000 to 2019.

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"I am very happy to note that the preventive measures adopted within the framework of this law, as well as those that we have deployed to regulate the legal use and sale of cannabis, have borne fruit", declared Lionel Carmant, Minister of Health and Social Services in a press release.

Carmant urges caution, however, as consumption trends have reportedly increased due to covid, a trend the province says it is keeping an eye on. Cannabis use rates across Canada have reportedly increased since the restrictions on covid took effect in March 2020.

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The report also notes a concern about violating provincial and federal marketing regulations, including through social media platforms that it has limited ability to monitor.

From 2018 to 2021, there were over 3000 instances where inspectors looked into such promotion or marketing violations, but only 185 violations found, or a compliance rate of around 98%.

The Director of Criminal and Penal Prosecutions (DCPC) of Quebec is responsible for prosecuting violations of provincial cannabis law. The organization focuses primarily on the possession of cannabis by people under the age of 21 and on personal cultivation, which is not permitted in Quebec. Since legalization, 787 "plead guilty" cases have been registered for these types of offenses.


Tags : CanadadispensaryLawstatistical
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