Cannabis edibles are surging in popularity and Manitoba plays an important role in producing them.
From gummies and baked goods to beverages, cannabis edibles have seen a rise in popularity.
“It’s actually blowing up. There’s huge demand in it,” said Peter Slupski, co-owner of Atomic Flower Cannabis. “People try it out and they keep coming back for it. They love it.”
Slupski said it can be tough to keep popular flavours in stock.
He said edibles appeal to people who don’t want to smoke or want to be more discreet in their usage.
Many cannabis edibles consumed by Canadians are made in Manitoba.
Chronos Group, which creates Sourz by Spinach, and Organigram which produces major brands like Monjour and Shred, both have facilities in Winnipeg.
Beena Goldenberg, Organigram’s CEO, said the company is Canada’s second biggest gummy producer by volume, making about every one in four sold.
“We were selling in the order of about 340,000 gummies a month, and now we are over 1.6 million, so significant growth in the business and the gummy segment overall,” she said.
Goldenberg said the company is looking to expand its product line as demand continues to grow.
The company is now creating snacks with minor cannabinoids like CBN and CBG to create consumables tailored to activities like relaxation or sleep.
“It’s really interesting how when you start combining CBD, CBN and CBG together, you create a product that might work really well for someone,” said Goldenberg.
The Cannabis Council of Canada estimates edibles make up about five to 10 per cent of the market right now, below the average of established cannabis markets like Colorado, which sits around 15 per cent.
According to George Smitherman, the council’s president and CEO, a major reason for the lag is that a package of edibles can only have 10 milligrams of THC in it.
“The 10 mg limit is a pretty low one, so if you’re a regular consumer of cannabis, probably that product is just not the one you’re looking for, and you might still be searching out your product from the black market,” he said.
Smitherman said scrapping the THC limit would also substantially reduce the amount of packaging used for edibles, allowing more product in a single package.
The council hopes the federal government gets rid of the limit as part of its Cannabis Act Legislative Review currently taking place.
An issue denting sales but not stopping cannabis consumables.
“I got coffee pods for your coffee machine. I got infused white sugar. The sky is the limit. I feel like they just keep coming out with new stuff, and I don’t feel they’re going to stop,” said Slupski.
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