Canada tallies CA$2.6 billion in cannabis sales for 2020, up 120% over 2019

Canadian sales of legal recreational cannabis totaled 2.6 billion Canadian dollars ($2.08 billion) in 2020, as December sales increased from a relatively sluggish November.

Licensed marijuana retailers across the country sold CA$298.4 million worth of cannabis in December, up 14.3% from November, according to new retail trade data released Friday by national data agency Statistics Canada.

Canada’s 2020 total represents a 120% increase over 2019 cannabis sales, which were valued at CA$1.2 billion.

The December figure caps off a year of mostly sequential monthly growth for recreational marijuana sales in Canada as new stores opened in many provinces, with monthly sales only declining in April and November.

December sales increased over November’s levels in every province except Saskatchewan.

Canada’s four largest cannabis markets — Ontario, Alberta, Quebec and British Columbia — accounted for more than 84% of the country’s legal recreational marijuana sales in December, with monthly sales totals and month-over-month growth as follows:

  • Ontario: CA$94.6 million (up 14.2%).
  • Alberta: CA$63.8 million (up 18.2%).
  • Quebec: CA$50.8 million (up 13.1%).
  • British Columbia: CA$42.5 million (up 16.5%).

In the remaining six provinces, December recreational cannabis sales totaled:

  • Saskatchewan: CA$11.8 million (down 14.1%).
  • Manitoba: CA$11.1 million (up 14.7%).
  • Nova Scotia: CA$8.2 million (up 19.6%).
  • New Brunswick: CA$6.8 million (up 10.8%).
  • Newfoundland and Labrador: CA$5.4 million (up 41.8%).
  • Prince Edward Island: CA$1.8 million (up 17.6%).

Monthly sales totaled CA$736,000 in Yukon Territory, and CA$896,000 in the Northwest Territories. Sales figures for the territory of Nunavut were unavailable.

Statistics Canada has estimated that legal sales of recreational cannabis overtook illicit sales for the first time during the third quarter of 2020.

Statistics Canada’s retail trade figures capture sales of regulated adult-use cannabis from licensed bricks-and-mortar cannabis stores, private-sector online sales in some provinces, and provincially-operated online stores in others.

The data bureau’s monthly cannabis sales data for 2020 are available here.

The agency is scheduled to release retail trade figures for January 2021 on Friday, March 19.

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