200 cannabis stores approved by Calgary, more than BC, Ontario & Quebec combined

The number of city-approved cannabis stores in Calgary surpassed 200 this week, while the province has licensed 63 of those to open their doors to customers.

The city’s store approvals exceed Ontario, British Columbia and Quebec combined, the three most-populous provinces in the country.

Experts say Calgary should be seen as an example for other municipalities in Canada when it comes to regulating adult-use cannabis stores.

The city has not set a limit on the number of stores it plans to license, the Calgary Herald reported.

British Columbia, which got off to a slow start, has issued permits for 104 locations.

Quebec’s government-run store network, Société Québécoise du Cannabis, lists 21 stores on its website.

The Ontario Progressive Conservative government’s rollout of its network of privately-owned stores has been sharply criticized, resulting in only 24 outlets opening so far. (A judge paused the licensing process for the newest store lottery winners, pending a hearing for disqualified candidates next week.)

The slow rollout of stores across Canada contributed to disappointing sales in the early months of legalization in most provinces.

However, sales started to rebound when Ontario opened its first stores in the spring.

According to the newest data from Statistics Canada, sales across the country surpassed 100 million Canadian dollars ($75 million) for the first time in July.

Ontario continued to lead with sales of CA$29 million, followed by Quebec (CA$21.7 million) and Alberta (CA$21.3 million).

British Columbia’s sales improved to CA$5.5 million, lower than Nova Scotia’s CA$5.8 million.

Statistics Canada’s monthly sales by province are available here.