Ontario-based Natural MedCo has become the first company in Canada to offer marijuana clones for sale to legal recreational consumers, achieving a first-mover advantage for an untapped and underserved consumer segment.
Natural MedCo’s Eve brand – which bills itself as “Canada’s premier cannabis brand for all women” – succeeded in getting its clones to market in Newfoundland and Labrador ahead of competitors.
Industry sources estimate the recreational home-grow market could be on par with the home-brew industry, valuing it at hundreds of millions of dollars.
Companies across Canada have been gearing up to capitalize on the niche market – from sales of equipment, genetics and other supplies – but consumers have not had legal access to starting materials.
“Looking at this as a preliminary trial scenario, we’ll learn from our mistakes and fix things up, and then (when) the springtime comes, hopefully we’ll be able to launch in other Canadian marketplaces,” he said in an interview with Marijuana Business Daily.
“The margins on clones are very positive for the company, and it’s also a unique service to be able to offer to consumers given the new landscape we’re operating in.”
Different varieties of clones are being sold on the CannabisNL website for almost 40 Canadian dollars ($30) each.
Roedding believes Newfoundland – and other provinces that allow home cultivation – could see similar results to Uruguay, the only other country to legalize recreational cannabis so far.
That translates to more than 8,000 potential consumers in Newfoundland, he said, and if they purchase the full allotment allowed, “you could multiply that by four.”
Licensed producers have offered a limited selection of seeds and clones to authorized medical cannabis users.
Tom Ulanowski, president of Nextleaf Labs in Coquitlam, British Columbia, expects a healthy market for clones and seeds when they’re more widely available.
“Live plants offer many advantages over seeds, namely that the phenotype and chemotype of the particular variety of cannabis is known, and plants themselves are typically two-four weeks old when shipped, saving some time for the grower,” he said.
“I hope to see more provinces offer cannabis starting materials in the coming months, especially as new companies are licensed to sell plants and seeds.”
Matt Lamers can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org
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