Manitoba MMJ firms urge province to give locals a role in rec market

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Manitoba’s medical marijuana businesses want to ensure that local MJ businesses get a crack at participating in the province’s emerging recreational cannabis market.

MMJ retailers and licensed producers (LP) in Winnipeg are urging the provincial government to adopt a “made in Manitoba” business model to prevent large, established MJ companies from monopolizing the market after the planned legalization of adult-use cannabis next summer, CBC News reported.

The request came after Manitoba’s government reached out to potential cannabis producers and retailers as it considers how adult-use marijuana should be produced, distributed and sold in the province.

If the province follows the advice of local cannabis business leaders, that could mean more opportunities for Manitoban entrepreneurs.

Provincial governments across Canada are weighing feedback from MMJ businesses and the public as they craft regulations on cannabis distribution, retail and consumption.

An executive from Winnipeg’s Delta 9 Bio-Tech, the first LP in the province, told CBC he’d like to see an array of local participation in the industry to keep profits in Manitoba and contribute to the provincial economy.

Justice Minister Heather Stefanson has said that the province is leaning toward using the existing Liquor and Gaming Authority as a cannabis regulator, but that “all options are on the table” when it comes to cannabis distribution and retail sales.