Statistics Canada released December retail sales for the country this morning, with cannabis sales growth increasing sequentially. Sales of C$298.4 million rose 14.3% from November, which had fallen 3% from October levels, and rose 102% from a year ago. In November, year-over-year growth had slowed below 100% for the first time, gaining 93%. For all of 2020, cannabis sales increased 121% to $2.62 billion.
Hifyre IQ had forecast sales of C$285 million based upon its data. The data analytics provider has been estimating January growth to be 12.6% below its December forecast, which would be 17% lower than the actual December sales level and up 62% from a year ago.
The increase is partially due to an extra day in December compared to November. An increase in the number of stores as well as falling flower prices have been boosting sales. In Ontario, the largest province in population, sales grew in line with the market at 14%. Alberta, which is the second-largest, grew 18%. Quebec grew 13%, while British Columbia gained 16.5%%.
Hifyre IQ estimated that product categories have been stable, with a slight decrease in pre-rolls towards flower. Flower and pre-rolls represent, according to Hifyre IQ data, 74% of the market.
The January sales will be released on March 19th.