Statistics Canada released December retail sales for the country this morning, with cannabis sales increasing from November by 8.5% to C$382.4 million. The sales were up 28.5% from a year ago, down from 35.8% in December’s growth rate:
Hifyre IQ had forecast sales of C$392 million based upon its data. The data analytics provider has been estimating January sales to be 8% lower, which would be 5.7% below the actual December level and up 29% from a year ago.
An increase in the number of stores as well as falling flower prices that bring consumers from the illicit market have been boosting sales. In Ontario, the largest province in population, sales were up 5% from November and 68% from a year ago, reflecting the increase in the number of stores. Alberta, which is the second-largest province, was up 11% from November and up 3% from a year ago. Quebec was up 14% from November and 9% from a year ago, while British Columbia was up 510% from November as it advanced 22% from a year ago.
Hifyre IQ estimated that product categories have seen a shift towards non-flower products, which it estimates at a record 30% in December compared to 28.5% in November. In January, Hifyre estimates that non-flower products decreased to 29.5%, with a reduction in edibles driving the change.
The January sales data will be released on March 18th.