Week in Weed – August 19, 2023

| David Brown

This week at StratCann, we covered an ongoing story about a decision made by the AGLC to include CBN within the total allowable THC in a cannabis product (more to come on this soon), the issuance of the first formal cannabis farmgate licence in BC, and looked at Ontario projecting $463 million in revenue from cannabis sales, taxes for 2023-24.

We also covered Canopy Growth entering into an agreement for the sale of its Hershey Drive facility in Smiths Falls, the Australian Greens tabling a bill to legalize cannabis, a new study showing legal, medical cannabis lowers individual market health insurance premiums in the US, and reported on a large raid in Ontario of an unlicensed facility. 

Elsewhere in cannabis news:

CBC covered a new private cannabis store in New Brunswick, McCannabis in Salisbury. New Brunswick currently lists six private cannabis stores, six farmgate stores, and 26 Cannabis NB locations. 

In Newfoundland, Taylor Giovannini, co-owner of Oceanic Releaf, is making news again along with Atlantic Cultivation’s CEO Chris Crosbie as they discuss cannabis excise taxes and the absurd $1 per gram federal rate, 75 percent of which goes back to the province. 

The Prince George Citizen featured the region’s newly-licensed micro cultivator Kush Mountain Craft Cannabis. The owners were the recipients of a $150,000 loan from Community Futures to assist in the $3 million start-up. 

Winnipeg Free Press covered the impending closure of the Cronos cannabinoid factory in Winnipeg. The 84,000-square-foot facility was purpose-built for Apotex in 1990 at a cost of about $50 million. Cronos Group Inc. bought the former Apotex Fermentation plant in 2019 for an undisclosed sum, partnering with Boston-based Ginkgo Bioworks Inc. to produce cultured cannabinoids. 

The first year of enhanced entrance security at the Saskatoon Ex resulted in “a tremendous amount of marijuana” being seized. 

Tilray announced it is taking on full ownership of the cannabis beverage company it ran with Molson Coors Canada, Truss, which is behind the XMG, Little Victory, Mollo, Veryvell, House of Terpenes, and Bedfellows Liquid Arts brands.

The New York Times ran a feature on Smiths Falls and the sales of the old Hershey Factory from Canopy back to Hershey. Since April, Canopy has sold seven of its buildings across the country, the latest being the plant at 1 Hershey Drive in Smiths Falls.

Finance & Markets

Auxly Cannabis Group Inc. shared their Q2 2023 financial report, with total net revenues of $22 million, a decrease of $2 million or eight percent from the previous quarter and a decrease of $5.3 million or 20 percent compared to the same period in 2022. The company says it still managed to retain the #5 LP position in Canada with a 5.2 percent market share and continued to improve sales in the pre-roll segment, with Back Forty Wedding Pie growing to become the #1 non-infused pre-roll SKU nationally in the quarter.

Approximately 85 percent of cannabis sales during the period originated from sales to British Columbia, Alberta, and Ontario. Net losses for the three months ended June 30, 2023, were $12.9 million.

Organigram announced a deal to supply 4C LABS cannabis for distribution to medical cannabis patients in the UK. Under the terms of the agreement, OGI expects to supply approximately 600 kilograms. The Canadian producer now has international supply agreements in place with Israel, Australia, Germany, and the United Kingdom.

MediPharm Labs Corp. announced financial results for its second quarter, which ended June 30, 2023. The company completed its first commercial delivery to the United States. The delivery consisted of clinical trial material for a fully funded large-scale phase two clinical trial.

MediPharm’s Canadian medical cannabis revenue for Q2 2023 was $3.8M versus $0.2M in Q2 2022 and $0.6M in Q1 2023, driven by the integration of the VIVO medical channel, Canna Farms. International Medical revenue in Q2 2023 was $3 million. The growth of International Medical was largely driven by the integration of VIVO’s Australian business, Beacon Medical Australia.

Revenue for Q2 2023 of $9.6 million increased approximately 120% versus Q2 2022 and 64% versus Q1 2023.

High Tide announced a new store in Oshawa, Ontario, their 51st in Ontario. High Tide’s Canna Cabana now has 155 locations across Canada. 

Delta 9 Cannabis released its Q2 2023 report. The cannabis producer, retailer, and distributor had net revenue of $18.3 million for the second quarter of 2023, an increase of 4% from $17.5 million for the same quarter last year. Gross profit was $5.2 million, an increase of 12% from $4.6 million for the same quarter the previous year. Loss from operations was $3.5 million for the second quarter of 2023 versus a loss from operations of $3.4 million for the same quarter last year. The release also included earnings reports from Q1. 

Rubicon Organics shared their Q2 2023 financial results. The certified organic producer reported net revenue of $11.3 million (28 percent increase) and $20.1 million (44 percent increase) for the three and six months ended June 30, 2023.

This quarter included the introduction of three new flavours of live rosin edibles under its brand, 1964 Supply Co.

SNDL released its Q2 2023 report. Revenue for its cannabis retail locations was $71.9 million for the second quarter of 2023, with a $17.8 gross margin and $2.3 million in earnings. The report also notes its “data licensing program is driving improved profitability and supplier relationships.”

SNDLs cannabis production saw net revenue of $20.9 million, a gross margin of -$1.2 million and a loss of $14 million. After recently “rightsizing” its Alberta facility, SNDL has now centralized most manufacturing activities and consolidated processing, labelling, and excising at its Kelowna, BC facilities.

SNDL’s business is operated and reported in four segments: Liquor Retail, Cannabis Retail, Cannabis Operations, and Investments. With its ownership interest in Nova, SNDL is Canada’s largest private-sector cannabis retailer, operating 196 locations under its four retail banners: Value Buds, Spiritleaf, Superette, and Firesale Cannabis.

As of August 11, 2023, the Spiritleaf store count is 98 (21 corporate stores and 77 franchise stores), the Value Buds store count is 91 corporate stores, the Superette store count is five corporate stores, and the Firesale store count is two corporate stores.

Fire & Flower announced that Fika Cannabis was the winner of an auction for aspects of the cannabis retail company and brand. The deal still needs to be completed, and more details are expected. 

MTL Cannabis received final approval to list its common shares on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the trading symbol “MTLC” and to commence trading at the opening on Monday, August 21, 2023. 

MTL Cannabis is the parent company of Montréal Medical Cannabis Inc., Abba Medix Corp., IsoCanMed Inc., and Canada House Clinics Inc.

​​International Cannabis News

Police in Trinidad say they seized 6.48 kg of cannabis illegally imported from Canada.