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Legalized cannabis in Canada and the United States is not killing illegal markets

Even if cannabis is legalized, some users prefer to stick to the usual illegal sources.


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May 24, 2022

Cannabis plants in the greenhouse of Cresco Labs Inc. in Indiantown, Florida

Eva Marie Uzkategi / Bloomberg via Getty Images

Several Cannabis Studies in Canada and the United States show that illegal sources are cheap or easily accessible, so users continue to buy drugs from illegal sources even after they are available from regulated legitimate stores. increase.

The findings suggest that policy makers who want to wipe out the cannabis black market need to make sure that new legal sources are widely available at competitive prices.

Cannabis has recently been legalized for recreational use in several countries, including Canada, Mexico and South Africa, and in 18 states in the United States.Proponents of legalization Less risk for users to buy cannabis from regulated stores Their cannabis products are safer than those of illegal dealers, have better dose labeling and quality control measures, and stores are less likely to sell to minors.

However, not all users choose to buy from regulated shops. For example, Canada legalized cannabis in 2018, but by 2020, about half of the cannabis used domestically was still illegally obtained.

A new survey of about 12,000 cannabis users in Canada and the United States found that about 35% of Canadian and 27% of U.S. users are the most common reasons to buy weeds whose prices are illegal. It turned out to be. Convenience is the second most common factor, cited by 17-20% of respondents in both countries.

The survey was conducted in 2019 and 2020. The average price of legal cannabis in Canada in 2020 was $ 8.04 per gram and the average price of illegal weeds was $ 6.45, but the price difference has narrowed since 2018 and the price in 2021 was $ 6.63. ..According to each, $ 5.52 Another study..

This is because the number of stores selling legal cannabis has increased over the last four years. David Hammond At the University of Waterloo in Ontario, Canada. “This is just a function to get the market up and running. There is more price competition right now.”

Steve Rolls At the Transform Drugs Policy Foundation, a UK charity that promotes legalization, people say there may be other reasons for sticking to dealers, such as loyalty and customs. “There is an established supply system that doesn’t just disappear overnight,” he says.

Journal reference: Journal of research on alcohol and drugs, DOI: 10.15288 / jsad.2022.83.392

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Legalized cannabis in Canada and the United States is not killing illegal markets

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