CCSI image 1 2022-03-25

*The provincial excise taxes vary. Cannabis Benchmarks estimates the population weighted average excise tax for Canada.

**CCSI is inclusive of the estimated Federal & Provincial cannabis excise taxes..

The CCSI was assessed at C$5.22 per gram this week, up 1.1% from last week’s C$5.17 per gram. This week’s price equates to US$1,884 per pound at the current exchange rate.

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Statistics Canada recently released retail sales data for January 2022, showing nationwide legal cannabis sales dropping from the previous month. Sales in January slid to C$347.2M. The month-on-month decrease of C$7.5M, or 2.1%, continues the trend of a flattening market, which commenced last summer. Monthly sales have averaged C$354M over the last six months for which data is available.

Also noteworthy in the latest report is the strong downward revision of the December 2021 sales figure. In last month’s retail sales report, December sales were estimated at C$382.4M. The latest release removed C$27.6M from the December sales estimate, bringing it C$354.8M. Looking at the same data on a per day basis paints a picture of softening demand in Canada’s legal cannabis industry, where sales have been sliding each month from September 2021 (C$11.8M / day) through January 2022 (C$11.2M / day). 

Trends in mature, state-legal U.S. cannabis markets have consistently shown that October-November and January-February are typically periods of relatively weaker sales, providing hope that Canadian legal cannabis demand could pick up again come March, when a significant month-on-month boost is frequently observed. In other words, the current Canadian sales slump may be due to a maturing market leaving behind the consistent growth of its early stages and settling into seasonal sales trends.