Online cannabis sales anticipated for Yukon’s private retailers

Triple J’s Canna Space in Whitehorse on April 17, 2019, opens their first container of product. Private cannabis retailers could be unrestricted from selling products online as of this May, the Minister responsible for the Yukon Liquor Corporation Ranj Pillai told the legislative assembly on April 6, 2022. (Crystal Schick/Yukon News file)

Private pot retailers in the Yukon will join the online market later this spring, according to the territorial government.

During question period on April 6, the Minister responsible for the Yukon Liquor Corporation, Ranj Pillai, said the Yukon government is committed to bringing private online cannabis sales in May.

A change to the Cannabis Control and Regulation Act, introduced in the legislature in October 2021, would allow the new rules to come into effect.

Right now, online purchase and home delivery to Yukoners over age 19 is only permitted through the Yukon government’s e-commerce site, Cannabis Yukon.

Yukon Party Leader Currie Dixon posed the question on online cannabis market sales to pin down when private retailers will have the same access as government retailers.

Why is the minister continuing to allow the government to sell online, but not allowing private retailers to do the same thing, Dixon asked.

READ MORE: Online cannabis sales coming to Yukon

In a public survey conducted by the Yukon government in 2017, just over half of respondents were in favour of allowing sales of cannabis using a mixture of government and private retail stores, while 58 per cent of respondents agreed that online sales and home delivery of cannabis should be allowed.

Pillai said online sales will displace the black market.

In a news release dated Oct. 18, 2021, during the 2020-21 fiscal year, online sales through Cannabis Yukon made up approximately 0.2 per cent of total cannabis sales through the Yukon Liquor Corporation, including its sales to retailers.

-With files from Haley Ritchie

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