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British Columbia-based cannabis media group Lift has made a big prediction about the future of supply and demand of Canadian cannabis. With legalization on the horizon for recreational use, the demand for government regulated pot will go from zero to 100 real quick. So, will the currently regulated producers be able to scale their business to supply all of Canada?

Canada looks to scale up production

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Lift has estimated that, as of mid-2017, Canadian cannabis producers have enough capital to expand to a massive 500,000 kg of flower per year. That may seem like an obscene amount of herb, but the Canadian market is well known for their deep passion for cannabis. Combine that with an already substantial medical market, and you’ve got the highest demand for cannabis in Canadian history.

Matei Olaru, the CEO of Lift has gone on record predicting that 500,000 kg’s a year still won’t be enough. He claims that once legalization strikes next year, the demand will be upwards of 650,000 kg per year.

The shortage could affect MMJ patients

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With 170,000 patients already on the Canadian medical cannabis program(ACMPR), the shortage could backfire onto their prescriptions. Producers would likely prefer growing cannabis for the recreational market, as it would likely have a higher price than the medicinal counterpart.

Justin Trudeau’s government has stated multiple times that the medical market will remain unchanged following recreational legalization, but no one really knows what could happen with supply and demand.

It does remain unlikely that Canada will see an overwhelming increase in consumption once legalization takes place because many Canadians already have access to unregulated dispensaries that are expanding around the country.

The determining factor for a sustainable MMJ market will come down to the pricing for the consumer, as well as the implementation of distribution and sales. If the Liberal government can make recreational cannabis as simple as purchasing a bottle of wine from a liquor store, then 2018 looks like it’ll be a great year for us cannabis-loving Canadians.

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