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Being from Canada, I've had a firsthand look at the rollout of legal cannabis here – the second phase of which has been dubbed "Cannabis 2.0."
It hasn't gone perfectly. We've seen the Canadian cannabis sector decimated so much over the past 14 months. But that's all changing…
You see, a significant factor in the sector's struggle has been the inability of producers to offer competitive products.
When 80% of the cannabis products consumed aren't smokeable, but in the edible format – cookies, chocolates, muffins, you name it – you simply can't compete with an illegal market.
The government isn't slow, though. They know this.
The problem was regulating the product and keeping it safe and out of the hands of children, which resulted in products with plain packaging, under 10 milligrams of THC per package, and little to no curb appeal.
But now… we've had a year and a half to work through cultivation, warehousing, fulfillment, and distribution issues from licensed producers.
We've had a year and a half to work through retail dispensaries and government-owned e-commerce platform problems.
And we've had a year and a half to work out product kinks and come up with some incredible unique offerings that can now, finally, actually compete with the black market.
We've launched beverages, mints, vapes, and a whole variety of new products that consumers love.
Now we can compete. We've got the cultivation, the distribution, the sales channels (both online and retail), and the final step of the equation – products.
These new products are doing more for the consumer, the producers, and the economy than we ever thought.
Canada alone just generated $8.1 billion in recreational, medical, and illegal cannabis sales over the past 12 months.
Finally, over the last two weeks, we've seen a significant increase in funding, merger and acquisition (M&A) activity, and a quiet sentiment boost. Strategic mergers and acquisitions (M&As) have been a leading trend in the cannabis industry this year.