With the legalization of cannabis in Canada in late 2018, many edible users in the cannabis community saw this as a positive step in the right direction as legislation would provide control measures across the board in terms of pricing, dosing and quality of product. It was not until a year later in October 2019 that edibles were introduced but much to the dismay of consumers, legal cannabis goodies, regardless if you were to buy edibles online or instore, were a disappointment.
Pricing was the key factor. For example, if you were to buy weed in Canada legally a year ago, the average price was approximately $10.50 per gram, whereas an illegal gram could be had for about $5.75. Legal cannabis was just under double the price and many consumers, for various reasons when given the choice, would prefer the legal option, however, the price gap was far more then double when it came to edibles which resulted in many consumers turning to black market goodies.
If you were to buy edibles online or in-store at this time a 10mg THC chocolate bar was approximately $10 and a package of 20, 50mg cannabis gummies was about $55. During that time I was able to source some unlicensed edibles (not the kind you buy from an online dispensary in Canada) at $10 for 180mg. Legal edibles were going for approximately $10 for 10mg while the illicit stuff was coming in at $10 for 180mg—that is a significant price difference for a lot less bang, not to mention a volume discount was also available if I met the criteria.
After speaking to several local cannabis shops, various mail order marijuana depots and online dispensaries in Canada they all had key irrefutable arguments to buy weed in Canada legally—product safety and quality control. The best online dispensary in Canada stated that in the case of edibles, consumers should not bring their experiences with illicit goodies into the legal realm as dosing in regulated edibles are stringently monitored and more exact that what the dude down the street offers. The problem becomes even more painful when experienced users turn to the legal market and despite acknowledging the fact that they will need to shell out more for the cost of bureaucracy, they do not even come close to what they were paying previously—if the consumer needs to pay close to 10 times more for legal edibles, that is not even close to being competitive.
The best online dispensary in Canada said it best when they stated that product safety and quality control should always come first, however there are those who want or need to take a chance in order to save a buck. Those requiring higher doses of edibles and those on a strict budget may not have the luxury of choice. Hopefully in time it will not need to be this way and the government can find a way to make it more affordable for all to buy weed in Canada legally.