Price Gap Widens Between Legal And Illegal Cannabis

The latest data from Statistics Canada shows that the price gap between legal and illegal cannabis is growing wider.

The quarterly report on cannabis prices issued by Statistics Canada shows that prices for cannabis products on the black market are falling even and the price charged at legal cannabis vendors is on the rise.

The Ottawa-based statistical agency says that the price gap between the two types of cannabis is as wide as $4.72 a gram, on average. Based on 572 survey responses, Statistics Canada said the price for illegal cannabis fell from $6.23 per gram on average at the start of this year to $5.93 a gram in the three months ended June 30.

Legal cannabis, meanwhile, went from $10.21 per gram to $10.65 during the same period. That means the gap between the two is now as wide as $4.72 a gram. And that gap is getting bigger, not smaller. Three months ago, StatsCan reported the first full quarter of price information showed the gap between legal and illegal cannabis was $3.62 a gram.

That means the illegal stuff today is roughly half the cost of the legal variety of the drug. So it is not surprising that more than half — 59% — of Canadians said they purchased illegal cannabis.

More than a third of them said they did so because the legal version is too expensive. The rest said they did so because they preferred the quality of the illegal options, or because it was too difficult to buy the legal stuff where they live.