Manitoba approved seven cannabis retailers to open one store each in rural communities, a selection that was made via a draw and will bring the province’s tally of pot stores to 30.
Fire and Flower, which already has 17 licensed cannabis stores in Alberta, Saskatchewan and Ontario, was selected to open a store in Swan River, Man. The Edmonton-based company confirmed on Thursday that it plans to open in the rural community.
Calgary-based High Tide Inc., which operates Canna Cabana stores in Alberta and has branded outlets in Ontario, confirmed it will open a store in Niverville.
In Manitoba, this is the province’s second phase of pre-qualified cannabis retailers, who still need to go through the lengthy licence process with provincial government agency Liquor, Gaming and Cannabis.
Manitoba has been relatively progressive with its licensing of cannabis stores, with roughly one licensed venue for every 59,000 residents. This compares with one store for every 43,000 residents in Alberta, which so far has the most retail pot outlets in the country, and one per roughly 600,000 people in Ontario, Canada’s biggest province.
Other retailers selected through Manitoba’s randomized draw are: Westleaf Inc. in Altona; Canada Corporation (Garden Variety) in Flin Flon; The Viscount Gort Motor Hotel Ltd. in Lac du Bonnet; The Corktown Cannabis Company in Russell-Binscarth; and Northern Hotel in Virden.
The retailers have 10 days to confirm their interest to Manitoba Growth, Enterprise and Trade.