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How Much Inventory Is Actually Sold?

According to Statistics Canada’s recently released quarterly inventory report, 954,867 kilograms of unpackaged cannabis inventory exists in warehouses all over the country. Considering that only three months earlier that number was over 1 million, this decrease of 7.8% is welcome, but is it enough?

Can’t Catch Up

When it comes to dried cannabis, sales never seem to catch up to new production, let alone make a dent in inventory numbers. In March, 39.7% more units were packaged than the month before, with over 11 million new packaged units entering circulation while only 21.88% of the 32.8 million remaining units in inventory were sold. While production has been fairly consistently decreasing, aside from the spike in March, and sales have bounced back from the post-holiday slump, only around 1 in 5 packaged units were sold between December 2020 and March 2021.

Fewer Than 1 in 6 Units Sold

Unfortunately, dried cannabis is the category with the highest turn-over from inventory to sale—other formats aren’t faring as well.

Production of edibles had been going down consistently, dropping from 3.6 million new packaged units created in November to only 2.6 million in March, but as sales yo-yo after the holidays, inventory is increasing, with 16.1 million packaged units sitting in federal and provincial warehouses. In March, only 12.5% of packaged inventory was sold, while production increased 21%.

Extracts saw a similar spike in production in March, increasing 29.3% over the month before, while sales increased 11%, barely surpassing pre-holiday numbers. There were 12.6 million packaged units awaiting sale in March, but fewer than 1 in 10 were sold.

Sales of topicals seem to be surging, however, growing 25% between February and March and nearly 85% during the holidays and production has risen accordingly. In December, only 51,844 new packaged units of topicals were packaged, but in March there was nearly three times as many produced, leaving 320,734 packages in inventory. With just over 24,000 units sold in March, that accounts for 10.7% of the inventory for the previous month.

Overall, dried flower still maintains its spot as the most common purchase, making up just over 65% of sales, but edibles, making up 19.4%, and extracts at 15% are continuing to take more of its share.

Quarterly Cannabis Sales (Packaged Units) – March 2021

Total: 10,946,235

Dried Flower: 7,136,353

Edibles: 2,126,211

Extracts: 1,659,370

Topicals: 24,301

Plants: 0

Seeds: 8,450

Quarterly Cannabis Inventory (Packaged Units) – March 2021

Dried Flower: 34,416,497

Edibles: 16,111,951

Extracts: 12,682,554

Topicals: 320,734

Seeds: 131,403

Plants: 6