Study Reveals Overwhelming Accessibility as Six in Ten Canadian Neighborhoods within 5-Minute Drive of Cannabis Dispensaries

Accessible Cannabis: Study Shows Majority of Canadian Neighborhoods within 5-Minute Drive of Dispensaries

A recent study conducted by a collaborative team of investigators from Ottawa and Toronto universities and research institutes has shed light on the accessibility of cannabis in , four years after its for adult use. The study reveals that nearly six out of every ten neighborhoods across the country are conveniently located within a five-minute drive of a cannabis dispensary, showcasing the remarkable level of access provided to consumers.

Examining longitudinal data on the status and location of all legal cannabis stores in Canada, the researchers found that as of October 2022, there were a total of 3,305 operating retail locations. By cross-referencing this dispensary location data against Statistics Canada’s “dissemination areas,” the study effectively demonstrates the distribution of cannabis dispensaries throughout the nation.

Contrary to concerns about closures, the study found that only 7 percent of retail cannabis locations permanently shut down over the course of four years. This indicates a relatively stable and resilient market. The research team also explored per capita stores and sales, in addition to analyzing closure rates and consumer retail accessibility.

Over the four-year period, the study reveals a significant increase in per capita stores and per capita sales each year, with average rates of 122.3% and 91.7%, respectively. Notably, private systems experienced larger increases compared to public systems, with per capita stores showing a 4.01 times greater growth and per capita sales increasing 2.46 times more.

Moreover, the study underscores the substantial expansion of Canada’s legal in the first four years following its legalization. While access varies across different Canadian markets, the overall growth and accessibility of legal cannabis dispensaries have been significant.

Interestingly, the accessibility of cannabis dispensaries now rivals that of liquor stores in Canada. A report by Statistics Canada prior to the launch of legal adult-use sales estimated that approximately 90 percent of Canadians lived within 10km (or about 6 miles) of a liquor store. In comparison, the study projected that only 35 percent of the population would live within the same distance of a planned cannabis store at the time of legalization.

In addition to the accessibility findings, multiple studies have highlighted positive outcomes associated with the presence of legal cannabis dispensaries. For instance, a 2021 study conducted by the University of New Mexico discovered that unemployment rates decreased in Colorado counties where dispensaries opened post-legalization, in comparison to counties without dispensaries.

Furthermore, another study from 2021 revealed a correlation between higher counts of medical and recreational storefront dispensaries and reduced opioid-related death rates, particularly deaths linked to synthetic like fentanyl. These findings suggest potential benefits and harm reduction associated with the accessibility of legal cannabis.

Supporting the positive , a 2020 study examined crime rates in Colorado before and after the state’s legalization, observing a substantial reduction in certain types of crimes— crime, larceny, and simple assault—in border counties near Colorado.

In conclusion, the recent study highlights the remarkable accessibility of cannabis in Canada, with nearly six out of every ten neighborhoods located within a five-minute drive of a cannabis dispensary. The findings not only demonstrate the expansion and stability of the legal cannabis market but also align with previous studies that suggest positive outcomes in areas with legal dispensaries. The accessibility presents a fascinating in the evolving landscape of cannabis regulations and consumer access.

Malvin Felix
I'm Malvin, a cannabis news enthusiast who finds joy in staying updated about the latest industry trends. My passion led me to become a dedicated writer, entrepreneur, and investor in the cannabis space. Through my writing, I aim to educate and spark discussions, while my entrepreneurial ventures and strategic investments reflect my commitment to driving positive change in the industry.

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