cannabis ontario

Ontario just surpassed a ridiculous new milestone in the number of cannabis stores

Ontario has an ever-growing number of cannabis stores, and the province has just passed a new milestone that might surprise you.

6 of Spade in Toronto became the 1000th cannabis store in the province when it opened in August.

According to the OCS website, Toronto alone currently has around 250 cannabis stores, accounting for about a quarter of the province's tally. That's also four times as many weed dispensaries as liquor stores.

That's a big leap from the five that were initially allowed in the city when pot shops first opened in Ontario. Launching in April 2019, 42 more opened in Toronto by the end of that year, and a cap on pot store numbers was lifted by the AGCO in January 2020.

Toronto's stores are all packed into 630 square kilometres of space, and dozens more applications are still currently processing through the AGCO.

Stroll down a main street in Toronto and you'll likely run into multiple dispensaries within blocks of each other.

Even within the past few days, OCS has announced the opening of around half a dozen new pot stores in Ontario on their Twitter account.

Black-owned and family-operated 6 of Spade was opened by Amiga Wheatle and her husband Jeremiah, who celebrated their first day in business with a DJ, educational workshops and giveaways.

Located in Little Portugal, the store is 700 square feet and has African art on the walls and a mural featuring prominent Black figures Emperor Haile Selassie, Muhammad Ali, Madam C.J. Walker and Bob Marley. The business owners are also aiming to address historical inequities around cannabis policing through their hiring practices.

The OCS website shouted out some other milestone stores in a roundup celebrating getting to 1,000, including the first store in Peel Region (Ganjika in Brampton) and Ontarios northernmost store (Off the Stem in Kapuskasing).

Whether all 1,000 stores will stay open or if we've reached a saturation point remains to be seen, but some cannabis stores that have opened up in the past couple of years are already shutting down.

Lead photo by

Jack Landau

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