Statistics Canada released January retail sales for the country, with cannabis sales falling from the inflated December levels, down 7.1% to C395.5 million. December was unrevised at C$425.9 million. The sales were up 14.1% from a year ago, down from the reported 20.% December growth rate. In 2022, total sales increased 17.9% to C$4.52 billion.
An increase in the number of stores as well as falling flower prices that bring consumers from the illicit market have been boosting sales. In Ontario, the largest province in population, sales were down 9.5% from December and up 14% from a year ago. Alberta, which is the second-largest province, was down 5.8% from December and up 13% from a year ago. Quebec was down 9.3% from December and up 3% from a year ago, while British Columbia was down 3.9% from December as it advanced 22% from a year ago.
Hifyre IQ had forecast January sales at C$413.3 million based upon its data. The data analytics provider has been estimating February sales to be 9.9% lower, which would be 5.9% below the actual actual level and up 14.9% from a year ago, based upon its data. Hifyre estimates sales outside of flower and pre-rolls at 31.4% in January and 31.7% in February.
The February sales data will be released on April 21st.