The Covid-19 pandemic has exposed the strengths and weaknesses among cannabis companies. While many dispensaries have reported big increases in sales, others find themselves scrambling to address a new landscape.
Making a hard pivot isn’t uncommon for cannabis companies, but several were already well-positioned for the crisis.
Whether it was already having delivery enabled sales or the space to create social distancing within stores, several companies have found themselves on the right side of the crisis, while others were clearly unprepared.
Recreational dispensaries in Massachusetts looked like they finally making up lost ground over the slow rollout. The virus caused shoppers to crowd stores in order to stock up.
Those shoppers were right to do so because the state decided there would be no more rec sales, only medical marijuana. This will benefit the medical dispensary owners, but the recreational stores will certainly feel an unlimited closure.
Andy Seeger, a Research Manager at cannabis data firm Brightfield Group said, “COVID is scrambling supply-chains and route-to-market options, forcing the notoriously slow governmental cannabis offices to respond much more rapidly than we have ever seen. Patient access and the healthcare as well as general business sustainability within the industry is now pushing liberalization of multiple markets across the country. This is a strange time, and in some ways an opportunity to right many market inefficiencies within the market by swiftly addressing issues and challenges.”
According to Brightfield Group, 52% of cannabis consumers said they stocked up or planned to stock up on cannabis, only 28% said they wouldn’t. Even though the virus specifically attacks the respiratory system, only 7% of cannabis consumers said they were going to cut back on inhalable products.