Cannabis shops in Quebec now sell poutine sauce, jerky and nuts; sales remain minimal


The few customers who were browsing for edibles at a Quebec (SQDC) cannabis store will have noticed some new options on the shelves.

While edible products commonly associated with cannabis, such as gummy bears or brownies, are considered illegal due to their potential appeal to minors, SQDC stores now sell cannabis-infused spicy crackers, mini sausages, chicken ramen, dill pickle-flavored nuts, cinnamon and blackcurrant bites, and, of course, poutine gravy.

SQDC spokeswoman Vanessa Roland said the provincially run organization changes its product lineup twice a year, but edible product proposals are evaluated throughout the year after they are submitted.

She added that the new products did not make much difference to the end result.

“In general, it has piqued customer interest. However, edibles make up less than 1 percent of sales at SQDC,” she said.

SQDC President and CEO Jacques Farcy said in 2023 that the state-owned company does not plan to expand its operations after recognizing that sales were stagnating and the illegal market remained active in the province.

“If you look at other Canadian provinces where the legal framework is a little different, you can see that the size of the illegal market is quite comparable. They absorb between 50 and 60 percent of the market,” he told the Canadian Press.

In Ontario, however, grocery is a growth industry, with the number of units delivered to stores increasing from around 1 million in early 2022 to around 1.5 million by the end of 2023.

Chewing gum, chocolate, candy and baked goods sold in Ontario Cannabis Stores (OCS) accounted for 10 percent of their sales in 2023 ($87,855,476).

Gummies and other edibles are also sold at several cannabis shops in the Mohawk community of Kanesatake, about 40 minutes north of Montreal.

A variety of cannabis edibles are on display at the Ontario Cannabis Store in Toronto on Friday, Jan. 3, 2020. Quebec has some of the strictest cannabis laws in the country and strict rules on the sale of edibles that may be of interest to youth. When the city began putting edibles on shelves earlier this year, cauliflower bites were an expected choice. (Tijana Martin, The Canadian Press)