A majority of Canadians are high on Shoppers Drug Mart sellingmedicinal marijuana, especially young adults and higher-income earners, a new Forum Research poll says.
Sixty-one per cent said they approve of Canada’s largest pharmacy applying to become a licensed marijuana producer for the purpose of retailing medicinal weed while 30 per cent disapprove and the remainder have no opinion either way, the new survey says.
Besides the 85 per cent of recent cannabis users, those ages 18 to 34 were most in favour, with 76 per cent giving Shoppers the thumbs up along with 71 per cent of the wealthiest surveyed (earning between $100,000 to $250,000 a year).
The regions most on board with the Shoppers application are the Atlantic provinces at 72 per cent and B.C. at 67 per cent, the poll shows.
The biggest group of Canadians who think the giant pharmaceutical retailer should butt out altogether include those 65 and over and Bloc Québécois supporters at 37 per cent, along with Conservative voters at 41 per cent, it found.
However overall, 62 per cent reported they will not change their store visitation habits if marijuana becomes available at Shoppers.
“It is clear that Canadians are as enthusiastic about seeing medical marijuana in the nation’s leading pharmacy chain as they are about legalization in general — in other words, very enthusiastic,” said Forum Research president Lorne Bozinoff.
While the LCBO has expressed interest in selling cannabis whenever it is legalized, Canadians are not as enthusiastic about seeing it sold in liquor stores, noted Bozinoff.
“I don’t think some liquor buyers feel comfortable being in the same store as marijuana buyers. Also, some may think the LCBO is a more costly distribution channel,” he explained.
“Pharmacies and the current retail distribution system, dispensaries, are preferred,” he said.
The poll also found one-fifth of Canadian adults have used marijuana or cannabis in the past year, especially younger people (39 per cent), and 24 per cent of men compared to 16 per cent of women. Also, 27 per cent of those with some college or university education reported using it in the last 12 months.
In total, 27 per cent of Canadians say they will purchase marijuana once it is legal while 17 per cent say they are “very likely” to buy it at that point, while 13 per cent of those 65 and over say they will try it whenever the law changes, the study says.
The Forum poll was conducted by phone November 9-10 in a random sampling of 1,474 voting-aged Canadians. Results are considered accurate within 3 per cent, 19 times out of 20.
Weed by the numbers
20 per cent of Canadians have used marijuana in the last year
27 per cent of Canadians say they will purchase it if legalized
13 per cent of Canadians 65-plus say they will try it if it’s legal
62 per cent of Canadians will not change their shopping habits at Shoppers if the pharmacy sells medicinal marijuana
Source: The Star