October 17 should be a national holiday in Canada.
Is the excitement over the prospect of legal pot overwhelming the rural Canadian community as great as it is in the urban centres of Alberta? I haven’t been able to turn on the news in Calgary for several weeks without an hour-by-hour update on how things are coming (or not coming) toward legalization day. Never mind Thanksgiving, this is bigger than Christmas.
If you note some sarcasm, you’re right. I’m boring as hell — I don’t drink or smoke dope — so where and when and whether pot becomes available isn’t going to directly affect my life. I am just somewhat amazed or surprised just how important this seems to a certain segment of society. It is almost like this has been a societal NEED that is finally being met and thank God the Trudeau government is on the job.
Whatever marijuana means or doesn’t mean in your life it is interesting to note it is almost suddenly big business. Why farmers are mucking around fighting the weather to harvest wheat and barley, or figuring out an odorless way to spread manure — weed is where it is at!!!
According to one news release I received this week “Deloitte estimates the legal Canadian cannabis market has a base retail value between $4.9 billion to $8.7 billion, which increases to between $12.7 billion and $22.6 billion when cannabis products and services such as growers, lighting, and hydroponics are included.”
Compare that to Statistics Canada figures showing the overall Canadian agriculture sector generates $112 billion of Gross Domestic Product (GDP). So dope has plenty of value — whether it is good or bad in terms of societal value is a personal call.
Let’s face it, growing marijuana likely will not always be the lucrative gold mine it appears to be at the moment, but as a side benefit, if you do run into a bad day in the pot business, smoking a bit of “crop” just might make the day seem better. I don’t think you can do that with canola.
Lee Hart is a field editor with Grainews based in Calgary. Contact him at 403-592-1964 or by email at [email protected]