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Wednesday, Jun 29, 2022
Mugglehead Magazine
Alternative investment news based in Vancouver, B.C.


Over half of cannabis consumers bought legal in 2021: Health Canada

Canadians’ attitudes haven’t shifted much over the past year

Over half of pot consumers bought legal in 2021 - Health Canada - woman smoking
Photo by Jared Gnam

While Canadians’ attitudes toward weed didn’t change much this year, patterns of use have continued to shift alongside the pandemic and more are choosing to access legal sellers.

In the Canadian Cannabis Survey 2021 — an annual questionnaire conducted by Health Canada that began in 2017 — 53 per cent of respondents say a licensed storefront was their usual source, up from 41 per cent in 2020.

According to the agency, Covid-19 continues to impact consumption. Less people who use cannabis (49 per cent) say their use habits didn’t change than last year (56 per cent). But 29 per cent say they consumed more, up from 22 per cent, while the same number of people say they used less (22 per cent).

Over half of cannabis consumers bought legal in 2021 - Health Canada - source

For the first time, a majority of Canadian cannabis consumers reported they usually got their pot from a legal source. Chart via Health Canada

The changes in consumption over the pandemic mostly affected younger age groups, with 25 per cent of people 25 and older increasing use, compared to 40 per cent of respondents aged 20–24 and 46 per cent of aged 16–19.

Read more: Youth cannabis use unchanged post-legalization: Canadian study

Read more: UBCO study looking at impact of cannabis use among Indigenous peoples

Driving after cannabis use has fallen over the past year to among 16 per cent of consumers from 19 per cent last year.

Reports of daily or almost daily consumption has remained almost unchanged at 25 per cent, but overall consumption shrunk slightly to 25 per cent from 27 per cent of respondents.

Over half of pot consumers bought legal in 2021 - Health Canada - frequency of use

Daily or almost daily consumption hasn’t changed much since last year

Smoking (down to 74 per cent from 75 per cent) is still the most common way to consume pot, but vaporizing (up to 28 per cent from 24 per cent), drinking (up to 15 per cent from 7 per cent) and topicals have all grown in popularity. Eating food containing cannabis remained the second-most popular option at 54 per cent (unchanged).

At very similar rates to a year ago, a majority of users and non-users say cannabis smoke can be harmful (74 and 77 per cent), daily or almost daily use raises risk of mental health problems (56 and 68 per cent) and teenagers are at greater risk of harm than adults (84 and 82 per cent).

Read more: Health Canada issues warning on risks of ‘copycat’ cannabis products

In terms of social acceptance, a majority of Canadians still believe any form of occasional cannabis consumption is okay (62–68 per cent), while alcohol is still rated more acceptable (89 per cent) and e-cigarette or tobacco use less acceptable (49–50 per cent). A slight majority (51–55 per cent) say regular pot use is socially unacceptable.

Over half of pot consumers bought legal in 2021 - Health Canada - social acceptability

Most Canadians don’t take issue with occasional substance use


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