A pair of companies have been named the first licensed to sell legal cannabis in Flin Flon as determined through a random draw by the provincial government last week.
Two retailers were selected for a number of smaller communities across the province including Flin Flon, one as a first preference retailer and a second as a standby retailer in case the first selected group does not choose to open a retail operation. According to the provincial ministry of Growth, Enterprise and Trade, the process involved a randomized draw with all pre-qualified retailers receiving one ballot for each community where they have expressed interest.
The rights to Flin Flon’s first legal cannabis retail outlet will go to 10552763 Canada Corporation, also known as Garden Variety Cannabis Company. Garden Variety owns and operates two cannabis locations in Winnipeg and was among the first companies to earn a licence to sell cannabis in Manitoba after legalization last year.
If Garden Variety chooses to forgo opening a retail location in Flin Flon, the standby retailer selected was Auxly Cannabis, a Toronto-based company that owns a number of smaller subsidiaries involved in cultivating and selling cannabis.
Under local zoning bylaws, the only area of Flin Flon where cannabis retail sales are permitted is the uptown business area, stretching along almost the entirety of Main Street.
Each first selection company will have 10 business days to either confirm or deny interest in opening a retail location, then must reach a written agreement with the provincial government. Following that, the company must receive permits from the community they plan to open a store in. In this case, if Garden Variety chooses to proceed with opening a Flin Flon location, the company will then need to reach agreements with the City of Flin Flon and purchase a storefront property before officially opening its doors.
If Garden Variety chooses not to open a location, then Auxly will receive the next opportunity. It is unclear what would happen in the event that both companies decline to open.
The closest provincially recognized cannabis retail location to Flin Flon is Meta Cannabis in Otineka Mall in Opaskwayak Cree Nation. Since legalization, there has not been an provincially recognized legal sale location for cannabis in Flin Flon, with many cannabis users either travelling to purchase their favourite strains or ordering online.