The Manitoba government is opening up the retail cannabis market in seven rural communities.
The province will license non-medicinal cannabis stores in Flin Flon, Niverville, Swan River, Virden, Altona, Lac du Bonnet and the rural municipality of Russell Binscarth, CBC News has learned.
The retailers will be chosen randomly from a list of nearly 100 pre-qualified applicants who responded to the province’s second call for pot shop proposals last summer. The expansion aims to bring recreational cannabis sales to areas underserved by the initial distribution rollout, following the legalization of marijuana last October.
Once the new stores are open for customers, the province says it will have met its goal of having a cannabis shop within a 30-minute drive of 90 per cent of Manitobans.
“There are still a few, if I can call them, holes in the province where that 30-minute access is not…