Walmart‘s Canadian unit said on Tuesday it is exploring the possibility of selling cannabis-based products, although it did not set a date for it. Walmart has a reputation for moral probity in some areas so the announcement came as a surprise.
After the announcement, the company’s shares rose 2.52% to $ 97.08 on the New York Stock Exchange. Walmart is the first general retailer to show interest in being part of the nascent Canadian marijuana industry.
It will be legal to consume marijuana for recreational purposes as of October 17 in Canada. Medicinal use is already legal.
Last month, Coca-Cola said it was closely watching the market for cannabis-infused beverages to see if it participates, while Corona beer distributor Constellation Brands announced investments of nearly $ 4 billion. in Canadian Canopy Growth. This month, Pepsico shares fell after it said it was not exploring any cannabis products.
Other Canadian retailers want to participate in the marijuana business. Last month, Drug Mart, a chain of pharmacies owned by Loblaw Companies, received a license from the Health authorities of Canada to produce marijuana for medical purposes.
Analysts forecasts stores like Walmart and Drug Mart will sell cannabis-based products in beverages, snacks and beauty sections as well as pharmacy. (With information from agencies)