How cannabis use changed in Canada, 2018 to 2020

Release date: April 21, 2021
Infographic: How cannabis use changed in Canada, 2018 to 2020
Description: How cannabis use changed in Canada, 2018 to 2020

How cannabis use changed in Canada, 2018 to 2020

An analysis using data from the 2018, 2019 and 2020 National Cannabis Survey

Cannabis use by province

Percentage of Canadians 15 years and older who consumed cannabis in the three months preceding the survey 

Table 1
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table 1 Fourth quarter 2020, Change in percentage points from first quarter 2019 (after legalization) and Change in percentage points from first quarter 2018 (before legalization) (appearing as column headers).
Fourth quarter 2020 Change in percentage points from first quarter 2019 (after legalization) Change in percentage points from first quarter 2018 (before legalization)
Canada 20% +2 +6
British Columbia 25% +6 +8
Alberta 22% No change No change
Saskatchewan 14% No change No change
Manitoba 22% +9 No change
Ontario 23% No change +10
Quebec 11% No change No change
New Brunswick 18% No change No change
Nova Scotia 27% +9 No change
Prince Edward Island 22% +7 +8
Newfoundland and Labrador 20% No change No change

By 2020, more consumers reported getting cannabis from legal sources or growing it, and fewer from illegal sources or from family and friends


Table 2
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table 2. The information is grouped by Source (appearing as row headers), First quarter of 2018, First quarter 2019 and Fourth quarter 2020 (appearing as column headers).
Source First quarter of 2018 First quarter 2019 Fourth quarter 2020
Legal 23% 47% 68%
Illegal 51% 38% 35%
Family and friends 47% 37% 29%
Grown 8% 9% 14%

The number of legal retail cannabis stores in Canada increased nearly eightfold since the fourth quarter of 2018


Table 3
Table summary
This table displays the results of Table 3 2018, 2019 and 2020, calculated using Fourth quarter, First and second quarters and Third and fourth quarters units of measure (appearing as column headers).
2018Note * 2019Note ** 2020
Fourth quarter First and second quarters Third and fourth quarters First and second quarters Third and fourth quarters
Legal retail cannabis stores 182 315 728 998 1,445

For more information, please consult the Health Reports article “Looking back from 2020, how cannabis use and related behaviours changed in Canada

Also visit Cannabis in Canada: https://www.canada.ca/en/services/health/campaigns/cannabis.html

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