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  • Writer's pictureTed Ohashi

Statistics Canada 2018 Cannabis Survey Results

The most recent Canadian cannabis survey results have been released by Statistics Canada. The polling was done between mid-August and mid-September-2018 which predates legalization. Key findings included:

  1. 15% of Canadians 15 and over reported using cannabis in the preceding three months. Males 15 to 24 are the most common users and daily consumption is highest among males under 25 years old.

  2. Nova Scotia (23%) and British Columbia (20%) report the most residents using cannabis in the previous three months. Quebec (10%) reports the least residents using cannabis.

  3. Males (18%) tended to use more than females (12%) and usage declines with age as 27% of 15 to 24-year-olds use cannabis compared with 13% for those 25 and older.

  4. 6% of Canadians 15 and over use cannabis every day or almost every day and 3% report using it weekly. 7% of males reported daily use compared with 4% of females. Daily usage declines with age as 8% of people aged 15 to 24 use daily compared with 3% of people aged over 45 years.

  5. One-third of cannabis users reported not paying for cannabis consistent with earlier reports. One-quarter of users reported spending over $250. Here is the three month breakdown:

  • 1. 14% of consumers spent $251 - $500

  • 2. 7% spent $501 - $1,000

  • 3. 3% spent over $1,000

  1. It is no surprise that daily users spend more with 25% spending between $251 and $500 and another 25% spending more than $500.

  2. 14% of cannabis users with a driver’s license reported driving within two hours of using with males being twice as likely to drive as females. Age did not seem to be a factor in using and driving. Again no surprise to learn that daily users were nine times more likely to have driven within two hours of using compared with only 3% of people who used only once or twice in the previous three months.

  3. 5% of Canadians 15 and over reported being a passenger in a car driven by someone who had used cannabis in the previous two hours. This was more common among persons aged 15 to 24 but there was almost no difference by gender. Only 4% of people aged 25 and older reported being a passenger. But 27% of users were also passengers compared with 2% of non-users.

This is the last survey prior to legalization and will all the data will form the basis for comparisons with post-legalization results. Regulators will be especially interested in the driver/passenger data.

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