Long-allowed to deliver alcohol, Uber Eats has now won approval to deliver cannabis in Ontario, Canada. Thanks to a new arrangement between Uber Eats and Tokyo Smoke Shop, adult cannabis consumers can place their order via the Uber Eats app and pick it up at the nearest Tokyo Smoke Shop.
More than three years ago, Canada legalized cannabis in part to combat the unsafe illicit cannabis market. Despite an abundance of cannabis retailers, the country is still struggling with that same illegal market, which rakes in more than 40% of all non-medical marijuana sales across Canada. It’s hoped that the convenience of the delivery partnership between Uber and Tokyo Smoke Shop will attract those Canadians still relying on the illicit market.
To date, there is no word if other Canadian provinces will utilize the delivery arrangement. An Uber spokesperson said the company will “continue to watch regulations and opportunities closely market by market.” The expectation is Uber will actively explore opportunities throughout other provinces. What that looks like depends on provincial laws and regulations for cannabis.
Once cannabis is federally legal in the U.S., Uber would likely include cannabis deliveries in the States. Uber has offered no indication if that would consist of any number of specific partnerships.
“When the road is clear for cannabis when federal laws come into play, we’re absolutely going to take a look at it,” said Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi.
In a roundabout manner, Uber entered the cannabis market last year by hiring cannabis advertiser Fyllo to target cannabis consumers for its food delivery services.
“A cannabis consumer is younger than the normal consumer, has more disposable income; they are busier than most, they are working all the time, exercising all the time, going on adventures all the time,” Travis Freeman, Uber’s global head of media, told Bloomberg News.