Six former employees of Toronto’s first REC retail store, the Hunny Pot, told Vice they endured an intolerable work environment where “the safety [and] happiness of workers, anything to do with their people, it was completely second thought.” Vice

  • Workers alleged they were forced to clean up two floods of human sewage without any kind of protective gear, resorting to wearing garbage bags on their feet. They also allege Hunny Pot representatives were lying when they told the Ministry of Labour they had given the workers N95 respirators and safety goggles.
  • Two former employees, both Black, alleged supervisors made racist remarks. The company told Vice these allegations were “completely untrue” and “absolutely ridiculous.”
  • The Hunny Pot faced criticism from the moment it opened. Hunny Pot publicist Kate Johnny impersonated the store’s “first customer” in a TV spot on the store’s opening by Toronto news station CP24. In doing so, she cut in front of lawyer Caryma Sa’d, who had spent the previous night in a tent in front of the store to make a statement, in part, about not shutting out the legacy market. Vice, CP24, Leafly

Following a series of armed REC store robberies in Alberta, retailers are removing opaque coverings on the windows of their stores, by which they said they had “made themselves targets.” CTV News

  • Technically, full-window coverings aren’t federally mandatory—stores must only not have any cannabis or accessories visible from the street. Twitter—Harrison Jordan, Trina Fraser, Cannabis Retailer
  • Though Alberta Gaming, Lottery and Cannabis representative Heather Holmen claimed last month that media covered windows on REC stores were never an AGLC requirement, some REC retailers described AGLC officials as “fanatical about having every inch of window covered.” CTV News
Ryan Roch of Alberta’s Lake City Cannabis noted “shifts in quality” over recent months. “My top [brand] leaders in October have fallen off the map. Focus on long term consistency not getting enough attention.” Twitter—Ryan Roch
Some REC retailers are veering away from the widely adopted “Apple Store” aesthetic, while others still think consumers want the Apple Store experience. GrowthOp, Greencamp

  • Retailers are giving up on smell-boxes for customers.

Police in Toronto suburb Markham busted an innovative underground illicit-cannabis and stolen-liquor store operating out of a commercial unit. CP24