Uber is getting into the cannabis business, at least in one part of the world.
As Reuters reported on Monday (Nov. 22), the ride-hailing giant says it will begin allowing customers in Ontario, Canada to begin ordering cannabis through the Uber Eats app.
Uber Eats will begin listing the cannabis retailer Tokyo Smoke on its marketplace starting on Monday, allowing customers to place orders and pick them up at the chain’s nearest location, a company spokesperson told Reuters.
The story notes that Uber, which began delivering liquor last year, has set its sights on the budding cannabis market. CEO Dara Khosrowshahi said in April that the company will consider delivering cannabis in the U.S. when things are clear, legally speaking.
Asked on Monday if Uber wanted to expand the program to other Canadian provinces or the U.S., a spokesperson told Reuters that there is “nothing more to share at this time.”
“We will continue to watch regulations and opportunities closely market by market. And as local and federal laws evolve, we will explore opportunities with merchants who operate in other regions,” the spokesperson said.
In September, the U.S. House introduced a bill that would decriminalize cannabis. If passed, it would remove marijuana from the list of controlled substances.
According to the bill, 47 states have amended their laws so that cannabis isn’t the same Schedule I criminalized drug it used to be. Thirty-seven states have passed laws giving legal access to cannabis, while another 15 allow some access for recreational use among adults.
Legal cannabis sales have been popular. According to the proposed bill, there have been $20 billion in cannabis sales in 2020, and that number is projected to hit $40 billion by 2025.
Canada legalized recreational cannabis use three years ago, although illegal producers still rule the market with a 40% share, Reuters said. The Uber/Tokyo Smoke partnership will help combat this underground market.
Cannabis sales in the country will hit $4 billion this year and are projected to reach $6.7 billion in 2026, according to the industry research firm BDS Analytics.