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This article was published 3/11/2017 (231 days ago), so information in it may no longer be current.
Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries wants to handle all angles of legal pot in Manitoba —- everything including production, distribution, and sales.
The Crown corporation said Friday that it submitted an expression of interest to the government of Premier Brian Pallister in September.
Pallister will issue a request for proposals Tuesday, setting out for anyone interested in getting a piece of the action in the legal pot business, where the government wants to go when cannabis becomes legal July 1.
MLL declined Friday to elaborate or provide any further detail of what it has in mind.
"Manitoba Liquor and Lotteries submitted an expression of interest for all or part of production, distribution, and retail of cannabis in Manitoba to the province in early September, and is expecting that the results of that process will be announced soon," corporate affairs director Andrea Kowal said Friday.
"All we can confirm is that we submitted an expression of interest in the fall," Kowal said. "The province has not released or published anything yet as a result.
"It would be premature to provide any other comment," she said.
The Manitoba Government and General Employees Union has been a strong advocate for handling legalized pot through the public sector.
Ontario is handling pot sales through its Liquor Control Board of Ontario.
The Toronto Star reported Friday that the LCBO-run Ontario Cannabis Retail Corporation has just announced that 14 municipalities will have 40 stores in the first wave of legal pot locations, with more to follow.
New Brunswick has said it will create a new crown corporation for cannabis.
British Columbia has said its existing dispensaries of medical marijuana could be involved in its plan, which, like Alberta's, is still to come. The Saskatchewan government website says cabinet will announce its plan sometime this winter. Quebec media are reporting the provincial government will also go the public sector route.
Like Saskatchewan, Nova Scotia, Prince Edward Island, and Newfoundland and Labrador are weighing feedback from public consultation.
Nick Martin is the bearded guy we keep hidden away at the back of the newsroom. He is now in his fourth decade working in daily newspapers.