Molson Coors prepares its supply chain as cannabis laws shift in Canada
- Molson Coors will have to navigate a new regulatory climate in distribution as Canada prepares to legalize marijuana nationwide on Oct. 17, Amy Michtich, chief supply chain officer at Molson Coors Canada, told attendees at a session at the Council of Supply Chain Management Professionals' Edge 2018 conference.
- Facing declining consumer interest in and consumption of beer, Molson Coors is partnering with a marijuana-infused beverage company to develop non-alcoholic, cannabis-infused drinks, beyond its usual products.
- With new product offerings, "the supply chain will continue to grow and evolve," Michtich said, and managing the business will also have to change.
Consumers across the globe are drinking less alcohol, and more are shifting toward wine and spirits over beer, Michtich said.
"Our business is tough right now," she said. "Our share continues to underperform, and so do our stocks."
In an effort to turn around the numbers, the beer-maker is tapping into a new opportunity, as Canada prepares to legalize marijuana across the country in two weeks. "Everybody, don't rush to the border," Michtich joked to attendees at Edge 2018.
With the new joint effort, Molson Coors will need a deep understanding of the legalities behind the logistics of cannabis-infused beverage distribution. "At the end of the day, it is really changing the supply chain," she said.
Under current laws, marijuana can be grown in certain provinces but cannot be distributed outside of the province. Funds from marijuana sales in some instances can't be transferred out of the province. Much of that will change Oct. 17 — requiring Molson Coors to stay up to speed on legislation.
"The alcohol industry has been tapped to make sure we understand what the regulations are for us to distribute," Michtich said.
Cannabis-infused food and drink products won't initially be included the legalization law, according to Bloomberg, but Molson expects the products to become legal next year.
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