Greentown owner Sam Katzman said his store is getting lots of good reviews. (File photo by Advocate staff)

Greentown owner Sam Katzman said his store is getting lots of good reviews. (File photo by Advocate staff)

Red Deer cannabis user disappointed in quality

Greentown reopens Thursday due to cannabis shortage

A long-time medical cannabis user has given thumbs down to the legal recreational product that is finally available in Red Deer.It’s criticism the manager of the new retail outlet is quick to dismiss, however.

Rob Gillis said the Ontario-produced cannabis that he bought last week doesn’t compare to the quality of medical cannabis he buys online from British Columbia.

“It is dried, old pot. (Customers) are paying for high-dollar pot and it’s not anywhere near that,” said Gillis, who has been buying medical cannabis for about five years.

He purchased 3.5 grams for about $45 at Greentown, which opened its doors on Thursday, and is the only legal recreational cannabis store so far in Red Deer.

Gillis went to Greentown because of the postal strike and he feared his online-ordered cannabis might get tied up in the mail. But he said the cannabis he bought in Red Deer had little smell.

“If you’ve got Lemon Skunk, as soon as I open the container, the whole room should smell like Lemon Skunk,” he said, referring to a variety of cannabis.

He said the buds were small, apparently the leftovers from a more healthy harvest.

“I would give it two out of 10.”

Gillis said he would appreciate being able to see the cannabis before he buys it to ensure the quality.

“It’s not right what they’re doing,” said Gillis, who was surprised by the amount of packaging.

See related:

Recreational cannabis has arrived in Red Deer

Eager-beaver cannabis entrepreneurs already waiting outside Red Deer City Hall

Alberta Health Services provides cannabis education

Greentown owner Sam Katzman said as far as quality goes, he hasn’t heard any complaints.

“I got a lot of people telling me how great they thought the quality was because it doesn’t come from the black market. It’s not sprayed with pesticides. You know what you’re getting. People really like that,” Katzman said.

“It’s made by professionals. It’s not made in someone’s basement. It’s safe.”

He said all legal recreational cannabis stores buy their products directly from the government.

“As far as the product itself, that’s the product that’s being provided by the licensed producer to the government and then to the retail outlets. So if you buy the Lemon Skunk in Red Deer, or if you buy the Lemon Skunk in Calgary or Edmonton, you’re getting the same product.”

He said a lot of black-market cannabis that has a strong odour has been sprayed to make it smell that way.

Containers from licensed producers also list the producer’s name and telephone number.

Katzman called Greentown’s opening a success with about 2,500 customers the first day.

“I got to meet a lot of great people in Red Deer. Everyone was so nice and so welcoming and so happy that we were there, because they waited a long time.”

Katzman said he did hear some shoppers say there wasn’t much variety in his store. But on Monday, things were already looking better.

“I got another order sheet and there’s 65 items to order. Last week, there was only, I think, 35. So as time goes on, (Alberta Gaming, Liquor and Cannabis) will have more and more variety.”

Days of operation will also expand as licensed producers address the cannabis shortage, he said.

Greentown was only open Thursday, Friday and Saturday last week, and will reopen again on Thursday.

As far as packaging goes, he said government guidelines require cannabis to remain sealed so customers can’t see or smell the product, and while there is a lot of packaging, it’s recyclable.

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

red deer city

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Alberta Premier Jason Kenney updates media in Edmonton on measures taken to help with COVID-19 on Friday, March 20, 2020. Political analysts say Kenney must rethink his traditional “fight back” approach and start building bridges to reconcile environmental concerns with oil and gas development. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson
Political scientists say Kenney must rethink pugilistic approach on oil, environment

Keystone XL pipeline expansion would have taken more oil from Alberta through the United States to refineries and ports

An incomplete secondary wall stands alongside the previous version near where the border separating Tijuana, Mexico, and San Diego meets the Pacific Ocean Tuesday, Jan. 19, 2021, in Tijuana, Mexico. In the days before Joe Biden became president, construction crews worked quickly to finish Donald Trump’s wall at an iconic cross-border park overlooking the Pacific Ocean that then-first lady Pat Nixon inaugurated in 1971 as symbol of international friendship. (AP Photo/Gregory Bull)
Biden halts border wall building after Trump’s final surge

Pause order leaves billions of dollars of work unfinished but still under contract

Former Alberta Premier Rachel Notley shakes hands with Joel Ward, former Red Deer College President and CEO, as Notley announces that the college is on the path to grant degrees. Red Deer-South MLA Jason Stephan says university status is not a necessary condition for offering degrees. (File photo by Advocate staff)
Future of Red Deer University increasingly uncertain

MLA’s college update says RDC more like SAIT and NAIT than a university

There are two confirmed COVID-19 cases at Red Deer College. Photo by Mamta Lulla/Advocate staff
Central Albertans were promised a university

Central Albertans were promised a university

Jacqueline Donahue of Hazleton, right, buys la Mega Millions lottery ticket at the Anthracite Newsstand on Public Square, Monday, Jan. 18, 2021, in Wilkes-Barre, Pa. (Mark Moran/The Citizens’ Voice via AP)
Nearly $1B Mega Millions prize due to long odds, slow sales

Only the third time a lottery jackpot has grown so large

David Shoemaker, chief executive officer of the Canadian Olympic Committee, speaks during the Olympic Partnership kick off event at the Sobey’s office in Mississauga, Ont. on Monday, October 7, 2019. Shoemaker says the IOC remains committed to staging the Summer Games in Tokyo this summer. THE CANADIAN PRESS/ Tijana Martin
Canadian Olympic boss says IOC plans to go ahead with Tokyo Games this summer

IOC calls cancellation decision “categorically untrue”

FILE - In this Jan. 24, 2011 file photo, Dustin Diamond attends the SYFY premiere of “Mega Python vs. Gatoroid” at The Ziegfeld Theater in New York. Diamond is undergoing chemotherapy treatments after being diagnosed with cancer, according to his representative. Diamond, best known for playing Screech on the hit ’90s sitcom, was hospitalized earlier this month in Florida. Last week, his team disclosed he did have cancer. (AP Photo/Peter Kramer, File)
Dustin Diamond undergoing chemotherapy treatments for cancer

Diamond hospitalized earlier this month in Florida

Winnipeg Jets' Mark Scheifele, left, and Kyle Connor, right, congratulate Blake Wheeler on his goal during second period NHL action against the Ottawa Senators on Thursday, January 21, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Four different Jets score as Winnipeg beats the Ottawa Senators 4-1

Four different Jets score as Winnipeg beats the Ottawa Senators 4-1

Most Read