Think of it as a no-frills convenience store for the cannabis consumer.
“Our whole guiding principle is we’re trying to save our customers money,” said Nathaniel Morris, owner of T Cannabis, a retail store recently opened at 4 Russell St. East in Smiths Falls. Although he will generally steer customers toward the best value for the money, and even teach them to grow their own products, Morris said he is also able to meet the needs of cannabis “connoisseurs.”
T Cannabis has been open for business since Oct. 30, but won’t be holding an official opening until exterior signage receives official approval from the town. The store is offering a number of edible products – only recently legalized for sale in Canada – including gummies, chocolates, gel caps and cannabis-infused drinks, produced locally by Canopy Growth.
Morris said his personal favourite product is “dabs,” which are the highest quality of hash concentrate, refined “to the point that you can see through it.”
Dabs are “the fine wine of cannabis,” said Morris. Dabbing, which requires the use of specialized “dab rigs,” has become a kind of subculture of its own.
Morris himself is a native of Toronto who spent a decade in California beginning in 2001 as a cannabis researcher and scientist. At that time he started an experimental farm in the northern part of the state, attracting considerable media attention. He was featured in programs on PBS and a Discovery Channel show called Weed Country.
“I’ve dedicated my life to the science,” said Morris, adding, “We’re passionate about the products we sell.”
Morris has been planning to open a cannabis retail outlet in Smiths Falls ever since the product was legalized in Canada. “It’s been a multi-year journey for us,” he said. The actual approval process for the Russell Street store took about seven or eight months. An applicant first receives a licence to open a retail outlet, then the actual location has to be approved. Morris plans to open a chain of T Cannabis stores in smaller communities, with the Smiths Falls store being the flagship location. A second location has already opened in Beamsville, Ontario, near St. Catharines.
Customers must present ID proving they are 19 or over. The store is open daily, from 10 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday to Wednesday, 10 a.m. to 10 p.m. Thursday, Friday and Saturday, and 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. Sundays.