NSLC Releases First Quarter Financial Performance 2022

Halifax - August 23, 2022 – The NSLC released its first quarter financial results today (April 1, 2022 – July 3, 2022), reporting a 0.5% increase in earnings for a total of $72.1 million. 

“The NSLC team continues to work hard to responsibly serve our customers, expand the cannabis network, and create positive impact in the communities we serve” said Greg Hughes, NSLC President & CEO.

Total sales for the quarter were up 3.6% to $219.4 million, with an increase in both beverage alcohol and cannabis sales. There were three additional selling days and we opened five new cannabis stores, which contributed to this increase in sales in both categories.

There was a 2.7% increase in beverage alcohol sales this quarter to $192.1 million and 10.4% increase in cannabis sales to $27.3 million. There was a 5.3% increase in the number of store transactions and a 4.2% decrease in the average dollar value of each transaction.

Sales to Licensees were up 148.2% or $7.7 million compared to the same time last year. Sales to Private Wine and Specialty Stores were down 3.5% and sales to Agency stores were down 8.2%.

Sales of local products continued to be strong as customers support innovative products created by local producers. Sales of local beverage alcohol and cannabis increased 18.1% overall to $31.1 million, with Nova Scotia wine leading the growth in local beverage alcohol at 24.0%. 

Local cannabis remains extremely popular as we continued to add more local products to our shelves. We carried products from five more local producers than we did during the same period last year for a total of 16 local suppliers, with local cannabis now accounting for 28.4% of all cannabis sales – our highest to date. 

The addition of new cannabis stores and a further increase in local listings supported a 59.8% increase in local cannabis sales as we work to impact illicit sales in the province. Our top three selling pre-rolls overall are produced locally and eight of our top ten dried flower products are also local. 

The average price per gram decreased a further 5.3% to $6.15, making NSLC cannabis prices more competitive with the illicit market. This reduction was due to price reductions, and customers purchasing 28-gram pack sizes and large pack pre-rolls, which both carry a lower price per gram. 

Our people volunteered more than 830 hours this quarter for a variety of community organizations across Nova Scotia. “I’m proud that our people have continued to come together and volunteer for organizations that help build healthy and sustainable communities,” Hughes said. In addition to volunteering time with organizations that are important to them, our teams, with the support of our customers and supplier partners, raised a record donation for the IWK Foundation along with funds for more than a dozen community organizations.

Q1 Business Highlights

  • Our diligent front-line employees asked customers who appeared to be under the age of 30 for valid photo ID 569,213 times and refused service 4,962 times.
  • 61 team members volunteered for organizations that help create stronger communities across the province.
  • Together with the support of our team, customers, and supplier partners, we were proud to make a record donation of $500,775 to the IWK Foundation.
  • With the support of our supplier partners, we awarded $140,000 to 13 community organizations across the province through our newly established “For the Good of the Community” Fund, working to build healthy and sustainable communities.
  • Renovated two beverage alcohol stores:
    • Meteghan, Spryfield
  • Opened five new cannabis stores:
    • Guysborough, Meteghan, New Germany, Springhill, Spryfield

Financial Highlights (compared to the same period last year):

  • Net income (earnings) totaled $72.1 million; up $0.4 million or 0.5%.
  • Total sales were $219.4 million; an increase of $7.6 million or 3.6%, due to increases in both beverage alcohol and cannabis sales.
  • Cannabis sales were $27.3 million, an increase of 10.4%. 
  • Beverage alcohol sales were $192.1 million, an increase of 2.7%.
  • Retail customer transactions (purchases) for beverage alcohol were up 3.4% and the average dollar value of each transaction decreased by 3.9% to $37.67. 
  • The total volume of beverage alcohol sold was down 2.3%.
  • Retail customer transactions for cannabis were up 17.4% and the average dollar value of each transaction decreased by 5.9% to $38.41. The average price per gram decreased 5.3% to $6.15.

Local Product Sales Highlights

Beverage Alcohol

  • Nova Scotia wine led the growth in local product sales with a 24.0% increase in sales to $4.1 million. 
  • Nova Scotia beer saw very strong growth of 13.5% to $7.6 million. We now list products from 36 local breweries, up from 16 breweries five years ago.
  • Nova Scotia spirits saw growth of 6.0% to $2.9 million. 
  • Nova Scotia Ready-to-Drink sales experienced a slight decline of 0.1% to $8.7 million. 


  • Nova Scotia cannabis sales again led the growth in local products with 59.8% increase in sales to $7.8 million. 
  • Nova Scotia cannabis accounts for 28.4% of all cannabis sales, the largest we have seen to date.




Sales Volume (Hectolitres)




$ 48,725,574

$ 47,073,964
















Total Sales by Category

$ 219,395,573

$ 211,827,894

Gross Profit

$ 108,424,412


Store Operating Expenses



Gross Operating Income

$ 85,827,981

$ 84,646,880

Other Corporate Expenses & Other Earnings



Income from Operations

$ 72,112,709

$ 71,727,273



Sales by Channel

Channel Sales Change
NSLC Stores $183.7M $2.0M (1.1%)
Licensees (bars/restaurants/pubs) $12.9M $7.7M (148.2%)
Agency Stores (independently owned) $17.0M $1.5M (-8.2%)
Private Wine and Specialty Stores $5.2M $0.2M (-3.5%)
Other Wholesale $0.2M $0.03M (-17.6%)
Online $0.4M $0.4M (-47.1%)

Operating Expense Ratio
The NSLC’s operating expense ratio for the fiscal quarter, including amortization and depreciation, was 16.6% compared to 15.9% reported the prior year. 

Board Expenses
The NSLC released the Board of Directors’ expenses for the quarter. These expenses amounted to $6.12 per Director, per day. An electronic version of these expenses is available to download

About the NSLC
The NSLC manages the safe and responsible sale of beverage alcohol and cannabis in Nova Scotia, returning 100% of its profits to government to help fund key public services. The NSLC aspires to be a trusted retailer, partner, employer, and responsible industry steward that is helping to create a stronger Nova Scotia. For more information about the NSLC, please visit our website at myNSLC.com.

For more information please contact:
Beverley Ware
Media Relations Manager
O: (902) 450-5920
M: (902) 456-5040



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