Bruce Walthers, owner of Old Hedley Cannabis, washed down some customer cash with an alcohol solution. (Andrea DeMeer photo)

Business at Princeton-area cannabis store grows during pandemic

While many businesses are closed and others are struggling through the COVID-19 crisis, there is at least one area retail store where business is budding, if not booming.

Old Hedley Cannabis, located on Old Hedley Road, is seeing a healthy stream of customers.

Cannabis stores, like liquor stores, have been classified as an essential service by the province.

Old Hedley Cannabis owner Bruce Walthers said he’s not surprised with that designation.

“So many people use it legitimately as medicine,” he said.

Old Hedley Cannabis sells both medical and recreational cannabis products.

Related: Pot shop opens near Princeton on band land

While there appears to be an increased demand for his wares, Walthers joked that “it’s not quite toilet paper.”

Because the store only opened five months ago and has been experiencing steady growth, it’s difficult to know how much of its success can be attributed to COVID-19, said Walthers.

While there are sometimes lineups outside the business, it’s because as a wellness precaution only one customer is permitted in the store at any time.

Service also takes longer, said Walthers, as he disinfects all surfaces in between customers, and even gives all the cash received an alcohol bath.

“We are here for the customers and we appreciate their patience,” he said.

Old Hedley Cannabis is open Tuesday to Friday, 10 a.m. to 7 p.m., and Saturdays, 10 a.m. to 5 p.m.

The store is located on Upper Similkameen Indian Band land, 18 kilometres from Princeton.

According to Walthers, all the products sold at the shop are lab tested and of high quality.

Related: BC Liquor Stores closing on Sundays, seeing skyrocketing sales amid COVID-19

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