Cannabis sales in Colorado reached $1.75 billion last year, a new record that netted more than $302.4 million in state tax revenue, according to a Westword report. The previous record was $1.55 billion in 2018.
The sales represent a 13 percent increase from 2018; sales increased just 2.5 percent year-over-year from 2017 to 2018, according to state Department of Revenue figures outlined by CNN.
Tom Adams, managing director at cannabis market research firm BDS Analytics, attributed the slow growth rates in 2017 to 2018 to drops in flower prices but called the 2019 turnaround “a bullish indicator that price compression can’t keep the popularity of legal cannabis down” in an interview with CNN. A recent report from the firm found an increase in the number of adults who reported using cannabis over a six-month period.
Truman Bradley, executive director of the Marijuana Industry Group, said that many people in the state are migrating to the legal market.
“As reefer madness goes away, as the stigmatism of cannabis reduces and people come over to the regulated market, I would expect that trend to continue.” – Bradley, to the Denver Post
In 2018, there was a 3 percent increase in recreational cannabis licenses in the state, while medical licenses decreased 8 percent.
According to a Colorado Sun report, the state’s cannabis-derived tax revenues are mostly split between human services, public health and environment, education, and local affairs. As of 2019, one-third of those revenues were still undesignated.
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