Since legalizing, Illinois has sold nearly $1 billion in adult-use cannabis through September, the Daily Journal reports. Riding a seven-month wave of over $100 million per month, September saw $120 million in cannabis sales, bringing the total transactions to $997,067,100. The September figures are an 80% increase over last year, the report says.
National Cannabis Industry Association spokesman Morgan Fox believes the trend reflects momentum toward the regulated cannabis sphere away from the underground market.
“They’re concerned about things like safety as well as quality and convenience, not to mention making sure their money is going toward legitimate businesses that are acting responsibly.” – Fox to the Journal
Fox is not worried about the decrease in sales from July and August to September, attributing the high sales numbers over the summer to “people stocking up, because they were worried about continued access,” similar to spikes seen throughout the pandemic.
As for competition from other legal cannabis states bordering Illinois, Fox says the state can avoid setbacks by licensing more cannabis businesses and lowering taxes on cannabis operators.
“We will continue to see that growth, and honestly, I think we would see much more growth if the state were to decrease taxes on cannabis businesses,” Fox said in the report, adding that the federal government could help by making it easier for firms to access traditional banking and financial services. Then, Fox said, “regulated businesses would be able to more easily compete with the unregulated market.”
Since cannabis sales began in Illinois in January 2020, the Midwest state has continued to break sales records. Last year, the state sold over $1 billion in combined adult-use and medical cannabis, reporting a record $86 million in December 2020. By March 2021, those numbers rose to $109 million and spiked over the summer at $127.8 million in July.
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