The rest of America needs to get on this.
Legal marijuana sales grew to a shocking $5.8 billion nationwide in 2016, seemingly helped by the introduction of recreational marijuana sales. That theory was confirmed this week after the Colorado Revenue Department announced the state’s weed sales totals from 2016.
In total, Colorado dispensaries made $1.3 billion in sales in 2016, the most of any state. Recreational marijuana made up $875 million in sales, while medical sales came in at $438 million. From that $1.3 billion, Colorado got to keep $199 million in taxes and fees.
According to the Cannabist, the weed industry’s growth is starting to slow down in Colorado, and they’re finding less people visiting the state solely to get their first legal high. There are a number of factors contributing to this, but the biggest one is legalization in additional states such as Oregon, Maine and Massachusetts. While industry insiders expect the state to set another sales record in 2017, they expect the industry to shrink a bit after that.
While that’s bad news for Colorado’s government, in the long run it’s good news for citizens of the United States. Now someone just needs to calculate how much weed $1.3 billion buys.