In the month of April some $117 million worth of legal cannabis was sold in Colorado, setting a record for the relatively short history of legal marijuana sales in the state. It’s sure to be a record broken time and time again.
Recreational marijuana sales accounted for over $76 million of the record total, which is not surprising considering how much larger and less restricted – in terms of customer base – that market is. Overall, recreational sales saw an 80% increase over sales from last Aril.
Of course, more sales mean more in tax revenue, including a record $5.5 million from the 15% excise tax on sales at the wholesale level.
All of this means two things: 1) People love marijuana and they will buy a lot of it and 2) In April more than $117 million didn’t go into the black market, untaxed and unseen (I say more because black market cannabis is generally more expensive than the legal variety).
Put another way, $117 million in economic activity occurred that would have not occurred had cannabis stayed illegal in Colorado. That’s jobs that would not exist without legalization, salaries that would not have been paid, taxes that would not have been raised and people that would have still been going to jail.
Through the first 4 months of 2016 almost $400 million in recreational and medical cannabis has been sold in Colorado. That’s just 4 months in one state. Imagine how that multiples across the entire United States if legalization were nationwide. We are talking tens of billions of dollars from an industry that already exists; it just needs to be brought into the legal market.
Good things happen when you legalize marijuana; who knew?