For the third consecutive month, Illinois has brought in over $34 million in cannabis sales, totaling over $100 million in sales since the state legalized cannabis.
If you were ever looking for reasons to legalize cannabis, look no further than Illinois. Illinois became the 11th U.S. state to legalize cannabis for recreational consumption and distribution, when it legalized the plant on January 1st, 2020.
From that point forward, adults aged 21 and older could purchase up to 30 grams of flower, edibles and concentrates from 37 state-sanctioned stores throughout Illinois – and evidently, this was a welcomed change.
At the end of the first day of legalization, nearly 80,000 people had purchased marijuana products, and dispensary owners reaped the rewards; bringing in $3.2 million for cannabis business owners across the state. After the first month, the state generated just shy of $40 million in cannabis sales, with almost 1 million cannabis products sold.
The success of Illinois' cannabis sales seems picture-perfect on paper, however, the state did face pot shortages throughout its first month, suggesting that the state could have yielded even higher returns had it been more prepared for the enormous demand for cannabis.
As the first month came and went, many wondered what February's cannabis sales would look like for Illinois, as it was likely that much of the initial hype would wear off regarding cannabis legalization. Evidently, some of the hype did wear off, as the state witnessed a $4 million decrease in pot sales. However, for the second month of its legalization efforts, Illinois still brought in $35 million.
This meant that the state had brought in a total of $75 million across two months of cannabis legalization, putting Illinois on track to generate roughly $450 million in cannabis sales for the year.
Now, the March results are in, and it's clear that cannabis has continued to be the gift that keeps on giving.
In the third month of legalization, Illinois has brought in $35.8 million in sales, $27 million of which came from local visitors, while out-of-state visitors spent $8.8 million on cannabis during their visit to Illinois. The number of sales from out-of-state visitors has remained largely constant throughout Illinois' cannabis legalization.
This totals over $100 million in cannabis sales for the three months since Illinois made cannabis legal. Again, Illinois' success serves as a reminder of the economic boon that cannabis legalization can yield, as the cannabis industry has continually been the source of enormous job growth, tax revenue, and economic stimulation in general.
Now, with the coronavirus upon us, and a serious decline in economic activity occurring, the question becomes; can Illinois keep it up?
Immediately, one can assume that much of the $8-9 million out-of-state sales will dry up, given that lockdowns are occurring throughout the U.S. and interstate travel is being strongly discouraged. However, precisely how much Illinois' cannabis sales will be impacted moving forward remains unclear.
The good news is that cannabis dispensaries in Illinois have been deemed essential, and will remain open throughout the coronavirus crisis so that medicinal patients aren't without their cannabinoid medicines. Moreover, not only will 4/20 occur this month, but the entire month is 4/20, given that it's 2020 and we're in the fourth month of the year. Typically, around this time, dispensaries will see a spike in cannabis sales, which may occur to a greater extent this year given that there is very little else to do due to lockdowns.
Additionally, due to these lockdown efforts, states are already seeing a stockpiling of cannabis products, and dispensaries are reporting sizeable increases in weed sales as people anticipate staying home for the foreseeable future.
All in all, April is shaping up to be a very interesting month for Illinois' cannabis sales.
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