Illinois Generates Nearly $110M From Cannabis in March

Illinois continues to be a brilliant case study in cannabis legalization for onlookers as the Prairie State sets another record in cannabis sales.

Illinois generated over $109 million through selling over 2.3 million cannabis-related items for the month of March, making it the most lucrative month for the State.

The previous record was held in January when Illinois brought in $89 million in cannabis sales, making March's cannabis sales a 24% increase over the prior record.

Close to a third of the State's sales came from tourists, who spent $33 million on adult-use cannabis in Illinois for the month.

Keeping at this trajectory, Illinois looks positioned to surpass $1 billion in cannabis sales for the year. By comparison, in 2020, Illinois's first year of legal weed saw close to $670 million in recreational cannabis sales. This means that the Prairie State could see a 50% increase in cannabis sales for 2021 over the previous year.

Moreover, as part of Illinois's Restore, Reinvest, and Renew program, 25% of the tax revenue on cannabis products will go to communities affected by the War on Drugs and provide them with financial and legal aid.

The economic benefits of cannabis legalization can serve as a useful incentive for other states who are seeking to boost their employment numbers as well as their tax revenue, as was indicated by New York Governor Andrew Cuomo, who said:

"I think this year is ripe [for legalization] because this state is going to be desperate for funding, even with Biden, even with stimulus, even with everything else, we're still gonna need funding and it's also the right policy, so I think we get this done."

And, last week, New York did "get it done," after signing legislation into law that will make adult-use cannabis available in the state within 12-24 months.

New York's move to legalize weed was preceded by New Jersey which legalized the plant in February, and New Mexico is currently in the process of legalizing the plant.

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Louis O'Neill
Louis O'Neill

Louis is a writer based in Sydney with a focus on social and political issues. Having interviewed local politicians and entrepreneurs, Louis now focuses on cannabis culture, legislation & reform.