Mass. Cannabis Sales Total $420 Million In 2019, Coincidentally
Jokes aside, here’s a look at how recreational marijuana sales shook out in Massachusetts since the first stores opened in late 2018.
Between Jan. 1 and Dec. 30, 2019, about $420 million in recreational cannabis was sold in Massachusetts, according to state figures. (Shutterstock)
The first recreational cannabis stores opened in Massachusetts on Nov. 20, 2018, two years after voters in Massachusetts approved recreational marijuana. If you stretch back to that date, gross cannabis sales are at $437 million.
There are under 40 recreational cannabis stores open across Massachusetts as of Dec. 30, and that $420 million figure is in line compared to other states with recreational marijuana.
Colorado’s cannabis sales totaled $303 million in 2014, the first year stores were open there — although that figure does not include medical marijuana sales. By 2019, the Colorado industry was humming along with close to $1.5 billion in sales. In Washington state, sales totaled about $260 million in the first fiscal year between July 2014 and June 2015, but reached $1 billion by fiscal year 2016.
Nevada sold about $529 million in the first fiscal year of recreational sales between July 2017 to June 2018, according to state figures. Sales in California’s first year topped $3 billion, although that’s considered to be the largest recreational marijuana market on Earth.
With more stores set to open, marijuana sales could surpass the 420 mark in 2020. There are about seven stores that could open in the next few months, including Cultivate along Route 9 in Framingham. CommCan in Millis and Insa in Salem are the two latest to open. Meanwhile, Marlborough’s Garden Remedies says it has the largest parking lot of any cannabis retailer in the state.
The state had issued 98 final license approvals as of Dec. 30. Another 449 licenses were under review, and that includes applications for retailers, cannabis growers, testing labs, and research facilities. Most of those pending applications — 191 — are from cannabis retailers.
In 2019, the top four most popular cannabis products sold in Massachusetts were buds (136,000 units sold), pre-rolled joints (56,000 sold), edibles (52,000 sold), and cannabis concentrates like vape liquid (20,000 units sold), according to the CCC.
All those marijuana consumers are sending money to state and local coffers. Marijuana sales in Massachusetts are subject to a 6.25 percent sales tax, 10.75 percent excise tax, and a 3 percent local tax (if one is in place).
And in case you’re wondering why cannabis sales totaling $420 million is a little funny, here’s an explanation.