Business

Summer Never Came at Colorado Dispensaries

Colorado marijuana sales have been on the decline in 2022.
Colorado marijuana sales have been on the decline in 2022. Jacqueline Collins
Colorado marijuana sales saw a slight bump from June to July, according to the state Department of Revenue, but continued falling on a year-over-year basis.

Dispensaries sold just over $153.9 million worth of marijuana products in July, the latest DOR numbers show, up from the $146.4 million sold in June, but down more than 24 percent from July of last year.

Recreational pot sales accounted for over $135.5 million in July, which made it the second-highest month so far in 2022, according to DOR data. However, medical marijuana sales hit $18.3 million, the lowest monthly total since Colorado began tracking sales numbers in 2014.

Monthly dispensary sales eclipsed $175 million eight times in 2020 and nine times in 2021. But given that July is typically one of the three highest-selling months for Colorado dispensaries in Colorado, per DOR data, pot shops may fail to cross that mark in any month in 2022.

This year's total marijuana sales figure through July — just over $1 billion — indicates that the state could come up about 20 percent short of the near-$2.3 billion sold in 2021, according to DOR numbers, with decreasing wholesale prices and less consumer spending cited as the most common problems faced by marijuana businesses.

The average wholesale price per pound of marijuana flower dropped nearly 59 percent from January 2021 through the end of June 2022, according to the DOR, although growers and dispensary owners say the fall has been sharper than those numbers suggest.

The declining sales have led to multiple dispensary closures and takeovers across the state in 2022.
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Colorado Department of Revenue
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Thomas Mitchell has written about all things cannabis for Westword since 2014, covering sports, real estate and general news along the way for publications such as the Arizona Republic, Inman and Fox Sports. He's currently the cannabis editor for westword.com.
Contact: Thomas Mitchell