Business

Colorado Marijuana Sales on Nine-Month Decline

Medical marijuana sales have hit record lows since 2014.
Medical marijuana sales have hit record lows since 2014. Jacqueline Collins
Colorado marijuana sales continued a decline in February, on both a monthly and yearly basis, according to the state Department of Revenue.

The $145.27 million in medical and recreational marijuana sold in February was about 14 percent less than the $151.12 million sold in January, and 25 percent less than in February 2021. That's nine straight months of falling sales on a year-to-year basis, DOR data shows.

Recreational marijuana sales accounted for nearly $125 million in February, the lowest total since February 2020. And medical marijuana sales are on even sharper decline.

According to last month's DOR report, January's medical sales were slightly over $21.1 million, a 24 percent dip from the month before, and the lowest monthly total since recreational dispensaries opened in Colorado in 2014. February's numbers were even worse, according to the DOR, with medical marijuana sales tallying just over $20.34 million.

A new set of laws restricting medical marijuana recommendations took effect on January 1, which led to a handful of medical marijuana clinics and physicians pausing or ending operations. The law also reduced daily limits of medical marijuana concentrate purchasing, from 40 grams to 8 grams a day.

February is traditionally the worst sales month for Colorado dispensaries, with sales picking up in the spring, according to historical DOR data — but marijuana business owners and state economic officials suggest that pot consumption may have peaked around the one-year anniversary of the COVID-19 pandemic, when dispensaries recorded record sales numbers.

Colorado now has more competition for out-of-state buyers, too. New Mexico's recreational marijuana dispensaries opened for business on April 1, potentially ending a pipeline of dispensary shoppers from not only New Mexico, but Oklahoma and Texas as well.
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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