Denver no longer has the distinction of being the only major city with retail marijuana dispensaries, but that hasn't stopped weed from flying off the shelves here. This city has seen almost $2.4 billion in marijuana sales since the first retail dispensary opened on January 1, 2014, according to our calculations based on Colorado Department of Revenue data.
Denver has been the center of the statewide marijuana industry since its inception, and by 2018 it was home to over 210 medical, recreational and dual-use dispensaries. DOR data shows that Denver County dispensaries accounted for well over one-third of Colorado's $6 billion in marijuana sales from 2014 through 2018, and brought in over $536 million last year alone.
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But that Denver sales figure reflects a slight 7 percent drop from the year before, falling from $577.5 million in 2017. Meanwhile, statewide sales increased around 2.5 percent from 2017 to 2018.
Over the past sixteen months, more than a dozen new dispensaries have opened in north Denver suburbs such as Commerce City, Federal Heights, Thornton and Longmont. But more states also began recreational pot sales in 2018, such as California and Nevada. And then there's Canada....
Data for Colorado marijuana sales in 2019 are not yet available. Here are the annual sales numbers for the City and County of Denver from 2014 through 2018:
- 2014 — $325.9 million
- 2015 — $413 million
- 2016 — $501.6 million
- 2017 — $577.5 million
- 2018 — $536.6 million