DENVER (KDVR) — Even with Colorado’s declining marijuana sales, the Mile High City has no problem getting stoned. Medical and adult use of marijuana reached $500 million in tax revenue and counting since legalization.
The city of Denver recorded medicinal marijuana sales dating back to 2010 along with adult sales in 2014 in Denver.
While the sales in 2022 dropped from their peak in 2020, Denver still hit half a billion in marijuana tax revenue in 13 years.
For the first 10 years, every single year broke a sales record. In 2022, the sales began to drop. So what changed?
One dispensary worker attributes some of this sales drop to inflation.
“Having marijuana, as much as it is a need for health and well-being, that’s one of the parts where people will spend less money because they’re having to spend more on gas, they’re having to spend more because of inflation,” PJ Rinker, vice president of The Joint dispensary in Denver, told FOX31 last April.
Others attribute it to changing laws.
“A new law that went into effect at the beginning of the year (2022) is impacting the medical market making it much harder for patients to access life-saving medicine,” the Marijuana Industry Group said in a press release in response to the drop in sales.
The group is likely referencing a Colorado law that went into effect in January 2022, limiting medical card holders over the age of 21 to purchasing 8 grams of concentrated products per day. For medical card holders under 21, the new law sets a daily limit of 2 grams of concentrated products.
While the revenue reached half a billion, that may also be part of the reason for the drop in sales.
Zooming out to look at the entire state, Colorado made more in tax revenue from marijuana in the 2022-23 fiscal year than from either alcohol or cigarettes and nearly as much as the two combined.