With 2020 sales reports in the books and a clear-eyed look at early 2021 retail trends, all signs point to a booming cannabis economy. It’s come up in conversation frequently over the past year, but the “essential” tag that most states bestowed upon the legal cannabis business has been a real boon throughout the pandemic. Whatever momentum was built up in 2020 seems to be carrying over into 2021—with no signs of slowing down.
As more states come online and as legal cannabis picks up traction as a normalized segment of the American business sector, consumer interest seems to rise steadily. States like Maryland and Arkansas (in the medical market) and Illinois (with a booming adult-use market) issued updates this week that provide some serious revenue numbers.
In Illinois, in fact, as Assistant Editor Andriana Ruscitto reports, "dispensaries and wholesalers had to adjust daily operations to effectively manage the influx of sales.”
Not a bad problem to have.
We’ve rounded up some of the key cannabis headlines from the week right here.
- Cannabis banking reform deposited another decisive victory in the U.S. House on Monday evening, when the lower chamber passed the SAFE Banking Act yet again. Read more
- During a 31-day reporting period that ended on April 11, the average daily medical cannabis sales in Arkansas approached nearly $900,000. Read more
- On a similar note, the Maryland Medical Cannabis Commission released a retail sales data report, which shows that medical cannabis dispensaries in Maryland recorded $48.1 million in cannabis sales in March. Read more
- Illinois' monthly adult-use cannabis sales surpassed an astounding $100 million for the first time in March. Read more
- The Federal Cannabis Regulations Working Group released its Principles for FederalCannabis Regulations and Reform, outlining what a federal regulatory framework—grounded in justice and social equity—should look like. The working group was convened by the Drug PolicyAlliance at the beginning of this year. Read more
And elsewhere on the web, here are the stories we’ve been reading this week:
- Miami Herald: “A high-profile effort to legalize marijuana was all but killed by the Florida Supreme Court Thursday.” Read more
- Local Coast Outpost: Papa and Barkley Social, “the chic, new-concept cannabis consumption lounge” from the hemp-CBD business, opened in Eureka, Calif. Read more
- Yahoo! Finance: “Long-time marijuana legalization advocate Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D., Ore.) is optimistic about the chances of ending the federal prohibition of marijuana now that Democrats control both chambers of Congress.” Read more
- Asbury Park Press: “For the first time since New Jersey legalized marijuana, its constituents had a chance to sound off on the regulators who will oversee it all. The New Jersey Cannabis Regulatory Commission held its second-ever meeting on Thursday, the first time members of the public had their chance to make comments on the state's existing medical marijuana and, eventually, recreational legal weed industries.” Read more
- North Bay Business Journal: Nicole Elliott, California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s top adviser on cannabis told a 4/20 crowd that, “with California legalizing adult use in 2016, the feds may compromise with a relaxing of rules on interstate commerce — which would essentially allow for transportation of related goods over state boundaries.” Read more