June marks the first month in Colorado history that recreational marijuana shops sold more than $150 million worth of products as cannabis consumption during the COVID-19 pandemic continues to set industry records.
Recreational marijuana consumers spent $158,102,628 at Colorado shops in June, according to data from the Department of Revenue’s Marijuana Enforcement Division. It’s a 6% increase of the previous single-month recreational sales record of $149,186,615 that was set in May, state data shows.
Last June, rec shops sold roughly $122.4 million in products. Before this year, monthly recreational sales had only eclipsed $140 million one time, in August 2019, state data shows. That month, dispensaries combined to sell $173,219,859 worth of products.
Medical marijuana sales took a step back in June. After setting a new record with $42,989,322 in sales in May, medical dispensaries sold $40,770,582 worth of products in the month, according to the MED’s monthly sales report.
Still, the industry comfortably set a new record for total business volume.
Combined, recreational and medical dispensaries sold $198,873,210 worth of products in June, up 3.5% over May’s previous record sales total of $192,175,937, state data shows.
This year is on pace to crush 2019’s record of $1.75 billion in cannabis industry sales, with $978.35 million in sales through June. By the end of June last year, the state had tracked $817.71 in sales.
Denver’s single-afternoon brush with coronavirus-related dispensary shutdowns in March notwithstanding, the pandemic appears to have been a boon the state’s cannabis industry. But research from Boulder-based industry analysis firm BDSA indicates the groundwork for this year’s record sales has been laid by years of maturation in the state’s legal cannabis ecosystem.
Per capita sales in Colorado hit $290 last year, according to the company, nearly double the $150 per capita spend it tracked in 2014, the first year of legal recreational sales in the state. Meanwhile, the number of Colorado adults who said they had consumed cannabis in the last six months hit 42% in the third quarter of 2019, up from 24% in the third quarter of 2017.
“In existing adult-use states, there are three main drivers of continued growth,” BDSA’s report says. “Further proliferation of new cannabis products that appeal to the needs and desires of new consumers; improved product availability; and growing acceptance of cannabis use.”
The Colorado Department of Revenue collected $33.62 million in taxes and fees on cannabis sales and businesses in June, according to state data. Tax reporting runs ahead of sales reports and the $36.13 million in taxes and fees the state reported collecting in July indicates that month has already seen unprecedented sales.
State revenue collected from marijuana businesses so far in 2020 exceeds $203.3 million, according to the latest state report. The state brought in roughly $302.5 million in cannabis-related revenue in 2019.