Arizona is set to outpace Colorado in cannabis sales just months after the substance became legal for adult use in the Copper State. According to current projections by the state data, the total annual sales are expected to pass the $1 billion mark by the end of this year.
Total sales have almost doubled since January
According to the latest report from the Arizona Department of Revenue, total cannabis sales in the state have nearly doubled since January. Recreational use and sale of marijuana were legalized in the state in January this year for anyone aged 21 years and older.
In 2010, Arizona voted to approve medical marijuana use and in November 2020 officially approved a proposal to legalize cannabis for recreational use. The state collected $75 million in taxes from both medical and recreational marijuana sales between January and May this year. This is according to a review of the state data by the Arizona Republic.
Arizona is one of the jurisdictions in the US that have fully legalized cannabis. As the Arizona Republic earlier reported, the state has witnessed monthly sales between $117 million and $213 million over the past three months, which could surpass $1 billion in total by the end of 2021.
Colorado marijuana sales are still under $1 billion
Comparatively, the total marijuana sales in Colorado hit nearly $684 million in 2014, the first year the state legalized cannabis for both medical and recreational use. In 2020, Colorado managed a total of about $2.2 million in both medical and recreational marijuana sales, as stated by the Colorado Department of Revenue.
According to a May report by the Marijuana Policy Project, a pro-legalization group, states have collected a total of $7.9 billion in tax revenue from recreational sales alone since Washington and Colorado became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana in 2014.
The report reveals that California has become the largest legal marijuana market, generating more than $1 billion from recreational marijuana taxes in 2020. The same year, Washington collected $614 million in cannabis tax revenue while Colorado generated $362 million in recreational cannabis taxes.
The increase in cannabis sales and state tax revenue comes just when Democratic legislators are considering nationwide marijuana legalization. Earlier this month, Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) introduced a bill that, if passed, could decriminalize cannabis at the federal level.