Michigan’s recreational marijuana industry is growing quickly. The sales keep hitting new milestones every year. According to a Michigan Radio report, adult-use cannabis sales in Michigan have grown to more than $200 million since the launch of the MMJ program.
The Michigan Regulatory Agency also reported how, for the past two months, cannabis businesses had recorded sales of between $10 million and $14 million in weekly sales.
While cannabis businesses continue to flourish, so do government coffers. According to tax revenues, since the market launched in December 2019, the adult-use sales have generated almost $35 million in excise and sales tax revenues.
In the past month, recreational marijuana sales in MI hit a new record. The state’s weekly adult-use cannabis sales surpassed medical sales. This was for the first time since the market got launched.
The impressive recreational marijuana sales in Michigan seem to be continuing on an upward trend. The moment adult-use sales began, sales numbers have been skyrocketing nearly every week. The voters approved recreational marijuana sales in 2018, but the legal sales never started until the final month of 2019. Within such a short period Michigan has managed to make history with its recreational sales and surpass expectations for the state’s MMJ program.
Most states have been hit hard economically because of COVID-19. But, the cannabis industry is thriving in most markets in the United States. Michigan is one such market. There is no slowing down. The recreational marijuana industry is maintaining “high” sales and exceeding expectations.
The Michigan industry credits the swift action by the governor and the Marijuana Regulatory Agency for allowing marijuana businesses to keep operations going with curbside sales and delivery services.
According to MRA spokesman David Harns, state licensing of employees has also been very efficient over the last few months. They have been quickly issuing licenses for the adult-use marijuana industry. “They haven’t missed a beat. Even after changing their work environment to remote locations due to the coronavirus,” He added.
Michigan first legalized medical marijuana in 2016 and began their Michigan MMJ program. Three more years had passed before recreational use got legalized. The voters finally decided in 2018. This allowed stores to start selling recreational marijuana to users. After legalization, Michigan officials issued 18 licenses, including the grower and processors. The state permitted stores to shift some of their medical marijuana supply into recreational.
More marijuana businesses were up and running in the last month of 2019. The sales of recreational marijuana went up. It has been rising until finally reaching $200 million.
Since recreational marijuana sales began in Michigan, something happened. The state lost about 19,000 or 7% of its registered medical marijuana patients and 2,900 or 8% of its registered caregivers. This is according to Steve Linder, president of the Michigan Cannabis Manufacturers Association.
“Where did they go? They didn’t stop using marijuana. They just stopped seeking medical cards and have transitioned into the adult-use system, ” says Linder. Some states provide a significant tax reduction on medical cannabis products. That helps to persuade patients to remain in a doctor-supervised program for health and safety.
Other states like New Jersey are phasing out MMJ taxes entirely. A move to both keep patients in the registration program and provide financial relief for low-income residents.