Marijuana Venture’s ongoing series on every legal market in the United States explores the ever-changing rules and regulations, market trends, demographics, business leaders and more for each state that has legalized recreational marijuana. This month takes an in-depth look at Arizona, the 10th state to enact a medical cannabis program and a relative newcomer to the world of recreational cannabis.
Arizonans actually first voted to legalize medical cannabis back in 1996, but it wasn’t until 2010 when Arizona officially became the 10th U.S. state to establish a medical cannabis program.
Currently the state’s medical program has more than 310,000 patients enrolled and has become the model for the state’s adult-use program, the Smart and Safe Act, which was passed by voters in 2020. In fact, the only major changes the state’s industry saw after recreational sales were legalized was the additional tax structure and the fact that adults could now enter a dispensary without registering as a patient. The only new licenses that will be granted are the 26 social equity licenses that will be determined in the winter.
The state seamlessly added recreational sales to its medical program during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic and launched just 80 days after voters passed the initiative — making it the fastest adult-use cannabis program to launch in U.S. history.
On top of that accomplishment, sales are on pace to break $1 billion in 2021, which is a feat that many recreational states have failed to make in considerably less turbulent times.
Next month, Marijuana Venture will conclude its series on every recreational market in the U.S. with a look at Maine. For information about upcoming issues or to learn about advertising and sponsorship opportunities, email Editor@MarijuanaVenture.com.
A special thanks to Cannabis Irrigation Supply, DIZPOT and Halo Infusions for sponsoring this issue.
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