Todd Maisch, the CEO and president of the Chamber of Commerce in Illinois, says the total sales of marijuana in the state may easily surpass the $1 billion mark this year, and the monthly figures seem to suggest that the milestone is possible. For example, data collected in March shows that recreational marijuana sales totaled $110 million, and the year is just approaching the halfway mark.
One factor that Maisch identifies as helping cannabis sales to hit those high numbers is the lack of legal marijuana programs in states neighboring Illinois. He says when Colorado and Washington launched their programs, out-of-state buyers contributed significantly to the success of the legal cannabis markets in those two states, and a similar pattern may be playing out in Illinois.
Already, taxes from recreational marijuana sales in Illinois have dwarfed those from the sale of alcohol, and so the Chamber of Commerce CEO feels justified in projecting that total sales for this year could exceed a billion dollars.
However, Maisch believes that some factors may derail this trend of record-breaking recreational marijuana sales. The first factor he mentions is taxes. If the state raises cannabis taxes to prohibitive levels as was the case with tobacco products, buyers may resort to sourcing their marijuana from illicit market players, which could hurt the legal side of the industry.
The second factor that could put the brakes on the growth of Illinois’ recreational cannabis sector is the legalization of the substance in the surrounding states. Once that happens, buyers from across state lines will dwindle, unless the programs in those nearby states levy taxes that make Illinois’ cannabis more affordable for people along the borders.
Maisch observes that not everything is rosy with regard to the explosive growth seen in the recreational cannabis market of the state. For instance, he points out that all individuals who choose to consume marijuana are potentially making themselves ineligible for jobs where safety is paramount, such as operators of heavy machinery and job opportunities linked to federal government agencies. He says it may be easy to keep tabs on the taxes the state is generating, but it may not be easy to put a number on how many people fail to get jobs due to failing a pre-employment or random drug test at their places of work.
Nevertheless, those concerns seem to pale in comparison to the current benefits that the state of Illinois is reaping since it established a legal market for recreational marijuana.
The success of the cannabis program in Illinois may be considered at as a broad pointer of what could be happening in other jurisdictions where companies such as Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF) operate.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Pure Extracts Technologies Corp. (CSE: PULL) (OTC: PRXTF) are available in the company’s newsroom at https://cnw.fm/PULL
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