Arizona’s medical marijuana revenue reached an astounding $280 million this past year, showing market watchers how the industry reaches AZ. The state of Arizona recently opposed the legislation aiming to legalize marijuana for recreational use, but these numbers show a special eagerness in the people of the state. Arizona’s medical marijuana revenue has showed that this is a lucrative industry, generating profits for businesses as well as $30 million for the state government. Future bill proposals could shape new laws around marijuana use, for medical or for recreational use, but voters will wait for 2018 to see that.
Medical marijuana is a growing industry across the country, and that’s especially true here in Arizona.
The latest numbers from the Arizona Department of Health Services show there are now more card holders than ever before, and they are also using more cannabis than ever before.
All of it comes on the heels of an election that saw voters narrowly reject an effort to legalize recreational use of pot in our state.
“I think a lot of people were waiting to see if it’s going to pass. It’s a lot easier for ‘hey I’m going to try cannabis for whatever medical conditions,” said Lilach Mazor Power of Giving Tree Wellness.
Mazor Power runs the Giving Tree Wellness Center in both Phoenix and Mesa. She says as soon as people realized Prop 205 wasn’t going to pass, her phones immediately began ringing.
“We saw it that day after how many calls our front desk at both locations got. “How do I get a card, where can I go, can you send me details?” said Mazor Power.
That interest helped fuel marijuana profits in December to their highest levels all year.
In fact, 29 tons of cannabis was consumed in Arizona in 2016, which is more than double the amount from the previous year.
Also moving higher was the number of card holders, with more than 114,000 people now legally allowed to use cannabis in Arizona.
Nearly $280 million was generated from the sale of medicinal pot with about $30 million of it translated into tax revenue for Arizona programs.
Some experts have predicted that if Arizona joins other states in legalizing recreational marijuana use, those tax numbers could triple.
Several groups are working to put the issue back on the ballot in either 2018 or 2020.