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Washington D.C. May 2024 Medical Cannabis Sales Are Down 16.7% Compared To May 2023

Medical cannabis sales in Washington D.C. declined by a considerable amount in May 2024 compared to May 2023. Voters approved adult-use cannabis in Washington D.C. in November 2014, however, recreational cannabis sales remain prohibited.

“Sales figures show a nearly 10% drop from April and a 16.7% decrease compared to May 2023.” Outlaw Report stated in its original reporting. “The program is anticipating the expiration of nearly 6,800 patient registrations by the end of August which eclipses the few hundred new patients registering a month.”

“The continued slump in sales raises concerns as the overall program sales have not increased in correlation with new retail locations opening. This means a little under $3 million in dispensary sales is now being split between 10 retail locations instead of the six that were open in February when sales were $2.5 million.” Outlaw Report also stated.

D.C. lawmakers approved a medical cannabis legalization measure in May 2010. A component of the measure allowed the launch of eight initial medical cannabis dispensaries in the Washington D.C. area.

In January 2023, the Medical Cannabis Amendment Act of 2022 became effective. The measure overhauled Washington D.C.’s medical cannabis program, making the program more accessible to patients.

As of March 2024, the Washington D.C. medical cannabis program had 25,463 unique patients enrolled in the program. Additionally, the program had 71 unique caregivers enrolled in the Washington D.C. medical cannabis program.

The Medical Cannabis Amendment Act of 2022 provided for three rounds of medical cannabis business license issuances, with 50% of licenses reserved for social equity applicants. The first round of licensing was for unlicensed operators, the second for social equity applicants, and a third for standard retail applicants. The first two rounds were already completed, and the third round will be underway this month.

The United States adult-use cannabis industry has generated over $20 billion in total tax revenue since the first legal recreational cannabis purchase was made in Colorado on January 1st, 2014 according to a report by the Marijuana Policy Project.

“Through the first quarter of 2024, states have reported a combined total of more than $20 billion in tax revenue from legal, adult-use cannabis sales. In 2023 alone, legalization states generated more than $4 billion in cannabis tax revenue from adult-use sales, which is the most revenue generated by cannabis sales in a single year.” the Marijuana Policy Project stated in a press release.

79% of people living in the United States lived in a county with at least one regulated cannabis dispensary according to an analysis by the Pew Research Center. The Pew Research Center also found the following:

  • 74% of people in the U.S. live in a state where recreational or medical cannabis is legal
  • There are nearly 15,000 cannabis dispensaries in the U.S.
  • California has the most overall dispensaries (3,659)
  • Oklahoma has the most dispensaries per capita (36 dispensaries for every 100,000 residents)

Total legal cannabis sales in the United States are expected to reach $31.4 billion in 2024 according to a recent analysis by Whitney Economics. Additionally, leading cannabis jobs platform Vangst, in conjunction with Whitney Economics, estimates that the legal cannabis industry now supports 440,445 full time-equivalent cannabis jobs in the United States.

Whitney Economics also projects the following legal cannabis sales figures in the United States for the coming years:

  • 2024: $31.4 billion (9.1% growth from 2023)
  • 2025: $35.2 billion (12.1% growth from 2024)
  • 2030: $67.2 billion
  • 2035: $87.0 billion

The emerging legal cannabis industry in the United States is projected to add roughly $112 billion to the nation’s economy in 2024 according to an analysis by MJBiz Daily. The projection is part of the company’s 2024 MJBiz Factbook.

“The total U.S. economic impact generated by regulated marijuana sales could top $112.4 billion in 2024, about 12% more than last year,” MJBiz stated in its initial reporting.