The first day of legal recreational cannabis in Illinois proved to be a lucrative one. On the first day of legal sales, over 77,000 transactions resulted in almost $3.2 million in sales. Those eagerly anticipating a cannabis purchase waited in line outside dispensaries — some queuing up the day before legalization.
The amount spent in the state on January 1 exceeds first-day sales in other states where recreational cannabis is legal. For example, Colorado, one of the very first to legalize recreational use, brought in a little more than $1 million in sales on the first day of business in 2014. Michigan, on the other hand, generated approximately $221,000 in sales on its first day of legalization in December 2019.
NEWS: @ToiHutchinson announces first day adult-use cannabis sales figures in Illinois
— $3,176,256.71 in sales
— 77,128 transactions
“Sales are great, but let’s never lose sight of the impact we’re having on families around the state.” #twill pic.twitter.com/yoxtOCLyog
— Alex Hanns (@alexhanns) January 2, 2020
Illinois is the 11th state in the union to legalize adult-use cannabis. In June 2019, the state was the first to legalize possession and sale of recreational pot through the legislature rather than a ballot initiative. Illinois state marijuana law permits Illinois residents 21 and older to possess up to 30 grams of cannabis. Nonresidents are allowed to possess up to 15 grams.
Scenes from the first day of legal weed sales in Illinois. (1/6)
Hundreds gathered outside the Rise dispensary in a Mundelein industrial park. The first customer got there at 5 p.m. — yesterday. pic.twitter.com/PHbPj4TxRV
— John Pletz (@johnpletz) January 1, 2020
Over 40 dispensaries in the state received licenses to sell recreational marijuana in the new year. However, they weren’t all open for business. January 2 was the deadline for applications for another 75 dispensaries that will have active licenses on May 1.
Governor J.B. Pritzker’s office hasn’t revealed how much tax revenue the state received from first-day sales. However, Illinois state taxes on cannabis products range from 10% to 25%, and where the tax falls depends on the amount of THC in the product. Generally speaking, the tax revenue from first day sales should fall between $317,000 and $794,000 before sales tax enters the equation.