Biz: Marijuana Money

February 10 2014, 11:20 AM

A single month of recreational marijuana sales in Colorado has produced more than $1 million in tax revenue—or so claims a NBC News report. NBC estimated the figure by examining a month of tax data from 18 of Colorado's 35 recreational pot shops and determining that those 18 shops generated $1.24 million in taxes in January.

Prior to legalization taking effect on January 1, 5280 examined Colorado's impending legal marijuana experiment. At the time, state tax revenue projections for recreational pot sales for fiscal year 2014-15 were $130.1 million. 

Based on the NBC report, sales would have to pick up to be on track to meet that figure. And the retail shops that spoke with NBC seemed to indicate that they believed the numbers would jump significantly as the system smoothed. According to the NBC piece, "in several cases, some of those sharing data had only sold recreational pot for four days due to complications with obtaining their state and local licenses."

For a comprehensive look at Colorado's recreational marijuana industry—everything from the quality control imposed on the industry to how to roll a joint—read articles editor Luc Hatlestad's "Going Green" from the December issue of 5280. 

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