Support the independent voice of Denver and help keep the future of Westword free.
Marijuana sales in Colorado were nearly $ 2.2 billion in 2020, according to the Treasury Department, breaking records for both annual sales and tax revenue.
Spurred on by historically high transaction months at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Colorado’s cannabis industry sold over $ 2.19 billion in pot and related products in pharmacies last year, DOR data shows. These sales resulted in the state raising nearly $ 387.5 million in tax revenue.
Last year’s total sales exceeded total sales of $ 1.74 billion in 2019, the previous year’s record, by over 25 percent. Annual tax revenues also increased significantly from 2019 to 2020, increasing by more than 28 percent.
As in previous years, marijuana sales peaked in 2020 during the summer months, peaking at over $ 226 million in July. Even the traditional winter downturn was still setting monthly sales records in 2020, with $ 186.3 million in December being by far the highest total for the last month of the year.
Although this winter decline generally extends through February and March, 2021 should maintain the pace set last year. The supply of recreational marijuana is now legal in Colorado, and sales of legal pots are expected to increase – if delivery companies actually move into the state. Both Aurora and Denver are in the early stages of implementing the service.
In late 2020, eight new communities have moved to selling marijuana for recreational use, including three cities – Broomfield, Littleton and Lakewood – in the subway area.
Since recreational marijuana sales began in Colorado in January 2014, legal cannabis has generated sales of nearly $ 9.9 billion and tax revenues of over $ 1.63 billion, according to the DOR.
Colorado Department of the Treasury
Keep Westword Free … Since we started Westword, it has been defined as the free, independent voice of Denver, and we want to keep it that way. We offer our readers free access to concise coverage of local news, food and culture. Produce stories on everything from political scandals to the hottest new bands with bold reporting, stylish writing, and staff everything from the Society of Professional Journalists’ Sigma Delta Chi Feature Writing Award to the Casey Medal for the Deservable Journalism have won. With the existence of local journalism under siege and setbacks having a greater impact on advertising revenue, it is more important than ever for us to raise support for funding our local journalism. You can help by joining our I Support membership program which allows us to continue to cover Denver without paywalls.
Thomas Mitchell has been writing about everything cannabis-related for Westword since 2014, covering sports, real estate, and general news en route to publications like the Republic of Arizona, Inman, and Fox Sports. He is currently the cannabis editor for westword.com.