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Coloradans With MMJ Cards Score Bargains

It arrives in pre-rolled joints and by the ounce in plastic containers. It is turned into oil and gets smoked, or is used to saturate gummy bears and brownies. Teas contain it. Salves include it as an ingredient. Pills? It finds its way into capsules, tablets and softgels.

Nearly everything for sale at dispensaries in Colorado, Washington, Oregon and California contains cannabis in one form or another.

But prices for marijuana products vary wildly.  And one discrete channel among the many through which cannabis is sold in these states has the cheapest weed in any form – in some cases by a long shot.

Whether they are buying flower, edibles or concentrates, residents of Colorado with medical marijuana cards pay the least for grams of flower, and edibles and concentrates products according to cannabis market research firm BDS Analytics.

Prices for Colorado’s top 20 strains in the medical channel vary, but all are fairly low compared to prices in other channels and states.

Between January and September of this year, for example, people buying through Colorado’s medical channel paid on average $3.78 for a gram of marijuana. The most expensive place to buy weed? Pity those Californians paying more than twice as much for a gram of weed — $9.39.

Shoppers in Colorado’s medical channel spend on average $20.46 for concentrates cartridges. Meanwhile, consumers in Oregon’s medical channel fork over the most for cartridges, with an average price of $40.16.

How about the land of brownies, caramels and teas? Edibles in Colorado’s medical channel average $12.42. But those who frequent Oregon’s recreational marketplace spend quite a bit more for their edibles — $18.27.

The news is not all rosy for Coloradans, however. While the medical channel is a comparative bargain, prices within the much busier recreational marketplace are quite a bit higher, and often more expensive than in other states.

Looking for edibles? They will set you back $17.17 in Colorado’s recreational market. But in Oregon’s medical channel they sell for $16.20, in California the average retail price is $13.77 and Washingtonians spend quite a bit less — $12.96. Flower, too, is cheaper in Washington’s single recreational marketplace than in Colorado’s recreational channel — $5.74 in Washington compared to $6.27 in Colorado.

Doug Brown

Doug Brown

Douglas Brown spent more than two decades in newspaper and magazine newsrooms around the country, covering everything from the White House and Capitol Hill to technology policy to crime in New Mexico. Now, he runs Contact High Communications, a leading cannabis public relations firm based in Boulder, CO. He can be reached at

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