Recreational marijuana customers spent almost $35 million at Illinois dispensaries in February, a decline from the previous month, but an industry analyst said the market still holds promise.
In January, recreational weed sales totaled more than $39.2 million, one of the strongest showings among states that have legalized marijuana.
With two fewer shopping days than January, February sales to Illinois residents totaled $25.6 million while out-of-state residents spent almost $9.2 million, according to data from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation.
States that launch recreational sales typically see revenues steadily increase as additional marijuana growers and dispensaries open, but Illinois is different, said Bethany Gomez, managing director of cannabis research firm Brightfield Group. Because of regulations, only a couple dispensaries have opened since recreational sales started Jan. 1, and no new growers are expected to open until at least late this year.
Those restrictions have contributed to a statewide product shortage that caused some dispensaries to halt recreational sales or institute buying limits. Many continue to sell recreational marijuana only on certain days of the week or for restricted hours.
Given those restraints, a $35 million month bodes well for the future of Illinois’ marijuana market, Gomez said. [Read more at Chicago Tribune]