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The sales value of legal recreational marijuana in California is expected to reach $6.59 billion by 2025.

2022-05-06

Pioneering California allowed medical use of marijuana in 1996 and recreational use (Proposition 64) in 2016, and a record 68 percent of Americans now favor legalizing marijuana, according to Gallup. California polls report similar numbers in the Golden State. In one poll, 18 percent of adult Americans said they had consumed cannabis within the previous year.


It has become big business.

The sales value of legal recreational marijuana in California is expected to reach $6.59 billion by 2025, up from $2.69 billion in 2016, according to Statista, a provider of market and consumer data.  In 2020 alone, retail sales were estimated at $4.4 billion.

California has 823 licensed brick-and-mortar cannabis shops, and close to 3,000 retailers and delivery services operate in the state without a permit, a February 2020 market analysis by Marijuana Business Daily found.

Leaders of the cannabis industry say legal cannabis is taxed too heavily and cannot compete with illegal sources that offer lower prices. The taxes and fees, they argue, thwarts development of the full market. The Associated Press reports that California’s illegal marijuana market is worth an estimated $8 billion, roughly double that of legal sales.
 
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