Illinois Cannabis Sales Top $1 Billion in 2020

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Cannabis dispensaries across Illinois sold more than $1 billion worth of marijuana products in 2020, state records show.

According to data from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR), which oversees dispensary licensing, adult-use cannabis sales eclipsed $669 million during the first year of legalization.

Meanwhile, year-to-date sales of medical marijuana surpassed $331 million through November, bringing combined sales to more than $1 billion.

Month-of-month sales of adult-use cannabis grew 15% in December, as dispensaries sold a record 1.89 million cannabis products worth more than $86.8 million. In October, the second-highest grossing month of 2020, adult-use sales surpassed $75.2 million.

The December medical cannabis sales figures have not been released, but the state’s 55 licensed dispensaries typically sell between $30 million and $33 million worth of product each month, a THCnet review found.

Medical marijuana dispensaries sold more than $30.7 million worth of cannabis in November. 

In total, sales of cannabis — excluding medical marijuana transactions from December — reached $1,000,308,800 in 2020.

More than $496.4 million worth of adult-use cannabis was sold to in-state residents, while more than $172.6 million was sold to out-of-state travelers.

As of December 27, 2020, the IDFPR had licensed 82 adult-use dispensaries. Those retailers combined to sell nearly 14.5 million marijuana products in 2020.

The Illinois Department of Revenue (IDOR) collected $105.9 million in tax revenue from the sale of adult-use cannabis through September.

Under Illinois’ Cannabis Regulation and Tax Act (CRTA), two types of taxes are levied on marijuana. The state imposes a 7% cultivation privilege tax on the gross receipts from the sale of adult-use cannabis by a cultivator to a dispensary. It also charges a variable, potency-based cannabis purchaser excise tax at the dispensary level.

Cannabis-infused offerings are taxed at 20%, while marijuana containing 35% THC or less is taxed at 10%. More concentrated cannabis containing over 35% THC is taxed at 25%.

Illinois is home to some of the largest multistate operators in the U.S., including Green Thumb Industries, Cresco Labs, and Verano Holdings.

Massachusetts-based Curaleaf Holdings, the largest cannabis firm in the country, also has a strong presence in Illinois following its acquisition of Chicago-based GR Companies (Grassroots).

Last week, Illinois Gov. J.B. Prtizker announced that "nearly 500,000 low-level cannabis-related records" had been expunged in Illinois.

The state is now four years ahead of a mandate to expunge over 700,000 cannabis-related arrest records by 2025, according to a news release.

"We are one year into what will be an ongoing effort to correct historic wrongdoings," said Toi Hutchinson, a senior advisor to Gov. Pritzker who previously served as the state's cannabis regulation oversight officer. 

The first wave of pardons began on December 31, 2019, ahead of legalization. 

"The administration remains committed to working with legislators to address any challenges to equity and on building an industry that re-invests in our state's communities," Hutchinson added.


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