When it comes to Nevada’s legal weed retail sales, the state hit the jackpot in August, selling $33 million worth of recreational cannabis in the month, a $6 million jump from July figures.
The data, released earlier this week by the Nevada Department of Taxation, also shows that almost $5 million in taxes filled the state’s coffers, an increase of about $1.3 million from the previous month. Nevada’s recreational marijuana program was launched in July, so the numbers are encouraging.
As the Las Vegas Review-Journal reports:
The recreational sales numbers were significantly ahead of the state’s projected $21.5 million in sales for August. In fact, the state did not project any month in the first year of recreational sales to eclipse $28 million.
Andrew Jolley, CEO of The+Source dispensaries and president of the Nevada Dispensary Association, said those projections will likely prove to be fairly conservative, and expects the market to continue to grow steadily over the next several months.
“I think it is a good indication that there was a large, pent-up demand that was being served by the black market,” Jolley said.
Earlier this year, Gov. Brian Sandoval projected that the state would bring in more than $100 million from taxes and fees in the first two years of recreational sales. But the Department of Taxation recalibrated that estimate to more than $120 million. Although it is difficult to forecast based on just two months of data, that forecast may move up even more.
Related Story: What Happened During Nevada’s First Weekend Of Legal Weed?
The taxes collected from cannabis goes to the state’s rainy day fund, which can be spent anywhere, but is normally reserved for emergencies.
State Sen. Tick Segerblom, D-Las Vegas, who was a strong advocate for legalization, was upbeat about the latest tax figures. “Obviously there’s a demand,” Segerblom said. He also told the Review-Journal that he is bullish on the long-term growth of the industry, noting that retail outlets continue to open its doors.