Per their most recent analysis of North American marijuana consumption and due to be published next month, the ArcView Group reports consumers within both the U.S. and Canada spent $53.3 billion on both legal and illicit marijuana during 2016.
Broken down into legal and illegal sectors, illegal cannabis sales totaled approximately $46.4 billion while only $6.9 billion was sold and taxed in states with reformed marijuana laws.
Reeking of missed opportunity and a massive loss of potential tax revenue, the report noted 87% of all marijuana sales across North America were serviced by the black market.
As to the sale of legal weed, the ArcView summary reported $6.9 billion in sales for both the United States and Canadian markets, cultivating a substantial 34% increase on a year-over-year basis.
No longer feeding the criminal element in the eight recreational and 25 medicinal states (plus D.C), the report noted between 2015 and 2016, North American black market sales dipped by a noteworthy 3 %. Taking a “bite out of crime” one legal sale at a time, this report indicates those states with legal access have done more to rid our country of black market marijuana sales than any ridiculous McGruff campaign.
Projected to cultivate a 26% growth rate over the next four years, the ArcView summary states that by 2021 the legal marijuana market will generate approximately $21.6 billion of taxable revenue. Anticipated to shrink illegal sales in North America to a still massive 67% by 2021, the report had an interesting little quote regarding legalization and the war on drugs: President-Elect Donald Trump said in 1991, “You have to legalize drugs to win that war.”