December 5, 2018

Massachusetts expects up to $1B in marijuana sales next fiscal year

Photo | Zachary Comeau
Customers wait in a long line to purchase marijuana at Cultivate in Leicester.

Massachusetts state tax revenue for recreational marijuana sales is forecasted to be between $93 million and $172 million next fiscal year, revenue officials told lawmakers Wednesday.

For this fiscal year, revenue estimates from adult-use cannabis sales are expected to be between $44 million and $82 million, consistent with a previous forecast, Revenue Commissioner Christopher Harding told the Joint Ways and Means Committee.

The state tax rate on recreational cannabis products equals 17 percent. At that rate, state officials are expecting this fiscal year's cannabis sales to possibly reach up to $482 million.

Based on that same rate, next fiscal year's cannabis sales could reach $1 billion based on Harding's maximum estimate of $172 million in cannabis tax revenue.

So far, just two retailers have opened for adult use sales: Cultivate in Leicester and New England Treatment Access in Northampton. Those businesses have reported more than $4.8 million in gross sales for the first two weeks since sales began on Nov. 20.

Harding categorized early sales as very robust on Wednesday.

"We don't know if that trend will continue at that pace once more stores open," he said. "We'll continue to track that."

The CCC said more stores could open by the end of 2018 and more will come online on a steady basis in the new year.

Information from the State House News Service was used in this report.


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