If you’re driving through Taos, NM any time soon, expect to see some new stores opening up with some… let’s call them relaxing products. Recreational marijuana sales were recently legalized in New Mexico, and businesses were given the OK by state officials to sell and distribute their products starting last week.
On Friday, April 1st, New Mexico officially allowed retailers to legally sell and distribute recreational marijuana products. New Mexico reported state recreational marijuana sales to surpass $5 million in the industry’s opening weekend. On Friday alone, Taos News reported transactions totaling $2.7 million.
Dispensary owners across the state said crowds of people were lined up hours before the stores even opened. Not so surprisingly, a large portion of New Mexico’s opening weekend sales can be traced back to people who live out-of-state, predominantly in Texas. Dispensaries located on the border accounted for a large percentage of the overall sales revenue from opening weekend.
Bryan’s Green Care is located just five miles from the border between New Mexico and Texas. The dispensary’s sales director told Taos news they experienced a 3,000% sales increase during opening weekend. Yes, that number is correct. 3,000% increase in sales over one weekend.
The owners of the dispensary originally were selling strictly CBD products, but they began recreational marijuana sales on April 8th. Adding new product lines to their business definitely added to the massive increase in sales, but it does not explain everything. One more factor playing into the massive sales increase was the overwhelming influx of customers.
Sales director Jordan McIlroy told Taos news that many of their customers that purchased something during opening weekend were from Texas, not New Mexico.
“I would say around 70% of our customers over the weekend were Texas residents,” he said.
The fact that sales have already passed $5 million is promising. Dan Rodriguez, the president and CEO of New Mexico’s largest cannabis operation, had financial analysts crunching numbers to predict opening weekend sales. He told Taos News that the actual $5 million in revenue was right on track for what his team predicted.
While sales are matching Rodriguez’s predicted numbers, he has data that makes it reasonable to believe that there will be a marijuana shortage coming soon to New Mexico. Rodriguez explained to Taos News that there simply are not enough licensed recreational marijuana growers in New Mexico to supply this highly-demanding market. He said there are currently less than 100 licensed growers in New Mexico. He fears that there will not be enough mature plants to harvest in the necessary time frame.
If a recreational marijuana shortage is on the horizon, customers will experience a price increase and fewer products to choose from. Patients in New Mexico who use medical marijuana may find it harder to refill their prescriptions if a shortage occurred. The only thing that will solve this problem is approving more recreational marijuana growing licenses.
Allowing more manufacturers to enter the industry will effectively increase the recreational marijuana product supply. Prices and product choices will remain the same, and potentially grow if more growers are allowed to enter the industry.