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April 24, 2024

Mass. surpasses $6B in cannabis sales as unofficial 4/20 holiday breaks singe-day sale record

A customer and a cashier stand at a retail counter inside a cannabis dispensary. Photo | Courtesy of Major Bloom Major Bloom, a cannabis business in Worcester

While the Massachusetts cannabis industry continues to feel growing pains, consumers’ appetite for cannabis has shown no signs of slowing. 

The state has surpassed $6 billion in total adult-use cannabis sales since the first legal recreational transaction took place in November 2018, according to a press release issued by the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission on Wednesday. 

Massachusetts also broke a single-day sales record on April 20, an unofficial holiday celebrating cannabis culture; Massachusetts adult-use retailers sold $8.5 million on that day, a figure topping last year’s 4/20 sales total of $7.2 million and the previous single-day sales record of $7.5 million, which was set on Nov. 22, 2023, according to the commission. 

“I continue to be encouraged by these sales milestones because they show that the industry is strong and efficiently regulated, both spurring economic development and critical tax revenue for the Commonwealth and providing safe, tested products for consumers and patients alike,” Ava Callender Concepcion, acting chair of the commission, said in a press release announcing the milestones. “With a wave of new statutory and regulatory changes beginning to take shape in Massachusetts, I’m confident that our industry is well-positioned to continue adapting, expanding, and creating more equity-driven pathways for individuals pursuing their entrepreneurial and career aspirations.”

Medical marijuana dispensaries have seen $62.5 million in sales so far in 2024.

In addition to the updated April sales figures, CCC has shared insights into delivery sales figures for the first time. 

Delivery operators have made $3.1 million in sales in 2024 as of April 21, while delivery couriers accounted for $1.4 million, equaling a combined total of $4.5 million. This compares to $488.3 million in sales this year that were made at retail storefronts. Delivery operators are businesses allowed to carry their own inventory and conduct sales directly to consumers. Marijuana couriers work with specific retail storefronts to pick up orders and then deliver them to consumers, similar to the business model of food delivery apps like Uber Eats and Grubhub. 

One Central Massachusetts delivery service in April expanded its delivery range, as businesses operating under that model await a state rule change to allow them to conduct deliveries with one employee in a vehicle, rather than the current requirement of two employees.

Despite the latest sales milestone, it hasn’t been all smooth sailing for cannabis businesses in the region. A number of businesses are facing lawsuits from contractors or other cannabis firms over alleged unpaid bills, and a Clinton cannabis firm permanently shut its doors earlier in April. 

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