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Prices Shoot Up 200 Percent in Nevada as Weed Flies off the Shelves

Maureen Meehan

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When legal weed sales went into effect on July 1, the excitement was palpable. Now, weed shortages and spiked up prices are also becoming palpable, verging on untenable.

Between distribution issues and much larger than expected sales, dispensaries and producers alike are freaking out; there’s not enough weed to go around, aggravated by the fact that there are only two distributors for retails outlets. Serious understaffing.

The market simply cannot keep up with the demand, which as we learned in Econ 101, has resulted in an increase in the price of marijuana—a 200 percent increase in just one month.

“Right now, the retail stores are really struggling with keeping a consistent product on the shelf and meeting demand,” said Brayden Sutton, CEO of Friday Night Inc., a Canadian-based adult-use cannabis company.

He added that the price per pound for trim has gone from $150 to $450 in one month. Yikes.

“They are constrained by what cultivators can produce, which is nowhere near what they need to be right now,” said Sutton.

Nevada only has 88 state-approved cultivation facilities, at least so far.

Nevada’s legal recreational market nearly got derailed at the last minute when alcohol distributors wanted to take sole control of delivering weed to the dispensaries.

Nevada’s law, unlike other legal pot states, dictates that only alcohol wholesalers can transport cannabis from growers to storefronts for the next 18 months.

However, applications from the booze distributors didn’t materialize in time and a temporary order was passed to get the market up and running.

Now, under certain circumstances, the state has agreed to license some retailers to transport pot from growers to storefronts.

A judge recently ruled that even more distributors could be approved and that alcohol distributors did not have the right to a monopoly.

It’s worth pointing out that Nevada’s early start plan could have something to do with not having enough time to iron out some of the wrinkles the state is facing.

Nevada was not expected to start selling recreational marijuana until sometime around mid 2018.

This is all fine for the future. But Nevada’s 602,000 people (55 percent) who voted for legal recreational weed–not to mention the thousands of tourist who visit Sin City daily—are waiting for those wrinkles to get ironed out.

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