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Some Illinois Pot Shops Closing Up Voluntarily During Coronavirus Pandemic

At least eight recreational shops are taking a beat in the wake of the pandemic.

Illinois Senate Approves Adult-Use Marijuana Legalization Bill
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The state hasn’t required them to do so, but a handful of marijuana businesses in Illinois have voluntarily closed up shop in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation said this week that it is aware of at least eight adult use recreational marijuana businesses across the state that have suspended sales, a decision made of their own volition. Other businesses, meanwhile, have imposed patient-only hours, according to the agency.

One such business, Dispensary 33 in Chicago, said that it would only serve medical cannabis patients for the time being.

“We do understand that not everyone with a medical need has a medical card, but until further notice we can only serve medical patients,” the dispensary said, as quoted by NBC Chicago.

Another Chicago-based shop, Moca Modern Cannabis, said it was restricting sales to online order pickup for medical patients only, according to NBC Chicago.

The Effect on Illinois’ New Adult-Use Market

The pandemic may disrupt what has been a booming start for Illinois’ fledgling recreational marijuana market. Earlier this month, the state said that the market had generated $74.2 million during the first two months of operations, a figure that shows steady demand so far. 

In January, the first month weed was sold legally for recreational use, the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation said that marijuana generated $39,247,840.83 worth of sales. Nearly $9 million worth were sold to visitors from outside the state, while more than 970,000 marijuana products were sold in those 31 days. On New Year’s Day, when the marijuana market opened for business in Illinois, sales reached nearly $3.2 million. Sales in February dipped slightly, totaling nearly $35 million. 

“The successful launch of the Illinois legal cannabis industry represents new opportunities for entrepreneurs and the very communities that have historically been harmed by the failed war on drugs,” said Toi Hutchinson, Pritzker’s senior advisor for cannabis control. “The administration is dedicated to providing multiple points of entry into this new industry, from dispensary owners to transporters, to ensure legalization is equitable and accessible for all Illinoisans.”

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Written By

High Times Writer.

2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Avatar

    Scott Blatter

    March 22, 2020 at 11:02 pm

    Well I live in extreme southern illinois and I can tell you this, illinois is blowing alot of smoke up everyone’s arses and getting away with it.i l live twenty miles from Paducah,my and can tell you about their “voluntary” shutdown. Only reason they shut down rec is the same reason that most of us downstate still haven’t been able to purchase any flower or concentratr yet. Because they dont have anything to sell to us,that’s why! The only way people south of collinsville or effingham can get access to any of the afore mentioned products with any shred of consistency is to drive north for an hour and a half,despite having 3 dispensaries in our region. The only even halfway consistent product offered by 1 of the 3 only is a 1 gram Preroll.Limit 1 per person per day. They have had 1/8’s at all 3 maybe 4 times since January 1.Those were sold out before close on the same day. All this while the upstate dispensaries have product almost at all times for rec. Limited choices,but still multiple choices of both aforementioned products. And the medical patients at these 3 dispensaries,or at least the patients that I know, are complaining about not being able to get their medicine at times or very little choice of product and not being the products best suited for treating their individual ailments. Products that they had been purchasing suddenly no longer available,etc. Just so you dont think I am blowing smoke toward you,all you ha me e to do is go to thriveil.com and harbory.us.com and follow their links to their facebook pages,go to their posts and load the comments. Wont take you long to see what I mean. The aggravated comment list is many and extremely long. Harbory was somewhat better than the 2 thrive locations. Basically all that has been available for rec there was edible,topical and tincture products that wouldn’t sell for medical. Oh yeah I almost forgot to talk about the price gouging.Approximately a week before rec becomes legal,they raise medical from $45 an 1/8 to $55. Then keep the rec and med at $55 to $65 per 1/8 and add around 40% tax to the rec and that reflects our current situation here in deep southern Illinois. Loud goes for $10 per gram on the street.
    Makes you scratch your head and say WTF? Screwed again. Feel free to contact me if you would like to hear about my woes in further detail. Thank you for your time and consideration.

  2. Avatar

    Scott Blatter

    March 22, 2020 at 11:22 pm

    Sorry.. spell correct got me on my prior post. I live 20 miles north of Paducah ,KY not Paducah,my. And the 40% tax I spoke of is on top of the $55 to $65(strains with higher thc are taxed at a higher rate i am told)per 1/8. Making a high percentage thc recreational 1/8 come in at a price of approximately $91. All I can say Is wow! At $10 a gram on the street I dont think you guys are gonna have much effect on quelling the black market. You might help build some crooks 401k but that about the only effect you’ll have. What a joke.

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