Colorado became the first state in the U.S. to legalize recreational sales of cannabis starting in 2014, and residents were shocked about how well it kicked off at first. Being one of two states (Washington legalized recreational cannabis the same year) where people could legally buy the drug without having medical reasons, the cannabis industry boomed right away.
In fact, in the first several years' cannabis was legal, sales for cannabis products were high and local governments were receiving large amounts of tax dollars. The cannabis industry continued to grow in sales every year up until the coronavirus pandemic struck in 2020.
But while most industries saw a decline in sales, cannabis sales increased during the shutdowns. Many saw the cannabis industry as one sector that proved to be pandemic-proof because people were still purchasing cannabis while everyone was stuck at home.
But after the pandemic came to an end, the cannabis industry started to drastically slow down. After 2021 saw a record of $2.2 billion in cannabis sales, the sales in 2022 took a serious dive. The fact that more states legalize recreational cannabis every year is one factor that has caused the decrease.
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