Cannabis is nearly a $1 billion industry in Oregon, but after years of upward trajectory, the industry has hit a wall.
Last year marked the first time that annual sales of cannabis products declined from over $1 billion in 2021 to $994 million in 2022. This comes as Oregon’s third-largest dispensary chain, Chalice Farms, recently asked Multnomah County to place five of its subsidiaries in receivership.
Hunter Neubauer, the president of the Oregon Cannabis Association, says he had a feeling that the company’s financial troubles would happen — adding that the business has been going through financial issues for some time.
“It’s really difficult to run a business when we’re fighting things such as archaic policy, such as 280E, and over-regulation and over-taxation,” Neubauer said. “It’s also really difficult when you don’t have an eye or an ear on the marketplace. If leadership isn’t involved on a daily basis, you can lose sight of what’s happening.”
Now, Neubauer says Oregon’s cannabis industry is “the most fragile it’s ever been” as demand is not keeping pace with supply.
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