High in July: NM's recreational cannabis industry has best month yet - Albuquerque Journal

High in July: NM’s recreational cannabis industry has best month yet

The state’s cannabis industry did nearly $23.5 million in recreational sales. (Eddie Moore/Journal)

New Mexicans were gettin’ high in July.

The state said Thursday that adult-use sales last month were the largest since New Mexico’s recreational program began in April.

According to the Governor’s Office, businesses realized nearly $23.5 million in adult-use sales for the month. April topped more than $22 million, which was the highest for recreational sales until now.

“These numbers show that the impressive sales generated in the first month of legalized recreational cannabis sales were no fluke — and this is only the beginning,” Gov. Michelle Lujan Grisham said in a Thursday statement. “We’ve established a new industry that is already generating millions of dollars in local and state revenue and will continue to generate millions more in economic activity across the state, creating thousands of jobs for New Mexicans in communities both small and large.”

In just the first four months, recreational sales have accounted for close to $88 million dollars. And for July, including medical cannabis sales, the state’s cannabis industry saw about $40.3 million in combined sales.

Albuquerque, the most populated city in New Mexico, again saw the highest number of sales — doing about $7.7 million in adult-use sales and $6.9 million in medical sales, according to the state data.

Santa Fe did nearly $1.9 million in adult-use sales. Hobbs did nearly $1.3 million in recreational sales and Sunland Park did about $1.2 million in adult-use sales — both towns which border Texas where cannabis is still illegal recreationally.

Rio Rancho did more in medical sales than recreational, with about $873,861 coming from the medical side and $742,725 coming from the adult-use side.

New Mexico Cannabis Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Ben Lewinger called the numbers a win for the state.

“I couldn’t be prouder of my home state,” he said. “The Cannabis Regulation Act presented what felt like an impossible timeline to stand up a brand new adult use cannabis industry, yet here (we) are – four months into legal cannabis for folks over 21 and we have record sales, for not only adult use but also our cherished medical cannabis program. …Best of all, no one city or county owns this success — the industry will continue to grow across the entire state.”

New Mexico Taxation and Revenue Department spokesman Charlie Moore said June cannabis excise tax returns totaled close to $2.5 million. Taxes are due on the 25th day of each month. July numbers won’t be ready until late August.

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