Fears of Marijuana Price Crash, ‘Bloodbath’ in Colorado as Regulatory Changes Take Hold

colorado marijuana

By John Schroyer

Last October brought a dramatic change to Colorado’s recreational marijuana market when the state axed its vertical integration rule and opened up the industry to new players.

These moves have spawned business opportunities and paved the way for a wholesale cannabis market, but they have also created challenges for existing cultivation operations and led to a shift in the industry’s dynamics. They’ve also sparked fears of an impending price collapse that could turn the industry on its head in the coming months.

“A lot of the people in the industry realize that there’s an imminent price collapse that’s coming because of all of the stand-alone growers that have come online since October,” said Toni Fox, the owner of 3D Cannabis Center, a rec shop in Denver. “We’re talking thousands, millions of square feet of grow space that were not online that are now. And those are stand-alone growers, so they’re going to flood the wholesale market, and the price of marijuana is going to collapse.”

Spike in Business Activity

When Colorado’s rec industry got up and running on Jan. 1, 2014, only existing medical marijuana businesses could apply for permits to get into the rec side of the industry. But the state opened up the application process last summer to other entrepreneurs who didn’t already have MMJ operations, and then began issuing those permits on Oct. 1.

That date also signaled an end to a mandate that rec shops grow at least 70% of the cannabis they sell, which helped bolster the wholesale cannabis market and allowed cultivation-only focused businesses to emerge. (MMJ dispensaries must still grow the majority of what they sell.)

The changes have led to a noticeable increase in business activity. The number of licensed rec marijuana companies has jumped by roughly 35% since Oct. 1. As of early this month, there were 869 licensed rec businesses in the state, compared with 644 in September.

The 225 new recreational permits issued in the past four months include licenses for 92 retailers, 99 cultivation operations, 30 infused product manufacturers and four testing labs.

And the number keeps climbing. In January alone, the agency licensed 12 new rec stores and 18 new cultivators.

By comparison, it awarded just 34 new MMJ permits from Oct. 1 through early February.

Price War Coming?

The rise of the wholesale cannabis market and the increase in new companies has pushed down prices to some degree.

According to Cannabase, an online marketplace that connects retailers and wholesale growers, the price of recreational marijuana dropped roughly $600 per pound between September and December last year.

At the same time, Cannabase found that supply has skyrocketed in the same time frame.

“The margins are getting squeezed,” said Cannabase CEO Jennifer Beck. She added that there’s “absolutely” a price crash on the way for Colorado’s marijuana industry, but optimistically predicted that it’ll wind up being a “blip on the radar” in the long term.

Fox painted a much darker picture.

A year ago, she was purchasing wholesale cannabis from other shops for $4,000 a pound. Since then, it’s gone down to an average of $2,000 a pound in recent months, she said.

In mid-February, Fox had sellers offering her marijuana for just $1,200 a pound. And she fully expects that by the summer, wholesalers will be offering marijuana to shops for $500 a pound.

“The people that are in this industry better be ready for a war, and it’s going to be a bloodbath this summer,” Fox said.

Fox said that’s one of the reasons she’s decided to sell her Denver store and move full-time to Salida, a mountain town three hours southwest of the state’s largest metro area, where she has a second smaller cannabis shop. She’s even willing to lose out on a possible profit from selling 3D just because she doesn’t want to have to deal with the price war she sees on the horizon.

“I know if I could give it another few months, I might be able to get a little more for it, but with the impending price collapse, and the wars that are about to happen, I feel that now is a great time to exit the competitive market,” Fox said.

Overproduction = Black Market Boost

Michael Elliot, the executive director of the Marijuana Industry Group, said he’s been hearing from concerned companies that overproduction could lead some desperate cultivators to turn to the black market, to get whatever price they can instead of simply destroying product they can’t unload.

“What I’ve heard is there’s a lot of low-quality product out there, and I’ve heard a lot of people are concerned that because it’s low quality, it’s not going to sell,” Elliot said. “(Diversion to the black market) is one of the core eight principles that the Department of Justice discussed that we as a state have to do everything we can to prevent. So the problem with overproduction is if we’re producing more than is being demanded in Colorado, that’s the danger, is that it leads to illegal diversion.”

Elliot’s worry is that if the issuance of new business licenses by the state leads to overproduction, and if that in turn winds up boosting the black market either in Colorado or outside its borders, then it could become a much larger problem for the industry as a whole.

He went so far as to suggest some “reasonable caps” for the Colorado cannabis industry, and said the fact that there are already some production caps is a step in the right direction. The MED might even consider slowing down or stopping issuing new licenses for a while, Elliot said.

“We’re not taking a position right now on whether they should stop issuing these grow licenses,” Elliot stated, but added that it’s “certainly something they could do to help address the problem.”

Not All Gloomy

Others are still upbeat about the forces at play in Colorado’s market, and say it’s too soon to tell what the long-term effect of so many new businesses will be.

“Really, it’s going to take several more months to see the impact on the market,” said Christian Sederberg, an attorney who works closely with the cannabis industry. “At this point, I think it’s too early to measure the impact. But in general, allowing new people to engage in the market as retailers and cultivators is a good thing.”

Sederberg also pointed to the tiny time frame for businesses between Oct. 1 – when the MED first started handing out new business licenses – and February. That small of a window, he said, wouldn’t yield enough data to really assess how the October changes have really affected the industry across the state.

That being said, Sederberg added that he wouldn’t be surprised to see some businesses fail this year – or get bought out – with the added competition.

“These are difficult business plans to sustain, especially if a lot of your competitors are already vertically integrated,” Sederberg said.

For some in the trade, however, the boom in licenses and growers has been good news. Edibles manufacturers, for example, now have far much more to choose from when it comes to picking the right product.

“We had periods of time last year when access to trim was challenging,” said Joe Hodas, chief marketing officer at Dixie Elixirs. “We didn’t have it when we needed it, and now we have pretty safe supply, to we’re able to produce products on an appropriate schedule, we’re not back-ordered on things, so we’re definitely seeing a benefit there.”

John Schroyer can be reached at [email protected]

41 comments on “Fears of Marijuana Price Crash, ‘Bloodbath’ in Colorado as Regulatory Changes Take Hold
  1. BigDaddyBeer on

    This is a normal process in pretty much all commodity markets. In a start-up situation like this industry, it should be expected. Illicit profit levels were never going to last but they were certain to attract folks. Same thing happens when a crop’s prices go way up. Next year everyone and his dog plants that crop and the price plummets.

    It all works out over time but not without a fair amount of blood in the water.

  2. Steve on

    What do resellers expect? Is there a market-driven rationalization of the enormous differences charged for medical vs recreational of the very same strains? What kind of markup/profit margins do “normal businesses” expect when they turn inventory? Should recreational sellers expect to earn such high profits indefinitely? What the recreational sellers need is a good lesson in supply/demand/pricing economics if they were truly expecting to continue to earn such high margins. Wake up time. The most efficient producers will remain; others will shake out of the industry.

  3. Tom Gallagher on

    The concern is real, the risk is real, the short sighted will be eaten alive. Those with sound business plans and contractual commitments for product will continue to thrive.

    I’m about to finish a recreational cannabis production facility and start on a MIP. My clients have little to fear, because the basic business fundamentals drive these investments. Many of the commercial production facilities being constructed around ours will not survive. That’s simply because they failed to look any further than the wholesale market. I know what their cost per square foot is and a supply glut calls into question the ability to service debt, let alone cost of production.

    That’s the free market …. some win …. some loose …. it’s about being smart.

  4. Steve W on

    Well this move to open up the growing should separate the sheep from the goats! The efficient will live and all others will die, just as efficient markets decree. What most don’t realize is that even $450 a pound is huge money in the ag world and even this price is not likely to hold if the market rules and regulation does not, too severely, crimp the movement towards efficient production. Cannabis is the cheapest intoxicant to produce in the world and it’s free market, unregulated price would be a small fraction of today’s bloated structure. I doubt that Colorado will allow the market to seek it’s true level but they are, at least, making progress towards reality.

  5. Jahpharmer on

    Colorado has quickly become (in)famous for “pretendica” I feel no mercy for such “Quick Buck Chucks”, may they all be smothered in their own low quality, high-impurity, pest infested strains.

    Our company motto is “The Dank is in the Details”(trademark protected folks). We are vertically integrated from breeding, to cultivation, manicuring-curing, to extractions we offer our medical dispensary client base throughout California a full service, full spectrum of products: smokeables, edibles, oils and tinctures, vaps,too…and soon wholly new forms of whole-cannabis, and custom, medically-specific cannabinoid-terpenoid blends.

    Don’t matter whether a herd of cows, or competitive cannabis companies, you either lead the herd or stare at sphincters.

    Thank you Colorado, and Washington state, for showing us over here in California how to and how not to do it.

    P.S. All them cultivation licenses being issued in Colorado…hmmm; you folks ever hear about “agent provocateurs, or 5th Column activities? How about Brutus in Shakespeare’s “Julius Caesar”? There’s an old saying that too much of anything is bad for you…now there’s them folks in Denver just issuing permits willy’nilly; wonder what their real motivations might be….

  6. Nebula Haze on

    It costs less than $100 a pound to grow top quality cannabis! When I grow it ends up being about $50/pound to produce, and that’s for a small scale personal grow that is not optimized at all! The prices they were charging before were artificially inflated because they had a monopoly on the market. Now the low quality cannabis can’t sell at high prices (as it should be!) and the consumer is the one who wins! With economy of scale and increased competition, the cost of cannabis in stores is going to continue falling, and will soon dip below the black market prices from a year ago, even with the (high) cost of taxes. With lower prices and higher quality cannabis in stores, it’s going to put a squeeze on the black market which was only charging as much because their product was illegal and difficult to obtain. Their quality and consistency just wasn’t always there. The black market may never go away completely, but with the convenience, consistent high quality, and competitive prices of a rec store, a lot more people are going to be visiting storefronts for their cannabis.

  7. Quinn Sysmith on

    Are crony capitalists (anti-free marketers) going to emerge from the ‘green revolution’ and demand more intrusive government ‘regulation’ to prevent new industries and businesses from emerging? Greed often triumphs over the minds of the weak and shallow, who crave ‘baubles and trinkets’ over freedom and compassion for their fellow human.

  8. Michael Prince on

    This article is on point, it is the nature of a fast emerging market like this.

    Another thing to consider is the effect this might have on grow stores. If flower becomes this cheap how many home growers will stop growing?

    How will this affect infused product companies? With so much of their COGs going to packaging and other materials, they might not be able to compete against flower. That is one of the biggest consumer complaints with infused products already. Once the price gap widens how will there businesses be effected?

    It’s foolish to think that the strong will survive. There will be good companies that go out of business too, it’s inevitable.

  9. Mount Zion collective on

    $50 to grow and process a pound…or just grow?

    If it takes someone 4 hours to trim one pound, and you only pay them $15 an hour (even though the current going rate is $20-25) that is $60 just to trim one pound.

    Now you add in cost of property, cost for soil and amendments, tractor, 10 hour days 7 days a week April-December for 2 people per acre

    Cost of security fence (20k to minimum needed fence on 5 acres)

    Cost of seeds/clones, greenhouse, t post for plant support in windy areas (7$ per with 4 on each plant=$2700 for only 99 plants), hortonova netting to shape and support plants,

    Cost of doing foliar sprays

    Cost to set up climate controlled drying room (7-20K for 1000 pounds)

    Cost for 1000s of 6 pack mason jars, or about 50K to properly cure 1 acre of bud

    Normal ag industry doesn’t have to take such delicate care at some many complex stages. You have no idea how complex it is to grow large scale while still ensuring quality of product (gentle so not to damage trichomes glands, to hold the green color, to hold the smell, taste and potency while preventing mold growth.

    The large supergrows in Canada said their cost per pound would be 500-800.

    I grow organic hybrid outdoor/greenhouse. Me and my wife do all the work from seed to harvest, then pay others to hand trim. We dry on a 7-10 dry in climate controlled room. We hand cure each bud in mason jars (cvaults if you have money). We do this at 4500 elevation (higher elevation=stronger sun=higher resin production) on south facing hill giving full day sun and ample airflow.

    I can do this for about 150-200$ a pound not including me or my wife’s pay for doing the majority of the work and all of the management and technical work.

    That doesn’t include taxes or permitting fees.

    Lots of people cutting costs by using machines to trim but I haven’t seen one that is acceptable quality. The other problem with machines is they need to be ran on wet material, and when you trim bud before you dry it like they do it will dry way too fast (harsh smoke, no smell). They try to mitigate this by jacking up the humidity and lowering the tempretures in the drying room but this drastically increases likeliness of having mold problems. So they come in 4-8 times a day to mix this pile of trimmed drying nugs but every time they do that they are destroying quality and trichomes.

    So $50 a pound…not likely. Yes their is a scale in production, but don’t forget there’s usually upfront heavy investment to provide economies of scale. Also csnnabis is currently grown in artisan style in the dispensary model, you cannot just grow 1000s of acres of high quality cannbis FLOWERS. You can grow 1000s of acres of shitty plants used for oils though, if your into that sort of thing…

  10. Gail Knight on

    I wish it only cost us $100 to grow a pound!! Nebula your website is always my go to on anything that pertains to growing but I couldn’t grow that cheap for my high quality hand trimmed organic in soil flowers due to the electric for the lights, the labor and as was mentioned in the article above me all the other work involved in the seed, veg, flowering, drying, curing, and advertising and delivery. The big industrials are trying to take over, but I WILL stay in the game, due to my very competitive prices, quality flower, honesty and dependability to my patients. All my strains are $150 an ounce and that is the magic number here..

  11. Jahpharmer on

    Mt. Zion Collective:
    Thank you!
    Your concise breakdown of real-world costs for growing, harvesting, processing, and curing top quality cannabis, be it MMJ or RMJ is right-on!
    Gives me the heebie-jeebies reading about how Marlboro Green plans to use “former” narco-traffickers down in Mexico to grow what it plans to package and sell throughout America.
    Already there’s a flood of cheap, machine trimmed, low quality products out there, and, more and more it seems the army of middlemen no longer care about quality, are only interested in cheap, cheaper, and cheapest.
    My rant with local boards of supervisors is MMJ & RMJ growers be regulated just like wine grape growers are; no special ordinances, no special set-backs, or invisibility barriers, etc. Given that eventually “we” win such battles, I envision there develops “bud tasting” businesses patterned on wine tasting businesses. Here is were I feel those of us who still take pride in producing excellent if not exquisite quality cannabis flowers and extracts will find our position as this industry develops. I am not so concerned about even tiny, “mom & pop” cannabis businesses vanishing as cheap, knock-offs to what they produce get “Walmarted” nationwide. I say this with some confidence having watched the flowering of mom & pop wineries and their accompanied wine tasting rooms all over California, and Oregon, over the past 60-odd years. It’s called a niche market. And for those with savvy business skills, or willing to learn such, their little businesses can survive, thrive, and even expand.
    You can go to your local supermarket and buy cheap, to OK, to good wine; however, you have to go either to wine shops or the wineries themselves to get the best products; the same will evolve for us cannabis growers, that is those of us willing to work for such, jump through the hoops for such, and support the politicians who will work helping us build such businesses. Will not be easy…thank goodness, or else everybody and their dog would do it, and as is always the case with quality vs. cheapness, there will be a demand for both in the marketplace.

  12. Gail Knight on

    Well the good thing Jahpharmer is that the quality flowers we grow are MUCH appreciated anyone other then a video game punky kid knows quality just by seeing it, followed by the smell,taste and then the effects. I take pride in my product and we wiil have our niche in it!1

  13. Constant Gardener on

    They are afraid to open the markets to growers who care about the product. There is the “warehouse weed” market and then there is a market of connoseurs who will purchase the type of quality and care that is being described by by Mt. Zion Collective and Jahpharmer. They are the ones who understand what it takes to produce “real” quality and will support that effort by paying a fair price instead of niggling over it because they can buy cheap crap. Let the market decide. That cannot happen when it is corporatized and overregulated. God forbid that people wouldn’t buy crap if they had a choice.

  14. Steve W on

    In re costs for quality bud I’ve got to say that anyone who thinks that the application of time and capital by farmers to the problem of producing exquisite quality bud at very low cost won’t solve the problem just doesn’t know much about farmers! High quality cannabis is a very easy crop to produce and while it is true that harvest and curing are, currently costly and a bit tricky, it will not take long for innovators to solve these problems and to do so in ways that will amaze us all but look simple in retrospect.
    If there is enough demand there will be solutions to mechanize harvest, curing and packaging and they will do it better than any of us can by hand!

  15. Mount Zion collective on

    ya I don’t believe in fairy tales… too many false promises given to farmers in the past. No way ur getting quality mechanized harvest process (harvesting, drying, trimming, curing, storage) at each stage the machine will make poor decisions as many of the decisions are more artistic than scientific…you cant a Machine to make art, each bud and strain is so different. Now you could Definintly create mid grade bud for 100$ a pound cheaper, but the quality drop will be well below that $100 so profit will be lost.

    The large majority of costs, 75%, do take place during harvest though.

  16. Cashcropper on

    I don’t think half of you know what your talking about.
    Cannabase thinks prices could fall to 600/lb by summer. The driest time of the year? Even with light deps, that doesn’t put a dent in the supply this nation wants from July- sept. Even part of October is dry, because it takes a few weeks to harvest and for that harvest to trickle out.
    A lot of people can grow, a minority produces the KIND, boutique cannabis. And there’s a market for that. I hope one day the magazines will focus more on what’s really in the cannabis that’s floating around, all this phospo loaded, eagle 20 sprayed crap, that the public is buying up, poisen!

  17. Steve W on

    There is nothing “artistic” in how one manicures bud anymore than there is “artistry” involved in pruning 100 acres of cherries. Once certain principles are recognized and defined, then repeatable actions can make the cuts and the rest is just sorting, drying and monitoring to get the right cure and storage condition. Don’t fool yourself, there is nothing that complicated about cannabis compared to many other processes already mechanized on modern farms.
    The fact is much of cannabis culture is amenable to such application of efficient methods. It is merely a matter of time and reasonable taxes until growing and processing your own cannabis is seen as as much a waste of time as growing and processing your own sweet peas or sweet corn is for most people now. We might not quite be there yet but we will soon be in a situation where cannabis pricing reflects it’s true costs and these will be very very low!

  18. Jahpharmer on

    Yo!, Steve W.;
    Please elaborate on your comment, “High quality cannabis is a very easy crop to produce…” Perhaps you have some techniques you’d share that make it “…very easy”? Are you referring to organic? Are you referring to long-season, or light-dep crops? Maybe it’s just me; however, I’ve been at it for over 35 years now, and when it comes to producing boutique quality, connoisseur cannabis I find much similarity with growing competition-class hybrid roses, or orchids: much hands-on, every-day, paying attention to details, many levels of details, are necessary to consistently (!), produce a product that stands-out, that wins “Cups”, that sophisticated tastes demand, all takes “blood sweat and tears.” Not easy at all!

    But then again, have I been wrong all these decades? Have I been toiling unnecessarily all this time. Please enlighten me! What’s your secret(s), Steve, to care-free (and, inexpensive?), growing high-quality cannabis?

    Oh, and by the way, try selling your “If there is enough demand there will be solutions to mechanize…” to connoisseur wine vintners, as one example of a boutique quality product that has successfully resisted “mechanization” for several thousand years now…but, ever am I willing to learn!

  19. Gail Knight on

    I know I won’t ever be producing or selling the generic product that you Steve are comparing to peas or sweet corn, and knowledgeable consumers won’t pay the cheaper prices for the crap the big tents are producing either. You must of went to a few seminars and are the college educated white collar type that never worked in the dirt and looked at the plant for the true potential of excellency that it is capable of. Just like the craft beer niche, the organic produce, and the fine wine and cigar industry, people will pay for quality and more so for this product, mark my words.

  20. Steve Martin on

    LMAO all over the place reading these comments!!! Wondering how old most of you are? I’m a young 53.. lol, do any of you remember back in the 70’s when we were getting top quality bud for just $10 an ounce??!!!??? Yes, $160lb. or less if you bought it by the pound! No it was not some of the mixed strains with higher thc in them like now, but it was some of the original Columbian, California Mohacan, Mesilla Vally homegrown(like hash when you broke it up, extremely potent & tasty!), all kinds of different stuff, yes, for just $10 a bag, & they were full bags, most of the time well over 30g’s, lmfao!!
    Here’s what I see coming: it will take a while, but legalization is imminent, everywhere on every level, period. Mass production & big business is imminent due to demand for product. Black market will always exist, period. Eventually, mass producers that produce inferior product will go out of business, period. There are many variables, depending on location, weather, all kinds of crap, as to if a grow will be quality product or not. Some of that has to do with skill, some has to do with luck too, for sure. Controlled environment can produce super high quality product.
    Bottom line: legalization should equal free market. Which should mean, one can choose to grow their own, purchase their own, sell or not sell to anyone they choose, at whatever price or for whatever reason, or to buy from someone for same, the reasons or price they choose. LEGALIZATION SHOULD EQUAL FREE MARKET, WHICH SHOULD END UP MEANING THAT ONE CAN EITHER GROW THEIR OWN, PURCHASE THEIR OWN, SELL THEIR OWN GOD GIVEN, CARE TAKEN TO THE END OF THE FLOWER PLANT, IN WHATEVER MANNER THEY CHOOSE TO DO SO, & IF THAT EVER HAPPENS??

    Simply, free market, will mean that maybe just one day, not too far in the future, one might just be able to either go to the store, or a friends house, or maybe even on the damn corner somewhere, or at a concert, & get a damn good high quality bag of smoke again, for yeah, just about $10 an ounce!! REMEMBER?? I DO!!!

  21. Steve W on

    gail- my comment re “peas and sweet corn” was really in reference to the fact that modern machinery has taken a complicated task- shucking peas and cutting sweet corn off the cob- and made it efficient and nearly cost free to perform. I wasn’t referencing quality of peas and corn although they are just as good when hand “manicured”! In processing cannabis as in processing most things the old adage that “you can’t make it better you can make it worse” applies. Great cannabis in, great bud out.
    Jahfarmer: I, as a lifelong organic farmer do not find high quality Cannabis particularly difficult as crops go. Start with good soil, add the proper nutrients, plant great genetics suitable for your area, train with a trellis and harvest carefully. I am fortunate to live in an area where molds and fungus are not much of an issue during summers which are long and, generally hot with long days and cool nights. I’ve never seen much in the way of pest problems outdoors either. Taken together if one follows these steps it’s hard not to produce great bud! I can just tell you that we grow very high quality bud in large quantities and sell it for a very reasonable price which is what our legal market demands.
    Good luck to all but if you are wise you won’t depend upon your, supposed, “boutique” quality to save you from efficient producers growing and packing at scale.

  22. Jahpharmer on

    Yo!, Steve M.
    Taking your $10 oz. price back in 1970 and using an on-line inflation calculator (http://data.bls.gov/cgi-bin/cpicalc.pl?cost1=10.00&year1=1970&year2=2015)
    …gives me a 2015 price of $60.25 for that same ounce today.

    That means the same pound you bought for $160 in 1970 will cost you $960.00 today.

    Good luck with your search for a $10 oz bag of something smokeable once we legalize in 2016.

    Oh, and yes I do remember such, however it was not for Columbian, those bags went for $35 oz. in 1972 when Columbian first became available mass-market here in California. Your $10 oz. bag was for Mexican “dirt weed” with stems, seeds, everything in it…
    Yes, do keep LYAO, but much of your laughter should be focused on how crossed-up your memories have become…that’s OK cause some of mine are too, like all of us over 50 folks…we still love ya!

    I feel for you, man, we all do; you are not the only one who longs-for, seeks rationalization for seeing prices become reasonable for the herb we all love to toke. But, guy, you got to realize inflation has ruined the purchasing power of the dollar. Really, man, weed ain’t no more expensive “now’a daze” than it was back “when”:
    Take that $35 oz of Punta Roja, or Columbian Gold back in 1972 and the same ounce today adjusted for inflation would cost $210.

    I imported tons (yes, tons) from Columbia back then and quantity wholesale prices were around $275 pound (typically for 20 pounds or more at a time). Today, similarly I see top shelf indoor going for around $1700 pound in similar quantities…no real difference in the price when you compare what $275 back in the early ’70s could buy you to what $1700 can buy you today, like groceries for example.

    It’s OK Steve, I get my bubbles popped all the time, too.

  23. Jahpharmer on

    For some reason I’m now being blocked from responding…no slurs, no nasty words, no derogatory comments, just going deeper into details in our ongoing “e” conversation???
    Try contacting me directly at: jahpharmer-at-g-mail-dot-com

  24. gail Knight on

    Wow why would someone ASSume the price of an ounce would return to the prices of 1972? How much was a gallon of gas back then or one pound of filet mignon? You must have some REAL GOOD quality medicine right now in 2015 to be dreaming up those crazy ideas, WOW

  25. Steve Martin on

    lol again you guys!!!! Jahpharmer, I didn’t have any bubble to be burst. I was just pointing out that the prices back in the 70’s, could actually become reality again, if MJ was completely legalized everywhere. Free market always = lower prices due to fair competition, period. That was the point I was trying to get across.. You may have payed $30oz for that good stuff in California, but even in 1975-1980, in New Mexico, we were getting top quality, all bud, no seeds, no stems, no trash, no sorry mexican stuff, for yes, $10 oz.. I guess it had to do with where you were at the time & who you knew. Also, your calculation of an oz being about $60 per oz. now, is kind of spot on, however, nowadays in our state, if you find a bag for $60, it will most definitely be schwag, or as some call it, dirt weed. I just think it’s way too high at over $400 per bag at the new shops coming up, & even on the black market now, for good quality dank, people are paying anywhere from $260-$400 an ounce.
    Gail, lol, I do not ASSume anything. I was just pointing out that if we had a “true” free legal market, that just possibly the prices could go way back down. I certainly hope they do not go back down, lol, as I am planning one of the new business in the industry. I would love to see the prices go & stay above $400 per ounce, so that perhaps I might be one of those that can get into the industry & make a decent living tending to the plant that I love! Lol, It would be nice though, for all the consumers/customers, etc.,, to be able to just go to any store, or any friends house, etc., where ever they wanted, & be able to get what they wanted, for prices at least comparable, yes, even with inflation, to what they were back then. Yes, we do have some not only real good quality meds right now, absolutely superb quality, lol, but for now, we keep it to ourselves. The reality is, that this is just now becoming legal, & most likely the prices will stay fairly high, but eventually, if fully legal everywhere, there should end up being enough quality product out there, that the prices will drop dramatically, & the businesses that are depending on the higher prices, will no doubt fail. Most likely, the big corps. will probably take this industry over for a while, then most likely the govt. will actually take complete control of it, & really mess it all up. But all those things will probably take at least another decade to come about. Mainly, I just wanted to point out, that it would be nice for the average consumer, if they could get the product for the prices that was around back in the 70’s. The prices now, in my opinion, are a high joke. If one really wants high quality meds at the cheapest price they can get, they need to grow it for themselves.

  26. Gail Knight on

    I am a DHHS registered caregiver and I am not keeping my high quality organic medicine to myself, all my strains but 1 is $150 an ounce. I am not getting rich but helping my patients get the best for the most reasonable price possible. I haven’t paid the prices I charge in at least 20 plus years and the quality is sooo much better. Peace…

  27. IntheKnow on

    @Steve W

    You are 100% correct about commodity
    prices and modern, mechanized farming
    techniques. Hops is a good example
    in the Yakima Valley in Wa State.

    Let’s say I am privileged to be able
    to visit any grower in Wa state and
    I already know the winners vs. the losers in this game. Everybody
    thinks that they are a boutique grower
    and their crap don’t smell, either.

    I believe that too many growers are
    way to involved in the plant and
    lifestyle to be objective about
    business practices. There will be
    bloodbath in Colorado, as well as in
    Wa state. $500 pounds are here which
    will match black market from oregon/norcal. Of course, these jokers
    will drop their prices, but most likely
    move it back east, while they can.
    I even predict $300 pounds very soon.
    Packaging and marketing will cost more
    than the product.

    Good luck to anyone who think they
    can survive as a boutique. I have
    40+ boutique growers who want to sell to me every day. Same quality, expensive to produce.

  28. Mountzioncollective on

    Dea is too busy bending over cartel paid prostitutes in south America, and the nsa is far too busy spying on the average American…

  29. Buddy Burns on

    It is sad that these types of problems exist with a marijuana plant that grows naturally in the Earth. Big business strikes again. Learn how to grow your own weed people and we can defeat big business together. Then again, if that ever happened they’d never fully legalize it, because they wouldn’t be making money! Double edged sword!

  30. Jahpharmer on

    Yo, Chris Anastasia: to whom are you addressing your question “…what state are you out of?” There’s several commenters here. I am in California.

  31. Ray on

    Cannabis is an emerging market and as all other commodities there needs to be price transparency. The prices should not be regulated but a benchmark needs to be established so cultivator’s know what to sell for and retailers know what to buy product for. There is a new pricing report put out by Cannabis Benchmarks (http://www.cannabisbenchmarks.com) that states the current selling price and future price for U.S. grown Cannabis. You can sign up for a weekly report so you can access the information weekly.

  32. bongstar420 on

    Lets see how much is produced, how much is sold, and what margins it happens at for each tier of low, mid, and high grade

    People shouldn’t forget that the Cannabis market has always been mostly high volume, low price consumption…at least 50% of the market price/volume

  33. deepOceanwaiting on

    I am flying into Colorado soon. Im looking to spend the day with a local grower. Willing to pay for time. I would consider other states?

    No small farmers please ..
    Love the article good information and read

    email: [email protected]

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