Many New York medical marijuana patients still buy from black market

New York’s medical cannabis program has been hard-pressed to prove it’s a viable setup, and those issues apparently are continuing with prospective patients still relying on black-market MMJ.

A combination of high product costs, bureaucratic red tape and the easy availability of cannabis flower on the street has added up to an ongoing system where many patients turn to street dealers for medical marijuana flower as opposed to high-priced extract products available at New York dispensaries, the Staten Island Advance reported.

“Most people that go to a dispensary go once or twice and never go back,” Landon Dais, a Marijuana Policy Project staffer, told the news outlet. “It’s just too expensive. They like that the products are screened and safe … but it’s about the bottom line for people’s pockets.”

For example, vape pens that typically cost about $30 or $40 in the Colorado market go for $100 in New York and the medicinal effect isn’t even on par with Colorado’s MMJ, Doug Greene of Empire State NORML told the Advance.

A number of industry insiders remain convinced that New York’s MMJ program – which has undergone multiple revisions as policymakers try to make the program sustainable – won’t be truly viable until the state allows dispensaries to sell smokable flower.

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5 comments on “Many New York medical marijuana patients still buy from black market
  1. Lance Brofman on

    New York City Medical Cannabis has become a status symbol,(unless you are actually sick) getting Medical Cannabis confers more status in terms of how powerful and how much influence and wealth you have. It confers more status and envy that getting your child into an elite private elementary school like Dalton or Collegiate and about the same status as having a chauffer-driven Rolls Royce.

  2. George Bianchini on

    Wait until 2018 when California opens it’s rec program. prop 64 says more about how citizens will go to prison than about how cannabis is legal now. And there are the new fee’s. Shall we count them.
    1. 15% state tax
    2. 7 to 10% sales tax (location)
    3. $9.25 cultivation tax (per ounce) yes, no really.
    4. local city tax of 5 to 10%
    5. new Manufacture costs
    6. 25-30% distribution costs
    The government will effectively double the wholesale cost of cannabis.
    They will make more money on cannabis than the cartels. (mark up)
    street vendors will be able to sell a gram of cannabis for $10 and double their money. that same gram will sell for 20 to 30 dollars at a legal dispensaries. Do the math. wake up people, they are setting us up to fail with all the regulations.

  3. Lance Brofman on

    In New York City taxes make cigarettes about $14 a pack. In some states the cost is less than $3. However, most NYC people buy the legal cigarettes rather than those from smugglers. Also, Nevada has a similar tax structure and rec cannabis sells retail for $8 per gram. Even more important is that many will find “edibles” made using C02 extraction the form of small tablets with 50 mg of THC a better deal.

    For example: $4.50 gets you about the same effect as a gram of cannabis.

    45 .00
    10 tablets at 500mg 50mg active THC per bottle 500mg active THC per bottle

    • George Bianchini on

      A news story from the huffington post claims that 57% of New Yorks cigarettes are black market. The taxation there has led to a booming black market. The biggest problem with the black market is that there are no warranties but plenty of enforcers with guns.
      Inside New York City’s Dangerous, Multimillion-Dollar Cigarette Black Market.
      Your claim of $8 grams in Nevada is off by $10 as an internet check of Nevada’s prices put the cost of a gram at an average of $ 18.65 plus taxes.
      Your numbers are off on dosages as well. Nevada’s law states that a maximum of 10% thc per dose with 10 doses max per package.

      By Christopher Mathias

  4. Lance Brofman on

    I saw $8 for a gram at Medicine Man in Denver. They have other strains at higher prices so your average is likely correct. Although the reviews for Medicine Man in downtown Denver noted they were very good in terms of service and selections but their prices were on the high side.

    Nevada Law limits a singe purchase to 800 mg of THC but an individual produce can be mostly THC- see Stratos tablets: Dose: 10 Tablets/10mg THC each For pain relief with a balanced and relaxing head and body high. Hybrid

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