“On a bureaucratic and social timescale, California is still at hour one of day one of legalization,” Downs writes.
Reasons for optimism:
- More than 3.2M Californians 25 and older used cannabis in the past month.
- California’s 13,000 liquor stores outnumber licensed dispensaries 21 to 1.
- While 67% of state local jurisdictions don’t allow dispensaries, “cities and counties are now beginning to compete to attract cannabis dollars.”
- Delivery services are expanding their reach.
- BDS Analytics sales data from several states, including California, show vape sales began to recover late last year.
- Leafly‘s annual cannabis jobs report found California leads the nation in pot jobs. WW California has more.
- Jeff Schultz, an executive with investment firm Navy Capital, continues to see opportunity amid the volatility.
“I think California is fucking fantastic,” Graham Farrar, CEO of Glass House Farms and a WeedWeek Council member, told Leafly. The company just opened a massive 355,000 square foot greenhouse in Santa Barbara County. The company believes its 500,000+ square feet of greenhouse canopy may make it the largest such operator in the country. Forbes
Still, not all is rosy. Among other issues, MJBiz says taxes are still a major headache for California businesses.
- In addition to the industry hated federal tax rule 280E, state tax collectors have weighed on company finances because they’re quick to levy heavy penalties for late payment.