Column: Pot dispensary an interesting experience – Chicago Tribune

It was with high anxiety we circled the parking lot, searching for a space near one of the most-visited adult-use emporiums in northeast Illinois. With the state ready to issue more licenses for recreational marijuana dispensaries, it was time to see what all the buzz is about.

It’s a tough job, but someone’s got to do it.


Especially considering 2022 cannabis sales in Illinois are expected to be the highest since the Prairie State legalized medical marijuana sales in 2015, and recreational weed in January of 2020. Last year, marijuana sales were just under $1.4 billion, according to the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation, which oversees the state’s budding reefer industry.

In June, recreational dispensaries reported sales of $126.8 million, which brings year-to-date sales to $750.6 million, a 20% increase from the first six months of last year, according to state data, with another $180 million in medical marijuana sales. Indeed, March to June this year was the state’s largest grossing four-month stretch, so far.


One projection has Illinois generating $2.55 billion in annual cannabis sales by 2025. Nationwide, legal U.S. weed sales are forecast to be more than $30 billion this year and reach $45.8 billion by 2025. Add to the illegal

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