Illinois announced it had sold $10.8 million dollars in recreational cannabis in the first five days of legal sales. After an opening day of more than $3 million in revenue, sales have stayed above $1 million per day.
Dispensaries across the state registered 271,169 transactions over the five-day period, averaging out to nearly $40 per transaction. The numbers do show a daily decline in sales and transactions over the five-day period.
The state also said it received more than 700 applications for 75 new dispensary licenses to be awarded in May. Applicants were able to seek multiple licenses in various districts, totaling more than 4,000 applications for licenses. More than 600 applicants filed seeking “social equity” status, which gives a 20 percent bonus in scoring and was designed to inject more diversity in the state’s cannabis industry.
“I think it’s a wonderful thing,” Edie Moore, executive director of Chicago NORML, the National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, said. “Our goal was to make sure people had the opportunity to compete, getting them connected with the right resources.”
A total of 25 percent of cannabis tax revenue will support the Restore, Reinvest and Renew program, which aims to address the impact of economic disinvestment, violence and the historical overuse of the criminal justice system. The Department of Revenue expects to have a tax revenue by the end of February.
With Illinois legalizing recreational cannabis, Chicago officials have installed special boxes in airports to dispose of any cannabis before going on a plane.
“We’re not encouraging people to bring cannabis through the airports at all,” Maggie Huynh, a spokeswoman for the Chicago Police Department said. “But, if for some reason you have it on you, we have those amnesty boxes out there so that you can dispose of it prior to getting on the airplane.”