Oregon cannabis sales along the Idaho border are apparently 420 percent higher than in the rest of the state, according to recent data.
According to CNN Business, the Oregon Office of Economic Analysis (OEA) reported these surprising and ironic results earlier this week. “In things you cannot make up, Oregon sales per adult along the Idaho border are 420 percent the statewide average,” Josh Lehner, an economist with the OEA, wrote, according to CNN Business.
Washington also shares a border with Idaho and officials there are seeing an increase in cannabis sales. As most would expect, these sales are attributed to the border effect, which is what happens when two bordering states have different laws. “Obviously recreational marijuana is not legal in Idaho, but even after throwing the data into a rough border tax model that accounts for incomes, number of retailers, tax rates and the like, there remains a huge border effect,” Lehner added. “This speaks to product availability and the final price to consumers being key driving factors in consumer spending patterns, which create much of the border effect.”
Despite the comical fact, the statistic is most significant because it’s such a high number. Yet it’s still expected to increase as the state grows. “Our office’s forecast calls for sales to grow approximately 80 percent over this time period as incomes grow, the state’s population increases, and marijuana becomes more socially acceptable and usage rates rise,” Lehner wrote. Recently Oregon state received a major grant to study hemp, and it also received cannabis tax grants.
It will be interesting to see how sales are impacted if Idaho finally decides to legalize since cannabis is still illegal in Idaho. There is one advocacy group who has begun collecting signatures for the general election later this year.