Report: Marijuana sales to quadruple after election

Report: Marijuana sales to quadruple after election
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The marijuana industry could quadruple in size after the 2016 elections, according to a new study released Wednesday.

The Los Angeles-based cannabis firm MedMen projects legal pot sales in the U.S. could increase by $20.5 billion per year after voters in nine states weigh ballot measures that would legalize recreational marijuana.

"The potential of this industry is undeniable," MedMen CEO Adam Bierman said. "The question is how we make sure it is done in a safe, responsible and controlled manner."

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The recreational use of marijuana has already been legalized in Colorado, Washington state, Oregon, Alaska, and Washington, D.C., and another 21 states permit medical marijuana.

These states account for about $7 billion in legal marijuana sales each year, according to MedMen. 

But that figure is projected to explode to as much as $27.5 billion, depending on how many more states legalize pot on Election Day.

On Tuesday, voters in Arizona, California, Maine, Massachusetts and Nevada will decide whether to legalize recreational marijuana for adults.

Meanwhile, medical marijuana will be on the ballot in Arkansas, Florida, Montana and North Dakota.

MedMen calculated the market price for marijuana and the rate of use in each of these states. It determined that recreational marijuana could contribute as much as $8.3 billion in sales to California’s economy, followed by $6.85 billion in sales in Nevada.

Florida alone has the potential for $2 billion in medical marijuana sales, according to the study.

Arizona and Massachusetts could each generate $1.45 billion in recreational marijuana sales. In Maine, legal weed dealers have the potential to sell $287 million per year.

While North Dakota could see $75 million in medical marijuana sales.

Arkansas and Montana were excluded from the study, however, because passage of the ballot measures in those states is less certain.