Cost of cannabis

The Cost of Cannabis

As long as cannabis has been sold globally, its cost has varied from country to country, town to town and even supplier to supplier. However, never has there been a more turbulent time in its pricing than now.

There are currently over thirty countries where medical use is legal and over thirty countries where recreational use is either decriminalized or tolerated in some form. In the United States ten states and the District of Columbia have legalized the sale and use of cannabis recreationally.

These changes have had a huge impact on the pricing of cannabis. In countries where there is a legal supply, new licensed networks are facing the established black market in a price and customer war. Taxes and regulations are hitting users in many countries depending on the level of legality.

Cost of Weed in the USA

At a federal level in the United States, cannabis is still illegal but 29 states have made medical use legal and 10 have done the same for recreational use. Due to federal influence, most American banks still refuse to open bank accounts for cannabis companies.

These companies are also up against competition from established suppliers, but still find themselves at odds with federal restrictions. Let’s have a quick look at the U.S.A’s average prices and then dig in deeper for a few states.

We’ve looked at this based on different weights and compared both the legal and black markets where possible.

USA Average

 High QualityLow to Mid
1 gram legal $13.71$11.83
1 gram black market $14.41$11.87
1/8oz (3.5g) legal $45.87$35.38
1/8oz (3.5g) black market $43.06$36.85
1oz (28g) legal $320$283
1oz (28g) black market $239$206

California Prices

Cost of cannabis in California

Recreational and medical use legalized

Nowhere are the struggles facing newly legalized areas more apparent than in California.

Taxes for cannabis were set to be high enough to deter use by minors but low enough to compete with the illegal market. Unfortunately they are still not low enough to support new legal businesses to undercut their illegal competition.

There are propositions underway to address this issue but currently this still has a large impact on the price. The quality of Californian cannabis is high but so is the price.

 High Quality Low to Mid
1 gram legal $13.09$10.05
1 gram black market $12.11$10.49
1/8oz (3.5g) legal $65$50
1/8oz (3.5g) black market $38$30
1oz (28g) legal $230$177
1oz (28g) black market $150.22$112.22

Oregon Prices

Oregon cannabis costs

Recreational and medical use legalized

Oregon are at the other end of the spectrum. With an abundance of new cannabis suppliers hitting the market prices are set to fall for at least the next twelve months.

Wholesale prices in this state have even dipped to as low as $398 per pound. The differences are striking but the agricultural economy and social progressive nature of its people may go some way to explain it.

 High Quality Low to Mid
1 gram legal $11.37$10.36
1 gram black market $12.56$7.79
1/8oz (3.5g) legal $38.67$30.20
1/8oz (3.5g) black market$26.95$26.75
1oz (28g) legal $150$143.75
1oz (28g) black market$165.33$100.00

Massachusetts Prices

Cost of cannabis in Massachusetts

Recreational and medical use legalized

With recreational cannabis’ legalization, Massachusetts is still riding a wave of demand for new supply. However, in a state where non-medical customers are subject to pay 20% tax and can buy a maximum of one ounce it may not be a legal infrastructure that grows to meet the need.

Prices currently sit in between California and Oregon but it is too early to tell which direction they will go.

 High QualityLow to Mid
1 gram legal $13.95$12.90
1 gram black market $14.04$9.93
1/8oz (3.5g) legal $47.50$40
1/8oz (3.5g) black market $46$30
1oz (28g) legal$246.76$238.79
1oz (28g) black market$214.39$176.64

Canadian Cannabis Costs

Cost of Canadian Cannabis

(Recreational and medical use legalized)

Canada implemented the legalization of recreational cannabis in 2018 and have managed to maintain prices that are significantly lower than in the USA. Because of the prior legalization for medical use in 2001 Canada already had an effective legal supply network that could be grown.

Unlike in America, there are no small start-up suppliers battling high taxes and being consistently undercut by the black market. On the contrary, in Canada they already have cannabis companies trading on the stock market.

 High Quality Low to Mid
1 gram legal $11$10.25
1 gram black market $10.87$9.30
1/8oz (3.5g) legal $28.75$22.50
1/8oz (3.5g) black market$41.88$30.00
1oz (28g) legal $172.50$100
1oz (28g) black market $173.77$155.74

Cost of Weed in the UK

Cost of cannabis UK

Illegal but approved for use by prescription

The UK cannabis market remains illegal, apart from the sale of seeds, but is booming. Not only are people buying it at UK prices but they are willing to pay more for good quality bud. UK dealers are now beginning to travel to California to buy legal weed and shipping it back home.

In the regulated farms the product can be such good quality that in the UK an ounce of Californian can be sold for as much as £700.

 High QualityLow to Medium Quality
1 gram illegal £15£10
1/8oz (3.5g) illegal £35£25
1oz (28g)
illegal
£260£220

Business Effects Prices

Cannabis remains to be big business across the world and continues to grow. The opening of legal markets and suppliers does not seem to follow a predictable pattern and depends on the local black market, taxes and if a medical trade already exists.

The averages that have been presented here are merely the broad strokes. If you dig deeper into a cannabis price reference site you will see that they can vary widely within states and even cities. For example even in California this year a gram was recorded as costing $5 in Fontana and $15 in Long Beach.

Where are you from and how much do you pay? Leave a comment below.

About Tim W. Shaw

imageTim W. Shaw is a freelance writer with a joint honours degree in English Literature and History. He writes on a wide range of subjects but specialises in Education, Health and Complementary Medicine.

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