Marijuana shops sold more than $19.7 million in recreational weed the first 12 days of sales in Illinois.
The state said consumers made more than 495,000 purchases during that time.
Sales figures were highest on the first day, Jan. 1, at almost $3.2 million, and dropped off steadily in the following days.
Friday, Jan. 10, and Saturday, Jan. 11, each brought in more than $1.6 million in sales. But sales were roughly half of that on Sunday, Jan. 12, when some marijuana shops were closed.
The first day of sales was one of the strongest in the history of legal weed, and the superlatives continued.
Illinois’ first week of recreational sales, which saw nearly $12.9 million in purchases, topped all other states. Oregon came the closest, with $11 million worth of legal weed sold the first week, said Bethany Gomez, managing director of cannabis research firm Brightfield Group. Colorado stores did $5 million their first week.
“$19 million in less than two weeks is really strong, especially given all the challenges that Illinois faces in terms of supply shortages,” Gomez said. “It is a really strong indication that the market is going to be very, very healthy here.”
Dispensaries are battling long-expected product shortages, and many stores have had to halt recreational sales at times. When sales are underway, products are limited, especially the dried marijuana flower that consumers smoke.
Illinois regulators warned dispensary operators in an email Friday that they are required by law to keep enough product on hand for medical patients.
Despite the shortages, long lines have continued to form at dispensaries. At around noon on Saturday, a customer at the front of the line at MedMen dispensary in Evanston said he had been waiting about two hours.
The state said tax revenue figures are expected by