On 4/20, West Michigan marijuana shops rake in the green

Marijuana in MI

GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (WOOD) — This 4/20, the unofficial marijuana holiday, cannabis users and sellers in Michigan are celebrating the booming industry.

Cannabis company Fluresh, which became the first recreational dispensary in Grand Rapids last year, celebrating the city’s “first fully legal 4/20.”

“Now that we have recreational facilities actually selling legal cannabis within Grand Rapids, before that we have had nothing but medical provisionary centers,” Fluresh Provisioning Center Manager Nic Hernandez explained.

Fluresh and neighboring dispensaries in and around Grand Rapids offered 4/20 deals and promotions Tuesday, drawing long lines of cars as several facilities offered curbside service only.

“It’s green in a lot of ways — it’s both the cannabis and the cash,” Gage Cannabis Grand Rapids general manager Drew McCarthy said of the industry. “It’s been a phenomenal day already and we’re planning on having a phenomenal rest of the year.”

Statewide, the recreational marijuana industry saw another year of significant growth, even more so during the pandemic.

“I don’t think there’s any sector that’s growing at this pace,” Michigan’s Marijuana Regulatory Agency Executive Director Andrew Brisbo told News 8. “This is fairly new from the commercialized side, but the consumer desire has been here.”

For fiscal year 2020, Brisbo said the state’s recreational marijuana industry generated more than $82 million in tax revenue. For fiscal year 2021, he expects that number to double, projecting $165 million in tax revenue.

Brisbo said the revenue helps fix roads, fund schools and benefit the cities or municipalities in which dispensaries are located.  

He expects the industry to continue its rapid growth. 

“Even if we get to $1.3 billion in sales this year, that’s still only about halfway of where we expect it to be when the market fully matures in the state,” he said.

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