Marijuana is disproportionately expensive at Michigan dispensaries, study finds 

click to enlarge STEVE NEAVLING
  • Steve Neavling

Cannabis dispensaries are convenient because they’re legal and offer a wide selection, but they’re often more expensive than your illicit drug dealer.

A new study by LeafLink, a wholesale marketplace for the cannabis industry, sheds some light on the costs of marijuana at legal dispensaries. Of the 10 states in the Wholesale Cannabis Pricing Guide, Michigan had some of the highest wholesale prices in 2019 for marijuana products, including flower, cartridges, and edibles.



Wholesale prices are what dispensaries pay for their products. On average, the pot shops set retail prices 64% higher to make a profit, according to LeafLink.

Prices are lowest in states with the most mature markets and product over-saturation, such as Oregon and Washington.

click to enlarge LEAFLINK
  • LeafLink

Michigan’s wholesale price for edibles — $0.79 for a milligram — was higher than the other nine states in the study: Alaska, Arizona, California, Colorado, Maryland, Nevada, Oklahoma, Oregon, and Washington. Edibles also provided the lowest profit margins for Michigan dispensaries, LeafLink concluded.

On average, Michigan’s 160 dispensaries paid $2,917 for a pound of flower in 2019, compared to $1,304 for the average pound across the 10 states. Oregon had the lowest wholesale prices at $700 a pound. The highest wholesale prices were in Maryland at $3,260 a pound.

Concentrates in Michigan also were disproportionately expensive at $34.70 a gram. Only Alaska had a higher wholesale price for concentrates at $39.40. The average cost of a gram of concentrates across the 10 states was $18.80.

The LeafLink study found that cartridges were very popular in Michigan and provided the highest profit margin for dispensaries. The wholesale price for a one-gram cartridge in Michigan was $28.90, compared to $33.40 across the 10 states. Only California, Washington, and Oregon had lower wholesale prices for cartridges.

The wholesale prices in Michigan were primarily from medical cannabis, but recreational marijuana sales didn't become legal until December 2019.

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