Michigan marijuana sales level out after coronavirus outbreak stockpiling

click to enlarge STEVE NEAVLING
Steve Neavling

Marijuana sales surged more than $1 million to $5.8 million the week before Gov. Gretchen Whitmer issued a three-week stay-at-home order on March 24 to slow the spread of the coronavirus. But sales went down more than $1.2 million to $4.6 million in the following week, March 23-29, according to data from the Marijuana Regulatory Agency reported by Crain's Detroit Business.

A recent survey by AmericanMarijuana.org of nearly 1,000 marijuana users found that nearly half stocked up as the outbreak ramped up.

The survey found that 48.7% of marijuana users stockpiled cannabis, and 55% of those who stocked up said they did so to calm themselves down during the outbreak. Another 23% stocked up because they were worried about a shortage.

Marijuana businesses are considered an essential industry under Whitmer's executive order and are allowed to remain open, but only for curbside pickup or delivery. For now, patients and customers are not allowed inside dispensaries.

“Studies have shown that cannabis can reduce anxiety and stress and we believe continued access to this product during this time is pertinent,” Michigan Cannabis Industry Association Executive Director Robin Schneider wrote to Whitmer, urging the governor to declare the industry as essential during the pandemic. “More importantly, patients with cancer, AIDS, chronic pain, seizures, and pediatric patients have reduced or replaced pharmaceuticals, including opiates, with medical cannabis.”

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About The Author

Lee DeVito

Leyland "Lee" DeVito grew up in the suburbs of Detroit, where he read Metro Times religiously due to teenaged-induced boredom. He became a contributing writer for Metro Times in 2009, and Editor in Chief in 2016. In addition to writing, he also supplies occasional illustrations. His writing has been published...
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