Ledes from the Land of Enchantment

New Mexico cannabis sales level off in May at $38.5 million

Combined sales of medicinal and adult-use cannabis topped $38.5 million in the second month of New Mexico’s regulated marketplace.

Despite four additional towns or cities seeing dispensaries open during the month, May sales amounted to $1 million less than the opening month of legal cannabis sales to adults age 21 and over opened on April 1.

Medical cannabis sales, which are not taxable, gained slightly as a percentage of total revenue in May with more than 45 percent. Adult use, also known as recreational cannabis, made up about 55 percent of revenue.

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The state’s Cannabis Control Division, which regulates production, manufacturing and sales, reported the first month’s figures Thursday afternoon.

Hashtag Cannabis opened on 4/20, offering free T-shirts to the first 50 customers and free hot dogs to all patrons.  The dispensary sells two strains of cannabis, both locally grown in Las Cruces that are exclusive to Hashtag Cannabis and the grower's dispensary in Anthony.

Licensed dispensaries in 44 towns and cities sold $38,532,757, of which $21,100,804 was for adult use and therefore subject to gross receipts taxes as well as a 12 percent state cannabis excise tax.

Retailers paid $1.6 million in gross receipts taxes on April revenue, which include sales of non-cannabis products at their stores; and $2.4 million in excise taxes, the CCD said.

Sales of medical cannabis, which is tax-free and requires enrollment in New Mexico’s medical cannabis program, amounted to $17,431,954 in May.

The trends were exhibited in New Mexico’s most populous city, Albuquerque, where medical cannabis sales increased while overall sales receded slightly. Dispensaries there sold $14.4 million in total, including $7.3 million for adult use.

The Las Cruces 420 Hemp and Cannabis Festival featured over 40 vendors and a couple hundred estimated attendees throughout the day at Sassy Grass Juice Bar and Lounge on April 20, 2022.

Las Cruces, which had ranked second for cannabis sales in April, saw mild dips in sales of both medical and recreational cannabis, selling less than Santa Fe in May with $3.3 million overall.

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In cities near or easily accessible to Texas, where cannabis remains illegal, sales remained robust. While the highest sales corresponded to major population centers, six of the top 10 were the southern New Mexico communities of Las Cruces, Hobbs, Sunland Park, Carlsbad, Alamogordo and Ruidoso.

Doña Ana County communities south of Las Cruces, near El Paso, saw gains in revenue.

Sunland Park increased sales to $1.48 million, including $1.27 million in adult use sales.

Anthony, where more dispensaries have opened since April 1, saw a large jump in both medicinal and regular adult products, from $27,330 the first month to $303,623.

Justin Lewis, a partner in Distinguished Dispensary, stands in the waiting area of ​​the Farmington, NM business.

Chaparral, which posted no sales in April as dispensaries prepared to open, posted $8,506 in total cannabis sales in May.

Carlsbad posted $1.08 million in cannabis sales overall, a slight decrease from $1.1 million in April.

Silver City also saw decreases in both categories, totaling $398,190 in May compared to $426,651 the prior month.

Deming, meanwhile, saw another dispensary open in the past month and increased sales in both categories. After selling $241,049 in April, sales there rose to $267,906 in May.

The CCD, a new division organized under the state Regulation and Licensing Department, projects $300 million in sales and $50 million in tax revenue during New Mexico’s first year of legal cannabis.

In the second month, sales remained on track to exceed that goal.

Algernon D’Ammassa can be reached at 575-541-5451, [email protected] or @AlgernonWrites on Twitter.

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