The State of Washington moved today to increase in the number of retail licenses by 222 to a total of 556. The rules governing the move will be announced in early January. Despite concerns about too much supply already, the state justified its move by using analysis provided by BOTEC Analysis Corporation, which published ” Estimating the Size of the Medical Cannabis Market in Washington State” yesterday.
BOTEC, which stands for “back-of-the-envelope calculation,”, is based in Los Angeles and focuses on drug policy and crime and justice issues. Its Chairman, Mark A.R. Kleiman, is a Professor of Public Policy and the Director of the Crime Reduction & Justice Initiative at New York University’s the Marron Institute, a member of the Committee on Law and Justice of the United States National Research Council, and co-editor of the Journal of Drug Policy Analysis. He is listed as an author along with Steven Davenport, Brad Rowe, Jeremy Ziskind, Nate Mladenovic, Clarissa Manning and Tyler Jones.
The report explained its methodologies and provided a range of estimates, broken down by medical, retail and black market:
What is somewhat startling is that the medical market, projected to be $480mm, is much larger than the approximately $100mm implied by collected tax revenue for fiscal 2015 (ending 6/30/15). BOTEC suggests a timing lag, as their estimate is through 12/31, but that dispensaries may be “grossly under-reporting their actual revenues for tax purposes.”
Download the BOTEC REPORT
Note: We amended the last paragraph from “recreational market, projected to be $460mm” to read “medical market, projected to be $480mm”