Medical Marijuana Demand in Arizona Persists as Vote on Recreational Legalization Nears Photo by LexScope on Unsplash
October 6, 2020

The Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) recently released its monthly report on the state’s medical cannabis program for August 2020. Total sales were down slightly from July to August. August missed out on having Labor Day weekend fall within its boundaries this year, a holiday that typically provides a sales bump. Still, July’s record setting demand was maintained for the most part, along with a notable increase in sales volume of extracts and concentrates. Arizona’s Spot Index was elevated slightly in August – it reached its highest monthly average since March – but, unlike in other states, the record-breaking demand generated during the COVID-19 pandemic has not resulted in a notable upward trend in wholesale flower prices.

As of August, Arizona’s medical cannabis program counted 269,030 patients on its rolls. That figure is up by 3.5% from the 259,840 patients registered in the program at the end of July. The number of registered patients in Arizona in August 2020 is also up by 31.7% year-over-year, from 204,271 in August 2019.

According to ADHS numbers, 16,417 pounds of cannabis flower were sold through the state’s dispensaries in August, a figure that is down by 0.6% compared to the 16,518 pounds retailed to registered patients in July. July 2020’s flower sales volume remains the record high for Arizona’s market. August 2020’s flower sales volume is up by 22.8% from 13,367 pounds in the same month the year prior.

The ADHS report also includes sales volume figures for edibles and “marijuana other,” which constitutes extracts and non-edible infused products. August saw 404 pounds of edibles sold, down by 9.4% from 446 pounds sold the month prior. August 2020’s edibles sales volume is down year-over-year by 18.7%, from 497 pounds in the same month a year ago. An annual downturn in monthly edibles sales volume has been reported for each month so far this year.

“Marijuana other” products saw their sales volume continue to grow in August. 1,696 pounds of “marijuana other” products were retailed in Arizona in August, compared to 1,638 in July, an increase of 3.5%. This product category has experienced massive year-over-year growth, with August 2020’s sales volume up by 92.5%, from 881 pounds in August 2019.

Combined sales volume of all product types reached 18,517 pounds in August, down by 0.7% from July’s total sales volume of 18,647 pounds. As with flower sales volume, July 2020’s cumulative sales volume remains the record high for Arizona’s market. August 2020’s cumulative sales volume is up 25.6% relative to a year prior, when dispensaries sold 14,745 pounds of product to patients.