Illinois the 11th state to legalized recreational Cannabis
January 1ft 2020 wasn't only the beginning of a new decade for the civilians of Illinois. It also marked the first day of legal recreational Cannabis, in their state.
How is it going to work?
From now on, consumers over 21 will be able to purchase cannabis products from licensed sellers, in Illinois.
For now, licensed dispensaries are the only legal sellers and the state is expecting to have around 295 stores in operation by 2022.
The legal amount one can have in his/her possession is 30 grams, (close to 1 ounce) of cannabis flower. For concentrate 5 grams is the legal limit and for edibles or tinctures, the citizens are allowed to have 500 milligrams of THC (the compound that triggers the buzz).
Note that Illinois visitors will be allowed to have only half of those amounts in their possession.
The rules are very similar to those in other states where it is already legal. People aren't allowed to smoke in any public space or in a motor vehicle, school ground, etc…
Medical cannabis users are allowed to grow 5 plants at the time. None patients are not allowed and could face penalties starting at 200$ if found guilty of growing Cannabis.
Concerning criminal records, those who were convicted with less than 30 grams will have their record revised by Governor J.B. Pritzker for pardon.
- Pritzker already pardoned more than 11,000 people by December 31, 2019.
Convicts found with a possession between 30 and 500 grams will be able to petition for their records to be permanently destroyed. They will be judged on a case-by-case basis.
What is to be expected?
As mentioned earlier the state of Illinois has predicted a growth in its amount of licensed cannabis sellers, expecting to have 295 by 2022. The state has already licensed 37 shops for January 2020 and is planning on approving 75 other applicants by May 2020.
The 37 current stores started 2020 with amazing sales numbers.
The Illinois Department of financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR) has recorded the sells from January 1st to January 5th, here are the results: The total amount of transactions over that 5 day period added up to 271, 169 and the total sales was 10,830,667.91$.
The excessive demand pushed the retailers to implement purchase limits, way under the 30 grams possession limit, to prevent the shortage of stock, and give cultivators time to catch up.
The main downside at the moment, for the Illinoisans, is that the little number of open stores and the high demand are causing the merchandise to be twice the price of what you can buy in states like Michigan. Hopefully, the ambition of the state Governor will pay off and the addition of new stores in May will help bring the prices down.
One more state where Recreational cannabis is legal only 39 to go. Let's keep in mind that already medical cannabis is already legal in 36 states and that to this day there are only 3 states where it is still completely prohibited. 2020 is looking bright and full of hope, let's hope the election won't slow the process of cannabis federal legalization.