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$10.4 Billion in Tax Revenue from Legal Cannabis Sales, But Where Does All That Money Go?



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The finance aspect of the cannabis industry is certainly getting a lot of attention lately and it is easy to see why. With the industry growing at an astonishing rate, many states are looking to rack in the big bucks in terms of tax and licensing revenue. Which states have legal markets for medical and recreational marijuana? Which States are racking in the most in terms of revenue? How are these States using this marijuana revenue? Read on as we provide answers to these questions and many more.

States in the U.S recorded a tax revenue of $10.4 billion from cannabis sales at the end of 2021. This figure doesn’t factor in revenue produced by medical marijuana distribution. From this alone, it is easy to see why many entrepreneurs are looking to get into the frenzy of the cannabis industry. Likewise, states are looking to also get in on the act through legalization and tax administration to rack up revenue.

Tax revenues from marijuana sales vary across states thanks to a number of factors. First, cannabis is illegal federally which means states with legal markets have full jurisdiction over policies and tax regulations. States that have the program established longer and have full operational markets and strong populations are also expected to have huge returns in terms of tax revenue. This is why states like California, Washington, and Colorado could go higher than $1,294,632,799, $559,500,000, and $423,486,053, respectively. Other states with high returns are Illinois, Arizona, Michigan, and Massachusetts.

Colorado and Washington were at the forefront of the push for the legalization of recreational cannabis with moves coming as early as 2012. With eventual legislation coming in by 2014 and 2015, the states were able to rake in considerable revenue. California has also been able to bring in $3,362,314,514 in revenue after its recreational marijuana market started in 2018. This excess revenue certainly came in handy for some of these States as they faced shortfalls thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic.


Retail sales of marijuana in Alaska began in October 2016 after it was voted upon in 2014. The state has the Marijuana Control Board which is saddled with the responsibility of tracking cannabis operations and issuing licenses. The state has seen a steady increase in tax revenue over the years which resorted in a 2021 turnover of $30,054,250. Cultivators in Alaska are taxed $50 per ounce for mature flowers and $25 per ounce for immature flowers. Alaska allocates 25% of the revenue to the general fund, 25% to the Marijuana Education Fund, and 50% to the Department of Public Safety, Corrections, and Health and Social Services.


Following voters’ approval of the Marijuana Legalization Initiative in 2020, Arizona approved l recreational market. The Arizona Department of Health and Human Services is placed in charge of all activities such as regulations and licensing. The state had a tax revenue of #217,553,000 at the end of 2021. Two types of taxes are imposed on marijuana in Arizona, 16% excise tax and transaction privilege tax. The excise tax revenue is then allocated to the Highway User Fund, Community Colleges, Municipal police, Fire districts, The Justice Reinvestment Fund, and The Attorney General.


The Department of Cannabis Control was saddled with taxation and licensing of marijuana operations after the state started retail sales in January 2018. Four years on and the state has the biggest cannabis industry in the country. California taxes $9.65 per ounce of flowers, $2.87 for leaves, and $1.35 for the fresh plant. The revenue gotten from the tax is first used to cater to regulatory and research costs. Afterward, 60% is allocated to anti-drug programs for kids, 20% to environmental programs, and 20% to public safety.


The state has the oldest retail cannabis market in the country and a robust allocation plan. Taxes on marijuana include 15% wholesale tax and 15% retail excise tax while exempting it from general sales tax. The revenue recovered is then split between state and local government at the ratio of 9 to 1. The state further divides its share between the general fund (15.56%), state public school fund (12.59%), and marijuana tax cash fund (71.85%).


Recreational cannabis was approved in Illinois in May 2019 and retail sales started in January 2020. The taxation of marijuana in Illinois is 7% in wholesale taxes. It also has special levies on retail taxes such as 10% on products with 35% THC or less, 25% on products with 35% THC or more, and 20% on infused products. The generated revenue is then split between the general fund (35%), Illinois Recover, Reinvest and Renew Program (25%), mental health and substance abuse (20%), state bills (10%), local government (8%) and public education (2%).

New York

Recreational cannabis in New York was just legalized in March 2021 after it was signed in by the governor. It is the expectation of the government that the revenue after the first year will amount to over $20 million. New York will tax 9% in retail tax and 4% in state-local tax. It will also impose 0.5cent/mg of THC in flower, 0.5cent/mg of THC in concentrate, and 0.5cent/mg of THC in edibles. It hopes to use the revenue to offset the decline in revenue from taxable cigarette consumption.


After legalization was achieved in 2012, retail sales of cannabis in Washington commenced in July 2014 and have grown since. The state charges 37% retail tax on marijuana and 6.5% retail sales tax. The state exempts medical cannabis from sales tax. Washington allocates the revenue from marijuana to different sectors and projects. In 2020, the revenue was allocated to the state’s health professions account, the state health authority for research, the University of Washington for marijuana-related educational programs, and other research departments.

It is obvious to see that the money goes to a lot of places depending on which state your focus is on. The revenue from the marijuana tax is helping most states deal with different financial burdens. Hopefully, more states will soon come into the fray so all can benefit!





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States to Feds: End Cannabis Prohibition Now




After a vote last week, the National Conference of State Legislators (NCSL) adopted a revised cannabis policy measure (the “Directive“) which supports federally descheduling cannabis, as well as cannabis banking reform. At this point, it’s abundantly clear that the states have moved beyond cannabis prohibition.

The NCSL is a non-partisan organization that represents all state legislators nationwide. A state legislator present at the summit, held in Denver, said that most of the discussion leading up to the vote centered on federal cannabis banking reform, but there was no debate on the language of cannabis legalization. The legislator said that there was minimal opposition, with an estimated five to seven states of the 44 in attendance that vocalized their opposition.

NCSL passed similar measures back in 2017 and 2018 calling for cannabis descheduling, though those measures were limited in scope, specifying that states should be free to establish their own cannabis legislation without federal intervention. This time, the NCSL made an explicit call for federal cannabis legalization. The Directive also states that “until cannabis is federally descheduled,” the federal government should focus on enforcing penalties for criminal enterprises in “illicit” cannabis production and distribution instead of citizens who comply with state cannabis legislation.

A new section of the Directive charges Congress with passing legislation centered on cannabis banking reform. The Directive states that cannabis businesses are forced to deal primarily in cash because they cannot access the country’s banking system, which makes them prime targets for theft, burglary, and armed robbery. This section “urges Congress to pass legislation allowing financial institutions to provide banking services to legitimate state authorized cannabis-related businesses.” This strong language demonstrates the state legislators’ focus on cannabis banking reform and access to financial services.

The Directive is significant for several reasons. Primarily, it shows that states favor an escalation of federal cannabis reform since adopting past measures. Instead of simply resolving that the federal government should not interfere with state cannabis legislation, the revised measure calls on Congress to deschedule cannabis and reform cannabis banking at the federal level. The Directive also demonstrates uniformity among state legislators in supporting federal cannabis reform, as the measure passed with an overwhelming majority and marginal voiced opposition.

The timing of the Directive is interesting, as it comes with roughly a dozen federal cannabis reform bills floating around Congress. Perhaps the bill with the greatest amount of traction is the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act (CAOA), sponsored by Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY) and Senators Ron Wyden (D-OR) and Cory Booker (D-NJ). The bill was filed last month, and while there may not be enough support for the CAOA to clear the Senate’s 60-vote threshold in the immediate future, Schumer has continued holding bipartisan talks about cannabis reform. He most recently stated that he is committed to passing “something” on cannabis reform by the end of the year.

Finally, NCSL adopted the Directive with the SAFE Banking Act having floated around Congress for several years. The SAFE Banking Act is a bill aimed at remedying the cannabis industry’s exclusion from the banking system, but was recently left out of a larger package of manufacturing reforms as a concession to Republicans lawmakers to pass the bundle of reforms.

The latest NCSL adopted cannabis measure, which supports the federal descheduling of cannabis and cannabis banking reform, is a positive development. It indicates pressure to hasten reform and uniformity among state legislators. Whether Majority Leader Schumer gets his wish and passes “something” on cannabis reform this year remains to be seen.

To catch up on recent federal efforts to end cannabis prohibition, check out the following:

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What are Cannabinoids and Can You Lose Weight with THCV or Sleep Better with CBN?




What are cannabinoids? We’ve all heard of cannabis and hemp, THC and CBD, but what about THCV and CBDV, CBN and CBG? How many cannabinoids are there? It turns out that there are more than 100 cannabinoids, each with unique effects and benefits. For example, THCV oils and gummies increase energy and suppress hunger, making them a potentially useful addition to a weight loss regime. On the other hand, CBDV is being studied for autism, CBG for pain and inflammation, and CBN is believed to be the best for relaxation and deep sleep.


For this article, we asked industry leader Rare Cannabinoid Company to answer the most frequently asked questions about these beneficial compounds, their uses, and how to take them. The premium Hawaiian company was the first to produce pure THCV and CBDV oils and has the widest selection of oils and gummies of CBC, CBDA, CBDV, CBGA, CBG, CBN, THCV, and terpenes.


Q&A with Rare Cannabinoid Company:


What are cannabinoids? They are a class of compounds found in cannabis and hemp plants. CBD (cannabidiol) and THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) are the most well-known cannabinoids, but there are many more that offer unique benefits.


How many cannabinoids are there? More than 100! At least 113 distinct cannabinoids have been identified in cannabis and hemp.


How do cannabinoids work? They interact with the body’s endocannabinoid system, which regulates mood, sleep, appetite, inflammation, and other functions.


What do cannabinoids do? They vary depending on the cannabinoid. For example, THCV increases energy and decreases appetite, which has led to it being associated with weight loss. Meanwhile, CBN is believed to promote relaxation and deep sleep.


What are the different types of cannabinoids? Only a small fraction are currently able to be extracted and used in commercial products. These include: CBD, THC, CBC (cannabichromene), CBDA (cannabidiolic acid), CBDV (cannabidivarin), CBGA (cannabigerolic acid), CBG (cannabigerol), CBN (cannabinol), and THCV (tetrahydrocannabivarin). We expect this number to grow as advances in breeding and extraction continue to improve. On our website, Rare Cannabinoid Company, you will find links to news articles and dozens of scientific studies on each rare cannabinoid and its effects and benefits.


Will cannabinoids get you high? Some cannabinoids, like THC, will cause psychoactive effects (a.k.a. a “high”). However, many others like CBD do not have this effect. For example, THCV is believed to improve concentration and focus.


Are cannabinoids legal? In the United States, the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp-derived cannabinoids that contain less than 0.3% THC. This means that products like CBD oil, CBG oil, and CBN oil are widely available and completely legal in most states. However, synthetic cannabinoids like Delta-8-THC are banned in many states.


What are synthetic cannabinoids? There are different types of synthetic cannabinoids. Some are man-made chemicals that mimic the effects of natural cannabinoids. These are often sold as “spice,” “legal highs” or “herbal incense” and can be very dangerous. Others, such as Delta-8-THC are converted from CBD into THC. Delta-8-THC does occur naturally in hemp and cannabis, however, it is found in such small quantities that almost all of the Delta-8-THC for sale is completely synthetic. 


Are cannabinoids healthy? There is a growing body of evidence that suggests cannabinoids offer a wide range of health benefits. For example, CBD has been shown to improve stress resilience and reduce temporary inflammation and one CBD product has been approved as an anti-seizure medicine. Meanwhile, CBDV is being studied in children and adults with autism spectrum disorder and THCV has been found in animal studies to reduce hunger and offer benefits for obesity and type 2 diabetes. CBG oil is also being used in many animal studies on various diseases. However, synthetic cannabinoids, like Delta-8-THC, can be dangerous, especially if they are made in unregulated facilities and do not offer proper third-party lab test results.


What are the side effects of cannabinoids? This depends largely on which cannabinoid you take. For example, THC is psychoactive and increases hunger. Conversely, THCV can improve focus and energy while suppressing hunger. For someone who is overweight, THCV may be helpful, however, for someone who struggles with an eating disorder, appetite suppression would be a negative side effect of THCV.


How do I take cannabinoids? The most popular way to take cannabinoids is by mouth in the form of oil tinctures or gummies. We offer pure extracts, blends with full spectrum Hawaiian CBD oil, and gummies. We recommend mixing and matching cannabinoids depending on your wellness needs or even the time for day. It’s also good to combine cannabinoids for the entourage effect. We believe that oils and gummies are among the most healthy and safe ways to take cannabinoids, but there are many other ways to take them including smoking, and vaporizing.


What are the primary health and wellness benefits of each cannabinoid?


  • CBN effects: The main CBN benefits are relaxation and deep, restful sleep, hence it being known as the “sleepy cannabinoid.” CBN gummies and oils are frequently used alone or with CBD to help people quiet their minds and fall into a dreamy sleep. CBN oil is also being studied for pain and inflammation. 


  • THCV effects: THCV has been referred to as “skinny pot” or “diet weed.” The primary THCV benefits are increased energy and decreased appetite. THCV weight loss has been studied in rodents and THCV oil has also been found helpful for addiction to nicotine and potentially other substances in animal studies.


  • CBDV effects: Potential CBDV benefits include increased sociability, reduced irritability, and memory benefits. CBDV is being studied for seizures and autism spectrum disorder. As the first and only company to offer a pure CBDV oil, it has proved very popular. 



  • CBG effects: CBG is known as the “mother cannabinoid” because it is the precursor to THC, CBD, and other cannabinoids. CBG has shown great promise in reducing inflammation and pain. It is also being studied for possible future potential in treating many diseases.





  • THC effects: THC is the main psychoactive component of cannabis. THC benefits include increased appetite, and relief from temporary pain and nausea. However, it can also cause anxiety and paranoia in some people.


  • Delta-8-THC vs. Delta-9-THC: Both forms of THC are very similar. Delta-9-THC occurs in abundance in cannabis plants, while most Delta-8-THC is a synthetic cannabinoid converted from CBD into Delta-8-THC. Delta-8-THC is said to be about half to two-thirds as strong as Delta-9-THC. It may also increase hunger even more than Delta-9-THC and can be dangerous due to the way it is made.


What plants produce cannabinoids? While the majority come from hemp and cannabis, cannabinoids may also be found in other plans such as rhododendron, licorice, liverwort, and echinacea.


Does hemp seed oil contain cannabinoids? No, hemp seed oil does not contain cannabinoids. Hemp seed oil is extracted from the seeds of the hemp plant and contains most of the same nutrients as other oils like flaxseed oil and fish oil. However, it does not contain any cannabinoids like CBD, THC, CBG, or CBN.


What does total cannabinoids mean? If you see this written on product packaging, it refers to the total milligram weight of all of the cannabinoids in the product – CBD, CBG, CBN etc. added together. It’s important to know the amount of each cannabinoid you’re taking. For example if a product calls itself “THCV gummies” but the THCV content per gummy is 1mg and the total cannabinoid content is 24mg, it may essentially be a CBD gummy with a tiny bit of THCV in it. Please note that our THCV gummies contain 25mg THCV in each gummy! However, if you’re looking at a hemp-derived Delta-9-THC product, it will have to contain a large amount of CBD and other cannabinoids to be legal and remain under 0.3% THC by weight. It would also be dangerous for a product to contain too much THC because it is psychoactive.

rare cannabinoids

Is there anything else you’d like to add to our Q&A on what is cannabinoids? That covers all the basics on these amazing compounds. As you can see from the last question, each cannabinoid is unique and there is a lot to learn about them. For anyone seeking more in-depth information, please take a look at our own Q&A, numerous blog posts, and links to scientific studies on our website. We also have a directory of independent cannabinoid advisors who see patients in-office and by phone and video appointments. These doctors, nurses, and clinicians can answer questions about which cannabinoids are best for particular situations and ailments. For product advice on oils and gummies, we welcome questions emailed to us at Thank you for this opportunity to share our knowledge and interest in cannabinoids.

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The Secret to NFL Great Aaron Rodgers’ Success? Tripping Balls on Psychedelics Made Him a Two-Time MVP




aaron rodgers psychedelics

NFL Star Aaron Rodgers Used Ayahuasca Before Dual MVP Seasons

Sports stars are our icons, heroes, and role models. We look to them because we feel they can do the impossible. So, when the star quarterback of Green Bay Packers Aaron Rodgers credits ayahuasca for winning back-to-back MVP awards, you can be sure we listened. You may be wondering how true this is or if this is just clickbait, not to worry a full scope will convince you.

The month of August opened up a new chapter for the popularity of psychedelics as Rodgers made the revelation public this week. The star quarterback shared how he traveled to South America to take ayahuasca and how this related to his success as the MVP of the league for two seasons. Rodgers credits the psychedelic concoction with helping him to change his mindset as well as improving his mental health. He shared all of this during an expository interview on the Aubrey Marcus Podcast.

The successive wins as MVP gave Rodgers his third and fourth award in 2020 and 2021. In his words, Rodgers stated that the knew after the ayahuasca experience that he will not be the same again. He believes the psychedelic drug was instrumental in him finding self-love and mental wellness. He was quoted by USA Today stating that the drug gave him a deep and meaningful appreciation of life.

When asked to comment on the experience, Rodgers explained that he went into the experience with a particular intention. This was to feel what pure love feels like and that was what he gained on his first night. He expressed the feeling as a magical sensation backed with a special unique sensation. He likened this sensation to having over a hundred different hands on his body imparting essence into it. He further explained that this essence felt like an impartation of a blessing of love, forgiveness, and gratitude for him.

For those that do not know, we will give a brief overview of what this psychedelic brew is. Ayahuasca is a special psychedelic brew native to the South American Amazon basin. The brew consists of different leaves and vines and is used for social and shamanic ceremonies. The potent psychedelic drug present in the brew is dimethyltryptamine (DMT). DMT is known to have a strong effect on causing vivid hallucinations and intense sensations. The popularity of ayahuasca is just gaining traction as a psychedelic brew compared to popular psychedelics like psilocybin also known as magic mushrooms.

A recent study was carried out by Dr. Robin Carhart-Harris from the Centre Psychedelic Research at Imperial College London. The study published in 2019 examined the psychedelic effect of the brew. The result of the study showed an effect on the brainwaves caused by the brew. Researchers believed that the brew stimulated the brainwaves to give a sense of dreaming while awake. Much of this effect is tagged to the effect of DMT which remains a very intriguing psychedelic. Carhart-Harris described the experience of DMT as a near-death experience or dreaming while awake. A high dose of DMT is also known to produce intense visual vividness and depth of immersion. Reports also have these effects to be higher than those recorded with psilocybin which is a more popular psychedelic.

Rodgers shared all as he explained deeply the effect the experience with ayahuasca had on him and his career. In his own words, the experience set him back on course and allowed him to focus on his job and gain perspective. This ultimately translated into how he approached things before him. He became freer to be the best he can be at work, at home, as a lover, as a friend, and as a teammate. This is why he attributes much of his success in 2020 to the effect of the encounter he had with ayahuasca.

When asked if the perceived relationship might be a result of a coincidence, Rodgers stated that he doesn’t believe that it is. He stated that he chooses not to ascribe things to coincidences. Instead, he chose to describe the feeling as the universe’s way of bringing things to happen as they are supposed to happen. Rodgers explains that the signs are always there around us waiting to see if we are conscious enough to notice them and listen to them. He explained that it is more like the intuition is peaking to use and hammering it that this is what you are meant to be doing.

Rodgers explained that he was comfortable going to experience ayahuasca thanks to his previous experience with psychedelic drugs. He had also stated personally to the interviewer that one of the best days of his life came after an experience with psychedelic mushrooms. He stated that the experience occurred while on a beach and he felt himself merge with the ocean that day.

Rodgers believes that too much emphasis is being placed on some of the possible side effects of ayahuasca. Examples of some of these common side effects include nausea, vomiting, diarrhea, and hallucinations. Instead, he believes attention should also be placed on the deep effects of promoting self-love and healing. Rodgers explains that this self-love prompted by ayahuasca was key to his mental health journey. He explains that ayahuasca helped him see how to love himself unconditionally and this is the first step to helping him love others around him unconditionally as well.  

From the testimony of NFL star Aaron Rodgers, we can tell that there is something special in ayahuasca that needs attention. There is limited scientific knowledge about the psychedelic brew presently but all that is bound to change with such testimonies. Till then we can only remain happy for Aaron Rodgers and be grateful that he had the experience he had with ayahuasca. Hopefully, this same effect will be translated to some other sports stars as they aim for greatness.








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