BIG Marijuana…The U.S. market for legal cannabis grew 74 percent in 2014 to $2.7 billion, up from $1.5 billion in 2013.

Legal Marijuana Is The Fastest-Growing Industry In The U.S.: Report


Legal marijuana is the fastest-growing industry in the United States and if the trend toward legalization spreads to all 50 states, marijuana could become larger than the organic food industry, according to a new report obtained by The Huffington Post.

Researchers from The ArcView Group, a cannabis industry investment and research firm based in Oakland, California, found that the U.S. market for legal cannabis grew 74 percent in 2014 to $2.7 billion, up from $1.5 billion in 2013.

The group surveyed hundreds of medical and recreational marijuana retailers in states where sales are legal, as well as ancillary business operators and independent cultivators of the plant, over the course of seven months during 2013 and 2014. ArcView also compiled data from state agencies, nonprofit organizations and private companies in the marijuana industry for a more complete look at the marketplace.

“In the last year, the rise of the cannabis industry went from an interesting cocktail conversation to being taken seriously as the fastest growing industry in America,” Troy Dayton, CEO of The ArcView Group and publisher of the third edition of the State of Legal Marijuana Markets, said in the executive summary of the report. “At this point, it’s hard to imagine that any serious businessperson who is paying attention hasn’t spent some time thinking about the possibilities in this market.”


marijuana fastest growing industry

Graph courtesy of ArcView Market Research.


The report also projects a strong year for legal marijuana in 2015 and projects 32 percent growth in the market. Dayton said that places “cannabis in the top spot” when compared with other fast-growing industries.

Over the next five years, the marijuana industry is expected to continue to grow, with ArcView predicting that 14 more states will legalize recreational marijuana and two more states will legalize medical marijuana. At least 10 states are already considering legalizing recreational marijuana in just the next two years through ballot measures or state legislatures.

To date, four states — Colorado, Washington, Alaska and Oregon — have legalized retail marijuana. Washington, D.C., voters also legalized recreational marijuana use, but sales currently remain banned. Twenty-three states have legalized medical cannabis. Still, marijuana remains illegal at the federal level.

The report projects that, by 2019, all of the state-legal marijuana markets combined will make for a potential overall market worth almost $11 billion annually.


marijuana fastest growing industry

Graph courtesy of ArcView Market Research.


The report also breaks out some interesting marijuana trends from around the nation. California still has the largest legal cannabis market in the U.S., at $1.3 billion. Arizona was found to have the fastest-growing major marijuana market in 2014, expanding to $155 million, up more than $120 million from the previous year. Medical marijuana is already legal in Arizona and California and recreational legalization measures are likely to appear on the 2016 ballots in both states.

More than 1.5 million shoppers purchased legal marijuana from a dispensary, either medical or recreational, in 2014. Five states now boast marijuana markets that are larger than $100 million, and in Colorado and Washington — the first states to open retail marijuana shops in the U.S. — consumers bought $370 million in marijuana products last year.

Oregon and Alaska are expected to add a combined $275 million in retail marijuana sales in their first year of operation, the report projects. And while D.C. has also legalized recreational marijuana use, ArcView couldn’t project a market size in the District because of an ongoing attempt by congressional Republicans to block the new law.


marijuana fastest growing industry

Graph courtesy of ArcView Market Research.


The huge growth potential of the industry appears to be limited only by the possibility of states rejecting the loosening of their drug laws. The report projects a marijuana industry that could be more valuable than the entire organic food industry — that is, if the legalization trend continues to the point that all 50 states legalize recreational marijuana. The total market value of all states legalizing marijuana would top $36.8 billion — more than $3 billion larger than the organic food industry.

“These are exciting times,” Dayton said in the executive summary, “and new millionaires and possibly billionaires are about to be made, while simultaneously society will become safer and freer.”

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Marijuana Use for 8th Graders in Denver 350% Higher than National Average

Denver 8th Graders Use 350% Higher than National Average

 Smart Approaches to Marijuana Canada (SAMC)3 hours ago

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA–(Marketwired – Jan 22, 2015) - Denver 8th grade student’s marijuana user rate is 350% higher than the national average for youth the same age.

Where do the students get their marijuana? 38% reported they got from a friend who obtains it legally, 23% reported from their parents, 22% from the black market, 9% from medical marijuana dispensaries, 4% from medical marijuana cardholders, 3% from retail marijuana stores.

60% of high school seniors say marijuana is not harmful. More than 6% of high school seniors reported smoking marijuana on a daily basis. A third of high school seniors got their marijuana supply from a third party’s prescription. In Colorado there was a 26% increase in youth (12 – 17) monthly marijuana use in the three years after medical marijuana was commercialized (2009).

For further information and data sources, please visit the following link:


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Letter to Parents and Guardians about Underage Use of Marijuana


January 2015

Dear Parent and/or Guardian,

As you know, you are the most powerful influence in your child’s life.  As this new year gets under way, our thoughts turn to sustaining a healthy community and keeping our children safe as they grow into their full potential.

Today, we come to you with concerns regarding the recent passage and implementation of Initiative 502 (I-502), the Legalization of Marijuana for Recreational Use.  It is important that we, as parents and community members, fully understand the health and legal issues associated with underage use of marijuana.

We have enclosed a brochure with clear and concise insights into many of the issues associated with underage use of marijuana.  Please read it and keep it in a prominent place for easy reference and talk about it with your son(s) and daughter(s).

It’s our job to keep our kids safe.  Let’s all work together to end underage use of marijuana in our community.

San Juan Island Prevention Coalition          
Friday Harbor, WA  98250
Telephone 360.378.9683
Board of Trustees :
Brad Fincher, Chair, Adult Probation, San Juan County District Court
Michael Baird, Treasurer , Compass Health
Boyd Pratt, Recording Secretary, Citizen, Civic Organizations
Gail Leschine-Seitz, Corresponding Sec., WSU-4H, Parent Friday Harbor Middle School
Sam Leigh, Trustee, Right of Way Driving School
Joyce Sobel, Trustee , Northwest Early Learning Consortium
Mark Tompkins, Trustee, Health & Community Services, Director
Amara Zee, Trustee. Counselor, Friday Harbor Middle School
The above Trustees are the Executive Board
Court Bell, Trustee, Retired SJISD Principal, Consultant
Sammy Finch, Trustee, Helping Out Teen Society, FHHS, Youth
Ron Krebs, Trustee, Sheriff, San Juan County
Rick Thompson, Trustee, San Juan Island School District, Superintendent
Sally Thomsen, Trustee, San Juan Island Parks and Rec, Director
Carrie Unpingco, Trustee, San Juan Island Community Foundation
Rita Weisbrod, Trustee, Evaluator
Cynthia Stark-Wickman, M. Ed       Executive Coordinator                  Office located at 520 Spring St.

The mission of San Juan Island Prevention Coalition is to strengthen community collaboration to prevent and reduce substance abuse among youth.





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Know the Facts on Marijuana (Health & I-502 Laws)


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Love Yourself!

Choosing Health, Love Yourself:)

The San Juan Island Prevention Coalition has been continuing their work on various Youth Leadership Programs and working closely with our local schools with our Prevention Intervention Specialist at FHMS and FHHS…Continuing the messages of Love Yourself…Choose Health, an extension of Red Ribbon Week last October, the symbol of a heart, is the theme the youth connected with and we’ll be featuring more of this year.

This image above was taken by FHHS students and they captured beautifully, what we hope to focus on this year in prevention… Love Yourself! By loving yourself, you can choose to be healthy, make choices that help you to be your best self... So, when you see more of these images of youth and their “healthy hearts”, please help support their efforts to be drug-free… Thank you!

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New for 2015, MADD is expanding its mission to take on the deadly effects of drugged driving. While we know that we still have our work cut out for us when it comes to eliminating drunk driving, we knew it was time to take that experience and apply it to the issues surrounding drugged driving. MADD has provided victim services to those impacted by drugged driving for many years. Now we can provide those families with hope – much like we have to victims of drunk driving for the past 35 years.

New National President Colleen Sheehey-Church’s son Dustin drowned after the car he was riding in, driven by a teen with alcohol and drugs in her system, crashed into a river, trapping Dustin in the vehicle. (Read their story here.) But her story is far from unique.

A 2009 National Highway Traffic Safety Administration study found that 18 percent of drivers killed in car crashes tested positive for one or more prescription, over-the-counter, or illicit drugs. Even the smallest amount of a drug can interfere with coordination, reaction time, perception and judgment. Mixing drugs with alcohol can worsen impairment and increase the risk of crashing.

However, since this is an emerging issue, there are a number of challenges that must be overcome and issues that must be addressed before the problem can be solved:

  • Drugs include both the legal and illegal variety, causing confusion among the public as to what qualifies as drugged driving.
  • No drug-specific fatality numbers or arrest data currently being uniformly collected.
  • No impairment levels defined for each drug and the mere presence of drugs does not equal impairment.
  • Testing for drug impairment and specialized law enforcement training programs to detect impairment costly.

These are precisely the areas that MADD plans to address first.

Because there is a common overlap between drunk and drugged driving issues, laws and initiatives, we feel this expansion of our mission is natural and hope to apply our learnings from the fight to stop drunk driving to aid the prevention of drugged driving.

Click here to take the pledge to show your support for MADD’s drugged driving prevention efforts.

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Co-Founder Project SAM (A Smart Approach for Marijuana Policy) & author of Reefer Sanity, Kevin Sabet, Ph.D.

Here’s some good science regarding marijuana…


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Legal pot shops crippled by black market, medical marijuana

“The following article illustrates what we have been saying for some time.
 The black market flourishes in states that have legalized pot.
 The medi-pot system is full of fraud and abuse.
 Tax revenue from pot sales is offset by massive regulation and other social costs.
 Because states have a financial interest in the outcome, they are “driving” customers to retail stores.
 ”Enshrining” pot in a state constitution makes it difficult to solve pot-related problems.
 Unscrupulous doctors abuse the system.”
What a surprise. Monte Stiles, former Federal Asst. Prosecuting Attorney, 24 year veteran of Crime and Drug Investigations
 Legal pot shops crippled by black market, medical marijuana

SEATTLE — A year into the nation’s experiment with legal, taxed marijuana sales, Washington and Colorado find themselves wrestling not with the federal interference many feared, but with competition from medical marijuana or even outright black market sales.

In Washington, the black market has exploded since voters legalized marijuana in 2012, with scores of legally dubious medical dispensaries opening and some pot delivery services brazenly advertising that they sell outside the legal system.

Licensed shops say taxes are so onerous that they can’t compete.
Colorado, which launched legal pot sales last New Year’s Day, is facing a lawsuit from Nebraska and Oklahoma alleging that they’re being overrun with pot from the state.

And the number of patients on Colorado’s medical marijuana registry went up, not down, since 2012, meaning more marijuana users there can avoid paying the higher taxes that recreational pot carries.
Officials in both states say they must do more to drive customers into the recreational stores. They’re looking at reining in their medical systems and fixing the big tax differential between medical and recreational weed without harming patients.

And in some cases, they are considering cracking down on the proliferating black market.

“How can you have two parallel systems, one that’s regulated, paying taxes, playing by the rules, and the other that’s not doing any of those things?” said Rick Garza of the Washington Liquor Control Board, which oversees recreational pot.

The difficulty of reconciling medical marijuana with taxed recreational pot offers a cautionary tale for states that might join Washington and Colorado in regulating the adult use of the drug.

While legalization campaigns have focused on the myriad ills of prohibition, including racial discrepancies in who gets busted for weed, the promise of additional tax revenues in tight budget times was in no small part of the appeal.

Weed sales have so far brought in some revenue, though less than officials might have hoped.
Colorado brought in more than $60 million in taxes, licenses and fees for recreational and medical marijuana combined through October of this year, and more than half of pot sold was of the lesser-taxed medical variety.

In Washington, where supply problems and slow licensing hampered the industry after sales began in July, the state collected about $15 million in taxes this year.

The latest states to legalize marijuana — Oregon and Alaska — have different concerns, but officials there are nevertheless paying attention to Colorado and Washington as they work on rules for their own industry.

Alaska doesn’t have commercial medical dispensaries, so licensed stores there won’t face direct competition. And in Oregon, taxes on recreational pot are set at just $35 an ounce, which officials hope will minimize competition from the medical side.

In Seattle, however, six licensed recreational stores face competition from medical pot shops that are believed to number in the hundreds.
Am I afraid about medical marijuana dispensaries taking my business? They have all the business. They are the industry,” said James Lathrop, the owner of Seattle’s first licensed pot shop, Cannabis City.

He said the dominance of medical marijuana and the black market is obvious in his clientele: It’s mostly tourists and professionals who use pot occasionally and don’t mind spending a little extra at a legal store.

Regular pot users have stuck with their old dealers or continue masquerading as patients, he said.

Reining in medical marijuana will be a top priority when the legislative session begins in Olympia next month.

The question, lawmakers say, is how to direct people into the regulated system — maximizing state revenues — without hurting legitimately sick people who use marijuana.

Ideas under discussion include reducing pot taxes to make recreational stores more competitive and eliminating medical dispensaries, which have been largely tolerated by law enforcement even though they aren’t allowed under state law.

The state could lift its cap on the number of recreational stores and license dispensaries to sell pot for any purpose.

Seattle officials have signaled that they intend to start busting delivery services that flout the law and recently sent letters to 330 marijuana businesses warning them that they’ll eventually need to obtain state licenses or be shut down.
Tacoma has also announced plans to close dozens of unregulated pot shops.

Officials have less leeway to alter the medical marijuana system in Colorado, where it was enshrined in the state constitution in 2000. But lawmakers are nevertheless set to review how it is regulated next year because the state’s 2010 scheme is expiring.

Taxes will be a large part of the discussion. Medical pot is now subject only to the statewide 2.9 percent sales tax, one-tenth of the taxes levied on recreational pot.

Colorado’s medical marijuana registry has grown from 107,000 people in late 2012 to about 116,000 this year, though marijuana patient advocates dispute that the growth is tax-driven.

State health officials, who oversee the registry, are planning to better scrutinize doctors who recommend large numbers of medical pot patients or who recommend more than the baseline of six plants for a patient.

The challenge for lawmakers will be countering perceptions that they’re trying to squeeze sick people for cash.

“I don’t want to wind up cracking down on people abusing the system in a way that negatively impacts the patients and the people who help them,” said Teri Robnett, founder of the Cannabis Patients Alliance.
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Colorado’s monthly marijuana usage is 72 % greater than U.S. total…The Marijuana Report Dec. 31, 2014

Colorado’s monthly marijuana use is 72 percent greater than the U.S. total among people aged 12 and older according to the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, released last week by the U.S. Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration. Past-month use in Colorado increased 22 percent from 10.41 percent to 12.7 percent between 2012 and 2013, one year after the state legalized recreational marijuana in November 2012 but one year before recreational pot shops opened for business in January 2014. Colorado legalized medical marijuana in 2000 when 7.8 percent of its citizens used the drug monthly compared to 12.7 percent thirteen years later. The legislature authorized commercial marijuana growing and sales through dispensaries in 2009. Three years later, more than 500 dispensaries were operating across the state and more than 108,000 residents held medical marijuana cards. Past-month alcohol and pain-reliever use also increased in Colorado in 2013.




E-Highlights features important news coverage posted to The Marijuana Report.Org each week. It is sponsored by National Families in ActionProject SAM (Smart Approaches to Marijuana), and the Treatment Research Institute. Check The Marijuana Report.Org often to keep up with daily marijuana news. Subscribe to E-Highlights for weekly overviews.

Meanwhile, The Denver Post’s weblog, The Cannabist, recounts the “Best of 2014,” including “Our top [marijuana] infused recipes, from pot brownies to mac and cheese“ (pictured here). The blog’s chef created brownies and penne pasta recipes infused with Killer Queen to treat her back pain. “Honestly, I was too high to know if anything hurt. Yikes,” she comments.
The Cannabist reviews “12 vape pens that caught our attention in 2014.” Vape pens are to marijuana what e-cigarettes are to nicotine, “portable, pen-like vaporizers that are discreet and ubiquitous.” This one, the “O.Pen,” is an e-cigarette whose “bottom half is a battery that screws onto a cartomizer–a heating element and a tube of hash oil.”
Among the “15 most intriguing questionsour readers asked this year,” says The Cannabist, is: “My dog gets carsick even on short trips . . . so I’m wondering whether giving him a small amount of pot butter before we go in the car might be a good idea.” “Don’t,” The Cannabist warns, because “at the moment there is zero data.”
Some 30 percent of homeless people in one Denver shelter came to Colorado for pot, finds a survey of more than 500 people there. “It’s having an impact on all of our social services across the state,” says state Rep. Ted Harvey, “an unintended consequence I never thought of.”
Colorado marijuana STILL not tested for contaminants. Washington has required contaminant testing for six months and is finding 13 percent of pot and THC-infused products contain mold, salmonella, and E. coli. Colorado was supposed to begin such testing last summer but has yet to even spell out testing criteria. Buyer, beware.
CNBC will air Harry Smith’s “Marijuana Country: The Cannabis Boom” on January 5. “Smith covers pot as a treatment for seizures in children (‘Charlotte’s Web’), the trouble with dosing edibles, the problem of enforcing zero tolerance in the workplace, the black market, the big businesses hoping to franchise, and sales stats in general–all with a critical eye.”


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Community Prevention & Wellness Initiative (CWPI) Survey for San Juan Island Community

This survey is not created locally, it is offered through the State, a Division of Behavioral Health, which maintains a high level of security, keeping this an anonymous survey. The SJI Prevention Coalition offers the survey for our community. Also known as, The Community Prevention and Wellness initiative (CPWI) Survey. We will extend the survey through December 31st, 2014 and get the results in late January 2015.

Everyone’s voice is important. Thank you for sharing this information. We hope people will take the few minutes to answer honestly. The data will help our community to address substance abuse issues among youth and help to get a sense of what our community’s perceptions are on these issues.

Also, please circulate this within your circle of influence, and add your personal invitation to parents, guardians, and community members. Our goal is to have a good cross-section of opinions that reflects the demographics of San Juan Island. Last year, we had over 300 survey participants. (We are currently at 120, as of 12/11/14, we need your voice added, please help us reach our goal of 300 by taking and sharing the survey!)

As needed, SJIPC will be distributing hard copies to those of you who would like paper and pencil documents. The survey is also available in Spanish. As always, thanks for your continued support!


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