Marijuana sales are generating billions of dollars in the U.S.

Marijuana sales are generating billions of dollars in the U.S.

The push for legalizing recreational marijuana doesn’t just make users happy. The Marijuana Policy Group says Colorado’s pot industry created more than 18,000 jobs and generated more than $2.4 billion for the state.

And it’s predicted that legal marijuana sales could grow to $21 billion in the next three years. Primo.

But even though more states are getting into this market, marijuana is still technically illegal because federal law hasn’t changed, despite a shift in public opinion.

U.S. public opinion on legalizing marijuana, 1969-2017

Will a budding business in herb inspire more states to prefer reefer to cushion to their coffers? Or will a continued federal prohibition drive the sales underground?


  • Wanda James Co-owner of the cannabis company "Simply Pure," based in Denver, Colorado.
  • Beau Kilmer Co-director, RAND Drug Policy Research Center and co-author of "Marijuana Legalization: What Everyone Needs to Know".
  • Bruce Barcott Deputy editor of, the world's largest cannabis information resource. He's also the author of "Weed the People: The Future of Legal Marijuana in the US"
  • Amanda Chicago Lewis Investigative reporter covering the marijuana industry. She writes a cannabis column for Rolling Stone, and has written marijuana exposes for Buzzfeed, GQ and Vice.
  • Governor John Hickenlooper Democratic governor of Colorado; former mayor of Denver, beer brewer and geologist

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