Summit County tops High Country recreational pot sales in 2017
April 26, 2018
A series of state reports shows Summit County stood second-to-none among its High Country peers — and 11th in Colorado — in terms of recreational marijuana sales last year.
The Cannabist, a marijuana-focused publication based in Denver, first reported on the new sales reports in December, shortly after the Colorado Department of Revenue published a trove of previously unreleased data from the state's marijuana retailers.
State officials have characterized the move as one grounded in transparency, and the reports, now available online at the Colorado Department of Revenue's website, reveal aggregate sales data from the state's medical and recreational marijuana retailers, further breaking down those figures by the county in which the sales took place.
The information is organized by the year and month, and backdated to 2014, the first year for which recreational marijuana sales were legal in Colorado.
There are some gaps in the reporting, including more than $46 million worth of recreational sales labeled "not releasable" due to confidentiality requirements.
Coupled with previously released tax revenues, the reports still paint the most accurate picture to date of the state's burgeoning marijuana industry, which saw over $1.5 billion in sales last year alone.
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Defined by Colorado Counties, the Mountain District encompasses a strip of Colorado's highest country, beginning with sparsely populated Jackson County on the Colorado-Wyoming border and running south to Custer County, another thinly populated jurisdiction about 100 miles north of New Mexico.
The district is for Colorado's highest peaks, some of its most rugged terrain and many of the state's ski resorts.
In addition to Jackson and Custer, the Mountain District includes the counties of Chaffee, Clear Creek, Eagle, Fremont, Gilpin, Grand, Jackson, Lake, Park, Pitkin, Teller and, of course, Summit.
According to the Summit Daily's analysis of the state reports, Summit was high atop the mountain district with over $22 million worth of recreational marijuana sales throughout 2017.
That put Summit County at No. 11 in the state, $1.2 million behind La Plata County, which includes the city of Durango.
No other county in the district came even close to that number, including Eagle County with Vail and Pitkin County with Aspen, which ranked Nos. 14 and 15 in the state for recreational marijuana sales, respectively.
Outside the High Country, Summit's recreational pot sales dwarfed other popular mountain destinations, like Crested Butte, Telluride and Steamboat Springs, all of which came in significantly behind Pitkin and Eagle counties.
Meanwhile, Denver outpaced every other Colorado county with its recreational marijuana sales reaching over $374 million through 2017. That was more than triple the county with the second-highest sales, Arapahoe at $111.8 million.
Rounding out the top 10 in order were Boulder, Adams, Larimer, Jefferson, Las Animas, Pueblo, Weld and La Plata.
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