With only eight dispensaries servicing patients across the state, Maine’s medical marijuana industry may seem small compared to those in other states. However, closer inspection reveals a thriving and bustling industry that puts all others to shame. Comprised of no less than 600 caregivers, the state’s medical marijuana industry generates up to $25 million in revenues every year. This figure is derived from data collected from the Medical Marijuana Caregivers of Maine (MMCM) and various other sources.
As impressive as the market for medical marijuana is in the state, the passing of a new law promises to make it even bigger. On October 9, a law adding several other illnesses and conditions to the list of health conditions that can legally be treated by medical marijuana took effect in Maine. The passage of this law is expected to affect dispensary owners as well as caregivers all over the state.
This early on, medical marijuana advocates in the state anticipate the changes that the new law will bring to the legal marijuana industry in Maine. An MMCM lobbyist named Paul McCarrier expected a “massive influx” of medical marijuana patients, stating that the number of new patients that will require medical marijuana will likely reach into the thousands. McCarrier also anticipates a drastic reduction of marijuana prices across the board, as well as a significant increase in competition and the demand for medical marijuana.
At present, full-time medical marijuana caregivers in Maine can make as much as $50,000 every year. After deducting expenses, caregivers can expect to take home from $24,000 to $45,000 every year. With the cost of starting up a marijuana business estimated at about $15,000, becoming a caregiver might just be a lucrative business opportunity for residents of the state.
In states wherein marijuana has been legalized for medical use, much of the demand is supplied by storefront dispensaries. This system essentially relegates caregivers to part-time status, which means that most of them will have to take on other jobs as well. However, the situation is markedly different in Maine, wherein the unique characteristics of the medical marijuana industry allow greater involvement for caregivers in the state. Maine is still largely a rural community, which means that small farmers have more opportunities to become involved in the medical marijuana industry compared to other states.
Because of the distances between communities, the eight dispensaries in Maine primarily service customers from the urban areas. This means that the estimated 12,000 medical marijuana patients in Maine rely primarily on neighborhood caregivers for their medicine. State law currently allows each caregiver to service the needs of a maximum of five patients. At current prices of $200 to $250 an ounce, caregivers in Maine stand to make considerably more money than storefront dispensaries in the state.
If you would like to learn more about the medical marijuana industry and the price of setting up such a business, contact us today and we will be glad to provide you with the detailed information that you need to get started!