How much is pot? Contrary to popular belief, marijuana has no fixed price. Like any commodity, anywhere that has more supply than demand, the price will be at least relatively low.
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Places like the United States are in a constant war with an influx of drugs like marijuana geographically stemming (largely) from South and Central America. Europe has its own different, perhaps more confusing mess of illegal drug smuggling (more countries and borders, etc.), and marijuana is less prevalent in Great Britain simply because it’s difficult to get on the island (and low supply may trigger a higher demand, and/or a high price).
Trends in purchasing legal recreational marijuana products are much easier to determine than any black market or illegal market prices, and will be a major focus of this article.
Myths about the Price of Marijuana
Myth: Marijuana is stronger now, therefore it’s more expensive.
Fact: Quite frankly it’s hard to differentiate and argue about what the most powerful weed in 1977 was, because of science!, and that makes it difficult for us to compare to anything in existence today.
Scientific research and methods of identifying levels of everything in marijuana like THC, cannabinoids, or other chemical compounds far surpasses any technology mankind had to produce any hard, empirical, scientific research on the subject of the strength of weed back then. Perhaps this is a myth that can only be argued about endlessly.
Myth: The stronger the type, the more expensive it is.
Fact: Not necessarily! At a local dispensary in Boulder, Colorado (where marijuana is legal for recreational use!), you’ll see on their “daily menu” that the amount of THC, the primary psychoactive compound in marijuana, has little to do with the set prices. Unless you go to the prices of the shatter concentrate…
Myth: Marijuana concentrate or “Shatter” is more expensive than normal marijuana.
Fact: True! Shatter can contain nearly four times the amount of THC in any number of strains of marijuana featured, and is much, much more potent! The correlation between THC and price could typically cost $50-$75 per gram: the price of about 3.5-7 grams of the actual plant-product. Shatter is also typically smoked in a method slightly different from marijuana, and more importantly, the process to produce the stuff adds another step and level of complexity and logically that affects the price.
Myth: Marijuana is cheaper to buy on the streets than it is to buy it at a medical dispensary.
Fact: Sadly there is no concrete, one size fits all answer for this myth. Prices of any commodity come down to supply and demand. Like the Great Britain example, since illegal marijuana harder to get into the island the prices skyrocket. Products at dispensaries are often highly manicured, and the process as well as the state tax combines for a pretty penny at the register. However, these prices in the United States are somewhat relative to the street value, with many attempting to be competitive.
For a more in-depth article on the rough estimates of price of marijuana per ounce by state, check out this article at Mother Jones. The index on the map suggests that the lowest amount of money per ounce is $204 (in Oregon), and the most is $387 (in North Dakota).
Perhaps if the United States passes legislation and makes marijuana legal on a federal level (which is highly unlikely for years to come), the prices of dispensaries much like this one in Colorado will be more reflective of a standardized price across the country. As for now, if you’re paying more than $387 for an ounce of weed, something is definitely wrong.
Suggestions for Further Readings on Myths About Marijuana
- Article: “Myths About Marijuana”, from MIT
- Article: “The Myths of Smoking Pot“
- Full length book: “Marijuana Myths, Marijuana Facts: A Review of the Scientific Evidence“, by Morgan and Zimmer
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