Last fall, Florida voters approved a new medical marijuana bill, and ever since, the state’s medical weed program has exploded. Now, the Florida medical marijuana market is on pace to break $1 billion by 2020.
Medical Marijuana In Florida Is Blowing Up
Florida’s medical marijuana program has been going through some dramatic changes over the past year or so. For starters, a new and significantly expanded program was approved by voters last November.
Since the vote, pretty much every aspect of the state’s medical marijuana program has been expanding at a rapid rate.
So far, there are more than 1,200 doctors who have been licensed to prescribe medical cannabis. That number represents a huge increase. Before last fall’s elections, under Florida’s old medical marijuana program, there were less than 300 doctors.
At this point, the state’s Office of Medical Marijuana is giving out an average of roughly 20 new doctor’s licenses every day.
But it isn’t just the number of participating doctors that is growing. Tons of new patients are enrolling, too. In fact, Florida has added more than 10,000 new patients since June.
That figure means that in roughly two months, the state has expanded its roster of registered medical marijuana patients by 60 percent. There are now more than 26,000 patients in Florida.
All of this is adding up to create a massive new market. So large, in fact, that financial experts now predict that the Florida medical marijuana market is on pace to break $1 billion by 2020.
It Hasn’t All Been Smooth Sailing
Despite this explosive growth, it hasn’t all been a smooth process. In fact, Florida has in many ways been fairly slow to adopt more weed-friendly laws.
Even before last fall’s election, the state had a medical marijuana program. But it was so narrowly defined that many thought it was too restrictive. That’s what last year’s Amendment 2 ballot initiative was designed to address.
After receiving 71 percent of the vote, that initiative was supposed to expand the program and make it more accessible. But this summer, things hit a roadblock. Lawmakers signed a bill that banned smokable medical marijuana.
Many patients saw this as once again making the states’ medical marijuana program too restrictive. In fact, a lawyer named John Morgan filed a lawsuit against the state in July.
Morgan argued that smoking weed is the best way for patients with certain conditions to medicate. By banning smokable cannabis, Morgan claimed, the state was making it too hard for these patients to use medical marijuana.
Final Hit: Florida Medical Marijuana Market Is On Pace To Break $1 Billion By 2020
So far, medical marijuana in Florida has been a bit of a bumpy road. Despite this, the new program is seeing some explosive growth this year.
Assuming that growth will continue the way it is right now, the Florida medical marijuana market is on pace to break $1 billion by 2020.