Washington Cannabis Sales Hit $200-Million, Closing Gap With Spirits

Sales of marijuana products in Washington state have for the first time surpassed $200-million in a quarter.

Other news outlets report that residents and visitors bought more marijuana than ever before in the second quarter of 2016, based on an analysis of purchase and tax records from two state agencies.

In the first quarter of 2016 - January, February, and March - people spent $54.8-million more on spirits than marijuana, which includes the cost of the products and its associated taxes. By the second quarter - April, May, and June - that gap closed to nearly $37-million. Those amounts include taxes levied by the state on those products. Spirits sales do not include wine and beer. Marijuana sales include all cannabis products, but not paraphernalia.

Marijuana sales in the second quarter of 2016 amounted to nearly $212-million. Spirits sales in the same period amounted to almost $249-million.

Washington voters legalized recreational marijuana in 2012.

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A non-profit group of over 150 current and former athletes is calling for marijuana to be removed form the World Anti-Doping Agency's prohibited substances list. Medical marijuana legalization is spreading across the US, but most pro-athletes are still prevented from accessing it. That's because most major sports leagues follow drug guidelines set by the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), which bans athletes from using cannabis even outside of competition.

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