Nearly $ 1 million was spent on adult-use marijuana products in Maine on Memorial Day weekend alone, according to a Department of Marijuana Policy estimate.

BANGOR, Maine – When Maine’s adult recreational marijuana market went live last October, it was difficult to set expectations as the program opened amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

As the pandemic’s harsh grip on our daily lives slowly relaxed, the growth of the recreation program in Maine increased exponentially. Growth buds to another record sales month in May.

Although official figures won’t be released until next week, Erik Gunderson, director of the Bureau of Marijuana Policy, estimated that dispensaries in Maine have raised more than $ 5 million in sales. He added that this includes nearly $ 1 million in products sold on Memorial Day weekend alone. “I think it’s a sign of things to come,” Gunderson said.

This will be the first summer that people 21 and over can legally purchase marijuana products in Maine. Gunderson said the timing is right as more licenses are granted statewide, established stores are working with more local vendors, and stores are selling more products to consumers.

“[The program is] continue to move in the right direction both in terms of revenue, in terms of active licenses, and when it comes to accessibility more and more cities are starting to opt. in, “he added.

Firestorm Premium Craft Cannabis in Bangor was one of the first eight dispensaries to open in October 2020. Owner Mohammed Ibrahem said Memorial Day weekend was busy in his store and he expected more customers and tourists stop by this summer.

“We are delighted to provide service to them and allow them to see our great state and to see our great companies and we are happy to be a part of it,” he said. “We believe our sales and growth are a big manifestation of the recovery the country and state are experiencing right now.”

Back when Firestorm and all the other dispensaries opened, product selection was limited and prices were high, Ibrahem added. Since then, he said the store has doubled the number of vendors it works with, all of which are Maine companies.

“We’re just excited to showcase more Maine-made products, you know that’s our ‘From Maine, for Maine’ tagline,” he said.

Now, customers can purchase edibles, THC infused drinks, THC cartridges, and traditional flowers at Firestorm and other dispensaries across the state.

Brandon Pollock is the CEO of Theory Wellness, which has offices in South Portland, Waterville and Bangor. He added that his stores had also increased their inventory selections in recent months.

“There are more and more growers and product manufacturers who are licensed into the recreational program, which adds a lot of variety to the menu that customers love,” he said.

Pollock added that his employees love it when it’s crowded and if Memorial Day weekend sales numbers are any indication, they’ll have to get used to it this summer.

“We hope that this trend continues and that more guests find us, and that we can make their vacation a little more special in Maine,” Pollock said.

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