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Large Cannabis Surplus Drives Down Oregon's Prices

Steffen Geyer

Oregon has more cannabis than it can sell, and that’s causing prices to plummet. That from an industry firm tracking cannabis trends. KLCC’s Brian Bull reports.

Economists with New Frontier Data in Washington D.C. say there was half a million pounds of excess marijuana grown in Oregon last year. And with no way to export the surplus legally, wholesalers are dramatically slashing prices.

Chief Knowledge Officer John Kagia says when marijuana was first legalized in Oregon, outdoor pot could run between $1200 to $1500 a pound…and indoor pot between $2500 to $3000 a pound.  

“I recently spoke to a retailer in Oregon, he had found “fire sale” deals, about 50 pounds at $150 a pound," Kagia tells KLCC. " This is a very, very dramatic reduction from where we were 12 months ago, and the concern is that with this excess inventory, that trend is going to continue.” 

New Frontier Data says it’ll take up to 18 months for Oregon’s cannabis market to clear its surplus inventory. In that time, many businesses will likely sell their licenses or shutter.

Copyright 2018, KLCC. 

Brian Bull is an assistant professor of journalism at the University of Oregon, and remains a contributor to the KLCC news department. He began working with KLCC in June 2016.   In his 27+ years as a public media journalist, he's worked at NPR, Twin Cities Public Television, South Dakota Public Broadcasting, Wisconsin Public Radio, and ideastream in Cleveland. His reporting has netted dozens of accolades, including four national Edward R. Murrow Awards (22 regional),  the Ohio Associated Press' Best Reporter Award, Best Radio Reporter from  the Native American Journalists Association, and the PRNDI/NEFE Award for Excellence in Consumer Finance Reporting.
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