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Will Cannabis Legalization Lead to Lower Prices?

Cannabis isn't cheao, but legalization could change that.

This story originally appeared on Cannabis & Tech Today

One of the most common questions cannabis consumers ask one another is how much cannabis costs in their part of the world. It's always fun to compare cost, quality, and quantity.

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One thing many cannabis consumers across the globe will be quick to point out is that cannabis is not cheap. For the lucky folks who live in a part of the world where cannabis is decent quality and cheap, congratulations. But for the rest of us, high-quality cannabis is usually fairly expensive.

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Prohibition Drives up Cannabis Prices

Prohibition drives up cannabis prices when it goes from one region to another, just as it did with alcohol in parts of the world that prohibited alcohol sales. When people are committing crimes to cultivate, transport, and sell cannabis, they charge a premium.

Cannabis cultivators have to take extra precautions to cultivate, transport, and sell cannabis when they are trying to avoid prosecution or targeting by thieves. They need extra security equipment to keep their operations undetected, along with a host of other gear to help get cannabis from point A to point B. All of that adds to the price of unregulated cannabis.

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Legalization Will Drive Cannabis Prices Down

The cannabis plant may grow all over the globe, however, that's not to say that the cannabis plant grows well enough for human consumption all over the globe. Just like any other crop, the cannabis plant has its preferred climates and geographical regions where it grows optimally. That's a big reason why cannabis is expensive in many parts of the world; it doesn't grow well or in a cost-efficient manner, which is why people often import cannabis from other regions.

When cannabis is finally legalized worldwide, and cannabis harvests can be shipped around the world like any other crop, prices will drop in many parts of the world and eventually arrive at a fairly consistent price. That will be great for consumers, even if it's not so-great from the perspective of gangs and cartels that currently run illegal cannabis operations.