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Progression to recreational dispensary establishments

August 28, 2017

Oregon’s Employment Transition to Recreational Marijuana Dispensaries

By Anna Johnson

Oregon Workforce and Economic Information
One of the evolving changes in Oregon’s legal marijuana industry is the shift to retail dispensaries. As of January 1, 2017 sales are allowed at licensed recreational retailers. Currently, recreational dispensaries may sell cannabis to both recreational and medical customers, with only recreational customers subject to taxes. Now medical-only dispensaries are only allowed to sell cannabis to those with a medical marijuana card.

In an effort to track payroll employment at marijuana-related businesses, the Oregon Employment Department has created a database of known marijuana-related recreational and medical dispensaries. They use a variety of methods to make this determination including reviewing information provided by the employer, referencing industry registries like the Oregon Liquor Control Commission (OLCC) license registry, and reading information publicly available online.

According to our most recent information, there were 217 recreational dispensary establishments in Oregon with 2,062 jobs that had an annual average pay of $23,706 in the 1st quarter of 2017. In that same quarter, we had 71 establishments included in the medical dispensary category with 289 jobs that paid an average annual wage of $21,282. Recreational dispensary total payroll in that quarter was $12,270,595. Medical dispensary total payroll was much less, at $1,538,148.


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