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Across the world countries and states are reevaluating how marijuana works in their domaine – sometimes legalizing it for recreational purposes, sometimes for medical purposes, and sometimes leaving it illegal.   Supporters of marijuana legalization name a few reasons that legalization is good for the community, one of the main ones being that the black market for marijuana will cease to exist.

Even with the legalization of recreational marijuana, the black market for the drug is unlikely to disappear immediately post-legalization.  Donald MacPherson, executive director of the Canadian Drug Policy Coalition, stated, “There’s a huge, complex system out there operating in the world that has been delivering excellent product to people at reasonable prices for 40 years … It’s really the degree to which the regulated system can, over a . period of years, encroach on as much of that pre-existing market as possible.”  It’s clear that while each ounce of marijuana bought from a dispensary indeed is an ounce that the black market doesn’t grow and/or sell, there will still be people buying from the black market for a variety of reasons.

Marijuana users currently have a relationship built up with their dealer – it’s familiar, trusted, and safe.   Often times black market prices undercut legal prices due to the taxes placed upon legal product in order to ensure safety in production, packaging, and marketing.  In some places, such as certain areas in Canada, the black market has bulked up their stock of the drug in preparation for the legalization of marijuana.  Additionally, some sellers have gone online in order to hit up those users looking for the convenience factor.

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