The New Mexico Cannabis Control Division anticipates the supply and demand for that greenery will remain steady and continuous, even if future sales numbers don’t mirror opening weekend.

Paul Gonzales, store manager of SWOP’s Corrales location, brings in cannabis plants in preparing for the first day of legal recreational cannabis sales in New Mexico on Friday, April 1, 2022. (Matt Hollinshead/Observer)

“What we saw is that a lot of folks, whether they’re transitioning from the illicit market to the legal market, or they’re cannabis-curious and wanted to get out, try some new products and see what this all about. New Mexicans are really interested in this product and ready to participate in this market,” CCD spokeswoman Heather Brewer said.

CCD worked with industry players to make sure stores had ample inventory and that there were enough producer licenses to ensure demand was met.

The state saw more than $5.2 million in total sales during the first three days of legal retail sales. Of that sum, more than $3.5 million came from adult-use recreational sales.

CCD will keep using its track-and-trace software, called BioTrack, to keep products away from illicit markets and to prevent improper use.

It’ll ultimately fall on producers and dispensaries to coordinate with each other about providing and replenishing inventory.

“Each sector of this industry is interconnected and reliant upon every other sector,” Brewer said. “They’re in constant conversation with one another to make sure that needs are being met, just like a grocery store is always on the phone with the dairy (producers).”

That communication line is particularly important entering certain holiday weekends or certain times of the year where demand increases, Brewer said. That way, all parties can ensure shelves are stocked in time for the next big get-together.

Opening weekend exceeded the CCD’s expectations in terms of how fluid the process was, Brewer said.

CCD expects the first three days of sales won’t be a mere blip. Supply will continue to meet demands, she said.

While CCD attributes the first three days of sales to the initial excitement for the industry, it expects the daily sales numbers to drop and level off as time goes on. Even so, CCD still expects a positive economic impact down the road.

“We’ll have a good, strong, reliable industry that provides a good, strong reliable source of revenue for the state,” Brewer said. “We do still expect $300 million in annual sales and about $50 million in revenue for the state each year.”

Assessing the initial consumer habits from opening weekend, Brewer’s assumption is that cannabis is proving to be a product one can enjoy on their terms within the confines of state law.