How Much Cannabis Did Colorado Produce Last Year (and How Much Are You Smoking)?


According to the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division’s 2017 annual report, Colorado’s legal marijuana grows produced 500 tons of usable cannabis last year.

In that same timeframe, Colorado dispensaries sold more than 411,000 pounds of flower, 11.1 million edibles, and nearly 28,000 pounds of cannabis concentrate.

But, what does 500 tons of cannabis look like?

When you’re buying in grams or fractions of an ounce, 500 tons can be hard to picture.

It’s about as much as 125 African elephants. Of course, we don’t smoke elephants, so that’s not a super helpful comparison.

In an effort to understand just how much pot is being produced and sold in Colorado—and what that means in practical terms—I split the total into joints, bowls, doses and grams. I then looked at how much Colorado residents and current users would have to consume to polish off 500 tons of cannabis.

How Many Joints Could You Roll with 411,000 Pounds of Bud?

Let’s say the average joint includes 0.5 grams of weed. In a previous article, we pointed to research that suggested the number could be as low as 0.32 grams or as high as 0.75 grams per joint, so 0.5 grams is a nice, even middle ground.

Assuming 0.5 grams of bud per joint, the 411,000 pounds of flower sold in Colorado could pack more than 186 million joints.

That’s enough for each of Colorado’s 5 million residents to smoke 37 joints. But, not everyone in Colorado smokes. So, let’s consider just the current cannabis consumers.

In the U.S., 55 million adults (about 10% of the population) admit to using cannabis in the past year. Using the same ratio, that means approximately 500,000 Colorado residents smoked last year, which would translate to more than 370 joints per person per year (more than one every day).

That’s a lot of weed.

Of course, many cannabis consumers prefer smoking from a bowl.

The average bowl holds slightly less marijuana then a joint—we’ll say about 0.25 grams of flower on average (though the size of your bowl may be much larger or smaller).

That equates to roughly 372 million bowls of weed… enough for every Colorado resident to pack their bowl 74 times. If we limit the number of bowls to only current cannabis consumers living in Colorado, each person could fill and empty their bowl nearly 744 times (right around 2 bowls every day).

How Big a Syrup Bottle Could You Fill with 27,890 Pounds of Cannabis Concentrate?

In 2017, nearly 28,000 pounds of cannabis concentrate were sold in Colorado.

That’s about 12.6 million grams of oil, shatter, wax and budder—enough for every resident in Colorado to consume 2.5 grams of cannabis oil.

If we stick to just the current consumers, each person could go through more than 25 grams in a year, or about 2 grams per month.

It can still be hard to imagine just how much concentrate 28,000 pounds represents. So, let’s consider things from another, arguably less practical angle.

As a fan of waffles, pancakes and all things breakfast, cannabis oil always makes me think of maple syrup. Naturally, this got me thinking about how much concentrate it would take to fill a 24oz Aunt Jemima bottle (about 710 grams).

Now for the fun part. How big a syrup bottle could we fill if we gathered all of the concentrate sold in Colorado in 2017?

Putting most swimming pools to shame, Aunt Jemima would be 17 feet tall, 11 feet wide, and more than 6 feet from toe to heel.

How Big an Edible Could You Make if You Combined the 11.1 million Sold in 2017?

The average marijuana edible contains 10 doses. With 11.1 million edibles sold in 2017, that’s 111 million doses… enough for every Colorado resident to consume 22 doses a year.

If we focus solely on current cannabis consumers, that climbs to 220 doses per person per year.

The question I wanted to answer, because why not, is how big an edible you could make if you combined all of the edibles sold in 2017 into one giant super-edible.

If we subtract the weight of flower and concentrate from the total weight of the cannabis produced in 2017, we’re left with about 561,000 pounds of edibles. (Of course, one pound of cannabis doesn’t translate directly to one pound of edibles, but let’s keep things simple.)

The biggest chocolate chip cookie in the world weighed 40,000 pounds and stretched 102 feet wide, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.

Given the weight of the edibles sold in Colorado (and some extremely dedicated chefs), we could have made a THC-infused cookie 14 times larger than the current record holder. The giant hypothetical cookie would be more than a quarter-mile wide and be significantly heavier than the combined weight of every NFL player on every team in 2017.

Naturally, tourism played a large role in driving these sales figures. If they didn’t, every current cannabis consumer would have spent roughly $4,000 on cannabis in 2017:

  • 370 joints (or 744 bowls of flower)
  • 25 grams of concentrate
  • 22 edibles (each with 100mg of THC or CBD)

Do Your Part to Help the CO Economy: Smoke Weed Everyday

What role did you play in helping Colorado produce 500 tons of cannabis? What sort of giant container would you want to fill with 28,000 pounds of cannabis concentrates? Let us know in the comments below.

And stop by Karing Kind in North Boulder to stock up on top-shelf, clean-grown bud and CO2 extracted cannabis oil.

Karing Kind is located just off of US-36, one mile north of Broadway, open MON-SUN from 9am to 10pm.

While we carry a variety of strains, concentrates, edibles, salves and tinctures, inventory and stock levels fluctuate from week to week and month to month. Check our menu and follow us on Twitter for an up-to-date list of edibles, concentrates and buds available.