Supply remains in jeopardy as patient enrollment increases at double the rate of industry sales
NEW MEXICO:The 35 licensed commercial producers in New Mexico’s Medical Cannabis Program brought in a record $22.1 million for the third quarter of 2017, an increase of 4 percent from the second quarter.
“Revenue is growing slower than previous quarters and not keeping pace with the dramatic increase of patients enrolled, which is a result of the lowest number of plants per patient in the history of the program,” said Duke Rodriguez, CEO and President of Ultra Health. “This product and pricing pressure is likely pushing qualified patients to purchase unsafe medicine from the illegal black market.”
All providers licensed a total of 14,550 plants for the 2017-2018 period, leaving less than one third of a single plant per patient. The plant count ratio will continue to deteriorate each month as patient enrollment increases.
The New Mexico medical cannabis industry is on course to complete 2017 with total projected sales of $85.5 million, which is a 68 percent increase over the $50.6 million achieved in 2016. Patient enrollment is projected to increase by 86 percent from 29,046 patients on January 1, 2017 to 54,091 patients on January 1, 2018.
Third Quarter Breakdown
Ultra Health continues to lead all providers in the third quarter with $2.8 million in sales, an increase of 20 percent since June 30, 2017. The provider currently holds 13 percent of the New Mexico medical cannabis market. Ultra Health currently leads the nation in percentage market share penetration.
The provider attributes its growth in the third quarter to patients’ favorable response to its new pharmaceutical-grade, smokeless medicinal productswhich include sublingual and oral tablets, pastilles, vaginal and rectal suppositories, oils, topicals and patches.
The 23 original providers accounted for 79 percent of the total market share for the third quarter while the 12 newest providers, which were selected in October 2015, held 21 percent altogether.
Ultra Health opened its ninth dispensary location in Silver City on October 17, 2017. The provider now serves seven counties as the nation’s largest vertically integrated medical-only cannabis network.
Six of the 35 licensed producers currently operate without a single retail dispensary location.