Price check! What are Californians paying for legal cannabis?

California’s legal cannabis market is just over a week old and one of the most contentious parts of the rollout is the minimum 15 percent hike in prices thanks to a bunch of new taxes.

That doesn’t even account for additional municipal taxes found in some places. In light of the situation, retailers are doing their best to win shoppers over early with great discounts, but how much are people actually paying?

We put out the call for folks’ receipts from across the state and here’s what we’ve found.

Pricecheck #1

price check
Photo by David Downs

Location: Harborside, Oakland, Jan. 1

Purchase: 501st OG gram – $16; Hybrid pre-rolls (2) – $14; exit bag – $1.00

Subtotal: $31.00

Taxes: $7.95

Total: $38.95

Discussion: Oakland customers are suffering under a 10 percent local excise tax on recreational cannabis that certainly stings at the register.

Pricecheck #2

Photo by David Downs

Location: The Green Cross, San Francisco, Jan. 6

Purchase: One eight-ounce of the cultivar Goji – $42.40; one white exit bag – $1.00

Subtotal: $43.40

Taxes: $3.69

Total: $47.09

Discussion: Not at all a bad price for an eight-ounce, but The Green Cross has always offered some of the best value shopping in California.

Pricecheck #3

Location: Berkeley Patients Group, Jan. 1

Purchase: All Star OG flower eighth-ounce (2): $120

Subtotal: $120

Taxes: $32.10

Total: $152.10

Discussion: Taxes are running 26.75% on recreational cannabis in Berkeley, where retail cannabis might be convenient, but it’s not competitive with the robust black market.

Pricecheck #4

Location: MedMen, West Hollywood, Jan 9.

Purchase: Purple Punch eighth-ounce – $45; NorCal Distribution eighth-ounce (2) – $130

Subtotal: $175

Taxes: 45.37

Total: $220.37

Discussion: The tax rate is on par with the rest of the state, but being the first municipality in the greater Los Angeles area has put West Hollywood among the biggest winners in this first week of sales. Nevertheless,  LA’s underground event scene is still thriving seven days a week for those who want their cannabis tax-free outside of Tinsel Town.

Pricecheck #5

Damn California marijuana tax is ridiculous #marijuana #californiaweed #legal

A post shared by Brandon (@mrdabster) on

Location: People’s OC, Santa Ana, Jan. 2

Purchase: Grape Soda eighth-ounce – $50;  Maggy’s Choice eighth-ounce – $60; Dozizoz eighth-ounce – $60

Subtotal: $170

Taxes: $52.28

Total: $222.28

Discussion: With 17 adult use facilities in town, things are getting competitive in Santa Ana. The savvy cannabis shopper should have no problem hunting down some great deals.

Pricecheck #6

Location: The Guild, San Jose, Jan. 1

Purchase: Big Pete’s Cinna Sugar 40 milligram – $6.70; GLD Pure Kush gram – $13.41

Subtotal: $20.11

First Time Purchase Coupon: -$13.45

Taxes: $2.29

Total: $8.95

Discussion: As seen here in the South Bay and much like the doorbuster sales we noted on January 1, coupons are going to be coming back into style. There are plenty of opportunities to get good cannabis without feeling like you’re getting robbed, albeit with a little extra effort.  

How did you fare in the legal market? Send us your own price checks! We’ll take them via email or via message to our Facebook page.