New Alaska marijuana tax rate could benefit fans of edibles

New Alaska marijuana tax rate could benefit fans of edibles

Move may make more raw material affordable for manufacturers

Fans of marijuana edibles may have something to cheer in a new tax regulation.

On Wednesday, the Alaska Department of Revenue and the Alaska Alcohol and Marijuana Control Office confirmed that starting Jan. 1, immature, malformed or seedy marijuana bud will be taxed at $25 per ounce.

Ordinarily, marijuana bud or flower is taxed at $50 per ounce, and other plant parts are taxed at $15 per ounce. Taxes are paid wholesale, when plants are sold from grower to retailer or manufacturer.

Abnormal bud isn’t attractive to buyers who smoke their marijuana, but it can still serve as the raw material for concentrates used in manufactured marijuana products. At $50 per ounce, abnormal bud was too expensive for manufacturers to consider, and growers were sometimes forced to simply throw it away for lack of a market.

Lowering the tax rate will make more raw material available for concentrate and edible manufacturers, possibly leading to cheaper prices or greater supply.

Further tax changes are possible in the next session of the Alaska Legislature. The Alaska Marijuana Control Board approved a resolution earlier this year that urges the Legislature to adopt a percentage-based marijuana tax rather than a flat amount per ounce.

• Contact reporter James Brooks at or 523-2258.

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