David Abbott

David Abbott

David Abbott is a freelance journalist living in Tucson. He originally came to Tucson while serving in the Air Force from 1978 to 1982, but left to seek his fortunes in California where his passion for journalism took hold. His editorial career has taken him from Northern California to rural Arizona as a writer, editor and newspaper production manager for several weekly newspapers, magazines and assorted publications. After accepting a position as editor of the Arizona Silver Belt in Globe in 2018, he returned to Tucson the following year to enjoy the mountains and write about cannabis and community news.


Arizonans spent more than $1.4 billion on marijuana in 2022, driven by recreational sales

By: - February 23, 2023

Total Arizona marijuana sales in 2022 mirrored the total from 2021, the first year of the legal adult use market, but the paths that each year reached $1.4 billion in sales were strikingly different.  In 2021, medical marijuana sales were the driving factor, accounting for nearly 55% — about $760 million — of the total. […]

Southwest Gas recruited elected officials to back its rate increase, records show

By: - January 31, 2023

Championing Southwest Gas’ second rate increase in as many years, mayors in some of Arizona’s fastest-growing communities sent a letter of support to the Arizona Corporation Commission claiming proposals from a consumer interest group “would impose unnecessary and costly barriers for consumers” who want to use natural gas.  “If enacted, these misguided policies will slow […]

Arizona recreational marijuana sales hit new record, medical sales slip again

By: - January 10, 2023

For the eighth straight month, and the eleventh time in the past year, medical marijuana sales dropped from the month prior, clocking in at about $31 million in October 2022.  By contrast, adult-use cannabis sales that voters approved in 2020 hit a new high in the same month, with more than $85.4 million in estimated […]

Hudbay ramps up excavation for Copper World Complex as local resistance continues and expands

By: - January 6, 2023

As bulldozers and heavy equipment accelerate the pace of destruction on properties owned by Toronto-based Hudbay Minerals Inc. in the Santa Rita Mountains 28 miles southeast of Tucson, environmental groups, local tribes and agricultural interests in the region continue the fight to halt mining operations there. Hudbay is currently carving roads, drill pads and clearing […]


Arizona cannabis sales continue to drop, but there are signs the market is leveling out

By: - November 17, 2022

Cannabis sales continued to decline in September, but dispensary owners say it is not an unexpected phenomenon and the market will continue to mature as it withstands a worldwide recession on the heels of a global pandemic. The medical marijuana market continued its precipitous decline, dropping to slightly less than $31 million in sales for […]

Arizona marijuana sales approaching $1 billion in 2022

By: - October 27, 2022

Arizona’s cannabis marketplace suffered a loss of nearly $7 million in August, as both medical marijuana and adult-use recreational sales dropped about $3.5 million each from the previous month, according to the most recent report from the Arizona Department of Revenue. The losses were offset, though, as ADOR revised July’s totals upward by almost $7 […]

AZ recreational marijuana sales plateau while medical continues its slide to irrelevance

By: - October 11, 2022

Arizona’s recreational marijuana marketplace has remained robust, although slightly down through July, while the medical marijuana market continued its slide into irrelevance, according to the most recent reports by the Arizona Department of Revenue and Arizona Department of Health Services. The ADOR report includes total sales through July 2022, while the ADHS report covers August, […]

The ‘poster child’ for social equity marijuana licenses looks to succeed, even against tall odds

By: - October 3, 2022

Alicia Deals is the poster child for Arizona’s social equity program, and she is willing to pass up an immediate payday — risking no payday at all — in order to try to forge her own path in a complex and heavily regulated industry. Deals is one of 26 winners of marijuana establishment licenses the […]

With recreational cannabis sales soaring, Arizona’s medical marijuana industry is struggling to adapt

By: - August 29, 2022

Arizona’s commercial marijuana market has gone through a seismic shift since 2021 began. Adult-use and recreational sales have overtaken medical marijuana, as cardholders abandon certifications and established businesses wrestle with the need to change with the times. Throughout 2022, the Arizona Mirror has tracked a 7-month downward trend in medical marijuana sales, while the recreational […]

Medical marijuana sales crater as recreational cannabis sales stay sky high

By: - August 16, 2022

Medical marijuana sales in Arizona continue to crater as recreational sales remain robust, according to tax and sales data compiled by the Arizona Department of Revenue. Sales of medical cannabis dipped to slightly less than $45 million in May, their lowest total since January 2021, when adults were first allowed to purchase marijuana for recreational […]

Marijuana dispensary workers are unionizing, while Big Cannabis throws up roadblocks

By: - July 22, 2022

Unionization for workers in the cannabis industry is gathering steam in Arizona, as budtenders at the Curaleaf Dispensary in midtown Phoenix recently voted to unionize, while workers at several other dispensaries are poised to vote on the issue within the next few weeks. “[This] election marks an important milestone for cannabis workers in Arizona and […]

Recreational marijuana sales remain steady as medical sales plummet

By: - July 11, 2022

Cannabis sales in Arizona continue to be robust overall, thanks to the continued explosion of recreational sales. But as adult-use recreational sales are increasing, medical marijuana totals are in a free-fall that began last year. The Arizona Department of Revenue reports that recreational cannabis sales were almost $75.5 million — which would have been an […]