CHARLESTON, Ill. (WTWO/WAWV) – An adult-use cannabis dispensary officially opened Friday in Charleston, Ill., the first of its kind in the community.
Zen Leaf, located at 909 Lincoln Ave., markets itself as “offering high-quality cannabis products in a welcoming and upscale retail environment.”
“Zen Leaf prides itself on providing safe, legal access to the health, wellness and happiness cannabis provides, and our Charleston dispensary will provide this portion of the state with access to high-quality, regulated cannabis products,” George Archos, founder, chairman and CEO said. “We’re grateful that Charleston provided an opportunity for us to invest, create jobs and generate new tax revenue that can be reinvested in the community. The Illinois cannabis market is one of the fastest growing in the country, and Zen Leaf Charleston will be an anchor retail destination for sought-after Verano products and other cannabis offerings.”
As an adult-use dispensary, adults 21 and older can legally purchase cannabis products after providing a valid state identification.
Cannabis consultants are on hand at the dispensary to help customers navigate the wide range of cannabis products including concentrates, edibles, vaporizers and flower.
The dispensary has created 30 jobs in Charleston with more than half of the positions filled by women.
Since adult-use cannabis became legal in Illinois on Jan. 1, 2020, the state has seen explosive growth in the market. Through November 2020, medical and adult-use sales have topped $917 million in combined sales, according to state regulators, and are on pace to top $1 billion this year.
As dispensaries and products continue to be added, state and industry officials expect the market to continue to rapidly grow.