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Some Michigan businesses expect steady increase in sales after legalization of marijuana

Some Michigan businesses expect steady increase in sales after legalization of marijuana. (WWMT/Cyrus Raymond)

Businesses that sell growing supplies and paraphernalia are hoping to cash in after Michigan becomes the first state in the Midwest to legalize marijuana.

Jeremy Alfieri is the owner of Zoo City Grower Supplier, a hydroponics and indoor garden supply store, in Kalamazoo, has heard from people trying to set up home growing operations.

"Business has picked up for us for sure," Alfieri said.

Under Michigan's new recreational marijuana an individual can grow up to 12 plants inside your home.

"Over the next year or two, we'll see a lot of customers coming in trying to get a price prospective. A typical setup is going to range from $300 up to $1,000," Alfieri said.

Justin Fleeson owns Otter's Oasis, a head shop on West Michigan Avenue, and he is hoping to see more green.

Fleeson said his clientele is mostly college kids, but he thinks that'll change.

"I think the older crowd is going to feel more comfortable diving back into it," he said.

Now that weed is legal to consume, Fleeson expects new technology to flood the market.

"Now that people can make money legally in the industry, there's going to be manufactures and people inventing things," Fleeson said.

Meanwhile, Alfieri's indoor garden store has all the necessary ingredients to grow pot.

However there is still one problem. Legal possession of marijuana remains illegal on the federal level.

"Where we provide actually most of our value is in the ability to provide input and experience and direction to our customers, we're not able to do that in this scenario. We have a situation where we dance around terminology and language," Alfieri said.

Both business agree the landscape will be much clearer once the state sets the rules for marijuana sales.

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