The East Coast Marijuana Economy

East coast map with pins
Gualberto Becerra/Shutterstock

It’s no surprise that when people think of cannabis they immediately think of the west coast. California has been the face of cannabis since the beginning, and they’ve been dominating hte marijuana economy. Some of the most popular strains of cannabis come from Cali, and their local community has been the strongest advocates of medical marijuana. Humboldt County is home to some of the most renowned cultivators in the world. For now, the west coast is the undisputed home of cannabis. However, with the rising growth of support for the legalization of cannabis, the east coast is slowly working their way in. With over 5 different east coast states taking a stance on legal cannabis, it is safe to say their cannabis industry is getting ready to boom!  

What States Make Up the East Coast Industry? 

New York, Massachusetts, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, and Florida are all gearing up for some form of legal cannabis in 2018.  Massachusetts was one of the first east coast states to recreationally legalize cannabis. Their ability to regulate the sale of cannabis in such a large market has helped push other states along. The attention to professionalism and compliance is what will help keep the spread of legalization flowing. The east can easily mirror the same regulations that the west coast has in place. This keeps things consistently professional in every legalized state.  

The cannabis industry on the east coast is bound to experience a major boom as the spread of recreational cannabis begins. Like the west coast, the east coast has a massive tourist market. This means that the size of their market areas is ridiculous compared to some states. Any state with a huge tourism industry will very likely see major growth in their cannabis market. New York alone has over 60 million tourist visitors each year. If they tap into a small percentage of that market, their cannabis industry will be massive. That doesn’t even include the already gigantic local population that supports legal cannabis on the east coast! 

What Is Expected of East Coast Cannabis? 

medical cannabis from doctor
Maryland and Pennsylvania are predicted to be the two largest cannabis markets on the east coast. The number of licenses that they released and are planning to release will drastically increase the amount of cannabis business in that area of the country. Plus, states like Virginia and Ohio will soon have their own medical marijuana programs.

With this many east coast states dipping their toes into legalization, it’s expected that there will be a major boom in the east coast cannabis industry. However, it’s not until the rise of recreational cannabis that there will be a drastic increase in profits for the states. Yet, the cannabis industry does much more than bringing tax money in. It creates jobs, gives patients cheaper alternative medicine, rejuvenates other local industries, and puts the cash flow back into the economy.  

The struggles that the east coast will have are going to be solely related to balancing the market between recreational and medical marijuana. In states like Maine, the medical marijuana industry has seen small dips in overall sales. It is partially due to the split of recreational and medical marijuana. Since people can grow for themselves at home, they are not spending money at dispensaries. With regulation changes and legalization, the markets will balance out and eventually continue their growth!  

It will be very interesting to see how similar the east coast market will be to the west coast. It is possible that we will see a few major west coast vendors make their way to the east coast. Granted, there are only a few cannabis vendors who have the capital to make this move. It is safe to say that local east coast vendors will become the kings of their market. Moving forward, it will be interesting to see which states will experience more growth than others. Those states with massive tourist numbers are bound to be at the top. Cannabis is quickly becoming one of the most booming industries in the country, and the east coast is at the forefront of the future!  

Article by: Justice Council