Last year, the legal marijuana market was worth an estimated $7.2 billion, and it’s projected to grow 17 percent annually, according to an analysis by New Frontier Data. Medical marijuana sales alone are expected to grow from $4.7 billion to $13.3 billion from 2016-2020.
To say that the marijuana industry will slow down when heading into 2018 is far-fetched, especially because that’s when California and Canada’s recreational marijuana programs will go into effect. Fortunately, the marijuana industry has created and continues to create a surplus of employment opportunities, which have significantly boosted the U.S. economy. Read on to find out what the marijuana industry may look like in 2018 and onwards.
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Marijuana Industry Statistics
Due to the significant success, U.S. states have experienced in recent years regarding marijuana either on a medical or recreational level, some people argue that the marijuana industry may slow down when heading into 2018. However, according to the data that was collected by Arcview Market Research, New Frontier Data, and Greenwave Advisors, the marijuana industry may go in the opposite direction of what different critics predict.
For example, according to New Frontier Data, adult recreational marijuana sales are expected to jump from $2.6 billion to $11.2 billion from 2016-2020. So far, retail marijuana sales have totaled $6.5 billion in 2016, which was a 35 percent increase from 2015, according to analysts at Greenwave Advisors. The same analysts predict that by the end of this year, recreational marijuana sales will reach $7.7 billion, which would be an 18 percent increase from last year.
Additionally, not only are U.S. states raking in millions and even billions of dollars from marijuana sales, but the U.S. economy is experiencing minor yet positive changes. Overall, marijuana has proven to be a huge economic driver as well as a job-creation machine, as stated by Giadha Aguirre DeCarcer, the founder of New Frontier Data.
Marijuana Industry’s Impact on the U.S. Economy
Not only does marijuana contain innumerable medicinal benefits and properties, but it’s also appealing to recreational users for a variety of reasons. And in addition to these social goods, marijuana provides countless jobs to people all over the country, but especially in states where marijuana is recreationally legal. The following was stated by New Frontier Data regarding marijuana and the impact it’ll have in future years, especially in terms of jobs:
“We expect the cannabis industry’s growth to be slowed down to some degree in the next three to five years, however with projected total market sales to exceed $24 billion by 2025, and the possibility of almost 300,000 jobs by 2020, it remains a positive economic force in the U.S.”
Thus, the marijuana industry may slow down at some point in terms of revenue, but there will always be a market for marijuana due to its powerful medicinal benefits that provide significant relief to people everywhere. As long as there’s a market for marijuana, then employment opportunities will always exist because there are different sectors within the marijuana industry that require in-person and virtual help, even at a governmental level.
Marijuana Industry Jobs
On a similar note, according to yearly surveys conducted by marijuana professionals at the Marijuana Business Daily, the marijuana industry currently employs 100,000 to 150,000 workers, and close to 90,000 are in plant-touching companies. In addition to these positions, the marijuana industry even creates jobs for state governments. Similarly, the Bureau of Labor Statistics estimates that the legal marijuana market will create more than a quarter of a million jobs, which totals more than all manufacturing, utilities, and government jobs.
Therefore, to say that the marijuana industry will slow down in 2018 is far from the truth. New Frontier Data has projections of the marijuana industry creating more jobs than the manufacturing industry by 2020, and this amount could increase from there depending on how many additional U.S. states will legalize marijuana to some degree. California’s recreational marijuana program alone will create thousands of jobs, including new government jobs that should be available by 2019, according to Cannabiz Media.
Additionally, Florida will follow behind California regarding government jobs. As stated by Cannabiz Media, Florida will soon hire additional people to help with the state’s medical marijuana license application process because of the significant delay patients have had to endure in order to receive their medical license/card. Currently, labor shortages are occurring in different states including Alaska, Arkansas, and Florida, which often result in people not getting accepted into their state’s marijuana program at all.
However, marijuana patients aren’t the only ones affected by U.S. state’s labor shortages. Many marijuana businesses that are ready to operate within the marijuana sector haven’t been able to do so in a timely manner because labor shortages have kept them from receiving their licenses. All in all, labor shortages within the marijuana industry are detrimental to a variety of people and businesses. Therefore, the creation and hiring of various positions is essential to help the marijuana industry progress even further.
What to Expect
Currently, close to 65 million Americans live in U.S. states where adults aged 21 and above can legally consume marijuana for nearly any reason. This number will continue to grow with time, especially since more U.S. states are implementing different marijuana programs. In 2018 and onward, prepare yourself to witness improvements within the marijuana industry despite potential dips in revenue.
What ultimately matters is that people are receiving significant help from marijuana, jobs are getting filled, and the U.S. economy is improving. 2018 will be an eventful year to say the least, but it’ll be one that brings success, abundance, and progress.
To educate yourself on the history of marijuana, read the article below: