Getting America High: America's Response the Cannabis Industry
Love it or leave it cannabis is here to stay. The US accounts for 90% of the global marijuana market and is estimated to earn as much as $23 billion by 2025. Forty-three states now allow the use of marijuana in some form, primarily for medical use, but ten states have made legal all the way across the board.
In 2017 it was estimated that there were nearly 9400 active business licenses to those in the cannabis industry and more than 100,000 employees. The marijuana market has also opened the door for female entrepreneurs. Women currently hold around 36% of executive positions and now have professional networks dedicated exclusively to women in the cannabis industry.
It's not just women jumping the cannabis train. To date, the industry has provided over 200,000 new employment opportunities in the U.S. Over 67,000 of them in California alone. The average annual salary for cannabis workers is just shy of $60,000. That's 10% more than most other U.S. industry workers.
The start-up cost to open a dispensary is about $775,000 and if it's properly regulated will cost just under two million annually to operate. This might seem like a lot but the average annual revenue per dispensary is about three million. To put things into perspective, the cannabis market made almost nine times more in sales than Oreo in 2017. That's a lot of money.
In 2017, insurance commissioner Dave Jones began an initiative encouraging commercial insurance companies to provide coverage for those in the cannabis industry. Later that year the first cannabis insurance carrier was approved in California and the CannaBOP (Cannabis Business Owner's Policy), was invented. These policies provided insurance coverage from "seed-to-sale".
Most insurers are still hesitant due to federal regulations and applicant requests are considered with extreme scrutiny by underwriting due to the high risk of the marijuana market. But to date, there are approximately 25 insurers between here and Canada dedicated to providing commercial coverage for the cannabis industry.
No one knows what's to become of the future. With support from over 2/3 of the American population and over 55 million cannabis users, one thing is certain: Marijuana is here to stay. Let's take a look at some stats provided by americanmarijuana.org:
Support for legalizing marijuana has been rapidly increasing since 2010 and doesn't appear to be slowing anytime soon.
Majority of all political parties in favor of legalizing marijuana.
California leads the pack when it comes to sales, revenue, jobs created and consumption. Take a look:
California earned $1billion more than all other states listed giving them a total of $2.5billion in sales in 2018 alone.
Based on trends, the industry will have more than doubled its total sales from 2017 by 2020. That's right around the corner.
Not every one that favors legal marijuana is a user. The market has proven to be profitable for our country in a multitude of ways. It's created over 225,000 jobs, generated billions in sales and revenue and could very well be the answer to our broken economy. Hate it or love it. But you can't deny the high impact it's had on our nation.