Sales of cannabis for medical and recreational purposes in the United States increased 67% in 2020 compared to 2019, according to Leafly’s analysis of state tax and revenue data. Total cannabis sales reached $17.9 billion this year, up $7.2 billion from last year.
According to Mr. Liflay, the “main driver” of this increase is the increase in average purchase size of loyal customers, who have increased their monthly cannabis purchases by an average of 25-40 percent.
Nine states – Arkansas, Connecticut, Florida, Illinois, Maine, New Jersey, North Dakota, Ohio and Pennsylvania – have doubled cannabis sales since 2019, the report said. Maine, in particular, finally began selling adult-use cannabis after a nearly four-year delay, and sales of cannabis for medical use subsequently surpassed sales of potatoes, hay, wild blueberries and milk to become the state’s most profitable crop. Sales of medical cannabis in Florida totaled more than $1.2 billion this year, making it the fourth-largest cannabis market in the United States this year, ahead of only California, Colorado and Washington, D.C., according to the report.
Leafly has been estimating cannabis sales in recent weeks, “assuming average sales over the past three months,” but plans to publish a full report on the year’s sales figures in its annual cannabis employment report, which the company plans to release in February.
Several states reported increases in sales in the context of the coronavirus pandemic, which led to home orders being halted and economic closures across the United States, but large cannabis businesses remained open as essential services. For example, clinics in Pennsylvania reported a 70 percent increase in weekly patient visits between February and August, while cannabis sales in New Mexico increased 55 percent in the first six months of the year.
During the general election – and in the midst of the pandemic – voters in six states approved a measure legalizing adult use of cannabis or a measure legalizing cannabis for medical purposes.