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Public support for cannabis legalization is stronger today than ever before, yet the “stoner” stereotype — apathetic, unsuccessful, flaky — persists.

But not, we believe, for much longer. People who consume marijuana, it turns out, are among the most well-adjusted and successful of American adults, based on results from BDS Analytics’ landmark cannabis consumer research study, the first of its kind in history.

Cannabis consumers rank especially high in a wide variety of measures that indicate social and personal well-being, according to landmark research reports from BDS: higher satisfaction with life, higher incomes, higher rates of volunteering, and higher enthusiasm for spending time outdoors.

When compared both to people who do not currently use marijuana but are not opposed to using it, and those who are opposed to marijuana, people who consume cannabis tend to rank higher on a range of indicators related to personal and social satisfaction.

By a wide range of key indicators, BDS Analytics’ landmark and ongoing consumer research study finds that people who consume cannabis are especially well-adjusted Americans.

While the study touches on a wide-range of topics, from how cannabis consumption affects alcohol and pharmaceutical consumption to the degree to which people use cannabis to help improve sex, the theme of overall well-adjustedness shines through with particular clarity.

Overall, the well-adjusted lifestyles seen among people who consume marijuana serve as a common theme in the findings of the landmark report Public Attitudes and Actions Towards Legal Cannabis, just released by BDS Analytics for California and Colorado. Research is underway in Oregon and Washington.

“The cannabis consumer cohort should be of interest to many marketers targeting healthy lifestyle consumers, whether food and beverages, exercise and recreation, community service and more,” said Linda Gilbert, managing director of the BDS Consumer Research Division.

The ongoing study is the most comprehensive and detailed look ever conducted at people who consume cannabis.

One theme that clearly emerges from the research is the overall healthy well-being of cannabis Consumers (people who consume cannabis), when compared to Acceptors (people who do not consume cannabis but might consider it) and Rejecters (people who do not consume cannabis and would not consider it).

Among the Findings, Cannabis Consumers Are:

Accomplished Personally and Professionally

• Average annual household income among California Consumers is $93,800, compared to $72,800 for Acceptors and $75,900 for Rejecters.

• The percentage of people holding master’s degrees among California Consumers is 20 percent, compared to 13 percent for Acceptors and 12 percent for Rejecters.

• Full-time employment is enjoyed by 64 percent of Colorado Consumers, compared to 51 percent of Acceptors and 54 percent of Rejecters.

Satisfied with Life

• Nearly five in 10 Colorado Consumers agree they are more satisfied with life today than they were a year ago, compared to about four in 10 among Acceptors and Rejecters.

Parents Raising Families

• Cannabis Consumers are the most likely segment to be parents in California: 64 percent of Consumers are parents, compared to 60 percent of Acceptors and 55 percent of Rejecters.

• In addition, Consumers in California are significantly more likely to have children ages 10 years or younger at home — 37 percent of Consumers compared to 23 percent of Acceptors and 11 percent of Rejecters

Active Socially and Creatively

• Among Colorado Consumers, 36 percent agree they are very social people, compared to 21 percent for Acceptors and 28 percent for Rejecters.

• Acceptors in Colorado were more likely to enjoy the fine arts and describe themselves as creative.

Enjoy the Outdoors

•  When compared to Rejecters, Consumers in both Colorado and California say they enjoy outdoor recreation at a higher rate — 50 percent for Colorado Consumers compared to 36 percent for Colorado Rejecters, and 57 percent for California Consumers compared to 26 percent for California Rejecters.

Nurturing and Volunteers

•  In California, 60 percent of Consumers agree that they are nurturing people, compared to 41 percent of Rejecters. Also, 38 percent of Consumers say they volunteer their time to help others, compared to 25 percent of Rejecters.

Cannabis Consumers More Content With Life

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Linda Gilbert, BDS Analytics:
“Cannabis consumers are far removed from the caricatures historically used to describe them”
[BDS Analytics]

The study includes a wealth of additional data that support the portrait of the person who consumes cannabis as, in general, more content with life and well-adjusted in society than those who steer clear of cannabis.

“Cannabis consumers are far removed from the caricatures historically used to describe them,” Gilbert. “In fact, positive lifestyle indicators like volunteering, socializing, satisfaction with life and enjoyment of exercise and the outdoors are highest among cannabis consumers, at least in Colorado and California.”

The consumer research division is examining the diversity of the cannabis consumer market, consumption practices, attitudes and lifestyles. It looks closely at exactly who is buying cannabis; for what reasons they are smoking leaf or concentrates, nibbling on sativa gummy candies, or rubbing CBD-rich lotions onto aching elbows; and how they arrive upon their consumption and shopping decisions.

A wide range of consumer profiles and behaviors is being revealed through the research, touching upon everything from how cannabis use affects alcohol consumption to different ways it is being used to manage medical conditions, improve quality of life, and even enhance sexual experience.

“Cannabis Consumers Are Happier Campers is the first installment of BDS Analytics’ Cannabis Wellness Trends, a periodic and detailed look at different aspects of public attitudes and actions toward legal cannabis and the market for legal cannabis.


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