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It was just over three and a half years ago that the first-ever recreational marijuana stores in the United States opened. That day — January 1, 2014 — is considered a milestone in American history by stoners. The growth of the industry since that time has been nothing short of phenomenal.

According to CBS News, “the growing acceptance and legalization of marijuana is helping the U.S. cannabis industry expand well beyond niche status.” It is forecast “to jump from $24 billion to $44 billion annually into the country’s economy by 2020.”

How Big Is The Market?

The market for legal cannabis is a lot bigger than some imagined. According to Fortune, a new report by a leading marijuana industry investment and research firm found legal cannabis sales jumped 17 percent, to $5.4 billion, in 2015. What’s more, they’ll grow by a whopping 25 percent this year to reach $6.7 billion in total U.S. sales.”

“While the drug remains absolutely illegal on the federal level, the tide of public opinion has been moving in favor of legal marijuana for years, according to national polls. A handful of states could become the latest to allow the sale of recreational pot following expected votes in November. Four states already have legalized recreational marijuana, and a total of 23 states have legalized medical marijuana,” Fortune explained.

“The huge jump in adult-use sales last year coincides with the first full year of recreational marijuana sales in Washington, which launched its legal recreational market in July 2014, as well as the beginning of legal sales in Oregon last fall. Meanwhile, 2015 recreational sales in Colorado had already increased by almost 68 percent year-over-year after only 11 months.”

Who are the consumers of legal marijuana?

  • The average recreational marijuana consumer is 37 years old.
  • Marijuana dispensaries serve customers 21-95.
  • The average marijuana consumer spends $33 on weed per trip to dispensary.
  • Weed smokers spent $645 on average in the last year buying pot.
  • There are more than twice as many men than women in the customer loyalty program.
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