Now is a better time than ever to take America’s legal marijuana market seriously. A new report from one of the leading marijuana industry investment and research firms has found that legal cannabis sales jumped 17% in 2015 to $5.4 billion and they will continue to grow by a staggering 25% this year which will help reach a total of $6.7 billion in the U.S. alone.
While the drug still remains absolutely illegal on a federal level, the wave of public opinion has been moving in favor of legalizing marijuana for years now. A handful of states have just become the latest to allow the sale and use of recreational marijuana following the November 8th elections. There are currently four states which have already legalized recreational marijuana and a total of 23 states that have legalized the use of medical marijuana.
Much of the country’s legal marijuana sales come from the already well established medical marijuana markets in states such as California, but now recreational marijuana sales are expected to help fuel the cannabis market’s soaring growth over the next few years. It has been projected that the adult use of marijuana sales will account for over half of the overall market by 2020. This would bring the growth to more than 1,150% for recreational sales over the next four years.
There’s no question that the huge jump in adult use sales last year corresponds with the first full year of recreational marijuana sales in Washington. The legal sales in Oregon which began last fall also played a big part. Meanwhile, after only 11 months in Colorado, recreational sales increased by 68% year over year. California’s medical sales already account for a large chunk of the total industry and now that Proposition 64 has passed, it will lead to an even bigger boom in industry sales.
We can all expect the cannabis industry to continue to gain momentum amongst entrepreneurs and investors. Its continued revenue growth will keep attracting more investors and also convince them to dig deeper for their investments. Billionaire Peter Thiel has already proved this when just last year, he secured a $75 million investment from Founders Fund.