California News

A new snapshot of California cannabis lovers

We’re just a few weeks into California’s fledgling social experiment with legalized cannabis and we’re already seeing a steady stream of user data, cultural deep-dives and all types of analyses of Californians who grow, sell, ingest, smoke, research, market, protect, profit from and invest in weed and all of its ancillary iterations.

BDS Analytics is one such “cannabis data analytics platform.” And its latest survey is a splendid data dump that any cannabis connoisseur would appreciate. Priding itself on providing the latest “cannabis market intelligence and consumer research” for the industry, BDS has mined the statistics swirling around the cannabis space. Here are some the nuggets they’ve come up with:

Californians Prefer Inhaling Over Munching

After processing and analyzing more than 300 million legal cannabis transactions so far, with millions more being studied each month, BDS says it can now predict how Californians will be consuming their cannabis in 2018:

  • Edibles: Will account for approximately 13% of sales in the statea this year, with candy accounting for the majority;
  • Vaping: Set to account for 64-66% of all concentrate sales;
  • Dabbable Concentrates: With more stringent testing requirements to be implemented in 2018, BDS says “we could potentially see an uptick in dabbable concentrates which would benefit Live Resin, Oils, Shatter, and Wax; (Dabbing, according to Thrillist, is a method of consuming concentrated cannabis oil by dropping a small amount on a hot surface and allowing it to vaporize. “While putting hash oil on a bowl or in a joint isn’t exactly new, dabbing allows the user to get nothing but the hash oil’s potent effect and flavor.”)
  • Infused foods (brownies, cookies, etc.): Will likely come in at 10-12% share of the edibles sales. “Could face challenges as new limits on dosing and strength could impact sales;”

Revenue and Jobs Should Enjoy an Uptick

  • BDS predicts total economic output from legal cannabis will grow 150% from $16 billion in 2017 to $40 billion by 2021;
  • California is expected to land about a third of all cannabis jobs nationwide;
  • Overall, the state could see 146,000 jobs total once indirect employment is included;
  • Direct cannabis industry employment in all nine legal states will top 291,500 FTE jobs by 2021, with a total employment effect of nearly 414,000 FTEs;
  • US consumer spending on legal cannabis in 2021 of $20.8 billion will generate $39.6 billion in overall economic impact, 414.000 jobs, and more than $4 billion in tax receipts;

Grow, grow, grow!

  • Cannabis cultivation is expected to increase, according to BDS’ data survey; to keep up with demand, cultivators will need to grow cannabis at a 23% compound annual growth rate – from 1.7 million pounds in 2016 to 4.8 million pounds by 2021;

A Woman’s Perspective on Pot as Health Aide

  • 37% of women consumers agree that “consuming marijuana gives me a sense of personal control over my health,” according to a BDS survey;
  • Four out of 10 surveyed female cannabis users turn to marijuana as a natural alternative to manage mood swings brought on by menstruation, menopause or mental health conditions;
  • 27% of female users say they consume cannabis to enhance their sexual experiences;
  • 25% of women reported reduced use of prescription medications, and 33% reported reduced use in over-the-counter medications in favor of cannabis;

Forget the Stoner Stereotype – Pot Users Are More Together Than We All Thought

  • BDS Analytics calls its “cannabis consumer research study” the first of its kind in history, offering what it says is the “most comprehensive and detailed look at cannabis consumers ever conducted; and it’s main takeaway? 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);”
  • For example, 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;
  • 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;
  • 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;
  • 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 are far removed from the caricatures historically used to describe them,” said Linda Gilbert, head of the consumer research division at BDS Analytics. “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.”

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