Global legal cannabis spending is forecast to reach $47 billion in 2025, a number too big to ignore for many companies and industries. The U.S. will continue to be the largest global market, driven by more and more adult use markets opening.
With the combination of more states enacting regulations allowing cannabis for medical and/or recreational use, and CBD products derived from hemp increasingly available in mainstream retail channels, consumers are growing more educated about cannabis.
Today, more than 80% of the U.S. population agrees with some form of legalization, and that number is growing. Additionally, acceptance of cannabis is growing, with nearly 70% of adults 21+ living in fully legal states identifying as cannabis consumers OR as being open to consuming.
With increasing acceptance, cannabis consumers no longer match the “stoner” stereotype, as they cross generations, genders, socio-economic status, income and beyond. As cannabis consumers diversify, reasons for consumption now run the gamut including:
- physician-guided medical treatment,
- anxiety reduction,
- relaxation and recreation, and
- general wellness.
According to BDSA partner, IRI, consumers think of food and beverage as a wellness aid and/or as medicine. Given this, it is not surprising for consumers to seek the functional benefits of cannabinoids, both THC and CBD, from an edible format. There is comfort in consuming cannabis in a familiar format, whether candy, chocolate, beverage or baked good.
- More than 70% of cannabis consumers in fully legal states consume edibles, and many non-consumers are open to trying cannabis via edible products.
- Edibles account for around 15% of sales in dispensaries, driven by gummies.
- As with non-infused food and beverages, taste and flavor are the top influencers of edible product purchases.
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