Report Shows 300 Percent Rise In Adult-Use Cannabis Sales In Colorado Since Legalization

A new report from New Frontier Data shows a steady increase in the sales of adult-use cannabis in Colorado since 2014 when the state became the first fully legal marijuana market in the United States.

Since 2014, the Colorado cannabis market has continued to flourish, generating more than $6 billion in sales and creating nearly 39,000 new jobs in and around the industry.

In addition to license and fee revenue, cannabis taxes generated more than $905 million between 2014 and 2018.

In the four years following legalization, retail establishment licenses grew 89 percent, and sales rose 300 percent from $303 million in 2014 to $1.2 billion in 2018.

Since 2012, past-month cannabis use has risen 18.8 percent, and past-year use has increased by 26.5 percent.

Retail sales accounted for two-thirds of all cannabis sold in Colorado between 2014 and 2018, reflecting strong, sustained demand from adult consumers.

But while adult-use sales have continued to climb each year since legalization, sales of medical cannabis have experienced a 13 percent decline.

Medical cannabis generated $388 million in sales in 2014 but dropped to $338 million in 2018 after peaking at $438 million in 2016.

According to New Frontier Data, more than 436,000 pounds of cannabis flower, nearly 34,000 pounds of concentrates, and more than 12.7 million edible units were sold in 2018.

“Colorado’s results demonstrate the significant industry to be created through legalized cannabis,” says New Frontier Data. “With economic benefits derived through effective regulations.”

As the current consumer market nears saturation, New Frontier says that new industry trends and innovations such as wellness applications, social-use venues, and a strong hemp sector will continue to provide lucrative opportunities in the Colorado cannabis industry.