Economic Impact of Cannabis

The legal cannabis industry is a major driver of economic growth throughout the US, and the industry will continue expanding as existing markets mature and additional states implement legalization. This growth will have a positive impact on national, state, and local economies since legal cannabis, when properly regulated, drives economic growth, generates hundreds of millions of dollars in tax revenue, and adds hundreds of thousands of jobs to the American economy.

Employment

The implementation of a cannabis market generates hundreds of thousands of new jobs, including both plant-touching and ancillary cannabis opportunities. Examples of direct cannabis jobs include budtenders, trimmers, cultivators, master extractors, dispensary managers, and laboratory technicians. Examples of businesses that are not plant-touching but integral to the cannabis industry include accounting, technology services, law, marketing, real estate, consulting, and security.

Not only are jobs in the cannabis industry numerous and diverse, emerging research demonstrates that they also pay well. According to a report from Glassdoor, a job recruiting and company review website, the median salary for cannabis industry job openings is 10.7% higher than the average U.S. median salary.3 Another study from Marijuana Business Magazine’s salary survey found similar results- cannabis jobs across all sectors and skill-levels paid at least as much or more than similar positions in different industries.4

Source: Glassdoor Economic Research       

Tax Revenue

As states move to legalize medical and adult-use cannabis, state and local governments have generated hundreds of millions of dollars in additional tax revenue. There is considerable tax revenue to be made for jurisdictions that adopt adult-use cannabis laws and implement sensible tax policies. Learn more about cannabis taxation policy here.

Tax revenue increases over time, as demonstrated by more mature adult-use markets. Market growth is to be expected, as the demand for cannabis in the U.S. exceeds $50 billion, and jurisdictions looking to implement an adult-use cannabis market should not be deterred by implementation and start-up costs. A combination of sufficient licensing, reasonable tax policies, and regulations that promote public health and safety will yield sufficient tax revenue generation that can be used to fund infrastructure, public schools, social equity initiatives, research, and other much-needed programs.

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