Discover the leading SaaS software comparison site

Each month we help +100k companies to find efficient online tools

100 Marijuana Statistics: 2020/2021 Data, Facts & Predictions

by Arthur Zuckerman

Marijuana is one of the most commonly used psychotropic drugs in the world. Also known as weed, pot, stinkweed, cannabis, or mary jane, it’s classified as a schedule 1 controlled substance. Moreover, in the United States, it’s the second most commonly consumed psychotropic drug after alcohol. As marijuana statistics show, the cannabis industry is a potential goldmine for investors.

The only problem is, with legal and illegal dealers scrambling for a piece of the pie, the resulting confusion can easily impede progress. If you want to venture into the marijuana business without ruffling the authorities’ feathers, you have to study the ins and outs of this industry.

In this article, we’ve compiled the vital marijuana statistics and facts to lighten your research work. Understanding the following statistics will help you strategize meticulously and navigate the cannabis industry with the caution needed to generate profits legally.

Marijuana statistics

General Marijuana Statistics

Marijuana remains the most widely used recreational drug in the world, and its usage stats are staggering. The global marijuana statistics tell a story that’s about as fuzzy as the body feels after taking a hit of the “devil’s lettuce.” The number of cannabis users is growing sharply, and the market is expanding rapidly.

Marijuana usage statistics

  • According to WHO, approximately 147 million people or 2.5% of the total global population consume marijuana.
  • This number is bigger, according to Statista, which reports that there were more than 219 million marijuana users in the world in 2017. 
  • Also, in 2016, 24 million US citizens or 8.9% of the total population were current cannabis users. 
  • Similarly, in 2018, 123,935 million US citizens had used marijuana in their lifetime, which is a significant increase from 104,950 million in 2009.
  • Moreover, in 2018, over 11.8 million young adults in the US said they had used marijuana in the past year.

Marijuana market statistics

  • The sales of legalized cannabis in the US is projected to grow at a compound rate of 14% (CAGR) to reach $29.7 billion by 2025.
  • Besides, by 2023, the total retail marijuana sales will reach between $25 billion and $30 billion annually in the United States 
  • In 2018, California was the leading state in terms of total cannabis sales, with $5.6 billion. 
  • Similarly, in Canada, the average price of illegal cannabis is $8.24 per gram. When sold via the legal channels, the same amount goes for $8.98.
  • Furthermore, in 2017, marijuana users in North America spent nearly $9 billion on legal cannabis. 
  • Moreover, 91% of infused product companies claim that they at least break even and make profits.
  • The overall cannabis industry spend in Canada is projected to rise by 58% in the coming years. 
  • In addition, the legal cannabis trade in the United States grew by 37% to reach $9.5 in net worth.
  • Legalizing cannabis would generate $8.7 billion in federal and state tax revenue annually.
  • The average price of one gram of cannabis flower in Washington was $8.1 in 2018. 

Marijuana product preference statistics

Much like any industry, the cannabis industry offers different products to satisfy the unique needs of the target customers. On the other hand, consumers from different generations have developed specific preferences for product types.

  • In terms of marijuana products preference, 43.6% prefer flowers, 16.6% vapor pens, 9.8% concentrates, 9.6% prerolls, and 9.6% edibles. 
  • But how does each generation prefer to consume marijuana? Generation Z (vapor pen), Millennials (Hybrid flower), Generation X (hybrid flower), Baby Boomers (hybrid flower), and Silent generation (tincture). 
  • In the same way, Canadians weed users prefer different cannabis-based edible products, including baked goods (51%), chocolate (43%), candies and lollipops (37%), beverages (31%), honey (25%), freezies (24%), ice creams (23%), potato chips(22%), and biscuits (20%)

Marijuana Product Preferences in 2019


Created by

Job creation statistics

As the world struggles to decipher whether marijuana is good or bad, the industry is putting food on the table for some people. Interestingly, marijuana jobs pay handsomely well (10.7%) above the median US salary.

  • Marijuana job openings increased by 76% year-over-year in December 2018. 
  • As a result, in the US alone, there were 1,512 job openings in the marijuana industry in December 2018. 
  • Besides, 53% of marijuana jobs are for technical and professional workers.
  • Interestingly, at $58,511, marijuana jobs pay well above the median US salary.

Marijuana Consumer Demographics

It seems adolescents, young adults, and adults have all dipped their toes into smoking weed. But as the following marijuana statistics reveal, the graph is skewed towards young adults, the millennials, and 12th graders.

  • In 2016, 6.5% of adolescents (aged 12 to 17), 20.8% of young adults (aged 18 to 25), and 7.2% of adults (aged 26 or older) were using marijuana in the US.  
  • Likewise, since legalization, Millennials have made the majority of marijuana sales at 51.49%. Generation X comes a distant second at 25.74%, followed by Baby Boomers at 15.84%, Generation Z at 5.94%, and silent generation at 0.99%.
  • Also, in 2017, 5.9% 12th graders, 2.9% 10t graders, and 0.8% 8th graders used marijuana daily.
  • Also, around 35 million Americans use marijuana regularly. Of this number, 24% are aged between 18 and 29, 13 % (30 to 49), 11% (50 to 64), and 6% are over 65 years. 
  • Moreover, in Canada, the share of weed consumers in 2019 is spread as follows 15 to 24 (24%), 25 to 34 (26.9%), 35 to 44 (20.1%), 45 to 54 (15.7%), 55 to 64 (10.7%), and 65 or older (6.1%)


In terms of spending, the silent generation (people age 74 or older) runs the show. This generation has the biggest basket size, which is a clear sign of their willingness to shell out more. This is highly possible because the silent generation has accumulated more wealth and has grown their earning power over the years; hence, the ability to spend more.

  • In terms of spending or basket size in 2019, the silent generation leads the way at $33.68 on average. Baby boomers come second at $30.66, followed by Generation X ($28.31), Millennials ($25.01), and Generation Z ($23.59).
  • Likewise, on average, the silent generation spends $16.97 per item, which is the highest amongst the generations. Baby boomers spend $15.93 per item, Generation X ($14.82 per item), Millennials ($13.81 per item), and Generation Z ($13.63 per item).
  • Besides, men shell out more ($14.80 per cannabis item) compared with women ($13.75 per item). 
  • Interestingly, 55% of cannabis users in Canada transition to legal purchase channels to have better quality products. 
  • Moreover, 33% of marijuana users buy online from licensed producers. Whereas 30% buy from licensed private retailers, and 28% buy from government retailers.

Consumption of Marijuana by Region

When you think of countries where cannabis is popular, the United States or The Netherlands spring to mind, right? Now, it turns out that the trends are changing, and the statistics below offer a sneak peek into the dynamic cannabis world. But, the numbers also offer a glimpse into the US market, which has, for many years, dominated the cannabis scene.

  • According to the UNODC data, Oceania (New Zealand and Australia) leads the way in terms of the prevalence of cannabis at 10.9%. America comes second at 8.4%, followed closely by Africa (6.4%), Europe (5.4%), and Asia (1.8%). (UNODC data)
  • Furthermore, when we look into specific regions, Oregon leads the way in terms of marijuana use by the state in the United States at 28.56%. Colorado comes second at 27.77%, followed by District of Columbia (27.03%), Vermont (25.71%), Maine (24.53%), Alaska (24.52%), Washington (24.18%), and Nevada (22.61%). 
  • Besides, there are eleven states with legal recreational marijuana including Alaska, California, Colorado, District of Columbia, Illinois, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont, and Washington 
  • In addition, 22 states in the United States have legalized medical marijuana use. 
  • In Canada, the west region controls 66% of the legal cannabis market. Ontario holds a 65% market share, Quebec 47%, and Atlantic (55%). 
  • Interestingly, more than 28 countries across the globe have eliminated the criminal penalties for possession of marijuana. 


Marijuana Vaping Statistics and Facts

Traditionally, cannabis was only consumed through smoking. However, the evolution of the modern market has forced dealers to rewrite the rules of consumption. As authorities tighten laws and intensify the fight against cannabis use, people are coming up with clever ways to keep the industry going. One such method is marijuana vaping. Vaping has gained a lot of traction in the last few years, as the following marijuana statistics show.

  • As of 2019, the vaping of marijuana among teens had more than doubled in the past two years. 
  • Also, marijuana vaping was reported at 20.8% among 12th graders, 19.4% among 10th graders, and 7% among 8th graders. 
  • Approximately 6% of teens who had ever vaped said they had vaped marijuana.
  • To anchor this stat, 3.5% 12th graders, 3% 10th graders, and 0.8% 8th graders participate in daily marijuana vaping. 
  • Besides, 50% of marijuana vapers that are hospitalized for EVALI give accurate information on the product they vaped. 
  • As a result of increased vaping, as of February 2020, 68 vaping-related deaths had been confirmed in 29 states, plus the District of Columbia. 
  • Moreover, 82% of patients hospitalized for substance use, 82% reported vaping THC containing products. 
  • To sound the warning, according to a study by Substance Use and Addiction researchers, vaping marijuana has a stronger effect than smoking it for infrequent users.

Vaping of Marijuana Among Teens in 2019


Created by

It’s a terrible world, where the villains continue to reap profits at the expense of the victims’ (pot user) health. New products and ways to consume marijuana are sprouting every day as the consumption continues to escalate across the age spectrum. With legalization renting the air in every state, the doors are opening for legal business. Still, the illegal minds have their ears pinned to the ground, looking to exploit every available loophole.

Medical Marijuana Statistics and Facts

It’s not all gloom, however, when it comes to the production and use of marijuana. In some cases, the devil’s lettuce hides its ugly head and brings its soft side to the fore. As shown below by the marijuana statistics, cannabis can be of great benefit, especially when used for medical purposes.

  • As of May 2018, California had the highest number of medical marijuana patients at 915,845. Other states on the top 5 list include Michigan (269,553), Arizona (162,528), Florida (108,981), and Colorado (88,946). 
  • Besides, the sales of medical cannabis will grow by $8.7 billion between 2018 and 2025. 
  • In the same fashion, the market size of medical marijuana or cannabinoid pharmaceutical will reach $10 billion by 2022. 
  • Interestingly, in 2018, 67% of physicians were in favor of marijuana use for medical purposes. 
  • Moreover, by 2018, Michigan had issued 215 medical marijuana production licenses, which was the highest number in the US. 
  • In 2014, 80% of physicians supported the legalization of medical marijuana and stated that it’s potentially beneficial. 
  • Approximately 6% of US citizens smoke marijuana to relieve stress. 

Source: Statista (2018)

Medical Marijuana for cancer patients

Even with different states in the United States implementing permissive medical marijuana laws, uncertainty still looms over the effectiveness of this product for medical conditions. For patients with cancer, in particular, medical marijuana is a light at the end of the tunnel as regards to symptom management.

The following medical marijuana statistics prove that patients, family members, and physicians are for the idea of using weed to deal with cancer symptoms.

  • 83% of US citizens support the use of medical marijuana among cancer patients. 
  • Besides, 93% of cancer patients reported that medical marijuana helped manage their conditions or related symptoms. 
  • Also, 62% of cancer patients in the US are open to using medical marijuana to manage their cancer nausea, pain, or other symptoms. 
  • In addition, 63% of cancer patients believe the benefits of medical marijuana outweigh the risks.
  • As of 2018, 13% of cancer patients, 4% of cancer patients’ family members, and 8% of caregivers have used medical marijuana to manage symptoms in the last 12 months. 
  • Interestingly, 48% of cancer patients using medical marijuana had difficulty accessing it in 2018. 
  • Moreover, approximately 45.9% of medical oncologists have recommended medical marijuana for cancer-related issues. 
  • Besides, 34.3% of oncologists believe that medical marijuana is equal or more effective in managing cancer pain than standard treatments. 

Overall, the use of marijuana in the medical field proves that this drug is a double-edged sword. People have seen the benefits of marijuana, and the consensus is to legalize the drug for medical use and make it available to the growing number of patients. It’s not surprising then that there is an upsurge of businesses looking to try the legal production of medical marijuana.

Recreational Marijuana Statistics and Facts

Unlike medical marijuana, recreational marijuana has been the bone of content for years now. To legalize or not to legalize? Many states in the US have chosen the former, and as a result, the market for recreational marijuana is growing steadily. As you will notice, states that pioneered the legalization continue to dominate the sales chart for recreational cannabis.

  •  In 2018, the total sales of legalized recreational marijuana amounted to $4.4 billion. 
  • Also, as of 2018, the total sales of recreational marijuana in the US reached $11.67 trillion. 
  • The recreational marijuana market in the US is valued at $3.2 billion. 
  • Meanwhile, California is the leading state in terms of recreational marijuana sales at $5.6 billion. 
  • Besides, as of 2019, 10 states plus D.C allowed for the use of recreational marijuana for people over the age of 21 years. 
  • Much like medical marijuana, there is sounding evidence that legalizing recreational marijuana increases the prevalence of cannabis use. 
  • Correspondingly, recreational marijuana legalization has been linked with a 6% increase in car collision claims.
  • In 2012, Colorado and Washington became the first states to legalize recreational marijuana for adults. 
  • Moreover, in the next decade, recreational marijuana will account for 67% of the market spending with medical cannabis taking up the remaining 33%.
  • On average, a recreational marijuana user spends $49 on one purchase, which is made every 14 days. 
  • Top 5 reasons why Canadians use recreational cannabis to help relax (66%), reduce stress or anxiety (62%), have fun with friends (58%), improve mood(48%), and as an alternative to alcohol (41%).

Source: Delliote (2018)

Interesting recreational marijuana facts

  • Interestingly, in 2017, the sales of recreational and medical marijuana in the US were approximately nine times higher than that of Oreo cookies. 
  • Furthermore, in 2020, it’s projected that the revenue of recreational and medical marijuana will surpass the revenue generated by the NFL. 
  • Besides, in Colorado, the number of recreational cannabis dispensaries is three times higher than the number of Starbucks locations. 

Legalization of recreational marijuana has given everyone (including the illegal dealers) a leeway to sell and consume this drug. California leads in terms of sales, but it’s not a surprise given that this state was the first to legalize recreational marijuana. Unsurprisingly, many states have decided to follow California’s footsteps, and the market is poised to keep the upward trends as a result.

Emergency Room Visits Caused by Marijuana Statistics

What happens when states legalize the use of marijuana? As shown by the following marijuana statistics, where there is increased use of marijuana, problems are bound to happen. There is no doubt, the legalization of cannabis has accelerated the use of this drug. Consequently, in some states, medical emergencies caused by the use of marijuana have risen sharply.

  • A state-funded study published revealed that 25.7% or 2567 emergency room visits in Denver hospital were caused by Marijuana between 2012 and 2016. Of these cases, 9.3% were partially attributed to edible cannabis. 
  • Also, edible cannabis products accounted for 10.7% of all emergency room visits from 2014 to 2016 in Colorado. 
  • Besides, between 2004 and 2011, cannabis-related emergency room visits for people aged 12 years and above increased by 43%. 
  • When Colorado legalized recreational marijuana sales in 2014, cannabis-related emergency room visits increased by three folds in 2016. 

In as much as states want to legalize marijuana, they have to take into consideration the impact it can cause. They have to carefully tread this path and proceed with extra caution to safeguard the interest of all parties. Ideally, they should explore all the available options to legalize the drug in a way that doesn’t encourage uncontrolled use.

Marijuana Use Disorder and Mental Health Statistics

Marijuana use disorder is becoming rampant, and we all know why. Much like in the emergency room visits case, legalization has catalyzed the increase in cannabis use disorder and mental health crisis. Which is the worst-hit age group? The marijuana statistics below offer the answer.

Marijuana Dependence and Abuse Statistics

  •  It is estimated that 17% of marijuana users become dependent on it. 
  • Besides, marijuana is addictive for approximately 9% of users who consume it 
  • Also, it is estimated that between 10% and 30% of cannabis users will develop a dependency. 

Marijuana use disorder statistics

  • In 2016, approximately 4 million US citizens aged 12 or older had a marijuana use disorder in the past year. 
  • Also, in the same year, 2.3% of adolescents (aged 12 to 17), 5% of young adults (aged 18 to 25), and 0.8% of adults (aged 26 and older) had a cannabis use disorder. 
  • Besides, the consumption of marijuana can impair psychomotor performance for as long as 24 hours after smoking as little as 20mg of THC.
  • In 2013, 2.5% of US adults experienced a marijuana use disorder. 
  • Further, in 2015, approximately 4 million US citizens met the diagnostic criterion for cannabis use disorder.
  • In 2016, 5% of people aged 18 to 25 years had a cannabis use disorder.

Marijuana mental health statistics

  • Daily use of high-potency cannabis increased the risk of a psychotic disorder by 10%. 
  • In addition, in 2017, 47.4% of patients with cannabis-induced psychosis developed either bipolar or schizophrenia disorder. 


According to the National Institute on Drug Abuse, studies have shown that people who smoke high-potency weed increase the possibility of developing psychosis by up to five times. Also, if the stats above are anything to go by, then marijuana use can cause serious mental health conditions.

Legalization of Marijuana Statistics and Facts

Initially, the point of departure—as regards the legality of marijuana use— was the same for both the federal and state laws. However, recently, disparities have begun to show. While the federal law has maintained a stance against marijuana, state laws have taken a dynamic approach towards this matter. The results? Well, the marijuana statistics below tell the whole story.

  • In 2013, Uruguay became the first country to legalize the growing, selling, and consumption of marijuana. 
  • In 2019, eleven states plus Washington, D.C had legalized recreational marijuana for citizens over 21 years.
  • Also, 32 states, including the District of Columbia, have legalized medical marijuana. 
  • In 2016, more than 70% of Florida voters approved the use of marijuana for medical purposes.
  • Besides, more than 30 states in the United States allow for the use of marijuana to treat dozens of health problems. 
  • Two-Thirds of US citizens are for the legalization of marijuana, which reflects a steady increase in public support. 
  • Also, only 8% of Americans think marijuana should be illegal under all circumstances. 
  • According to 59% of US citizens, marijuana should be legalized for medical or recreational use. On the other hand, 32% think it should be legalized for medical use only.
  • Moreover, according to a study by Gallup, in 2017, 64% of US  citizens supported the legalization of marijuana. 
  • As of 2018, there were 9,397 active licenses of marijuana businesses across the United States.

Percentage of Americans that Support Marijuana Legalization

Percentage of Americans that Support Marijuana Legalization
Legalized for medical/recreational use: 59%

Legalized for medical/recreational use

Percentage of Americans that Support Marijuana Legalization
Legalized for medical use only: 32%

Legalized for medical use only

Percentage of Americans that Support Marijuana Legalization
Should be illegal under all circumstances: 8%

Should be illegal under all circumstances


Source: Pew Research

Created by

This is just the start of the weed legalization. In the coming years, more states will jump the bandwagon, and the number of licensed marijuana businesses will increase.

The Marijuana Market is Shaping Up

A lot of things are taking place in the dynamic cannabis world. A section of the population thinks marijuana is a harmless herb and has put the best foot forward to unearth its benefits.

Oncologists are for the idea of legalizing medical marijuana to help cancer patients deal with symptom management. Cancer patients, on the other hand, have clutched at the prospect of using cannabis to ease pain and vomiting. Besides, the general public has expressed resounding support for the legalization of marijuana for both medical and recreational use.

The states are heeding the calls, and many have legalized or are in the process of stipulating marijuana laws. The goal is to cleanse the tainted marijuana image, hoping to turn the tables and let the good side of weed begin to show. It’s still early, nothing has been won yet, but there is hope that in the coming years, the cannabis industry will be huge.

All that said, we cannot forget how far we have come with this drug. For many years, cannabis has been a fierce monster that mauled the lives of many, spoiled careers, and damaged many families. So, as we toy with the idea of legalizing marijuana, a great deal of caution is needed to see out this process.


  1. Management of substance abuse
  2. Number of cannabis users worldwide by region 2009-2017
  3. Number of Americans who used marijuana in their lifetime 2009-2018
  4. Key Substance Use and Mental Health Indicators in the United States:Results from the 2016 National Survey on Drug Use and Health
  5. What is the scope of marijuana use in the United States?
  6. U.S. Legal Cannabis Market Growth
  7. Exclusive: US retail marijuana sales on pace to rise 35% in 2019 and near $30 billion by 2023
  8. Recreational Marijuana – Statistics & Facts
  9. A society in transition, an industry ready to bloom 2018 cannabis report
  10. How Profitable is the Average Cannabis Dispensary? [2020]
  11. In 2017 And Beyond, U.S. Enjoys The Highest Legal Cannabis Market Share Worldwide
  12. The Budgetary Impact of Ending Drug Prohibition
  13. The demographics of cannabis consumers
  14. Demand for Cannabis Talent Heats Up
  15. Monitoring the Future 2017 Survey Results
  16. 85+ Must-Know Marijuana Statistics and Facts (Infographic)
  17. Past three months marijuana and cannabis consumption Canada by age 2019
  18. Prevalence-general
  19. Marijuana use among U.S. adults within the past year 2017-2018, by state
  20. Here Are All the States That Have Legalized Weed in the U.S.
  21. Marijuana Facts
  22. Vaping of marijuana on the rise among teens
  23. What Are Kids Vaping? Results from a National Survey of U.S. Adolescents
  24. Outbreak of Lung Injury Associated with Ecigarette use, or Vaping
  25. Acute Effects of Smoked and Vaporized Cannabis in Healthy Adults Who Infrequently Use Cannabis
  26. U.S. legal medical marijuana patients 2018, by state
  27. Medical Marijuana Statistics 2019, Usage, Trends and Data
  28. Medical, Recreational Marijuana Should Be Legal, Most Clinicians Say
  29. ASCO 2018 Cancer Opinions Survey
  30. Medical Oncologists’ Beliefs, Practices, and Knowledge Regarding Marijuana Used Therapeutically: A Nationally Representative Survey Study
  31. Recreational marijuana and impaired driving
  32. Timeline of cannabis laws in the United States
  33. 18 Fun Facts About Cannabis
  34. Acute Illness Associated With Cannabis Use, by Route of Exposure: An Observational Study
  35. Trends and correlates of cannabis-involved emergency department visits: 2004 to 2011
  36. Marijuana ER visits climb in Denver hospital study
  37. Is marijuana addictive?
  38. A bit of tarnish on marijuana’s benign reputation
  39. Journal of Addiction Research & Therapy
  40. Marijuana use disorder is on the rise nationally; few receive treatment
  41. Marijuana Statistics and Facts
  42. The contribution of cannabis use to variation in the incidence of psychotic disorder across Europe (EU-GEI): a multicentre case-control study
  43. Rates and Predictors of Conversion to Schizophrenia or Bipolar Disorder Following Substance-Induced Psychosis.
  44. Uruguay becomes first nation to legalise marijuana trade
  45. States That Legally Regulate Medical and/or Adult Social Use of Marijuana
  46. Smoking medical marijuana becomes legal in Florida
  47. Two-thirds of Americans support marijuana legalization
  48. Record-High Support for Legalizing Marijuana Use in U.S.

You may also like

Leave a Comment