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Are Publicly Traded U.S. Cannabis Companies Profitable?

The legal cannabis industry in the United States is made up of a patchwork of markets, laws, rules, and regulations. Currently, 24 states have passed adult-use legalization measures and even more states have adopted medical cannabis legalization measures. Washington D.C. has also legalized cannabis for both medical and adult use.

A handful of companies operating in legal U.S. markets are publicly traded. According to a recent analysis by, only one of those companies generated a profit in 2023.

“Green Thumb Industries (CSE: GTII) (OTCQX: GTBIF), based in Chicago, became the only cannabis firm to record net profits in 2023, with a $36.3 million profit on top of an amazing $1.1 billion in sales. This was a huge increase above its $12 million profit in 2022, demonstrating a stunning triple of yearly earnings.” stated in its initial reporting.

“In contrast, Florida’s Trulieve Cannabis Corp. (CSE: TRUL) (OTCQX: TCNNF) experienced the most significant setback of the year, with a whopping $527 million loss compared to $1.13 billion in sales.” the reporting also stated.

The reporting points out that Curaleaf Holdings (TSX: CURA) (OTCQX: CURLF) incurred losses of $281.2 million, Ayr Wellness (CSE: AYR.A) (OTCQX: AYRWF) lost $272 million, Cresco Labs (CSE: CL) (OTCQX: CRLBF) (FSE: 6CQ) lost $180 million, The Cannabist Co. Holdings Inc. (NEO: CBST) (OTCQX: CBSTF) (FSE: 3LP) lost $174 million, and Verano Holdings Corp. (Cboe CA: VRNO) (OTCQX: VRNOF) lost $113 million.

A separate analysis published by Green Market Report found that, “twenty of the largest publicly traded marijuana companies in the U.S. lost a cumulative $2.3 billion” in 2023 despite generating “$8.7 billion in revenues.”

The United States adult-use cannabis industry has generated over $20 billion in total tax revenue since the first legal recreational cannabis purchase was made in Colorado on January 1st, 2014 according to a new report by the Marijuana Policy Project.

“Through the first quarter of 2024, states have reported a combined total of more than $20 billion in tax revenue from legal, adult-use cannabis sales. In 2023 alone, legalization states generated more than $4 billion in cannabis tax revenue from adult-use sales, which is the most revenue generated by cannabis sales in a single year.” the Marijuana Policy project stated in a press release.

Total legal cannabis sales in the United States are expected to reach $31.4 billion in 2024 according to a recent analysis by Whitney Economics. Additionally, leading cannabis jobs platform Vangst, in conjunction with Whitney Economics, estimates that the legal cannabis industry now supports 440,445 full time-equivalent cannabis jobs in the United States.

Whitney Economics also projects the following legal cannabis sales figures in the United States for the coming years:

  • 2024: $31.4 billion (9.1% growth from 2023)
  • 2025: $35.2 billion (12.1% growth from 2024)
  • 2030: $67.2 billion
  • 2035: $87.0 billion

The emerging legal cannabis industry in the United States is projected to add roughly $112 billion to the nation’s economy in 2024 according to a newly released analysis by MJBiz Daily. The projection is part of the company’s 2024 MJBiz Factbook.

“The total U.S. economic impact generated by regulated marijuana sales could top $112.4 billion in 2024, about 12% more than last year,” MJBiz stated in its initial reporting.