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How Much Are Legal U.S. Cannabis Sales Projected To Be In 2024?

The United States legal cannabis industry remains a patchwork of state-level laws and conflicting federal policies. Yet, despite the public policy hurdles and chaos, the emerging legal industry in the U.S. is thriving in places where it is allowed to operate.

According to the Pew Research Center, “Since Colorado and Washington became the first states to pass legislation in 2012, there are now 24 states (plus the District of Columbia) that have legalized the recreational use of marijuana as of February 2024. Another 14 states allow the drug for medical use only.”

The Pew Research Center has determined that:

  • 79% of Americans live in a county with at least one cannabis dispensary.
  • There are nearly 15,000 cannabis dispensaries in the United States.
  • California alone has 3,659 cannabis dispensaries
  • Oklahoma has the most cannabis dispensaries per capita in the U.S. (36 dispensaries for every 100,000 Oklahoma residents)

Cannabis Dispensaries Pew Research Center 2024

Whitney Economics recently published a market analysis report in which the leading cannabis economics firm projected that legal cannabis sales in the United States will reach $31.4 billion in 2024.

“The 2024 forecast for legal adult-use and medical sales will top $31.4 billion, an increase in overall sales of $2.6 billion from 2023. This represents a YoY growth rate of 9.14%.” Whitney Economics stated in a press release.

“We are quite proud of our predictive analytics that resulted in last year’s forecast versus actuals being 98.3% accurate. Although there are uncertainties in the near-term outlook, demand for legal cannabis in the U.S. will remain strong throughout the decade, with growth coming from newer markets.” stated Beau Whitney, chief economist at Whitney Economics.

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

Cannabis remains prohibited at the federal level in the United States, however, Gallup found in 2023 via its annual survey that 70% of U.S. voters support ending federal cannabis prohibition.

Annual Gallup Cannabis Legalization Poll Results 2023