Most consumers residing in jurisdictions in the United States where the adult use of cannabis is legal report obtaining their marijuana primarily from brick-and-mortal retailers, according to new survey data compiled by New Frontier Data.
Fifty-two percent of respondents said that they primarily sourced their cannabis products from brick-and-mortal establishments. By contrast, only six percent of those consumers residing in legal states said that they primarily purchased cannabis from a “dealer.” Nearly one-third of respondents reported obtaining cannabis from either friends or family. Gifting cannabis to others without any remuneration is legal in adult-use states.
Nationally, 43 percent of current consumers said that they obtained their cannabis from retailers, up from 34 percent one year ago. Authors of the survey suggested that in many instances, residents of states where cannabis remains illegal are traveling to neighboring legal states to purchase cannabis products and return home with them.
“These data indicate that the legal, regulated cannabis market is displacing the underground marketplace,” NORML’s Deputy Director Paul Armentano said. “Over time, consumers are becoming more comfortable with and more reliant upon licensed retailers – who offer greater convenience, product quality, and safety.”
Data from Canada, which legalized retail cannabis sales in 2018, shows a similar trend, with the percentage of consumers reporting obtaining cannabis from licensed providers rising year over year.
Additional information is available from the New Frontier Data report, Cannabis Consumers in America 2023.