2016 was an unforgettable year for the cannabis industry. Four new states legalized recreational use of marijuana by adults (including the mammoth, California); while another four legalized the use of medical marijuana. Meanwhile, sales in the states that had already legalized cannabis reached nearly $7 billion, an astronomical figure. With more opportunity in new states and the industry continuing to grow in mature in other states, experts expect to see tremendous growth once again in 2017.
Here five of the biggest trends expected to dominate cannabis industry news this year:
The more states legalize marijuana for recreational use, the more competition there will be within the industry. This is good news for consumers, as more competition tends to mean lower prices, something we’ve already seen over the last couple of years in the states that have legalized.
National Leaders Emergence
The most recent update of our national cannabis consumer attitudinal report reveals that there is very little recognition within the cannabis industry of cannabis brands. As legal recreational marijuana continues gaining momentum across the United States, more and more money will be invested into the industry to help establish some of the first nationally recognized brands.
Cannabis Industry Consolidation
The entrance of more investment money into the cannabis industry will also result in many of the current smaller operations getting bought up by larger companies, or merging with other smaller brands to be able to compete with the bigger companies. All of this meaning it will likely require a significant increase of resources to be able to compete as national players.
Ancillary Businesses Boost
Expect to see a major surge in businesses that deal with the needs of the cannabis industry and consumers, but do not actually sell cannabis products. As the cannabis market continues to boom and surge, the needs of cannabis enthusiasts will continue to increase and broaden, and there will be many new businesses poised to capitalize on the growing ancillary market.
Recreational & Medical Marketing to Diverge
The way cannabis products have been marketed and sold in the medical and recreational markets has been fairly similar over the last few years. Our research report also reveled that very few consumers were able to identify today’s top recreational or medical brands. But as the recreational market continues to take off, expect to see a divergence in these branding strategies. Experts predict the medical market will likely more closely resemble the biotech industry, with marketing and branding strategies following a similar approach, while the recreational marijuana industry will likely begin to resemble the beer and liquor industry and their branding and marketing approaches.
These are just five of the trends experts foresee for the cannabis industry throughout 2017. What do you think 2017 has in store for the industry? Add your predictions in the comments!
And if you want to learn more about the only national attitudinal research study on cannabis brands that exists today, download our report.