Legal Marijuana Sales Forecasts: Potentially $44 Billion by 2020

The legal marijuana industry could be worth $44 billion by 2020, according to a new industry publication.

The recently published 2016 Marijuana Business Factbook estimates that the United State’s legal marijuana industry will add $24 billion to $44 billion annually to the country’s economy by 2020.

The Marijuana Business Factbook is published annually and features financial data, legal info, consumer research, and stats related to the cannabis industry in the U.S. The financial forecast figures in the report are based on the assumption that current business and legalization trends continue.

According to the report published by Marijuana Business Daily retail sales of medical and recreational cannabis will reach $14 billion to $17 billion in 2016. Currently, 25 states have adopted some form of medical marijuana legislation, and four states (ColoradoWashingtonOregonAlaska) have legalized recreational use marijuana for adults over 21.

“We’re witnessing the emergence of a business that is about to become a massive economic force,” said Chris Walsh, managing editor of Marijuana Business Daily. “These figures, which we deem conservative, show not only how important the industry already is to the U.S economy at large, but also how much more important it is about to become.”

Several initiatives expected to reach ballots this November are likely to further expand medical marijuana programs throughout the country and increase the number of recreational marijuana states to double digits by the end of the year. Last October, a survey by Gallup found that 58 percent of Americans are in support of marijuana legalization.

“The [report’s] projections reflect marijuana’s march toward the mainstream as it emerges from the shadows to become a respectable, above-board industry that is giving birth to scores of jobs, fostering new business opportunities and creating a broad ripple effect across the country,” added Walsh.

The Marijuana Business Factbook report’s findings come on the heels of another optimistic 4th edition market analysis report by ArcView Market Research, which estimates cannabis sales to reach nearly $21.8 billion by 2020.

Additionally, sales of recreational marijuana could surpass medical marijuana sales by 2018, according to the Marijuana Business Factbook report. The report by ArcView agrees that recreational use sales will eventually overtake medical marijuana’s, expecting adult use marijuana to account for 53 percent of the overall cannabis market by 2020.

The results of this fall’s election will make a significant impact on projected sales. Voters will not only decide in several states whether to legalize adult use cannabis, but will decide between presidential candidates with varying stances on legalization.