BDSA Report Projects $57 Billion in Global Cannabis Sales by 2026

Cannabis data company BDSA published a report projecting that by 2026, global cannabis sales will increase to $57 billion – a significant increase from 2021’s $30 billion global cannabis sales. 

Global Market Forecast September 13th report predicts significant breakthroughs for the cannabis industry to take effect within the next five years with the sustainable growth of adult-use cannabis and the downturn of mature markets. 

Most importantly, the report projects that U.S. sales will rise from $25 billion in 2021 to almost double that in 2026 with $42 billion resulting in about 75% of total global cannabis sales.

BDSA CEO Roy Bingham revealed in a press release, “The ‘hockey stick’ trend of sales growth seen in the early years of legal cannabis has passed, and economic and regulatory headwinds are exerting pressure on the legal cannabis market.” Despite this shift, Bingham’s updated forecast “predicts that steady gains in developing U.S. markets will continue to drive single-digit annual growth in total U.S. legal sales in 2022, with continued growth prospects out to 2026.”

BDSA demonstrates through the Colorado Department of Revenue how mature cannabis market prices are undergoing dramatically low prices with “adult-use sales [continuing] to drop. Recreational sales in June 2022 reached $127,157,358, compared to June 2021 which reached $152,719,813. Medical cannabis sales in Colorado also follow a similar dip compared to last year’s sales data.”

In order to prevent oversupply, BDSA shares that experienced states like Oregon and Washington have put in place moratoriums while newer states to the cannabis market like Illinois are experiencing massive returns with $2 billion in total sales in 2022 so far – a 14% increase from the previous year. The report highlighted that both New Jersey (which just recently opened their adult-use programs) and soon-to-be recreational cannabis-friendly New York will most likely be significant contributors with an estimated combined 22 million adults expected to contribute $5 billion to the total 2026 projection of $42 billion. 

“Though mature legal cannabis markets in the U.S. saw sales soften in 2022, the cannabis market is still forecast to see topline growth in 2022, driven by strong sales in new and emerging markets, such as the populous states of New Jersey and New York,” Bingham said. “The U.S. will continue to dominate global sales over the next few years, but we see potential from emerging global markets such as Germany and Mexico.”

The report also mentions how medical cannabis sales continue to drop – particularly in recently legalized adult-use sales like Arizona

The press release states, BDSA projects annual dollar sales in Arizona’s medical channel will be 30% lower than the 2021 annual dollar sales total and roughly half the annual sales total seen in 2020—the last full year of medical-only sales. By contrast, the Colorado medical channel still saw modest growth in annual sales for roughly two years after the launch of its adult-use market in 2014.”

Global markets are continuing to ramp up their medical and or recreational cannabis programs with larger countries such as Mexico decriminalizing cannabis (adult-use cannabis is still not legal) and smaller countries like the U.S. Virgin Islands introducing a medical cannabis rules draft for review. Germany took a bit of a hit in their program ramp-ups with a concern that the European Union would reject the adult-use reform measure. Unfortunately for Bermuda, a territory of the United Kingdom, their recent attempts to implement a legalization bill were rejected by U.K. officials. 

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