Headset: Millennial Men Driving Cannabis SalesFebruary 8, 2022
A new report from cannabis market research firm Headset provided an update on the demographics of cannabis consumers as existing markets mature and new ones come online. The company’s data comes from California, Colorado, Michigan, Nevada, and Washington, as well as Alberta and Ontario.
Sales have grown substantially over the past two years. They totaled $1.8 billion in the first quarter of 2020 across the five U.S. states, divided between around $1.2 billion from male customers and $600 million from women. Sales peaked in Q2 2021 when men bought nearly $2 billion worth of cannabis and female consumers purchased an additional $1 billion. The overall category receded back to about $2.75 billion in the final quarter of 2021. While men continue to comprise the lion’s share of purchases, sales to women have grown slightly faster over the last two years, with growth among women up 55% compared to 49% for men; female market share has grown from 31.7% in early 2020 to 32.6% at the end of 2021.
Looking at age data, Millennials dominate cannabis consumption. Fully 50% of cannabis purchases were made by the cohort over the past two years, with only minor variations in their market share on a quarter-by-quarter basis. Gen Xers make up around one-quarter of the market, while Baby Boomers contributed 13.1% of cannabis sales in Q4 2021. All three generations have seen their percentage shrink due to growth among Gen Z consumers, which, as Headset points out, is the only generation constantly adding new consumers to its ranks as its members turn 21; Gen Z market share has doubled from 8.3% to 15% over the past two years.
Generational differences also play a large role in product preferences. The differences are most pronounced between Gen Z and the Baby Boomers, with Millennials and Gen X falling in between. For example, vaporizer use among Gen Z is double that of Boomers’, with Gen Z spending 31% of its cannabis purchases on vape products, compared to 15% among Boomers. The difference is even more pronounced among concentrated forms of cannabis, where Gen Z spends 11% of its cannabis money and Boomers only 4%. Conversely, Baby Boomers spend far more on edibles than other generations—19% compared to 7.5% for Gen Z. The one category the generations seem to agree on is conventional flower, which accounts for approximately 40% of the spending of all four generations.Subscribe to Shanken News Daily’s Email Newsletter, delivered to your inbox each morning. You will also receive the Cannabis edition as part of your subscription.
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