Top Line Stats For Cannabis Industry Job Growth in 2018

The cannabis industry had a banner year in 2018 as legalization efforts continued to sweep the country. In total, 34 states now allow medical cannabis while 10 allow adult use cannabis. 2019 looks to be a similar year in terms of cannabis legislation, with more state legislatures and governors taking up legalization as a core tenet of their reelection efforts.

Increased legal access to marijuana means higher demand for the product and overall industry growth. Leafly put together a report detailing exactly what that meant in 2018 – below are the most important points from the report.

Legal cannabis sales increased by 34% over 2017 to $10.8 Billion.

64,389 total jobs were added in 2018, bringing the total to 211,000. If you count all the ancillary jobs – lawyers, accountants, consulting companies, regulatory entities, etc. – who rely on the cannabis industry to support them, the total balloons up to 296,000. For a point of reference, there are currently 52,000 coal mining jobs and 69,000 brewery workers in the US.

Florida added more cannabis jobs than any other state, going from 1,290 in 2017 to 10,358 in 2018. Highlighting the effect that consumer demand has on industry growth, the increase is largely due to the number of medical marijuana patients increasing from 65,000 to 165,000 in 12 months. Nevada and Washington added the second and third most jobs with 7,573 and 7,035, respectively.

The top 5 job markets over the next year are projected to be in California, Massachusetts, Florida, Oklahoma, and Arkansas. These states are likely to add the most jobs in 2019 based on state politics, patient increases, and dispensary licenses already granted.

The numbers don’t lie – 2018 was a great year to be in the cannabis job market. And based on the trajectory over the last three years, 2019 looks like it will be following suit.