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There Are Now More Than 440,000 Jobs Supported By The American Cannabis Industry

Emily Mullins

by Emily Mullins

April 16, 2024 12:25 pm ET Estimated Read Time: 2 Minutes
Fact checked by Kymberly Drapcho
There Are Now More Than 440,000 Jobs Supported By The American Cannabis Industry

The cannabis market in the United States is booming, and jobs within the industry are increasing right along with it. A new report from Colorado-based marijuana staffing company Vangst and the analytics firm Whitney Economics discovered that cannabis-related jobs have increased about 5% over the last year, a slow but notable growth.

As such, there are now more than 440,000 cannabis jobs available in states that have legalized medicinal or recreational marijuana. Some states, including Michigan, New Jersey, New York, Connecticut, Utah, and Rhode Island, are experiencing more rapid growth than others. Other states with new programs, such as Missouri, have added thousands of jobs in a relatively short time span.

States with long-established markets, like Colorado, California, and Washington, have actually seen a decrease in jobs. “A countervailing pushback in mature markets in the American West (California, Colorado, Oregon, Washington, and Nevada) resulted in the loss of roughly 15,000 jobs across the region,” the report’s authors noted.

There are a few reasons attributed to these losses, ranging from an oversupply of marijuana products to less cannabis tourism and a decline in the novelty of purchasing marijuana in dispensaries.

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Fortunately, the report’s authors are not concerned. “We expect losses in these markets to continue to thin out in 2024 and turn positive once again in 2025,” they stated. They also predict that the United States cannabis market will be worth an astonishing $87 billion by 2035.

States that have legalized cannabis are generating impressive tax revenue, much of which goes to schools, roads, and other essential public functions. The same reporting agency found last September that legal states made nearly $6 billion in tax revenue over an 18-month period.

The latest report not only outlines employment figures but also highlights the salary ranges across different roles within the cannabis sector. For instance, trimming marijuana can fetch hourly wages ranging from $14 to $27, whereas a director of cultivation earns an annual salary of $90,000 to $140,000. Budtenders can earn between $14 and $22 per hour, while retail directors command salaries ranging from $80,000 to $120,000 annually.

As the cannabis industry continues to grow at a rapid pace, and as more states legalize the substance, it’s very likely that more than half a million jobs could be marijuana-related in just a few years. If you’re looking to change careers or break into cannabis, there’s no better time than now.

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