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Industry in Focus: Booming Cannabis Industry
There is an extremely bright, lucrative future for the legalized cannabis industry. We know that thousands of people are continuing to pour into this industry, which shows no signs of slowing its growth. While many industries, such as manufacturing and agriculture, are projected to see significant declines, American cannabis is expected to create more than 250,000 new jobs in the next three years.
Warehouses that might once have been expected to house industrial operations and storefronts intended for boutique retail establishments will instead be filled by a vast array of cannabis-related businesses.
Cannabis is currently permitted for medical use in 30 states, and has been approved for recreational use in eight, including California and Nevada. Cannabis is anything but a niche industry. In February 2017, Forbes discussed a study that valued the American cannabis industry at $7.2 billion in 2016, and projected that it would grow at a compounded annual rate of 17% over the next several years.
The study projected that medical cannabis sales would grow from $4.7 billion in 2016 to $13.3 billion in 2020, while recreational cannabis sales would grow from $2.6 billion to $11.2 billion in 2020. The global medical cannabis industry is projected to reach $55.8 billion by 2025, according to Grand View Research, driven by favorable regulatory trends and increasing interest among academic researchers and health care providers.
The cannabis industry is growing at an exceptional pace, and investors have had no choice but to take notice. Investment firm Cowen & Co. forecast in 2016 that the U.S. marijuana industry could be worth as much as $50 billion by 2026, while ArcView, a leading cannabis research company, has projected a 26% annual growth rate in North America through 2021. If ArcView is correct, the North American legal-cannabis industry could be generating almost $22 billion in sales within a few years.