Not all new marijuana markets are created equal relating to enterprise opportunities for cannabis cultivators.

The Nov. three election opened the door for marijuana growers in five states that might generate greater than $2.5 billion in medical and leisure cannabis gross sales a 12 months by 2024.

But a few of these new markets are extra interesting than others. Chalk it as much as location, dimension and general friendliness of enterprise laws.

New Jersey and Arizona are the clear favorites with their impending leisure cannabis markets constructing off current medical marijuana packages and enormous state populations.

Options in Montana and South Dakota – which each legalized grownup use – seem restricted, at greatest.

Mississippi – which joined South Dakota in approving medical marijuana – might be the darkish horse, relying on how cities and counties reply to the new program.

By manner of Mother Nature, New Jersey‘s leisure market gives the perfect out of doors rising local weather – therefore the Garden State nickname.

In distinction, the opposite 4 states are anticipated to rely closely on indoor and greenhouse operations. Their climates don’t simply lend themselves to out of doors rising due to excessive temperature swings.

In addition, extra conservative-leaning states – suppose Mississippi and South Dakota – is perhaps much less prone to permit outdoor-grown cannabis that may’t be secured and guarded in opposition to diversion.

That mentioned: “Any new market is good,” mentioned Nic Easley, a Colorado-based cannabis guide, mentioning how the general pattern towards nationwide legalization advantages the industry as an entire.

Below are snapshots of every state:


This state gives a blended bag.

Sara Gullickson, CEO of Arizona-based CannaBoss Advisers, ranks the market towards the highest in enterprise opportunities among the many five new states, significantly for cultivators and processors.

She primarily based her rating on the potential for constructing out enormous cultivation and processing facilities indoors and in greenhouses in addition to the state’s comparatively giant inhabitants of greater than 7 million individuals.

The state already has a couple of large-scale greenhouses in operation.

Marijuana Business Daily tasks the state will generate $760 million in annual leisure gross sales by 2024.

So far, Arizona has issued roughly 130 vertical MMJ licenses to corporations that might be eligible to start out leisure marijuana companies relying on the standing of the corporate.

And therein lies the rub, Easley mentioned.

“If you’re not licensed already, you’re not in the game,” he added.

Still, he values Arizona way over Montana and South Dakota.

Michael Mayes, a Chicago-based cannabis guide, agreed, saying that whereas the market will probably be profitable, the deck is stacked in opposition to new operators.

One alternative comes from the 26 social fairness licenses slated for entrepreneurs dwelling in communities disproportionately affected by the struggle on medication by a program to be developed by the state well being division.

On the brilliant facet, Arizona’s adult-use market is anticipated to develop shortly.

Existing medical marijuana operators can apply for twin licenses between Jan. 19, 2021, and March 9, 2021.

The state has 60 days to situation a license from the time an software was filed.


Without any licensing caps, on the floor Mississippi seems poised to reflect Oklahoma’s MMJ market, the place no restrictions on allow numbers has allowed that state’s industry to growth.

But not so quick. Mississippi and Oklahoma aren’t the identical: Oklahoma’s new program removes municipal management and leaves it to the state to jot down the laws.

That means Mississippians will possible have native management over the new MMJ industry, which might create roadblocks.

“Even though it’s legalized, there’s going to be pressure and pushback,” Easley mentioned.

Mayes agreed: “I’m just afraid that things are going to get tied up and there’s going to be a huge clash between local and state.”

That mentioned, medical doctors can suggest medical marijuana for greater than 20 circumstances.

And if the state permits reciprocity from registered sufferers in different states, there could be a chance for serving out-of-state sufferers.

“It’s going to be a lucrative opportunity for those who are interested in it,” Gullickson mentioned.

MJBizDaily tasks annual gross sales of $800 million by 2024.

As in politically conservative South Dakota, industry watchers aren’t anticipating the Mississippi program to roll out shortly.

Easley predicts it should take 18-24 months earlier than any MMJ income is generated, although licenses are imagined to be issued no later than Aug. 15, 2021.


The state’s leisure cannabis laws name for 10 cultivation tiers of as much as 30,000 sq. ft plus a micro-tier of as much as 250 sq. ft.

The sticking level for would-be growers: Existing medical marijuana companies will get first crack at getting into the leisure marketplace for a 12 months, and the initiative additionally requires that enterprise licenses go to Montana residents.

Gullickson sees the state as a “very small opportunity.” She added that in some areas, cultivation corporations have already got the market cornered.

“I look at the existing producers to see how they’re doing, and I think they’re doing a really good job,” Gullickson mentioned.

The University of Montana tasks 2024 adult-use gross sales to achieve $234 million.

Easley expects to see companies producing income by 2021, however he reckons five to 10 manufacturers will dominate the state.

New Jersey

Industry officers are essentially the most bullish on New Jersey, due to proximity to New York and that state’s roughly 20 million residents.

MJBizDaily tasks New Jersey might generate annual leisure gross sales that strategy $1 billion by 2024.

Although the prevailing MMJ companies will get a head begin, buyer demand is anticipated to outpace provide, making New Jersey a profitable marketplace for growers.

Gullickson ranks the state No. 1.

Gov. Phil Murphy backs this system, and that may assist push its growth.

When the adult-use program is up and operating, Easley expects it to outpace Massachusetts in income over the long run – regardless that Massachusetts has been a “cash cow.”

The massive concern that Mayes and Easley cited: The two dozen MMJ licenses that had been accessible in the third spherical of approvals stay mired in lawsuits. That doesn’t bode nicely for new growers.

South Dakota

Despite South Dakota being the primary to legalize leisure and medical marijuana concurrently, Mayes ranks the market final for enterprise opportunities.

“They don’t really want it, it seems like,” he mentioned. The timeline for awarding licenses and beginning this system is ready too far in the long run, Mayes added.

Projected 2024 gross sales for medical marijuana are $10 million-$12 million.

Gullickson characterised South Dakota as “kind of a question mark,” questioning how the MMJ and leisure packages will coexist.

This would be the “slowest and most painful of markets,” Easley predicted. “It’s a long game.”

Bart Schaneman will be reached at [email protected]

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