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Global Legal Cannabis Sales Projected to Hit $58 Billion in 2028

But legal markets beyond the U.S. and Canada remain small.

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BDSA, a provider of market intelligence for the cannabis industry, today released its latest projections for the global legal cannabis market over the next five years. In 2023, global legal cannabis spending grew to $36 billion. BDSA forecasts sales to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 10% from 2023 to 2028, resulting in a $58 billion market by 2028. The growth of legal cannabis sales has been largely driven by U.S. markets, and particularly fueled by the adult-use channel.

“U.S. adult-use markets currently represent approximately 56% of total global cannabis sales, and are poised to claim an even larger share of global sales in the coming years as U.S. medical markets contract,” said Roy Bingham, co-founder and CEO of BDSA. “The cannabis industry is incredibly dynamic, with each market facing unique regulatory changes and industry pressures. Looking ahead to 2028, emerging adult-use states, particularly those on the East Coast and in the Midwest, are expected to contribute the strongest increase to total U.S. and global sales.”

U.S. sales totaled $29.5 billion in 2023. Sales are expected to grow to $32.4 billion this year, and reach $46 billion in 2028. While emerging adult-use markets, including Connecticut, Maryland, Missouri, New Jersey, New York and Illinois, are forecast to see some of the fastest growth, the most mature adult-use markets have struggled under the pressure of price compression and illicit competition since late 2021. Some mature markets, such as Michigan, have continued to grow their legal sales. Others such as California have stagnated, but are expected to return to modest growth in the coming years.

Emerging markets that are on the verge of legalizing adult-use are forecast to be another top driver of cannabis industry growth. Florida and Pennsylvania, both home to strong medical markets, are forecast to launch adult-use sales in 2025 and see strong growth out to 2028.

Like in the U.S., Canada’s cannabis market remains largely driven by adult-use sales, with $4.2 billion of the $4.5 billion in sales for 2023 attributed to the adult-use channel.

Globally, legal cannabis markets beyond the U.S. and Canada remain small, with BDSA estimating sales totaling just $2.4 billion in 2023. Total international cannabis sales are forecast to grow at a CAGR of 24% through 2028, reaching $7 billion.

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