The State of Cannabis report, based on data from more than 250,000 California cannabis consumers on the Eaze platform, and more than 5,000 survey respondents, zeros in on trends in consumer demographics and behaviors, product category preferences, wellness and more. Ultimately the report shows that the rise of marijuana consumption is in full force and that Eaze has the data to back it up. As you will see, the preference of a vaporizer trumps flower. Here are three key insights:
Marijuana is the new glass of wine
There’s no denying that alcohol plays a big role in many cultures. Celebrations usually involve champagne, sporting events include beer and relaxation can seem synonymous with wine. But the data shows that marijuana is quickly becoming the preferred alternative to alcohol in California. More than 82 percent of people surveyed in the report said that using marijuana has caused them to reduce their alcohol intake. Furthermore, in 2016, orders for medical marijuana spiked nightly around 7 p.m., which is about the time many typically open a bottle of wine. A total of 11 percent of respondents said that they’ve quit drinking entirely because of marijuana. Now imagine replacing booze with marijuana in American culture. A bedtime ritual would now include a vape pen instead of a glass of wine to help someone fall asleep. It’s hard to ignore that this type of future is closer than we think.
Flower power is over and vapes are on the rise
When most people think of using marijuana, their first thought is often smoking the dried cannabis flower. However, for many first-time marijuana users, that can be intimidating and requires additional equipment like rolling papers or a pipe. So,it’s no surprise to see in Eaze’s data that a vaporizer trumps flower in popularity. From 2015 to 2016, flowers went from 75 percent of total sales to 54 percent of total sales. Vaporizer cartridges, however, grew from just 6 percent in 2015 to 24 percent in 2016.
Vaporizers, which are self-contained, don’t smell and are discrete, are something that even marijuana skeptics are willing to try. In terms of deliveries, fewer than 5 percent of deliveries in 2015 contained a vaporizer cartridge. In 2016, that number increased to 20 percent (1 in 5 deliveries contained a vaporizer cartridge). In terms of orders, only 7 percent of people had ordered a vaporizer cartridge on the Eaze platform in 2015. By the end of 2016, 31 percent had ordered a vaporizer cartridge – a 429 percent increase over the previous year. With vaporizers becoming the new norm, the industry has seen that consumers are demanding a more appealing method for consumption.
Marijuana consumers aren’t always who you’d expect
Public perception of marijuana users often associates a specific user stereotype, but the reality is that marijuana is being widely used by a myriad of demographics. Californians, specifically, are increasingly comfortable with marijuana use and are embracing its benefits. On a typical day in 2015, Eaze users placed an order every minute. In 2016, that number increased 100 percent, resulting in an order every 30 seconds. While cannabis consumption is growing throughout the state overall, it is growing at different rates across California. Northern California continues to grow faster than Southern California, with the East Bay experiencing the largest growth in 2016.
Data also shows that there is a rise in women using the Eaze platform. In 2016, 25 percent of people using Eaze were female (1 in 4). By the end of 2016, women accounted for 33 percent of users, raising the total to 1 in 3. That’s a 32 percent annual increase. There is also data shows the rise in Baby Boomers on the platform. Baby Boomers represent the fastest growing segment as a percentage of all Eaze users, growing 25 percent over the previous year. Meanwhile, Gen Xers grew 8 percent and Millennials dropped 3 percent. An overall growing user base underscores the appeal across a wider audience and thus, suggest a bright future for marijuana.
With a wealth of data to suggest cannabis consumption is replacing alcohol, more appealing to use and attractive to a wider audience, it is clear that marijuana has the potential to thrive as the next booming industry. Until recently, marijuana’s negative stigma has kept it from expanding its appeal to a widespread audience but as we see demand growing, we look forward to seeing how brands will evolve to cater to consumer expectations.
By Kyle Merwin, Marketing Specialist, Eaze Medical Marijuana Delivery
Kyle Merwin manages content and social media at Eaze, the leading cannabis technology company. In his role, he’s responsible for all the content strategy, social media management, and consumer education. Prior to Eaze, Kyle lead program sales at Bay Club in his hometown in Marin County, CA. He holds a Bachelors of Arts in Media Studies from the University of California, Berkeley.