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How Often Millennials Smoke Cannabis, and Why It Matters

The answer may surprise you.

By
This story originally appeared on Cannabis.net

While the general perception about cannabis suggests it is still taboo, the millennial generation is working actively to change this outlook. The millennials have been the pioneers of adult use of cannabis and a big reason why nine states reviewed cannabis reforms since 2012.

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Unlike Baby Boomers, Millennials have proven to be open-minded to new experiences, hence, becoming major drivers of social development. Not only is the Millennial generation changing the societal perception about cannabis, but they also contribute a lot to the evolution of the cannabis industry.

RELATED: How Cannabis Brands Should Market to Gen Z and Millennials

Millennials and the cannabis industry

Similar to other consumer goods sectors, Millennial consumers largely dominate the U.S cannabis industry. Now, marketers are innovating new ways to reach this demographic as they search for ways to grow their businesses. Presently, there are about 72 million Millennials in the United States, which makes the generation the largest cohort by population.

The Millennials (individuals born between 1981 and 1996) are now between their late 20s and mid-40s make up a larger percentage of cannabis consumers (38%), followed by Gen X (29%), then Baby Boomers (19%), and Gen Z (13%).

According to Gary Allen the CEO of New Frontier Data, Millennials are active participants in the cannabis industry given the generation witnessed a rapid change in cannabis-related policies and societal attitudes. He added that these young adults witnessed the normalization of cannabis use and the mitigation of negative conceptions about the plant. Now, the generation is playing active roles in the legal cannabis industry both as champions of change and as participants.

Shedding more light on Millennial cannabis preference and consumption habits, New Frontier Data, a market, and analytics research company carried out a new survey.

RELATED: The Fastest-Growing Cannabis Consumers May Surprise You

The New Frontier Data survey

The New Frontier Data survey was carried out to have a better insight into the unique behavior and attitudes of millennials exhibited towards cannabis. The survey discovered that 39% of millennials who use cannabis usually consume weed several times every day. This was confirmed in a press release published to the general public.

In the past years, cannabis use by millennials has increased across the board. New Frontiers, quoting survey data between 2017 and 2020, noted that there's been an increase in cannabis use among respondents between the ages of 30 and 34. The survey showed an increase of 36% among the 30 to 34 age group. The figure further increased to 51% among millennials of the 35 to 39 years age group.

Of the total consumption, about 62% of consumption was primarily for adult use. Millenials list relaxation as one of the prime reasons for cannabis consumption. Other reasons that come next are stress relief and treatment of anxiety.

As regards product preferences, the survey indicated that 63% of Millennials use both non-flower and flower products while just 14% of the respondents claim to exclusively use other forms of cannabis. Among the 14%, majorities turn out for being females with 20% of millennial women opting not to smoke compared to just 9% of millennial men. Millennials mostly consume cannabis via joints(24%) followed by edibles (15%), weed (12%), vapes (9%), and bongs ranking least with just 6%.

The New Frontier survey also indicated that millennials mostly prefer to buy cannabis from brick-and-mortar stores and retailers. 35% of the respondents claim that brick and mortar retailers are their primary source while 26% identified they get their cannabis from family and friends. Another 20% claim they still rely on private dealers while 13% make use of delivery services. For every purchase, the survey showed that millennials are likely to buy cannabis worth $200 or more. Approximately 50% of millennials purchase between $50 and $200 worth of cannabis.

The survey also explored what millennial consumers do while using cannabis. Across all generations, listening to music and watching movies/TV at home ranked the most common activities. Apart from these, millennials also indicated other consumption activities, working inclusively which is backed by their full-time employment rates. According to the survey, millennials indicated other activities which included reading (20%), bonding with friends(38%), general chores and cleaning (35%), playing video games (41%), and eating (43%)

In an attempt to make a solid conclusion, New Frontiers upheld the centrality and active roles millennials play in the United States cannabis legal reforms and the general cannabis industry. The millennial generation illustrates an intricate knowledge of cannabis above any other age group and their enthusiasm is backed by their willingness to spend.

While millennials already play important roles in the cannabis industry, more is still expected from the generation. Many expect that the generation will spearhead the adoption of public consumption areas and will fasten the speed of cannabis reform as they continue to fill up elected offices. With such power in elected offices, they will be able to affect cannabis reform changes even at the federal level shortly.

Other vital findings from the survey

Conclusion

While the general perception about cannabis and its use remains taboo in the United States, the millennial generation is doing everything in its power to address the misconceptions and make cannabis a non-controversial topic.

With so much support from the millennial generation, cannabis reform is bound to happen across all states in America. New regulations will be set in place and the cannabis industry will foster beyond expectation. By then, the older and younger generation will see cannabis in a new light and accept it for what it truly is – a gift from Nature.