Wholesale cannabis marketplace, LeafLink, releases monthly reports about the wholesale cannabis industry. This data primarily consists of financial facts and figures, and gives you an idea of what the industry is doing, where it is headed, and what that means for your cannabis business.
We are looking at 2020’s October report, and the data basically shows what we have known all along. The cannabis industry is growing, thriving, and claiming its spot in the American economy at a rapid pace. LeafLink reported a 118% year-over-year (YoY) increase as measured by LeafLink’s Gross Merchandise Value. Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) is the total value of merchandise sold over a certain period of time, so in this case, January-September. LeafLink’s data is representing wholesale cannabis data from six key legal states: Nevada, California, Colorado, Oregon, Arizona, and Michigan.
Michigan’s YoY GMV increased by a whopping 342%, and out of these six states, it is the strongest escalation in GMV. LeafLink attributes this strong growth to the brand’s increase in order volume and value of the order. Oregon saw the biggest increase in overall transaction volume, and was reported to climb 4% in month-over-month (MoM) growth.
If you ask most people who are even a little bit familiar with cannabis supply and distribution, they’d likely tell you that flower generally leads the market. Like every single month this year on LeafLink’s report, cannabis flower led the marketplace and in fact, it has even grown its lead since January. Cannabis flower has remained at last 20% of all marketplace sales in 2020, going all the way up to 34.1% of sales in September of this year. Flower also gained the most shares on a national level, (+1.82 percentage points) from August to September 2020, which further proves the industry’s growth. Flower’s constant lead in the marketplace signals a true demand for pure, unadulterated cannabis.
Interestingly enough, cannabis gummies saw the strongest decline in MoM marketplace sales, dropping 20%. The gummies are part of LeafLinks’ Edibles & Ingestibles category, and Edibles & Ingestibles was the most competitive area in Arizona during September. 54% of brands sold edibles and ingestibles in Arizona last month, so over half of them, but sales were only 26% of the marketplace. Going back to flower and its natural dominion over the marketplace, only 36% of brands sold flower in Oregon, despite it making up 39% of sales. The average listed flower prices (in pounds) peaked at $1,226 in September 2020, down slightly from their 2020 high ($1,291) during the month leading up to 4/20.
Pre-rolls were the second fastest growing category and increased 7% MoM. Cannabis topical products actually dropped off in February 2020, when they went from making up 2% of sales to 1.5%. They’ve remained at roughly 1.5% since, dropping a little here and there. According to the data provided by LeafLink, cartridges make up the second biggest category for marketplace sales. The company reported September’s cartridge sales to be 24.7% of all sales. Concentrates also have a strong place in the market, maintaining between 12.6% and 16.4% of all marketplace sales.
The top brands for each state were: Timeless Vapes in Arizona, Pacific Stone in California, TasteBudz in Colorado, Peregrine Manufacturing in Michigan, Cannavative in Nevada, and oreKron in Oregon. These brands were classified as the top based on same-store sales growth YoY.
LeafLink reported a 45/55 split between brands seeing an increase in sales, with most of them seeing a decrease in sales during the month. For those brands seeing an increase in sales, their median brand growth was approximately 25% MoM, while those who saw a decrease in sales saw a median decline of 20%. The overall transaction volume per brand increased by 2% MoM, and increased by 57% when you are comparing the same brand last year.
Cannabis retailers spent 49% more on average during September 2020 than they did in September 2019. The data shows that 47% of buyers increased their spend at this time, and the median growth in spending of 28% MoM. Those who did reduce their spending did so by 25% on average. The average transaction volume per retailer increased by 1% looking at a month-over-month period, and grew over 49% when compared to the same time last year.
LeafLink calls their monthly report their “Flash” and it can be delivered to your email inbox every single month. This is a free tool that allows you some behind-the-scenes industry insight. This report provides so much value, seeing this data can help you make better and more educated decisions about your business, or just simply knowing where the industry is headed.