New Jersey Cannabis Sales Off To A Hot Start

Customer turnout, cross-border demand drive consumption up in the first three months of legal adult-use sales.

A tidal wave of demand for pot in New Jersey is driving promising numbers for operators in the new adult-use cannabis market, according to a report from cannabis data firm BDSA.

Monthly sales growth in the state outpaced other adult-use markets tracked by the firm despite having one of the lowest per capita retail counts in the pool. BDSA estimated a compounded monthly growth rate of roughly 10% through July versus Illinois’ rate of 3% in its first three full months of adult-use sales.

The boost is being driven by strong customer turnout, “which is even more impressive considering the current macroeconomic situation and limited legal access in the state,” according to BDSA CEO Roy Bingham.

Since recreational cannabis launched in April, New Jersey reported approximately $200 million in legal sales.

More than half of the respondents to a BDSA Consumer Insights survey that reside in New Jersey claimed to consume pot within the past six months, up about 15% since spring 2020 – before adult-use consumption was legal, according to the release.

“Furthermore, as one of the first adult-use markets in the Northeast region, New Jersey’s market has likely been the beneficiary of cross-border buying from other consumers in the tristate area, as New York and Connecticut consumers are still awaiting legal access in their respective states,” the company noted in its news release.

The findings come after BDSA data from Spring 2022 showed that 77% of respondents across adult-use markets either claimed consumption in the past six months or indicated they were open to consuming someday.

“The continued warming of attitudes towards cannabis consumption across markets has been accompanied by a sharp drop in the share of those who are opposed to consuming (rejecters),” the report said. “Between fall 2021 and spring 2022, the share of rejecters fell ~15% to just 23%”

While flower prices plummet in legacy states such as Colorado, the category commanded a higher share of unit and dollar sales in New Jersey. Companies in the state have boasted about the boost in the most recent dump of financial report cards as they face demand headwinds in mature markets.

“Flower typically holds a roughly 40% share of dollar sales in other markets, but made up roughly 50% of dollar sales and roughly 45% of unit sales in July 2022 in New Jersey,” BDSA said in a news release.

To drive the point, dabbable concentrates made up only around 2% of dollar sales in July, versus the 5%-15% share that the category holds in other mature markets.

Adam Jackson

Adam Jackson covers the cannabis industry for The Green Market Report. He previously covered the Missouri statehouse for The Columbia Missourian and freelanced for The Missouri Independent. He most recently covered retail, restaurants, and other consumer companies for Bloomberg Business News. You can find him on Twitter @adam_sjackson and email him at adam.jackson@crain.com.


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