Cannabis is one of the most popular recreational drugs on the planet, and its potentially
wide-ranging medical uses show promise. Given its low rates of addiction and lack of adverse
health outcomes, cannabis has the potential to replace common pharmaceutical treatments
for chronic pain, seizures, insomnia and other conditions that afflict hundreds of millions of
people worldwide. Likewise, cannabis also has the potential to disrupt the alcohol industry
by serving as a substitute for beverages such as wine, beer, and spirits.
Along with the United States and Canada, several countries have followed suit in relaxing
their cannabis laws and allowing for the use of medical cannabis; which in turn paves the
way for a fully regulated and legal recreational market. Several potentially large international
cannabis markets include Germany, Spain, Australia, Israel, and Colombia.
It is difficult to estimate global cannabis prices because cannabis sales usually occur in the
illicit market. Typically, cannabis prices vary depending upon location. Germany has some of
the lowest cannabis prices in the world. Other countries, such as Israel, are starting to see
higher prices as cannabis begins to move into regulated pharmacies.
Due to complex regulations and various international laws, international cannabis supply
chains are fragmented, with only a handful of companies operating internationally. The
largest of these global companies is Canopy Growth Corp., which has a presence in seven
countries along with the United States and Canada.
Due to its status as an illicit or semi-legal substance in much of the world, there has yet to
be a set international commodity price for cannabis. Even in countries like the U.S., where
recreational cannabis is legal in nine states, the price of cannabis can vary significantly by
In Oregon, for example, extreme competition among cultivators has driven down cannabis
prices to roughly $1 per gram. However, in California, a newly open recreational market,
cannabis prices are between $11 and $14 per gram. According to Cannabis Benchmarks,
which tracks the wholesale pricing of cannabis, the national average price of a pound of high-quality
cannabis is approximately $1,285.
Due to federal legalization, cannabis prices in Canada are slightly more consistent. Most
provincial governments are aiming to price cannabis at CAD$10 per gram. On average,
medical cannabis in Canada costs around CAD$8 per gram. However, as legalization goes
into full effect in Canada, prices may fall within the first several years as competition
increases in the cannabis space and as large-scale cannabis production is actualized.
You can read the full report titled “The Economics of International Cannabis Companies” here.