AndCan® Index December 2020 Release

September 2020 legal U.S. cannabis product demand continues to grow

  • Monthly demand for legal cannabis products in the U.S. increased by 0.7% in September.
  • Year-over-year demand is strong, showing a 24.0% growth rate.
  • The growth rate decreased from August to September, continuing the prior month’s trend of slower growth.

EAST LANSING, MI—December 1, 2020—According to Anderson Economic Group’s monthly AndCan®Index, growth in demand for legal cannabis products in the United States in September was lower than the previous month, continuing a new trend of slow growth markedly different from the rapid rise in sales we experienced in the spring and early summer. AEG’s experts produce this monthly measurement by closely following 50 state trends for both the recreational and medicinal marijuana markets. Monthly calculations are based on benchmarks developed when AEG first began assessing the market in 2015.

Anderson Economic Group’s lead analyst for this market, Kenan Cosguner, noted that the unprecedented growth in cannabis demand earlier this year was unlikely to persist in the long-term. “Federal relief programs passed in response to the COVID-19 pandemic helped fuel a dramatic rise in demand for cannabis products last spring,” he explained. “Now that these relief programs have ended, it appears that demand growth may be returning to pre-pandemic levels.”

While some states, such as Illinois and Michigan, experienced recreational cannabis sales growth in September, others saw demand weaken. After months of strong growth, cannabis sales fell 3% in Massachusetts. And in Colorado, sales fell 8%, the second month in a row the state has seen cannabis demand decline.


September’s rate of growth follows the lower trajectory from August; a noticeable slowdown after March-July’s extremely fast pace.

For additional insight regarding AEG’s AndCan® Index and trends in the legal cannabis space, contact our industry experts online or at 517.333.6984.

Cannabis in the News

With legalization on the table, medical marijuana producers push to loosen restrictions
Virginia’s General Assembly will consider recreational cannabis legalization next year, and the state’s cannabis companies plan to take the opportunity to push for loosening restrictions on medical cannabis in the state. They hope legislators will consider allowing the sale of unprocessed flower; currently, the state’s medical cannabis program is mostly limited to processed products.

NJ cannabis bill advances, but lawmakers differ on the details
Following the success of New Jersey’s recreational cannabis ballot initiative in November, the state’s General Assembly and Senate passed separate bills out of committee to establish a marketplace. Differences between the two bills will need to be reconciled before the legislation can move forward.

$6 billion question: Which states are likely to legalize recreational marijuana in 2021?
After recreational cannabis ballot initiatives succeeded in Arizona, New Jersey, Montana, and South Dakota last month, the industry is looking ahead at what other states might follow suit in 2021. Connecticut, Maryland, New Mexico, New York, and Pennsylvania are all considered states to watch for possible legalization through the state legislature. Looking farther out, Missouri, Ohio, Oklahoma, Missouri, and North Dakota may see recreational cannabis ballot initiatives in 2022.

About the AndCan Index

Launched in June 2017, the AndCan Index reflects observed demand from U.S. states that have legalized cannabis and estimates latent demand in states where data on observed demand are unavailable.

The AndCan Index builds upon:

  • Over four years of comprehensive coverage of the U.S. legal cannabis market and assessments of demand by Anderson Economic Group;
  • A rigorous methodology that has been presented in technical papers at two professional economics conferences; and
  • More than two decades of business consulting experience worldwide.

Comments from other professional economists have been incorporated into the AndCan Index, as has additional research by Anderson Economic Group consultants.

In March 2019, Anderson Economic Group released the 2019 benchmarked AndCan Index, which included several methodological and data improvements. They added data for a number of states that were not included in the original index and updated the AndCan methodology to take advantage of new data.

About Anderson Economic Group

Since its founding in 1996, Anderson Economic Group has become one of the nation’s premier boutique consulting firms, specializing in business valuation, expert testimony, and public policy. AEG has assisted governments, universities, large corporations, and businesses across the U.S. and abroad. All of the firm’s work is based on the core values of professionalism, integrity, and expertise.

AEG has offices in East Lansing, Michigan and Chicago, Illinois.

Lisa Wootton Booth
AEG—East Lansing, Michigan