Based on the search results that come up on google when you key in the word dispensary near me, it is evident that cannabis enthusiasts now have more ways through which they can achieve that euphoric feeling. The legalization of medical cannabis and subsequent decriminalization of recreational cannabis has allowed producers to innovate new ways in which they could package cannabis to make it more alluring and acceptable even though let’s face it; cannabis has never really had a problem attracting new users.
Ways in which cannabis is consumed
Understanding the various ways in which cannabis is consumed allows us to dissect the different popularities that exist amongst these forms and finally establish indeed what could potentially be the most popular form of cannabis.
For the longest time, there was only one classical way through which a person could consume cannabis. This method was by inhalation and to be very specific, smoking, because now there’s an additional subcategory under inhalation and that is vaporizing. Smoking entails lighting up the flowers either rolled up by self as a blunt or through a purchased pre-roll for those that may not have the time or the expertise to roll a joint by themselves. The effect is that as the active compounds are released, the cannabinoids through inhalation enter the lungs and are effectively passed on directly to the bloodstream. The effect of smoking is felt almost immediately, making it one of the most effective ways of consuming it.
Vaporization on the other hand has done away with direct combustion of the plant and instead heats a device known as a vaporizer which has perfected the vaporization points for cannabis. These devices then heat the concentrate which usually comes as oils, this action leads to the formation of vapor that is then inhaled by an individual and follows the same process as smoking would. In a way, vaporization is like modernized smoking. It comes with its benefits as well as its own significant challenges that cannot be ignored. For instance, the lack of direct burning of the flower ensures that there is no irritation on your throat in the long run. The downside is that the oils which are the concentrated forms of cannabis run the risk of having leftover substances of ingredients that were used in the extraction process, the effects of vaporizing and inhaling these substances together with cannabis cannot yet be determined but from the sounds of it, it does not lean towards the positive side.
Perhaps one of the most recent and possibly pleasant ways of consuming methods is orally. There are various methods at play here and they are edibles, tinctures, oils. Edibles are food products that have been infused with cannabis, tinctures are cannabis infused liquids while cannabis oils are extracted cannabis dilutes with a carrier oil to help absorb the cannabis once you ingest it. As evidenced, all these oral methods dictate that the cannabis will at some point pass through the digestive system and expectedly, the effect from orally taking cannabis takes longer to be witnessed, but it is in fact stronger because the digestive process transforms them. Because of the duration that it takes to feel the effects, oral consumption of cannabis is usually mistakenly abused and not preferred by people who are keen on getting the right dosage.
This method has everything to do with the skin and the skin being our largest organ, making them a notable methodology. This method relies on the absorption process of the skin and they have a much targeted approach to the problem area. The effects take place within minutes and one of the most lauded facts is that they are not intoxicating at all and can thus be reapplied severally without concerns of over-dosing.
Focusing our attention on Washington state and with a renewed understanding on the forms of cannabis available both old and new, we cross examine the figures in sales across board that will authoritatively determine which is the most popular form of cannabis.
Most Popular form of consumption of cannabis based on sales
It might be the familiarity that is associated with the product or that it seems to work exactly how it needs to, despite the numerous innovative products that have been introduced to the market, this product accounts for at least 49% of the total transactions within the entire market. That’s virtually half of the sales. An interesting fact is that it has been highlighted as one with the lowest margins in terms of profitability so you can imagine the magnitude of sales that must have occurred to have it as the number one most transacted product.
Edibles make a mark as the second most popular transacted item but they manage to average 13% of the total transactions which is an impressive feat by their own right but when comparisons are made it is evident that the gap between the two is significant.
Having been invented as a remedy for those that simply had no time to roll up their own flower or simply lacked the necessary expertise, these guys show up at 3rd position with a whopping 11.5% indicating that smoking is still a fan favorite. When you add up the flower and pre-roll percentage you realize that at least 60% of the total market would still love to ingest their cannabis in the old fashion way. A sure sign for producers to keep cross breeding new strains of flowers and innovating new ways to stuff a pre-roll. After all, the market never lies.
Being relatively new this entrant garnered a strong 10.7% indicating that the market should certainly be cognizant of niche consumers that are indicating their preferences. Concentrates have significantly high THC content and their taste is also not very pleasant. To achieve such numbers means that people are beginning to understand what works for them and embracing these newly introduced ways of getting their doses of cannabis.
Back to inhalation, the sassy modern kind, statistics show 8.2% sales for vapor pens. Vapor pens use oils and this can almost be likened to concentrates. The freedom that choice is giving consumers is showing that they were ready for variety.
These top 5 items really show where the market is at in terms of popularity but position 6 through to 10 give a glimpse of potential shifts that could occur and for this reason, a notable mention is provided to recognize the leaps that those products have made as well. Beverages come in with 3.7%, tinctures and sublingual 2.2 %, topicals at 1.1%, capsules at 0.8% while cannabis multi set gift items make the list at tenth position with 0.1%.
Whilst this analysis provides a broad picture on how we can picture the popularity of the forms of cannabis, it also becomes pertinent to dissect the growing popularity of products within the same industry so as to discover hidden trends on the products that are most likely to take center stage in the near future. There might be favorites for now, but the trends in the market show that this may not be the case for very long.
Fastest growing in popularity based on sales
The products listed here may not be found in the top 5 products at the moment but they show great promise in eventually finding a place in that coveted list. Here, we showcase the significant strides that they have made in the form of percentage growth per month.
This is a type of concentrate that demonstrates that it is yet to experience better days. On the broad analysis, concentrates show up at fourth position, but in this list, we get to understand that they have the highest improvement in monthly sales at 29.3%. People are beginning to notice and appreciate its benefits and with the continuation of this pattern, we might as well witness a significant jump to higher positions in the coming years.
These products only made it to 6th position with notable mentions on the broader analysis, but on the in-depth analysis, they’re making big moves. With 24.3% monthly growth, investors should keep their eyes on this item.
This particular product falls under the vapor pens categories and it has seen a 23.1% monthly growth. This can certainly be explained by the fact that vapor pens are considered as the more health conscious way of inhaling cannabis rather than the usual burning of the herb.
Edibles were certain to make an entry on this monthly growth list because many first timers see it as the most viable entry point to accustom themselves to the benefits of cannabis. They also provide a discreet way in which one can indulge without exposing themselves to scrutiny. It is of no surprise that this product witnessed 22% monthly growth.
Shake and trim
Falling under the flower category, it is evident that it cannot be replaced. There are still just as many people that enjoy the old fashioned way of experiencing the herb and it still satisfies the parameters as one of the fastest and most effective ways of consuming cannabis. Even though newer methods may be experiencing higher growth spurts in comparison to it, a 20.4% average monthly growth is no small feat for this pioneer.
Vapor pens cartridges are able to show 19.7% monthly growth at sixth position, the pre-roll makes an entry at seventh position as a connoisseur with a close 19.4% monthly growth, reiterating that inhalation is still one of the widely accepted forms of consumption. At eighth position, edibles make another entry as caramels and chews with a monthly growth rate of 19.1 %. Tinctures take the ninth position with an average monthly growth of 18.3% while pre-rolls make yet another appearance with their sativa single strain product at 17.1% average monthly growth.
The broader analysis lets us in on the undisputable popularity of the flower as the most preferred way of consumption, but when we look at the average growth of popularity per month, we can also see that it is in fact trailing behind concentrates and edibles and that it may take a while but it’s only a matter of time before shifts in the market result in new trends that had otherwise been unfathomable before. But until such a shift occurs, the flower reigns supreme.
The statistics also indicate a glaring potential growth for the edible markets as they come in at distant second place and also have several entries in the products that exhibit some of the highest monthly growth earners. This phenomenon can be attributed to the fact that the production and supply costs for gummies are lower and thus could have acted as an incentive for producers to make more of them and thus provide a wider and more available selection for consumers prompting them to experiment and inevitably cause a spike in the sales. Nevertheless, edibles have proven themselves as worthy contenders for the number one position.
Concentrates come in a close third. These would be the products that manufacturers would essentially be pushing off the shelves because their margins are great. They also have higher potency and it is not likely that there would be repeated purchases within a short span duration of time because a little goes a long way.
Cannabis is the third most popular recreational drug in America, right after alcohol and tobacco. It makes sense that there would be so many variations of products that have been designed to cater to the different niches to enable them fulfill their needs. When you take a walk into a Seattle dispensary today or any other day, regardless of the form in which you decide to consume cannabis, rest assured that the market research will always ensure that the producers know that you exist as a consumer and that your need is communicated as being just as important as the next persons.