There will be an estimated 280,000 new cannabis jobs created by 2020


My first job was at a little racetrack in Ohio called the Midvale Speedway. I ran the candy stand, selling Skittles and Snickers to eager kids. My boss’ mother brought me cookies every week and they’d let me close up a little early so I could catch the last couple races. I loved going to work, and it showed me how important a positive environment can be to employees.
Americans spend one third of their week at work so they can come home and enjoy the rest of their time. People who find a secure job they actually enjoy are happier, and for good reason. As the cannabis industry grows, it’s providing more opportunity for a better life experience in new markets.

In Colorado alone, 18,000 cannabis jobs have been created since adult use was legalized in 2014. Over two thirds of those have been full-time jobs. Because of their success, other states are using Colorado as a business model for growth. As a result, the national cannabis job market is projected to increase significantly. New Frontier Data’s annual cannabis report estimates that there will be over 280,000 new cannabis jobs in the U.S. by 2020. A boom like that could vastly improve the conditions of any state looking to boost their economy.

As we’ve previously outlined, the cannabis industry is only growing. Annual sales are projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 16%, according to the New Frontier Data’s report. At such a substantial rate, sales are expected to triple. In less than eight years, it’ll be a 24-billion-dollar industry. This is due in large part to the rapid growth of the legalization of adult use, the profits of which could increase as much as five fold by 2025.
The most promising aspect of all this data is this— the numbers only reflect the states that have already legalized. More than a quarter million jobs sounds great, but those numbers don’t necessarily reflect what the future holds. Indeed, the actual number could be much higher. The cannabis industry is positioning itself to bring much needed stimulation to local economies across the country as more states legalize.

As other industries continue to become stagnated, the timing for cannabis couldn’t be any better. For decades, manufacturing jobs have been a staple to the American economy. Since 2000, however, the country has lost over five million jobs in the industry. As we move forward, new opportunities have presented themselves to those ready to invest. The report also shows new jobs revolving around the cultivation and distribution of cannabis are going to outpace those in the manufacturing industry in the next few years. A large chunk of these will be in administration and retail, but another significant portion will be in manufacturing.

With such economic promise, federal intervention seems less likely. While Attorney General Jeff Sessions’ initial attitude caused some concern, it hasn’t affected the industry’s progress as much as we expected.

One sign of a relaxed position came from none other than Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, who introduced a bill into congress that would legalize hemp farming. While this isn’t a direct reflection on his attitude toward cannabis, it’s a step in the right direction. This bill could also signify a softening opinion on the matter from top conservative figures.
Even more recently, former Republican Speaker of the House John Boehner announced his change in position on cannabis. These developments point to a positive trend that has all the potential to continue.

As jobs pick up, the momentum will only increase in favor of cannabis. The outlined growth will not only contribute to the economy nationwide, but it’ll also usher the industry into a more prominent role in society. This shift into a more mainstream position, as we’ve outlined, will change the perception of the industry. The better the image, the more the entire country benefits.