As cannabis moves from counter culture to commonplace, many ask if the average user has changed. Now realized as a viable (and often preferable) medicine for many ailments, more people than ever enjoy cannabis. A new study by Headset Inc., a cannabis intelligence firm, took an in-depth look at exactly who smokes the most weed these days. With data compiled from customer loyalty programs, they took a look at trends based on age, gender, and spending habits, to find out what the average user today looks like.
Who smokes the most weed these days?
From the inaccurate stereotype of yesteryear to the modern connoisseur of today, cannabis use has drastically changed genres. According to the study, which tracked 40,000 legal recreational cannabis purchases in Washington State from September 2014 to July 2016, times have changed quite a bit.
The average recreational consumer calculates out to be a 37-year-old male (like the handsome cannabis enthusiast above). The average time between purchases is 19.4 days.
The younger generation isn’t spending the most money on recreational cannabis, either. Instead, those in their 40’s average $823 annually, and those in their 50’s average $753 annually. The average recreational user only spends $647 annually. Over 57% of customers spend more than $500, but less than 10% spend more than $2,500.
The most likely factor for high annual spending is conditions for medical use that don’t meet approval for medical use.
Legalized states continue to see a drop in product price of 2% a month, and potential to drop 25% each year. Those of us in non-legal states certainly aren’t seeing that kind of decrease.
Most people spend between $25 and $50 per trip to a marijuana store, with a $33 median spend per trip. 34.7% of customers spend less than $10 on average, usually picking up a single item like a half gram pre-roll or a carbonated beverage. Only 8.2% spend more than $100/trip.
Customers in their twenties spend an average of $27 per visit, but visit more regularly, a median of every 16 days. Older customers visit less frequently, those in their 30’s every 18.2 days, and in their 40’s every 20 days. Headset co-founder Cy Scott says there is a logical explanation.
As you’re older, you might have more money to go and make bigger purchases. The millennials might be out and about more; they can drop into [marijuana dispensaries] more often. Older people might just plan more.
Women also tended to shop smarter instead of more frequently, as per usual.
In the study, fewer than 10% of purchases came from those over age 60. While the average age comes out to 37, Headset reports that millennials make most of the recreational purchases. Over 50% of consumers ranged in age from 21 to 34. But the key point remains that the study looked solely at recreational purchases.
Men vs. women
Men account for 68.9% of all recreational purchases. And though both sexes generally buy more flower, women noticeably buy more pre-rolled joints and edibles. Men, on the other hand, buy more flower than women, and more concentrates.
As age goes up, edibles and other purchases (such as topicals) go up, but pre-rolls go down. Those in their 50’s are the biggest buyers of traditional bud.
Not exactly what you imagined, right? The study remains limited to customers who take part in the loyalty program, so one time or infrequent customers may be inaccurately portrayed. Similarly, the study only looked at recreational use, medical use may show a far different typical user. But, as Headset says:
In contrast to the stereotypical depictions of marijuana users in popular culture and the mainstream media, our customer loyalty data shows that there is a wide range of pot smokers. Each customer segment brings their own habits and product preferences with them into the marijuana store.
Are you surprised by who smokes the most weed? What do you think of the change in the average user? Tell us on social media or in the comments below.