New projections from Prohibition Partners suggest legal sales of recreational cannabis will double in the next three years as policy reform gains global momentum and new markets develop in Europe.

Estimated by the cannabis data and intelligence firm to be worth US$24.9 billion this year, global sales of recreational cannabis are forecast to reach $49.7 billion by 2027.

The growth is driven largely, although not exclusively, by positive cannabis policy reform in North America and, more recently, Europe.

North America remains the global powerhouse of legal cannabis sales with recreational use now legal in almost half of the 50 states and medicinal use legal in 38.

The Netherlands, Switzerland, Germany and the Czech Republic have emerged as Europe’s most progressive when it comes to cannabis reform and potential commercial legalisation.

Today (December 15), 400,000 people in the Netherlands will gain access to legal cannabis through government-licensed supply chains as part of a pilot program, following the example of Switzerland where six such schemes have been approved with more than 10,000 registered participants.

The report concludes that, in a difficult global economic environment, and with the potential socio-economic benefits of cannabis legalisation in mind, policy makers and business leaders are taking a pragmatic approach to cannabis legalisation.

This pragmatism is reflected in cannabis reform that is shaped by past experiences and insights from other regions and countries – the failure of prohibition, the benefits of a health-oriented perspective, and the economic potential of nurturing cannabis-related industries.

Prohibition Partners concludes: “Promising developments in multiple areas show progress towards a larger, more sophisticated and more internationalised global cannabis industry.”

The Global Cannabis Report: 4th Edition is available via this link.

Prior to launching Cannabiz, Martin was co-founder and CEO of Asia-Pac’s leading B2B media and marketing information brand Mumbrella, overseeing its sale to Diversified Communications in 2017. A journalist...

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