Which are the Highest-Selling Cannabis States in US


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The cannabis industry has been experiencing rapid growth in the United States and around the world. The legal cannabis market is expected to hit $73 billion by 2027, according to a report from Arcview Market Research and BDS Analytics. 

With this growth comes an increasing number of states legalizing recreational marijuana use. As of 2021, 15 states have legalized recreational marijuana, with more likely to follow suit soon. 

As a result, there are now billions of dollars being made in legal cannabis sales each year across the US. But which states are making the most money? 

Let’s take a look at some of the highest-selling cannabis markets in America, what factors have contributed to their success, why these markets are so popular among consumers and how they compare to other lucrative markets such as alcohol or tobacco products.

Overview And Statistics Of Usage In The Us

As of 2021, recreational marijuana is legal in 15 states and medical marijuana has been legalized in 36 states. Total sales are expected to hit around $30 billion by 2025. 

The highest-selling cannabis states vary depending on both population size and legal frameworks.

In 2019 alone, the US legal marijuana market was valued at nearly $13 billion. That same year saw California lead the way with over $3 billion in cannabis sales. 

Colorado sold almost $2 billion worth of recreational and medical marijuana that same year. Washington, Oregon and Michigan rounded out the top five with over $1 billion in legal cannabis sales. 

Another key factor to consider is per-capita marijuana consumption by state. 

As of 2020, Colorado was the highest consumer of cannabis in the US with an estimated 23.7 metric tons consumed that year. This equates to over 2.5 ounces per person annually. 

Oregon, Washington and Nevada were the next highest consumers with about 1.7 to 2.2 ounces per capita consumed in 2020.


California is the highest-selling cannabis state in the US, accounting for nearly a third of all legal cannabis sales across the country. 

The large population and widespread acceptance of marijuana use have both contributed to California’s success as one of the best-selling cannabis states. 

The Golden State’s medical marijuana market has been booming since the legislature legalized cannabis for medical use in 1996, and recreational sales have been on a steep upward trajectory since adult-use was approved in 2016. 

California has seen steady growth over the years, with total sales reaching $3.1 billion in 2019.

The state also boasts one of the lowest taxes on marijuana products in the country, which has helped to make it more affordable for consumers. 

California offers one of the most diverse product selections in the US, with everything from flowers and edibles to topicals and tinctures available. 

Finally, a major factor behind California’s success as one of the highest-selling cannabis states is its large network of dispensaries. 

California has more than 900 licensed cannabis retailers, providing convenient access to products throughout the state. 

Overall, California’s legal marijuana market is well-established and continues to be one of the most successful in the US. 

With favorable laws, low taxes, and a wide range of product options, it is no surprise that California remains one of the highest-selling cannabis states in the country. 


Colorado is known to be one of the highest-selling cannabis states in the US, and for good reason. 

Colorado has a long history with marijuana legalization, being one of the first states to legalize medical usage in 2000 and recreational usage in 2014. 

This early adoption gave them an advantage over other states, allowing them to establish legal retail outlets and have their industry take off. 

The ability to legally purchase cannabis has helped the Colorado market grow immensely, with sales through 2019 estimated at around $2.2 billion in revenue and over $1 billion in taxes collected from these sales. 

Colorado is also home to many of the nation’s leading cannabis producers, as well as a thriving culture of cannabis consumption.

In addition to the wide variety of products available for purchase, Colorado is also home to many of the nation’s most renowned dispensaries. 

These shops provide a unique experience that allows visitors to learn about different strains and products, as well as offering knowledgeable staff members who are eager to help educate customers on their purchases.

Colorado’s well-established cannabis industry has also attracted many investors and entrepreneurs, providing substantial economic benefits to the state. 

This is evidenced by the numerous businesses that have sprung up in the state over recent years, ranging from retail outlets to cultivators and producers.


Oregon is one of the highest-selling cannabis states in the US due to its vast and varied selection of products, ranging from flower, edibles, concentrates, topicals, and more. 

Oregon’s recreational marijuana laws are among the most lenient in the country with no age limit or residency requirements on purchase, meaning that both locals and tourists are able to purchase cannabis products. 

This state has the lowest taxes on recreational marijuana in the country at only 17%. 

All of these factors have helped contribute to making Oregon one of the best states for selling cannabis. 

Oregon’s reputation as a progressive state with an increasingly open attitude towards recreational use of marijuana has also helped boost sales. 

It is a prime example of how more relaxed and open laws can help create an environment for increased marijuana sales, which then helps the state benefit from additional revenue and job creation. 

Washington State

Washington State is one of the highest-selling cannabis states in the US, due to its groundbreaking recreational marijuana law passed in 2012. 

This made Washington the first state to legalize adult use of cannabis for recreational purposes. 

Since then, there has been a considerable increase in sales and taxes generated from cannabis businesses operating in the state. 

The Washington State Liquor and Cannabis Board (WSLCB) regulates the production, processing, distribution, and sale of marijuana in the state. 

The board also imposes taxes on cannabis businesses, such as a 37 percent excise tax and 25 percent sales tax. 

These taxes are collected from each transaction made by customers at licensed retailers. 

In terms of sales, Washington is one of the leading states in terms of cannabis sales. The state had $1.2 billion in legal cannabis sales in 2019 and the total market size was estimated to be around $4.7 billion. 

It also has some of the most liberal regulations for growing marijuana at home. 

Under state law, adults are allowed to grow up to six plants in their home, and possess more than the legal limit of cannabis products. 

This helps to ensure that customers have access to quality marijuana at an affordable price, while also stimulating the local economy.


Michigan’s sales reached over $200 million in 2020, which makes it one of the top five highest-selling states in the nation. 

One key factor contributing to Michigan’s success is its large population base. Combined with the fact that cannabis is recreationally legal in the state, Michigan’s large population makes it an attractive market for marijuana products. 

Michigan has also been praised for its comprehensive regulatory system and taxation scheme, which helps to ensure safety and fairness for consumers. 

The state has a two-tier tax structure, where additional taxes are applied when cannabis products are sold, in addition to the state’s 6% sales tax. 

This taxation scheme encourages businesses to thrive, thus providing a legal and safe environment for cannabis use and consumption. 

Michigan has also been praised for its medical marijuana program, which allows for the access of a wide range of cannabis products to those who need them medically. 

As of 2020, the program has about 290,000 registered patients and over 1,400 dispensaries. 

This vast network of medical marijuana providers helps to ensure that those who need it can access it safely and with minimal difficulty. 

Final Word

It is clear that cannabis sales have been increasing rapidly in the US. California, Colorado, and Oregon are currently leading the way with their high-selling numbers. 

However, many other states are catching up quickly due to changing laws and attitudes towards marijuana consumption. 

As more consumers become aware of the potential benefits of cannabis use, it’s likely we will see a further increase in sales across all states over time. 

With this increased demand comes an opportunity for businesses to capitalize on these new markets by offering products tailored to consumer needs and preferences. 

It will be interesting to watch how these trends continue as more people discover the power of medical marijuana or recreational use throughout America!

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