The coronavirus crisis has caused dramatic shifts in how and when consumers spend their money, specifically with regard to consumer products—and cannabis is no different.
Most states allowed cannabis dispensaries to remain open during lockdown, saving the nascent industry from the same fate as the rest of brick-and-mortar retail. But even though cannabis was deemed an essential industry, consumer habits changed nonetheless.
Record Sales, Cost-Conscious Consumers
Perhaps buoyed by that “essential business” label, adult-use cannabis sales in the largest U.S. markets remained relatively resilient compared to other segments of the retail industry.
“What we’ve seen is that the average cart size at retail is going up,” said John Moynan, chief operating officer at SLANG Worldwide, a consumer packaged goods (CPG) company with distribution in 12 states. “People are buying more, and the average price per unit is going down, so basically people are bulk buying and looking for more value options.”
Experts agree that bulk buying at the outset of the pandemic was likely the reason for the increase in sales. But five months in, sales are still strong.