Medical Marijuana Positioned To Become Major Part Of Pharma Industry

Patients with chronic pain or undergoing chemotherapy will help drive the change.

Medical Marijuana
Photo by katicaj via Pixabay

According to a research report by New Frontier Data, medical marijuana sales are forecast to grow to $5.3 billion in 2017, accounting for 67 percent of total cannabis sales. Medical sales in currently legal states are forecast to grow to $13.2 billion by 2025, at which point medical sales will account for 55 percent of all sales. In comparison, adult-use sales in 2017 are forecast to reach $2.6 billion, rising to $10.9 billion by 2025.

Medical cannabis products are known to be beneficial for such conditions as chronic pain, post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), sleep disorders, anxiety, nerve pain and others. “Looking at these numbers, it would appear that medical cannabis would be a drop in the bucket when it comes to impacting the total pharmaceutical industry. However, when you start to break down the numbers by specific sectors of the industry, like chronic pain or symptoms associated with chemotherapy, which are very lucrative markets for pharmaceutical companies, you will certainly see cannabis have a major impact,” said Aguirre De Carcer, CEO of New Frontier Data.

The research points out that the United States constitutes 35 percent of the global pharmaceutical market, the largest market in the world, and a major driver of the US economy, and it is estimated that cannabis and related products can replace $4.4 billion to $4.9 billion per year of current spending on existing treatments.

“Significant changes are already underway in California for medical cannabis and adult use laws, which we see will have major implications for the cannabis industry, including ecommerce and delivery services in the state,” said Giadha Aguirre de Carcer, New Frontier Data CEO. “As the largest state in the country – and the largest potential market for cannabis products – the implications for the growth of the industry because of California’s adult use market cannot be overstated.”

Indeed, the future is bright for medical marijuana in the Golden State. According to a comprehensive data analysis performed by BDS Analytics, California medical marijuana dispensaries sold $894.85 million worth of cannabis products in the second quarter of 2017 alone. That figure is for medical marijuana. For comparison, in the same time period Colorado’s recreational market accounted for $516.39 million. Oregon sold $163.07 million and Washington sold $302.77 million.

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