Published in the Baltimore Sun
Co-Authors: Jorge Eduardo Castillo, Doris J. Cammack-Spencer
Medical cannabis is an emergent industry, and diversity must be woven into the fabric of this multi-billion dollar business from the beginning. We acknowledge that there are those in our communities who remain steadfast in their opposition to the expansion of the availability of cannabis in Maryland, and we honor these different points of view. Yet consider that we are not attempting to change minds about the issue itself but, rather, to shed light on the economic impact we know this industry will have. With the economic drive to “follow the money,” communities of color must not be left behind.
New Frontier Data estimates that the legal cannabis market in the U.S. was worth an estimated $6.6 billion in 2016 and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 16 percent, reaching more than $24 billion by 2025. The medical cannabis market was worth an estimated $4.7 billion in 2016, and is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 12 percent, reaching more than $13 billion by 2025.