According to the new Leafly report Cannabis Harvest Report 2022 published last month, cannabis prices in the United States have plummeted despite a year of historic inflation.
Adult cannabis growers in the United States grew 554 tons more cannabis in 2022 than the previous year. Yet the value of the harvest has dropped by a billion dollars. Large-scale farming and the rise in crop technology, for example, have driven wholesale prices to historic lows in Colorado. Grams of flowers can be sold for $4 in Oregon.
How much legal weed does the US grow?
According to the second annual report Cannabis Harvest Report 2022, adult cannabis cultivators produced 2,834 tons of cannabis last year in the United States. Cannabis is thus placed behind corn, soybeans, straw, wheat and cotton as the 6th commercial crop in the United States.
According to federal usage surveys, that 2,834 tons represents only about a quarter of Americans’ annual cannabis demand.
Growers in the western United States have apparently grown too much over the past year. Meanwhile, farmers in the Midwest and East have not grown enough to meet their region’s demand. Due to federal prohibition, licensed farmers cannot sell across national borders. But the illicit market does. This dynamic hurts legal farmers in the West, while overcharging customers in the Midwest and East Coast. Residents of Illinois and Maine, for example, pay some of the highest prices for cannabis in the country. People in Colorado, Oregon and California pay some of the lowest prices.
Our results suggest Congress needs to do the will of 68% of voters and send cannabis reform bills to President Biden this year. Americans want to vote with their dollars for crafted, sustainable, long-lived cannabis, but they can’t yet.
Several dozen farmers shared their experiences with Leafly, reflecting the regional booms and busts in this evolving field. Small farms would therefore have a much harder time maintaining a healthy financial course than large companies.
“Prices this year have never been so low and honestly that is quite tragic for all the small artisanal farmers. Many people will not be able to afford to run their farm. Our community as a whole is in a bad financial situation,” explained Jason Gellman of Ridgeline Farms, yet one of the winners of the Emerald Cup 2021.
According to Gallup, about 68% of Americans are willing to end federal cannabis prohibition and move to a regulated system.