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Overview of CBD Sales in the United States

  • In 2021, cannabidiol (CBD) generated over $5.3 billion USD in product sales revenue through both online and in-store transactions.
  • By 2024, the market is expected to develop exponentially, with estimated sales amounting to $12 billion USD – an increase of $6.7 billion USD from 2021.
  • California sold the most CBD products across the United States in 2021. With sales reaching $24.9 million USD (36% of market share) by May. However, it’s worth noting that sales are declining in California and other states with recreational cannabis.
California sold the most CBD products across the United States

CBD beverage sales are projected to pass CBD edible (gummies, confectionery, snacks, etc.) sales by 2025. Likely due to the growing trend of CBD cafes appearing across the country.

worldwide CBD sales are expected to quadruple by 2027

In accordance with all segments, worldwide CBD sales are expected to quadruple by 2027. With more awareness being made concerning CBD products and their potential, it’s likely more people are willing to give them a try.

majority of CBD sales (66%) came from online retail stores
  • The majority of CBD sales (66%) came from online retail stores. This may have to do with customer reassurance a CBD website allows for, such as Certificate of Analysis (CoA), manufacturing process, and other frequently asked questions.
  • However, online sales from multiple markets increased in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. With that in mind, the share of CBD sales may be subject to change as the United States returns back to in-person activities.
majority of online CBD sales come from specific CBD brands
  • The majority of online CBD sales come from specific CBD brands. While many companies strive for customer retention, this is likely due to the fact that customers can learn about brand-specific information (i.e. CoA, manufacturing process, etc.) through a company’s website.
  • A brand’s website also usually provides customers with the most deals (i.e. coupons, subscription services) for savings.
  • As runner-ups, CBD sites selling multiple brands and likely found a market by offering a versatile selection of products. Notably, specialty CBD products (such as CBD inhalers, lollipops, etc.) cannot be purchased through the majority of large brands.
CBD sites selling multiple brands
  • California has the largest CBD market, beating runner-up Florida by more than double in sales. Beyond the fact that California has the largest population of all states (40 million), its major cities are much more open-minded to cannabis-derived products (with medical marijuana being legal in the state since 1996).
  • States that had legalized recreational cannabis by 2019 seemed to do better (on average) than those that had not. This may indicate why Washington, Colorado, Michigan, and Oregon are so high on this list.
States that had legalized recreational cannabis by 2019 seemed to do better
States that had legalized recreational cannabis by 2019 seemed to do better
Tinctures (CBD oils) were by far the most popular
Tinctures (CBD oils) were by far the most popular

Segments of CBD Sales in the United States

  • By 2025, it’s expected that $6.4 billion USD will come solely from nutraceuticals (i.e. CBD oils, gummies, capsules, etc.). However, topicals are also expected to rise to $4 billion USD, likely due to their ability to relieve certain pains more effectively.
Graph 10
  • Vitamin sales in U.S. convenience stores were the most popular, with sales reaching a total of $20.5 million USD in 2020. This comes as no surprise as 40% of CBD users spend between $20 – $80 USD on CBD per month – insinuating that a large chunk of the market takes it every day, likely alongside other daily vitamins.
  • Runner ups are sleeping remedies (at $7.3 million USD) and external analgesic rubs ($4.8 million USD). This stays true to trends reporting that joint pain, anxiety, and insomnia are the top three reasons people use CBD.
most popular CBD beverages
  • Seltzers and sparkling waters are among the most popular CBD beverages (taking 57% of sale shares in this category). This is likely due to the fact that they can be made based on dietary restrictions (i.e. sugar-free) and in a variety of ingredients.
CBD coffee
  • CBD coffee has developed a small market for itself as many people use CBD to offset the anxiety brought on by caffeine. However, CBD-infused coffee likely isn’t as popular as some may imagine due to the fact that you can simply add CBD oil drops into coffee (allowing for a more precise dosage).

Brands of CBD Sales in the United States

Brands of CBD Sales in the United States
  • Charlotte’s Web and Plus CBD Oil were both able to maintain their popularity from 2017 to 2019. However, as we got into 2019, we saw a number of new brands begin to garner a reputation, including Green Roads, Medterra, and CBDfx.
  • This switch in brands is for two main reasons: 1.) in 2018, hemp and CBD products were officially legalized thanks to the Farm Bill, allowing for more opportunity among entrepreneurs, and 2.) with CBD gaining popularity, the market was able to start settling in.
CBD in-store
  • As discussed, the majority of consumers purchasing CBD in-store are looking for liquid vitamins or analgesic rubs. This differs slightly from online sales that showed a notable percentage of tincture (CBD oils) sales.
Most CBD consumers
  • Most CBD consumers aren’t purchasing CBD in grocery stores which is why all stats mentioned here are below $1 million USD. Still, of these stats, liquid vitamins and analgesic rubs remain the most popular.

Consumption of CBD in the United States

Consumption of CBD in the United States
  • As of 2021, at least 18% of U.S. adults have used CBD. However, this number is projected to hit 35% by 2024.
  • Most likely, the reason this number isn’t higher is that the market needs time to settle. As we’ll learn, most people still don’t have a clear understanding of what CBD is and how it differs from other cannabis products.
  • As more information continues to spread about CBD (most notably, its non-psychoactive properties), then more people will likely be willing to try it.
  • Since COVID-19 struck less than 2 years after CBD was federally legalized in the United States, it’s unclear how much of an effect the pandemic itself had on the market. While a little under 30% of both mature and emerging markets claimed to use more, this could simply be due to more information coming to light.
  • Contrary, some believe CBD (and cannabis sales, in general) increased in 2020 due to the stress and anxiety of the pandemic, as observed in this 2021 study. Overall, the study concluded that CBD may help in emotional exhaustion and burnout symptoms among frontline health care professionals – a segment of the population most affected by this pandemic.
  • As mentioned, the pandemic likely caused an increase in online CBD retail sales. With the general population spending more time at home and on the internet, it’s likely more information concerning CBD had emerged to a larger audience.
Most U.S. adults use CBD
  • Most U.S. adults use CBD alongside prescription medication. As is often advertised, CBD hasn’t been found to cure any health condition. Yet, it’s shown lots of promise as an additional therapeutic measure for many conditions.
  • 32% of CBD users prefer to take it alongside other natural remedies. As discussed, those who take CBD daily are likely taking other daily supplements with it, such as multivitamins or fish oil.
CBD lotions
  • 29% of adults are most interested in CBD lotions, likely due to their ability to relieve specific types of pain. However, an almost equal amount (28% and 26%) are interested in CBD gummies and tinctures (respectively), likely due to their consistent dose and easy use.
  • Other popular products include CBD capsules (18%), CBD oil sprays (18%), CBD-infused foods (17%), and CBD vaping products (13%).
  • More niche CBD products (such as CBD beauty products) tend to have a smaller market, likely due to their lack of potential medicinal value in comparison to more popular products (such as lotions and tinctures).
CBD for mental health difficulties
  • Pain relief is by far the most popular reason people use CBD (at 64%). With more specific types of pain also making this list, such as arthritis (at 27%) alongside headaches and migraines (at 21%).
  • Many are also using CBD for mental health difficulties – most notably, anxiety and stress (at 49%) alongside sleep and insomnia (at 42%). Furthermore, people have found CBD beneficial for depression (at 26%) and other mental health conditions, such as post-traumatic stress disorder (at 8%).
  • As more of the population uses CBD (and more research comes out), these statistics are likely to alter.
CBD market
  • Since the CBD market is so new, it comes as no surprise that 22% of the population still has a lack of trust in the manufacturer or product itself. This goes along the lines of a discussion made earlier, concerning why most people purchase CBD products online.
  • An equal amount (22%) of U.S. adults believe CBD will not help them with their health condition. While there are no reports on this topic, it may have to do with word-of-mouth from others who have tried CBD and didn’t garner any effects.
  • As discussed, a number of people still don’t know the difference between CBD and other cannabis products which is why 8% of U.S. adults believe it will make them high. Once more information spreads concerning CBD, it’s likely this number will drop.