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How Many Legal Cannabis Jobs Are There In The U.S. In 2023?

DENVERApril 10, 2023 /PRNewswire/ — Vangst, the world’s leading cannabis industry jobs platform, today released the annual 2023 cannabis industry jobs report. This year’s report found there are now 417,493 full-time equivalent jobs supported by the legal cannabis industry in the U.S. That’s a surprising result—a 2% drop in employment. It’s the first time legal cannabis jobs have declined year-over-year since the modern legal era began in 2012.

From 2017 to 2022, Leafly and Whitney Economics partnered to produce the Cannabis Jobs Report, an annual tally of jobs supported by America’s regulated cannabis industry. This year Leafly is passing the torch to Vangst, who is proud to publish the 2023 Jobs Report and continue its legacy of solid economic data and timely, accurate information. Jobs Report creator Bruce Barcott and economist Beau Whitney, founder of Whitney Economics, are once again at the helm of the report.

Key findings from the 2023 Vangst Cannabis Jobs Report include:

  • Nationwide, annual cannabis sales increased by $850 million in 2022. That’s a 3% rise, from $25.25 billion in 2021 to $26.1 billion in 2022. That figure includes all state-regulated medical and adult-use sales (not hemp, delta-8, CBD, or unregulated sales). Adult-use states accounted for 77% of total sales.
  • One of the newest markets within the industry saw exceptional growth while other legacy markets saw extreme drops. New Jersey gained 4,220 jobs in 2022, bringing the total number of cannabis jobs in the state to 7,367. On the other end of the spectrum, California lost 13% of cannabis employees last year bringing their total to 83,593.
  • Michigan moved ahead of Colorado to become America’s second-largest cannabis employer, supporting 35,405 jobs.
  • 23% of cannabis jobs are in retail, 31% in cultivation, 17% in manufacturing, and 20% in ancillary and indirect jobs. The remainder are in wholesaling, distribution, and lab testing.
  • Whitney Economics expects to see nearly 12% growth in revenue, industrywide, by the end of 2023.

“Vangst is thrilled to partner with Leafly and Whitney Economics on the 2023 Jobs Report,” said Founder and CEO Karson Humiston, “As federal prohibition prevents federal and state labor departments from compiling data on the legal cannabis industry, data such as that found in the Vangst 2023 Jobs Report is critical. Pairing seamlessly with our Salary Guide, Vangst has truly become a one-stop shop for employers and job-seekers interested in the cannabis industry.”

To view the Vangst 2023 Jobs Report, please visit

About Vangst
Vangst is the cannabis industry’s hiring platform. Vangst helps cannabis companies find the talent they need to grow their business. From on-demand gig workers to trained and credentialed full-time employees, Vangst has built the industry’s go-to talent marketplace for all cannabis hiring. Vangst is proud to work with more than 1,500 of the cannabis industry’s leading businesses.

Since raising their seed round in 2018, Vangst has become one of the fastest growing companies in the cannabis industry and was recognized as one of Fast Company’s Most Innovative Companies. Today, over 400,000 people have full-time jobs in the cannabis industry and this number is expected to triple over the next five years.

Vangst is a Series B company and backed by Lerer Hippeau, Colle Capital, Level One Fund, Snoop Dogg’s Casa Verde Capital, and others. Vangst’s headquarters is in Denver, CO.

About Whitney Economics
Whitney Economics is a global leader in cannabis and hemp business consulting, data, and economic research. The firm regularly consults with private companies as well as local, state, and national government agencies, applying economic principles to create actionable policies and strategies.


Source: PRNewswire