Once upon a time in America, handling marijuana meant losing your job. In 2019, it may mean you’ve just been hired to a brand new job in one of America’s fast growing industries.
Cannabis is an already largely and ever-increasing job sector for new employment opportunities. While only 10 states have legalized cannabis for recreational use, 22 more have allowed some sort of medicinal marijuana use in their state. That’s about 2/3rds of U.S. states with some form of legal cannabis, and more could be on the way.
Lots of “Green” Jobs
That spread of legal marijuana means a massive increase in available jobs. According to Leafly, cannabis has created 211,000 full-time jobs in the United States already. The industry added more than 64,00 new jobs in 2018, which is a 44 percent increase. Leafly expects 20,000 more cannabis jobs this year in just Florida and California alone.
61% of Americans support #cannabis legalization, including, for the first time, a majority of Republicans. In 1973, that number was just 19%. Legalize ? it ? federally.
— Leafly (@Leafly) May 20, 2019
Unsurprisingly, the highest concentration of these jobs comes in states where cannabis is legal both medicinally and recreationally. But that doesn’t mean that there isn’t growth elsewhere. And these jobs are all outside the federal purview.
“Leafly started counting cannabis jobs three years ago because the federal government won’t. Cannabis is still a Schedule 1 drug at the federal level, equated with heroin, and is considered to have no medical value,” explains Leafly. The federal government considers these jobs illegal, and “that makes them untouchable as far as the Department of Labor and its Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) is concerned.”
Fortunately, Leafly is keeping track, and their findings are just another promising indicator for this growing industry.