“The future of cannabis is female,” according to new lifestyle brand Cannabis Feminist. And there’s data to back that up. According to a new study by the Cannabis Consumer Coalition, women use cannabis more than men do. They also prefer to microdose.
The survey was placed in magazines and on websites, and shared online throughout social media, garnering more than 530 respondents. The findings correlate mostly with other studies, except the finding about women getting high more than men, the study authors say. The finding indicates that women will become a major target for advertising and marketing in cannabis, like in most other industries.
Just over 58 percent of the respondents were female, while just under 42 percent were male, leading the study authors to conclude that women partake more than we think they do. “When the data started coming in and more women were responding, I was trying to figure it out and thought maybe it’s that women respond to online surveys more than men,” lead author Larisa Bolivar tells Jane Street. But then she found research showing that men are more likely than women to participate in online surveys. “It is well known that women make the majority of purchasing and family health care decisions and also that women have a strong leadership presence in the new cannabis industry,” says Bolivar.
The study also found that almost 30 percent of respondents prefer edibles dosed at less than 10 milligrams of THC per sitting, confirming the popularity of microdosing. Another 18 percent preferred edibles dosed at 25 milligrams, still well under a full 40 to 50 milligram dose. “Other data in the study shows that cannabis consumers do not consume edibles as frequently as other products, which can contribute to lower tolerances,” says Bolivar. Most cannabis users from the survey said they preferred flower.
In another surprising finding, more than 40 percent of respondents said they spend over $200 a month on cannabis. Moreover, the majority of users were over the age of 36, while about 40 percent were between 21 and 35.
“We’re not dealing with the typical couch locked teenager,” says Bolivar. “We’re talking about people who are professionals, who go to work and make enough money to spend more than $200 a month on cannabis, which is a lot of money to spend on anything. The report shows cannabis consumers are not your stereotypical stoner.”
And while most of the respondents lived in legal states like Colorado, California, and Washington, the study nonetheless found that people more often get their weed from the black market. Bolivar suggests that might be because people would rather not spend extra money on taxes when they could get a similar, tax free product from a local dealer. The study also found that people tend to make their own edibles, rather than buying them.
“Overall, I was surprised to see how many people consume cannabis daily,” says Bolivar, suggesting that they maybe felt comfortable not having to publicly admit it in person. With a large amount of daily consumers, she stresses that cannabis shouldn’t necessarily have to be boxed into a just a pharmaceutical or just a recreational framework.
“It’s completely unique,” says Bolivar. “And at the end of the day, I love that women are dominating so many facets of the industry, leading the way all the way down to consumption.”