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The numbers don’t lie — and they clearly indicate that cannabis is the fastest growing industry in America. The cannabis sector created more than 33,700 jobs in 2019. That translates to a 15% growth rate. More than a quarter-million people now have jobs in the “legal weed” business.

A 2020 report by Leafy said cannabis has turned in a 100% increase in added jobs since they started recording data three years ago.

It’s an excellent time to get into cannabis, although the considerable competition new entrants into the field will face. One way to get a leg up is to start in a state that offers the best chance for success. Which U.S. states offer the best business climates for pot? Here are the Top 4:



California was the first state to legalize medical marijuana and has been otherwise ahead of the game ever since. Relaxed prohibition has created more time for operators here to build a viable infrastructure and develop a market. California has a large population, and the public attitude about pot has long been accepting and positive. All things marijuana perform well in the Golden State.



The Rocky Mountain State was the pioneer in making recreational cannabis fully legal. It even beat California to make all-things-pot legal. That was seven years ago. Estimates are that the cannabis industry has generated more than $1.4 billion in tax revenue alone. When considering that Colorado’s population is small compared to California, this is an excellent state to realize attractive profits with a weed business.



It’s called “America’s biggest cannabis state” by industry observers because cannabis products of all variety enjoy exceptional demand among Washington residents. That includes everything from smoked weed to CBD oils and baked goods. Washington is a superb place to own a cannabis shop because many local customers will beat a path to your door.



It’s right next door to the scorching hot Washington cannabis market, and Oregon was the first state to decriminalize the possession of cannabis back in 1973. That suggests a local culture that has long accepted pot as a legitimate product. A lot of people here are eager to buy. Better yet, tax laws and licensing are more lenient in Oregon. That means business owners will face far fewer tax and bureaucracy burdens than places like California, Colorado, and Washington.

Scott Gelbard