From Niche to Normal – Cannabis Use Becoming More Accepted in the United States

Consumers and Non-Consumers Say Cannabis is Good for the Economy

NEW YORK–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Growing numbers of consumers support the legalization of cannabis in
some form and a majority believes it has a positive impact on the
economy, according to the newly released 2018
Fall Cannabis Culture Poll
, developed jointly by leading global
communications agency BCW (Burson Cohn & Wolfe), PSB Research and
Civilized, a premium media and lifestyle brand that embraces and
highlights modern cannabis culture. A full 83 percent of the poll’s
respondents (U.S. adults, cannabis consumers and non-consumers) say they
support some form of legalization of cannabis. Sixty-three percent of
non-consumers, and 95 percent of cannabis consumers, say legalization
has had a positive economic effect on the states where use has been made
legal.

PSB Research, in partnership with BCW and Civilized, conducted online
interviews between September 26 and October 4, 2018 with 1,200 U.S.
adults aged 21 and older to explore views on cannabis and its usage and
to determine general habits and behaviors of those who use and those who
do not use cannabis. Respondents are defined here as consumers and
non-consumers.

While consumers and non-consumers say legalization has benefitted local
economies, cannabis purchases continue to be interpersonal transactions.
Currently, 46 percent of consumers say they buy cannabis from friends or
family, while just 30 percent patronize dispensaries. However, 84
percent of consumers who do not purchase cannabis at a dispensary say
they would be willing to consider doing so. Thirty-eight percent of
non-consumers say they would consider spending money with a
cannabis-related business if it were legal where they live.

Use of cannabis in the U.S. is primarily recreational, but medical use
is also popular. One in five (19 percent) of Americans currently consume
cannabis, and more than half of those consumers say they use it at least
a few times a week. More than four in five self-reported cannabis
consumers use it for recreation, while about half of consumers report
using cannabis for medical purposes. Cannabidiol (CBD) use among
self-reporting consumers is also fairly common — about one in three
cannabis consumers also report using CBD for medical or other purposes.

The amount of dried and cured cannabis that consumers buy varies; while
about one in 10 consumers buy one gram or less per month, about one
third of consumers buy at least a quarter of an ounce every month.
Thirty-five percent of cannabis consumers say they spend at least $100
per month cannabis or cannabis-related products.

The 2018 midterm elections just confirmed the data from The Cannabis
Culture Poll – cannabis is moving from niche to normal across the U.S.,”
said Chris Foster, President, North America, BCW. “Michigan voters just
made their state the tenth in the U.S. to legalize recreational
cannabis, and Missouri and Utah passed initiatives to legalize medical
marijuana, making medical use legal in 33 states.

However, as legalization continues to spread across the U.S. and create
new market opportunities, it won’t be long before the government begins
to establish standards for production, distribution and consumption,”
Foster continued. “Entrepreneurs and business owners will need to be
prepared to navigate what is sure to become a complex regulatory
environment.”

Consumers and non-consumers already see the need for some level of
regulation and oversight of the industry. About half of non-consumers
and over two-thirds of consumers would view the industry more favorably
if it partnered with organizations to develop medical standards and
regulations, increased industry funding for research on cannabis’
effects from medical and recreational use, and/or developed public
education campaigns to support responsible legal use of cannabis and its
derivatives.

We’re excited to see the strides business leaders and voters in the
U.S. are making to normalize cannabis,” says Derek Riedle, Publisher of
Civilized. “There is incredible potential for this industry as cannabis
sheds its taboo, shadowed past. We’re proud to be part of the movement
as the industry brings cannabis out of the dark and into more lives
across North America.”

About BCW

BCW is one of the world’s largest full-service global communications
agencies. Founded by the merger of Burson-Marsteller and Cohn & Wolfe,
BCW delivers digitally and data-driven creative content and integrated
communications programs grounded in earned media and scaled across all
channels for clients in the B2B, consumer, corporate, crisis management,
CSR, healthcare, public affairs and technology sectors. BCW is a part of
WPP (NYSE: WPP), the world leader in communications services. For more
information, visit www.bcw-global.com.

About PSB Research

PSB is a full-service custom research and analytics consultancy that
connects data-driven insights with human experience to solve clients’
most critical challenges. With a heritage in political polling, PSB
brings the agility of campaign strategy to research and consulting
across a wide range of industries, including technology, healthcare,
financial services, and entertainment. PSB is a member of the BCW Group
of companies, which is a part of WPP (NYSE: WPP), the world leader in
communications services. For more information, visit www.psbresearch.com.

About Civilized Worldwide Inc.

Founded in 2015, with offices in New Brunswick and California, Civilized
is a premium media and lifestyle brand that embraces and highlights
modern cannabis culture, reflecting the millions of adults who choose to
enjoy cannabis as part of a balanced lifestyle, but don’t define
themselves by it. Reaching more than 3 million unique monthly visitors
North America-wide, Civilized produces engaging content for and about
people who enjoy cannabis responsibly. Other verticals include Civilized
Studios, a video network available to 100+ million viewers that fills
the void of broadcast quality video and original series in the cannabis
space, and Civilized Events, exclusive branded experiences for both the
cannabis industry and consumers – from intimate dinner parties to
large-scale events like the first-ever World Cannabis Congress. For more
information, visit civilized.life.

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Contacts

Catherine Sullivan
212.798.9501
Catherine.Sullivan@bcw-global.com

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