US Cannabis Industry Workers Get Paid More Out West

cannabis industry

Various factors contribute to higher wages for cannabis industry workers on the East Coast of the USA relative to those on the West Coast. This is a general trend in the startup cannabis businesses but has some exceptions. For instance, California still pays marijuana workers more than other US states, and Florida continues to pay less than the national average.

The main factors that cause these wage differences are:

  • High cost of living and higher wages in or near the East Coast medical cannabis markets
  • Stabilized sales patterns in more mature western markets
  • Continually expanding East Coast operations
  • Generally higher product prices in the east
  • Oversaturation of western markets

As the East Coast continues to expand its cannabis markets with new businesses, the demand for new workers increases linearly. However, with limited numbers of experienced workers living in the East Coast, employers are being faced with challenges to meet their needs for suitable employees. Cannabis funding entities are, not surprisingly, being flooded with demand for startup cannabis business loans.

This is causing some poaching activity by the East Coast operations, including attractive compensation and benefits packages that West Coast cannabis employers cannot, or at least, would much rather not meet.

Cannabis industry workers seem to be making out best in Massachusetts and Maryland. In Massachusetts, both medical and recreational marijuana markets continue to expand rapidly. Between November 2018 and April 2019, the state reported more than $76.8 million in revenue from adult recreational use alone.

In 2018, Maryland surpassed $100 million in medical marijuana sales. 2018 was the first year for Maryland in this market. So far, the state has racked up more than $48.9 million in the first quarter of 2019. This is exciting news for entrepreneurs who are thinking about a startup cannabis business model.

While these sales numbers are incredible and represent much fuel for budding cannabis industry investors, there is still currently a shortage of qualified and suitable workers to fill the already-available positions needed to keep the industry running smoothly.

Many West Coast cannabis industry business owners are complaining about the East Coast efforts to steal their marijuana workers away from them. Indeed, there is now a big demand for those workers and for recruiters that are able to fill the positions they are needed in.

California weed workers seem to be in the highest demand because Cali was the first state to boom this industry, and so, the workers from there are more skilled, experienced and seasoned. Keep in mind that California continues to pay more than its West Coast neighbors for cannabis industry workers. That is directly because they do not want other states stealing them away!

While this continues to create numerous opportunities for those looking to break into working inside the booming cannabis industry, it also continues to challenge employers and business owners to meet their weed worker demands.

If you are considering a cannabis business loan, Apply Here to break into this exciting industry, there are various options available. Companies that finance marijuana businesses offer versatile terms for well-qualified startup cannabis businesses.


Marijuana Business Daily – Chart: Eastern US salaries top Western compensation in cannabis