The green wave that’s driving cannabis legalization in the U.S. is being powered by an unexpected group: Baby Boomers and the Silent Generation. The people born in the 36 years between 1928 and 1964 are providing strong demand for cannabis.
In fact, the cohort of people who will turn 55 or older in 2019
This fledgling “mature market” has huge potential as a growing
A good place to start when thinking about seniors is to learn about how and why they want to consume cannabis. Most Boomers have at least a passing familiarity with cannabis. After all, this is the generation that gave us flower power, the Summer of Love and Woodstock. But these days, instead of looking for a mellow groove, they’re hoping cannabis can provide relief from the trials and tribulations of later life, such as arthritis, inflammation and chronic pain.
Senior consumers are also looking for natural alternatives to pharmaceutical products, especially opioids. Some may be using cannabis to lessen the side effects of chemotherapy. Others are turning to cannabis to combat depression and anxiety or hasten sleep, as well as enhance libido and creativity.
It’s also worth noting how the Boomers like their cannabis served.
That’s because these products tick a few boxes for this generation in terms of being low-dose, discreet and approachable. Users can microdose with candies that contain as little as three milligrams of THC or CBD. The
A few more things worth noting about older cannabis consumers. As a group, they’re not short of disposable income now that many of them are empty-nesters — they’re among the highest monthly spenders on cannabis products. They’re relatively brand loyal too, so it’s worth trying to win their business from the get-go. A note to advertisers: this is a demographic where word of mouth is still the best recommendation.
Because of limited mobility and desire for discretion, they want their cannabis either delivered to their door or they want an easy way to get to a dispensary, hence the rise of several Boomer-friendly regular shuttle buses that ferry seniors straight from home to the store and back again.
It’s crucial that dispensaries make this generation feel comfortable
It’s important to make them feel welcomed and cared for. That can start at the design level by making sure dispensaries are open, clean and user-friendly. For example, my company’s chain of dispensaries called The Botanist is inspired by 19th Century laboratories, greenhouses and the study of botany. There are lush botanical walls, weathered wood, bell jars
It will take companies time before they find the best approach to