According to an Arcview Market Research analysis, North American cannabis sales are expected to reach $10 billion this year – a 33 percent increase over 2016 totals. Troy Dayton, Arcview Group CEO, compared the industry’s growth to cryptocurrency.

“Aside from cryptocurrency, there is simply no other industry changing as rapidly or as unevenly as the cannabis sector. That makes capturing the data, predicting consumer behavior, and forecasting political developments both extraordinarily difficult and complicated, and one of the most vital tools for investors, entrepreneurs, and regulators trying to make sense of it all.” – Dayton.

The report indicates that the new figures are due in part to Nevada launching adult-use sales earlier than anticipated and Germany rolling out its medical cannabis program.

“Our data shows positive indicators across the board for the legal cannabis industry, in North America and around the globe. The passage of the 2016 ballot initiatives and continued maturation of the existing adult-use markets are the primary drivers of the growth this year.” – Tom Adams, editor-in-chief at Arcview Market Research and principal analyst at BDS Analytics.

The analysts suggest that next year’s figures will exceed the firm’s previous estimates due to Canada’s expected move to a legalized regime, California’s implementation of Prop. 64 and Nevada regulators considering allowing cannabis-related tourism.

Arcview projects that by 2021 the legal cannabis industry will reach $24.5 billion, representing a 28 percent compound annual growth rate.

Editor’s note: This article has been updated for accuracy — a previous version indicated that the $10 billion industry was in North American retail cannabis sales only and not its industry as a whole.

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