Four states that could legalize in the coming year

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During his annual speech to conference-goers in Las Vegas this week, Marijuana Business Daily CEO Chris Walsh predicted four more states will legalize cannabis to some extent in 2022.

States to watch

From an adult-use perspective, Walsh said to keep a close eye on Ohio, Missouri, South Dakota, Oklahoma, North Dakota, Maryland and Arkansas. On the medical front, Nebraska and Idaho could also vote in favor of cannabis policy reform. 

M&A all the way

Walsh also predicted that the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) won’t be the ones to regulate ingestible CBD, but that states will likely be the ones to step in. Federal laws, even in banking, likely won’t change, he said, and sales will flatten in Colorado, Washington state and Oregon. 

And the consolidation trend will continue in 2022. “We’re going to see our biggest year in 2022 for M&A,” he said. “That’s going to accelerate. You’re going to see some of the biggest companies coming together.”

What’s next

Overall, sales will continue to climb, he said — and could even double by 2025 to $45.9 billion. It’s hard to deny that, even in very tough times, cannabis is resilient.

“Despite the lockdowns and the political, social and economic unrest,” he said, “the cannabis industry has prevailed – and been deemed essential.”

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