November 2020

Top takeaways from the wholesale cannabis industry’s data engine


Each month, LeafLink Insights will share data-driven insights into some key topics like category sales, state by state performance, and pricing analysis. These takeaways are meant to help you better understand where the industry is headed and what kinds of opportunities exist for your business.

For a deep dive into our customizable, single-source analytics products, please request a demo.

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National View: The wholesale cannabis industry, as measured by LeafLink’s GMV (Gross Merchandise Value), grew 112% in October 2020 year-over-year (YoY).* 


On a same store sales basis, GMV grew 25% YoY in October 2020. The top performing brands in September were:

  • Grow Sciences (AZ) 

  • THC Design (CA)

  • Veritas Fine Cannabis (CO) 

  • Peregrine Manufacturing (MI)

  • Cannavative (NV)

  • oreKron (OR)


State View: Michigan grew the fastest at 213% compared with the same period a year ago.

Categories: Cartridges gained the most share nationally (+1.78 percentage points) from September to October 2020.

Buyers and Sellers: During October 2020, average sales per seller grew 53% YoY, and average spend per buyer grew 50% YoY.


California shows accelerated growth














For the month of October 2020, wholesale cannabis sales as measured by transactions on LeafLink’s marketplace (GMV) increased by 112 YoY.

To help clients gain a better understanding of state-level trends, we disclose market-specific information for six key states each month. Out of those disclosed this month, we continued to see strong growth in four states. However, Nevada and Oregon saw declines YoY in October. Encouragingly, year-over-year growth in California accelerated.  


Gummies lose market share; Packaged Flower continues to dominate

Flower led the market again during October 2020, with the Packaged Flower subcategory maintaining 20% of all marketplace sales. Second to Flower, Cartridges saw the largest growth in total sales, increasing 2% MoM, while Edibles & Ingestibles saw the largest drop MoM in market share (-1.7 percentage points). This decline was led by Gummies, which saw a 10% MoM decrease in sales.



Washington’s Flower market was the least saturated in the state

Each month, we visualize the relative competitiveness of 7 categories in key states to help clients best position themselves for the future and take advantage of opportunities to capture market share. 

In October 2020, Edibles & Ingestibles in Nevada was the most competitive category, with 62% of brands selling the category while only making up 16% of sales. Conversely, in Washington, Flower was the least saturated, with only 29% of brands selling the category while making up 38% of sales in the market.


Transaction volume is up by over 53% YoY

In October, we saw a 42/58 split between brands seeing an increase in sales, with the majority seeing a decrease during the month. Median brand growth was approximately 27% MoM, while those that declined saw a median decrease of 20%. Overall average transaction volume per brand decreased by 3% MoM during this month and increased 53% when compared to the same period last year.

The top brands in terms of same-store sales growth in each core state were Grow Sciences (AZ), THC Design (CA), Veritas Fine Cannabis (CO), Peregrine Manufacturing (MI), Cannavative (NV), and oreKron (OR). 



Retailers spent 50% more in October 2020 vs October 2019

We observed a similar distribution when analyzing October 2020 buyer spend. 46% of buyers increased spend at this time and the median growth in spending of 31% MoM. Those buyers who did reduce their spend decreased it by 24%. Average transaction volume per buyer increased by 4% MoM and grew over 50% when compared to the same period last year.


Concentrates prices are slowly increasing  

Average listed Flower prices*** peaked at $1,267 during October 2020, down from a 2020 high of $1,291 during the month leading up to 4/20. In California specifically, Flower pricing peaked in August and began to decline through September. 

Average listed Concentrates prices** rose slightly in October, increasing nearly 2% per week during the month. At the end of October, the average price of Concentrates was $46.99, a 6% dip from the 2020 high seen in June. 


*In each of 2019 and 2020, we lock the number of brands on January 1st of each year and measure GMV for these brands only.

**Same store sales refers to the comparison of GMV for the same brands in the 2019 period to GMV for the same brands in the 2020 period.

***Flower pricing is in lbs and concentrates is in grams.

Gross Merchandise Value (GMV) is defined as unit price times quantity sold. This is a barometer for overall volume of activity on our marketplace.  

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About LeafLink Insights

LeafLink Insights is the intelligence engine of the cannabis industry. By connecting brands, retailers, investors, and other industry participants to real-time first-party data, LeafLink powers smart and rapid industry growth. To learn how our suite of customizable analytics products can help your business optimize sales performance, request a demo.

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