In the past, choosing a state to retire in was based on several factors: how
nice the weather was, how close the grandchildren were, and how many
golf courses the area offered.
Today, it’s pretty safe to add "how accessible medical marijuana is" to
More and more, retirees are seeking out states that offer medical
This reality is largely attributed to the fact that older people with
health conditions want access to the therapeutic benefits of medical
cannabis. As a result, retirees are flocking to states like Oregon,
California, Washington, Alaska, and Colorado, where the quality of life
is good and the medical access to marijuana is even better.
The Striking Statistics
Retirees who head to a dispensary in one of these states are much less
likely to encounter young people than people a lot like
themselves — retired seniors with health conditions that require
treatment by medical marijuana. Dispensaries in retiree-rich towns are
packed with chemotherapy patients, severely arthritis sufferers in
wheelchairs, and seniors suffering from degenerative conditions like
Many of the conditions that medical marijuana serves to treat, like pain and
loss of appetite, are issues that affect seniors, so it makes
sense that medical marijuana is popular among the retired demographic.
Although medicinal cannabis isn’t the only reason seniors are
flocking to these states, it’s impossible to deny that it’s playing a
large part in their decisions. In fact, ArcView Market
Research reports that, in 2014,
the medical marijuana market amounted to $2.4 billion dollars, a figure
that is projected to balloon to $3.4 billion in 2015. Statistics like
this provide solid evidence that medical marijuana is a sought-after
market. Many seniors find the availability of medicinal cannabis so
important that they are willing to base their choice of state on whether
access is permitted.
When you take into account that Colorado, which made the choice to
legalize medical marijuana in
has the highest inbound percentage of retirees in the country right now
and that seniors are the fastest-growing
percentage of medical marijuana
users, it’s impossible to deny the fact that medicinal marijuana is
important to retirees.
Although medical marijuana continues to be a contentious topic around
the country, one thing is clear: states that have made medical marijuana
legal are enjoying an increase in economy and population thanks to the
influx of retirees who appreciate their stance on therapeutic cannabis.