Diversity, Equity And Inclusion In Cannabis Industry: New Report Shows Little Change

MJBizDaily’s Diversity, Equity and Inclusion in the Cannabis Industry latest report shows the percentage of executive positions held by women and racial minorities in the U.S. cannabis industry remains little changed in 2022 compared to last year.

“Both groups have experienced steep declines from pre-pandemic highs when they outpaced their cohorts in mainstream business,” reads the report.

“Cannabis industry experts suggest that competitive markets tend to favor businesses with white men in ownership and leadership positions, primarily because of their established access to capital,” said Andrew Long, data reporter at MJBiz. “It should also be noted that the fallout from the pandemic hit female and non-white business owners harder than it did white men.”

According to the report, “Marginalized groups fared better in their respective state-regulated markets this year versus the national numbers we calculated from MJBizDaily survey results.”

Demographic data for owners and employees in the cannabis industry remains limited, thus, the report looks at two states at very different points in their journey: Colorado, a mature market, and Illinois, an upstart.

Highlights Of The Report

  • Women holding executive positions in the cannabis industry grew by only one percentage point over the year, to 23.1%. That’s down sharply from 36.8% in 2019, before the COVID-19 pandemic. The number is below national averages.
  • Executive positions held by racial minorities in the industry fell to a new low for the group since MJBizDaily began tracking in 2017, dropping to 12.1% in 2022 from 13.1% in 2021. This is well below the average for all U.S. businesses.

Additional information in the report includes:

  • Breakdown of cannabis ownership by a group
  • Women, minority employment by sector in cannabis
  • Lesson from failed social equity programs
  • Nationwide challenges faced by social equity applicants
  • The role of access to capital post-pandemic
  • Executive profiles.

Photo by Miles Peacock on Unsplash

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Posted In: CannabisNewsMarketsAndrew LongCannabis Social Equity
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