In statistics released in August 2020, the CBD industry consumer and market intelligence firm Brightfield Group outlined results of its extensive survey of CBD users meant to get a clearer understanding of the COVID-19 pandemic’s effect on what had been a burgeoning marketplace.
Market growth didn’t reach the optimistic pre-pandemic levels expected for 2020. Much of that was certainly a result of the pandemic suppressing CBD sales potential due to economic pressures on both consumers and retailers. Still, regular CBD users are buying more product during these tough times. Brightfield surveyed 5,000 CBD customers in June 2020, and found that 39% of CBD buyers have increased their CBD consumption due to the pandemic.
Brightfield also found that, despite negative effects of the pandemic on the economy in general, the CBD industry itself has remained bullish on demand, continuing to innovate in the areas of packaging, product quality, flavors and textures, as well as branding.
While that may project as a positive for the industry as a whole, sheltering orders have hurt brick-and-mortar retail sales of cannabidiol and related products. Brightfield’s June survey found that 45% of CBD consumers had moved their CBD shopping online. Millennials were most likely to make that switch, with more than half of them opting for cyber purchases.
The demographic breakdown of CBD users who increased their consumption saw 51% of baby boomers leading the way, closely trailed by Generation X at 48%. For millennials, 40% are buying more CBD products followed by Generation Z at 17%.
The hemp derived CD market is still projected to reach $4.7B this year thanks to a projected 14% growth rate compared to 2019.
While growth of CBD topicals and edibles meant to ease what ails the body are becoming increasingly popular, the top ailment of CBD users in the survey was anxiety, with 42% of users taking the edge off with CBD. Depression and anxiety ranked No. 2 and No. 6, respectively.
And while the pandemic’s economic blow hurt the market in 2020, vacillation on the part of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration continued its seeming lack of action. Should the FDA settle on lasting regulation that provides certainty to CBD-hemp growers, makers and retailers, look for the expectations of market growth to move even higher.