Cannabis Retail Boom Creates Over 2,000 New Jobs in Oregon
Culture Magazine-Benjamin M. Adams-6/4/2016
The retail market in Oregon is redefining itself as a job-creator. Oregon’s retail cannabis sector generated $46 million in expected wages and created 2,156 jobs in the state. The report, issued by New Economy Consulting and Whitney Economics, gathered data from the Oregon Health Authority.
The young cannabis market hired 1,345 new full-time employees and 805 part-time employees. The wages coming from these jobs is expected to reach $46 million. Interestingly enough, the report cites the latest figures from the beer industry. According to the latest figures from the Oregon Health Authority, private beer, wine and liquor retail stores employed 1,450 individuals compared to 2,156 in cannabis collectives.
“We believe Oregon’s cannabis retail sector is off to a strong start and that the potential for it to positively contribute to the health of the state’s economy and provide additional budgetary resources for key public services is significant,” researchers wrote in the study. “It became evident early in our study that we were barely scratching the surface of the cannabis industry’s economic impact and how many jobs currently exist within the commercial industry today.” Researchers surveyed registered Oregon collectives from December 9, 2015 to January 16, 2016. The collectives that responded employ 3 full-time employees and 2 part-time employees on average.
The cash-only status makes it hard for cannabis-related employers to offer benefits, however, 28 percent of respondents reported receiving benefits. 45 percent of cannabis collective offer benefits to full-time managers.
Oregon legalized cannabis for adults over the age of 21 in 2014. Cannabis didn’t go on sale until an emergency bill opened the gates to the retail market. The overall economic impact is expected to reach $196 million by 2017.