Skip to Main Content

Greatest Gen Dominates Illicit Market

Cannabis Retailer recently commissioned Caddle Insights to survey 10,279 Canadians on cannabis shopping habits, their preferences on consumption lounges, and the importance of loyalty programs. Consumer opinion varied widely based on age, gender, and location. Here’s what the survey found.

Survey Demographics

Out of the 10,279 Canadian surveyed, 49% are female and 48% are male.
Survey respondents were mostly from Canada’s most populated provinces: 38.8% in Ontario, 22.9% in Quebec, 14% in British Columbia, and 11.2% in Alberta.

Cannabis Purchasing Habits by Age, Gender, and Province

Only 19% of Canadians surveyed purchased cannabis in the past three months and 36% purchased cannabis from the illicit market.

Breaking down results by gender, province, and age, is where these purchasing habits get interesting:

·        15% of females versus 23% of males have purchased cannabis in the past three months
·        28% of women versus 41% of men have purchased cannabis from the illicit market in the past three months

Gen X purchased close to the Canadian ‘average’ of cannabis at 18%, while the other ages vary widely: 4% greatest and silent generations, 12% baby boomers, 28% Gen Z, and 29% millennials have purchased cannabis in the past three months.

The greatest and silent generations dominated the illicit market, with 84% purchasing illicit cannabis in the past three months. This is likely due to the fact that cannabis has been illicit for most of their lifetimes. In comparison, 26% baby boomers, 30% Gen X, 38% millennials, and 46% Gen Z have purchased illicit cannabis.

With respect to location, 31% Alberta and 30% Ontario residents have purchased illicit cannabis. Notably higher, 47% British Columbia and 49% Quebec residents have purchased cannabis from the illicit market in the last three months.

Consumption Lounge Location Preferences

Survey respondents were also asked where they would like to see a cannabis consumption lounge open. Overall, 42.3% of respondents said in a cannabis store, 33.5% want a cannabis-only lounge, 26.3% in a coffee shop, 23.8% in a pub or bar, 23.7% at special events, 23.4% in a private club, and 15.2% other.

Once again, responses vary widely when broken down by age, gender, and province.

37% of women would like to see a cannabis-only lounge versus 30.9% of men. Another notable difference from the ‘Canadian average’ is that 19.8% of women would like to see a consumption lounge in a private club versus 26% of men.

Cannabis stores were most popular among Gen Z, with 45.3% of the generation responding that it was a preferred location, and least popular with the greatest and silent generations. These oldest generations prefer other locations, with a whopping 77% indicating so.

Unlike other Canadians, baby boomers had less preference for coffee shops (20.2%), pubs and bars (15.8%), and special events (16.6%) as consumption lounge locations. Pubs and bars and special events were popular among millennials, with 29.5% and 27.5%, respectively, saying they would be preferred locations.

Close to 45% of Alberta residents would like to see consumption lounges as cannabis-only lounges, versus 34% Ontario, 31.2% BC, and 24% Quebec residents. Coffee shops and pubs and bars were also more preferred as consumption lounge locations by Alberta residents.

Cannabis Products Consumed in Consumption Lounges

Survey respondents were asked what kinds of cannabis products should be allowed to be consumed at consumption lounges. Overall, flower was the most popular at 47.4%, followed by edibles at 31.1%, concentrates 14.3%, and oils 7.2%.

There continues to be variation in response based on demographics. Some notable differences include:

·        27% of males said edibles should be allowed to be consumed in consumption lounges versus 37% of females
·        35.6% of baby boomers said flower should be allowed to be consumed versus 61% of the greatest and silent generation
·        On the flip side, 36.4% of baby boomers said edibles should be allowed to be consumed versus 16.1% of the oldest generations and 25.5% of Gen Z
·        Concentrates were most popular with Gen Z with 20.5% saying they should be allowed, while 0% of the greatest and silent generations agreed
·        Oils varied widely, with 23% of the greatest and silent generations saying they should be allowed and only 2.9% of Gen Z

Importance of a Loyalty Program

For Canadians in general, 42.2% said a loyalty program is very important in their decision to frequent a cannabis store, followed by 26.2% at somewhat important, 18% neutral, and 13.5% not very important or not at all important.

Males find greater importance in a loyalty program than females. 72% of males said it was very important or somewhat important, versus 63.2% of females.

A loyalty program is most important to the greatest and silent generations with 77% of respondents saying it is very important in their decision to frequent a cannabis store. All other ages were close to the Canadian average, with the exception of only 35.1% of baby boomers saying it is very important. However, baby boomers were the largest age group to say a loyalty program is not at all important at 18.4%, well above the Canadian average of 7.8%.

Tags: baby boomers (3), cannabis consumer (8), cannabis consumption (22), cannabis purchases (6), consumer data (23), consumption lounges (6), Gen Z (17), greatest generation (1), illicit market (21), millennials (16)