April 20 (4/20) is a kind of American national holiday in the pot-smoking world, but no one seems to know exactly why. Is it Bob Dylan’s “Rainy Day Women #12 & 35” (12 x 35 = 420)? Is it an old police code (a 420) for marijuana possession? Or is it for some other wild reason, like Adolf Hitler’s birthday?
Whatever the reason, to Eaze Solutions, Inc. this week seemed a good time to release the results of its recent cannabis survey.
Eaze is a four year-old San Francisco-based technology platform serving licensed cannabis dispensaries and brands. The company’s technology provides help to cannabis businesses with compliance, inventory management and delivery. Eaze says it helps consumers too by connecting them either online or via mobile. According to Eaze’s social impact director, Jennifer Lujan, the company’s mission is to “improve people’s lives by helping them understand the benefits of cannabis and by providing them with safe, convenient access to legal cannabis products.”
In four years, Eaze has raised $52 million in financial backing and has signed with over 60 cannabis brands, accounting for almost 2.5 million deliveries handled by the company’s drivers. What delivery costs a consumer is made complicated by varying regulations in various locales; the Eaze blog shows why.
One of the company’s market focuses has been minority communities that the company claims have suffered the most from the federal “war on drugs.” To address that issue, Eaze joined forces with the Oakland-based Hood Incubator to provide equity to minorities in the cannabis business.
More important, Eaze views the legal recreational cannabis market as being in high gear, literally. For future marketing programs, the company wanted to know what its customers think. On March 27-28, 2018 an email survey went out to its user database that garnered 4,852 respondents.
According to Eaze, nearly half responding to the survey said: “they plan to openly celebrate 4/20 this year by posting on social media, the beginning of a wave of openness about cannabis already under way in 2018. One in eight said they’d be marking 4/20 for the first time, and 73% of those said legal adult-use is the reason.”
The majority celebrating cannabis 4/20 on social media are likely to be women–the survey indicated more women than men want to talk about it on social media. And legal or not in California, that state’s women are twice as likely than men to talk about cannabis use with their children. Notwithstanding legal status, a majority of respondents—60%—are not inclined to share their cannabis use with employers, citing “career concerns.”
What is no surprise is that Baby Boomers (37%) and Millennials (42%) are less open about their cannabis use than those in Generation X (46%) or Z (52%)—an average 73% of responders say they are open about it with their parents.
Before joining Eaze as its social impact director, Jennifer Lujan founded Weed for Good, “a compassionate care non-profit that provides free medical cannabis and education to low-income patients suffering from chronic and terminal illnesses.” Eaze helps facilitate access and delivery to those patients today and Lujan says, “The current California legal cannabis infrastructure was built on more than 21 years of legal medical cannabis access for patients. It’s important for us to support compassionate care programs to ensure they’re able to continue providing access to patients in need of medical cannabis.”
Survey respondents gave clarity to that point: 95% have a friend or family member who benefited from medical marijuana.
The survey sample of approximately 5,000 gleaned from a population of 350,000 provides Eaze with a 95% confidence level—a margin of error of 1.4 (plus or minus). It indicates the tide has turned on cannabis, and that will be good for the company.
Today, Eaze continues to serve the California market. But the combined value of recreational and medical legalized sales across the country has been estimated at almost $22 billion by 2020. Eaze has its eyes on markets in other states.