Green Wednesday cannabis sales rivaled the likes of 4/20 and the Friday preceding July 4, as U.S. customers stocked up on non-inhalable products ahead of the Thanksgiving holiday, according to cannabis data and research company Headset.
The day before Thanksgiving, known as Green Wednesday in the cannabis industry, featured a 48% sales increase compared to the three previous Wednesdays in November for retailers in California, Colorado, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon and Washington, Headset reported Nov. 28. That uptick makes Green Wednesday the third-highest grossing day of cannabis sales so far in 2022, bested only by April 20 and Friday, July 1.
Headset’s three-day analysis also revealed that Thanksgiving Day sales fell 65% compared to a normal Thursday while Black Friday sales increased 1% compared to a typical Friday—the busiest day of the week for most cannabis dispensaries.
Overall, inhalable product categories experienced the most significant dips during the three-day holiday stretch, including concentrates (-11.4%), flower (-10.8%) and prerolls (-6.4%), according to Headset. More discrete product categories like topicals (15.3%), beverages (13.2%) and edibles (6.1%) experienced the largest sales growth during the holiday stretch.
While Headset’s data came from a seven-state analysis, figures directly from the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission (CCC) revealed an even greater uptick for Green Wednesday, when licensed adult-use retailers in the commonwealth recorded nearly $7 million in sales. That benchmark represents an 85% increase compared to a typical Wednesday from five weeks of data Cannabis Business Times collected from May 30 to July 3 of this year—when the average Wednesday brought in nearly $3.8 million in sales.
Fridays were the busiest day of the week for Massachusetts retailers, representing 18.8% of sales, followed by Saturdays (16.9%), Thursdays (14.8%) and Wednesdays (13.1%) during the analysis conducted by CBT.
But with the Thanksgiving holiday shuffling things, Green Wednesday accounted for 23% of sales among Massachusetts retailers last week, followed by Black Friday (20.9%), Saturday (15.6%) and Tuesday (14.4%). Thanksgiving Day, when adult-use customers spent $337,502 at Massachusetts dispensaries, accounted for 1.1% of sales for the week.
Day Sales (adult-use) % of Sales Mon. 11/21 $3,769,444.68 12.42% Tue. 11/22 $4,660,071.33 15.36% Wed. 11/23 $6,971,457.90 22.98% Thu. 11/24 $337,501.93 1.11% Fri. 11/25 $6,341,856.50 20.90% Sat. 11/26 $4,725,621.16 15.57% Sun. 11/27 $3,537,130.00 11.66% Total $30,343,083.50 100.00%
With the high traffic numbers expected for Green Wednesday—which also was the third-highest grossing sales day in 2021, according to industry software company Akerna—retailers weren’t so fast to hand out holiday discounts, according to Headset. During the three days in Headset’s seven-state analysis, Green Wednesday’s average discount was 19.8%, while Thanksgiving Day (22.2%) and Black Friday (23.7%) saw the largest average discounts—both with an increase of more than 8 percentage points compared to typical Thursdays and Fridays in November.