Top 10 US Cities For Marijuana Consumption Revealed

By Kelly Burch 02/23/18

All of the cities have medical marijuana programs, and five of them have legalized recreational use. 

a busy section of Times Square in New York City

New York City residents consume more than double the amount of marijuana than residents of any other city in the United States, and the Big Apple leads global pot consumption as well, despite the fact that cannabis for adult use remains illegal in New York state. 

The data was compiled as part of a report by Seedo, a European company that sells hydroponics and other supplies that can be used to grow marijuana. The report looked at the price of marijuana and consumption in cities around the globe. 

While New York City residents consume 77.44 metric tons of weed each year, residents of Karachi, Pakistan, the city with the second highest consumption rate, use just 41.95 metric tons, USA Today reports. New Delhi, India has the third highest rate of consumption at 38.26 metric tons, followed by Los Angeles at 36.06 metric tons. 

Chicago is the only other American city listed. The Windy City consumes 24.54 metric tons of weed each year, putting it at No. 8 globally for consumption. 

Marijuana use is fully illegal in Pakistan and only medical use is allowed in New York state. However, changing laws around cannabis use could affect consumption rates, especially in Los Angeles, where adult use of marijuana went into effect on January 1. 

The researchers pointed out that understanding pricing and consumption of marijuana in individual cities can help lawmakers and voters make more informed choices when it comes to changing cannabis laws. 

“This study has revealed some incredible insights into the kind of tax revenue that legalizing weed could generate,” Uri Zeevi, chief marketing officer at Seedo, said in a press release. “Take New York City for instance, which has the highest consumption level in the study at 77.44 metric tons of cannabis per year. If they taxed marijuana at the average U.S. cannabis tax level, the city could make $156.4 million in potential tax revenue per year. This is equivalent to providing nearly 3 months worth of free school meals to every single public school kid in New York City.”

The top 10 U.S. cities for cannabis consumption are, in descending order: New York, Los Angeles, Chicago, Houston (20.89 metric tons), Phoenix (14.65), Philadelphia (14.22), Dallas (11.95), San Francisco (7.85), Seattle (6.39), Denver (6.2), Washington, D.C. (6.18), Boston (6.1) and Miami (4.12). 

It’s important to note that the research only looked at total consumption, and did not account for differences in the population of these cities. However, it can serve as a snapshot to see how prevalent marijuana use is in different areas of the country.

All of the top 10 American cities reside in states with medical marijuana programs, and five of them have legalized marijuana for adult use. 

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Kelly Burch writes about addiction and mental health issues, particularly as they affect families. Follow her on TwitterFacebook, and LinkedIn.