Florida Medical Cannabis Patient Growth Falls Again

Each week, Florida’s Office of Medical Marijuana Use (OMMU), which is part of the state’s Department of Health, releases data on the state’s medical cannabis program, including an active patient count, a qualified physician count, new approvals and an update for each dispensary. That data includes the number of dispensaries and the unit sales each week. This is the third New Cannabis Ventures article in what we expect will provide updates every month. This article is based upon the update that was provided Friday as of 5/23. Readers who are interested in the  data going forward can visit the OMMU update page.

Patient Growth Is Slowing

We last updated on the Florida market three weeks ago, and the annual growth in patient count had fallen to 7.8% in early May from 8.4% in mid-April.  The rate is now at a record low of 7.2%:

At least the patient count is growing! It’s over 800K and at a large 4% of the population. The post-pandemic population boom aided patient growth, and some program improvements have helped excite Florida residents. There has been an increase in dispensaries to 638 from 568 a year ago. This is an increase of 12.3%, which is faster than the medical cannabis patient growth has been.

Unit Growth Remains Strong

When we updated the BDSA data earlier this month, we shared that Florida revenue was up only 1.8% from a year earlier in March. This was a record low too.

The increased competition and falling prices combined with slightly increasing sales suggest that unit growth remains strong. In the most recent week, sales of medical cannabis product units with THC grew 10.7% from a year ago, while smokeable flower units expanded 8.6% from the week ending 5/25/23.


We warned readers on May 17th to be careful investing in MSOs that are big in Florida. The entire cannabis market has pulled back since then, and the entire group of MSOs is sharply lower. The four leaders in Florida have declined sharply:

The overall market, as measured by the NCV Global Cannabis Stock Index, has declined by 10.5% since then, and the NCV American Cannabis Operator Index has dropped 14.0%. The Florida 4 have dropped by more than both of these.

It’s not clear that Florida voters will approve adult-use legalization in November. If they don’t, we think the market will not be happy with a mature medical market that is slowing and competitive. If they do, it’s not yet clear that the four largest operators will win going forward. Investors should remain careful in our view with the big Florida operators.

Exclusive article by Alan Brochstein, CFA
Alan Brochstein, CFA
Based in Houston, Alan leverages his experience as founder of online community 420 Investor, the first and still largest due diligence platform focused on the publicly-traded stocks in the cannabis industry. With his extensive network in the cannabis community, Alan continues to find new ways to connect the industry and facilitate its sustainable growth. At New Cannabis Ventures, he is responsible for content development and strategic alliances. Before shifting his focus to the cannabis industry in early 2013, Alan, who began his career on Wall Street in 1986, worked as an independent research analyst following over two decades in research and portfolio management. A prolific writer, with over 650 articles published since 2007 at Seeking Alpha, where he has 70,000 followers, Alan is a frequent speaker at industry conferences and a frequent source to the media, including the NY Times, the Wall Street Journal, Fox Business, and Bloomberg TV. Contact Alan: Twitter | Facebook | LinkedIn | Email

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