The CBD market is maturing, and new data from Morning Consult puts some more figures behind CBD’s surge, finding that 1 in 3 US adults have tried a product with CBD in it, up from about one-quarter (24%) in 2019.
As has been the case for several years now, the CBD market’s popularity is being led by younger generations, with Millennials in particular putting some distance in between them and the rest of the US adult population. As of this latest survey half (49%) of Millennials report having tried a product with CBD in it, up from close to a third (32%) in 2019.
Further behind, close to 4 in 10 (37% of) Gen Z adults report having tried a CBD product, up from 28% in 2019, while 3 in 10 Gen Xers have also joined in, up from 23% a few years ago.
Baby Boomers are the least likely to have tried a CBD product, though more than 1 in 5 (22%) now have (up from 16% in 2019).
Millennials Eye Mental Health Benefits
Adults generally tend to associate CBD with pain relief, as two-thirds (66%) of respondents say they believe a benefit is to relieve pain. Not too far behind, 58% of adults say a benefit is to reduce anxiety. This is in line with research published last year by The Integer Group, in which pain relief was the top reason given for buying CBD products, ahead of anxiety reduction.
For Millennials responding to this latest survey, though, these benefits are neck and neck, with 68% believing pain relief to be a benefit and 67% seeing reduced anxiety as one.
Millennials are also considerably more likely than the adult average to believe that CBD can help offset symptoms of depression (46%, vs. 35% of adults overall) and reduce PTSD symptoms (41% vs. 33%).
As a result, Millennials are also far more likely than others to say they’re very interested in taking CBD for these benefits. In fact, more Millennials (46%, vs. 31% of adults overall) are very interested in taking CBD to reduce anxiety than for any other reason. Millennials are also considerably more apt to be very interested in CBD to offset depression symptoms (41% vs. 26%) and to reduce PTSD symptoms (33% vs. 21%).
Interest in THC Products Also High
The Morning Consult analysts write that “increased usage of CBD may also pave the way for THC-infused products in the food & beverage world, pending federal legality.” In fact, the results indicate that interest in THC-infused products is already as high as it is for CBD products.
As an example, the survey results show that 22% of US adults are very interested in trying food or beverage products that contain THC, versus 19% for CBD. Expanding to those who are either very or somewhat interested, and CBD (48%) overtakes THC (43%), but among Millennials the figures are virtually equal (64% and 62%, respectively).
Meanwhile, slightly more US adults report having tried food/cooking oils infused with THC (20%) than with CBD (18%), and for infused beverages THC (15%) and CBD (14%) are relatively on par. Among the younger crowd, there’s near parity in trials of infused beverages, while considerably more have tried out food/cooking oils infused with THC (38%) than with CBD (32%).
For most who have tried these products, the frequency of doing so is still irregular, with the majority using them once a month or less. Nonetheless, there are some relatively heavy users, as a range of 15-22%, depending on the product, report doing so at least a few times a week, if not every day.
About the Data: The results are based on a January 2022 survey of a representative sample of 2,201 US adults.