Most cannabis consumers have their go-to snacks when high, but researchers in Georgia and Connecticut looked at retail scanner data to see which high-calorie snack foods saw a sales spike in states that legalized recreational cannabis. They published the results in an academic paper that should have Hostess Cake and Frito-Lay rushing to support more legalization initiatives.
Based on the retail data, which types of snack foods benefit most from the munchies? Leading the way, chips experienced 5.3 percent sales growth in states after they approved legalization. Cookies came in second with 4.1 percent sales growth, followed by ice cream in the third spot with 3.1 percent growth. Remove state- and pair-specific time trends from the equation, and these percentages jump to 6.6, 6 and 5, respectively. According to Statista, salty snack food alone is a $67 billion industry in the U.S., so these percentage bumps mean hundreds of millions in added revenue.
Do these findings really surprise anyone? Probably not, especially for the people at Ben & Jerry's who came up with ice cream flavors like Half Baked, Magic Brownies and Satisfy My Bowl.