The state has several adult-use competitors in the area , including CT whose sales started January 10, 2023, and the aforementioned NJ. BDSA’s CEO, Roy Bingham, believes that the data demonstrates New Yorkers will ultimately prefer to buy in-state. But the potential market isn’t limited to just the residents of the state! Because of New York’s booming tourism industry, the state also stands to gain from canna-tourism, and there are businesses already operating cannabis tours.
BDSA’s survey of the data uncovered interesting nuances about New York’s market that makes it exceptionally interesting for those looking to start a vape business. According to medical sales data tracked by BDSA, vape and flower each accounted for 35% of New York’s medical marijuana sales. This is a larger share for the vape market than is normally observed in nascent adult-use markets. By comparison, in neighboring New Jersey, vapes represented 27% of market share in the first three months.
BDSA’s review of the New York cannabis consumer data also reveals a strong growth of cannabis users within the state . 45% identified as past six-months consumers, which is a 17% increase just since fall of 2021, with an additional 27% of New York adults saying that they planned to consume in the future.
This doesn’t mean that New York doesn’t have challenges to overcome. As opposed to the retail approach of other states, New York started by opening one dispensary on December 29,2022 (New Jersey’s adult use sales started with 12 locations). Additionally, because of the prices and difficult of access, the thriving illicit market will be a factor. In December, A task force in New York City arranged by Mayor Eric Adams seized 100,000 products and $4 million dollars in cash.The slow-to-start retail market is also due to an extensive equity review being performed by the Office of Cannabis Management (OCM). The OCM is tasked with parsing 1.2 million arrest records to determine communities most severely impacted by the drug war.
63 retail licensees are also awaiting the results of a federal lawsuit. The lawsuit contends that the OCM’s process, meant to limit the power and reach of multi-state-operators, is unconstitutional. and are instead using the time to build their brand.
Regardless of these challenges, BDSA expects New York to be the second largest contributor to cannabis sales growth through 2026.
Smart Moves in Creating Your NY Vape Business
New York offers a unique opportunity for those looking to start a vape business, but it will take several smart moves to position your business for success.
Patience is Key
New markets, especially one in heavily regulated environments such a New York, will always take some lead time. Expect months of delays before you’re able to realize revenue, and build this into your business plan. Use the time to build your brand, infrastructure, and key relationships.
Stay Lean: Small and focused
In addition to understanding your market and the segment you are aiming for, also understand your product. Instead of focusing on a vast menu of products, focus on building a core of products that can create meaningful lines for your brand. Focus on perfecting your product: it’s consistency, quality, and uniqueness will all contribute to its success.
Don’t Forget your Packaging!
Packaging is already a core part of connecting your brand with your users. But BDSA’s insights on the New York market centers it as especially important: “Packaging is also important to New York consumers, who are significantly more likely to purchase a product based on visually appealing packaging, discreet packaging, resealable or reusable packaging, and high-quality, premium packaging relative to consumers in other adult-use states.”
Keep Overhead Low Through Automation
One of the key ways to keep overhead low in a vape business is to build in as many automation tactics as you can from the start. ATGPharma / OneSupply offers automation options and support that grow with your business and its needs. Automatic and semi-automatic filling solutions, packaging solutions together with top-notch and experienced support helps to keep your business svelte. Don’t limit automation in your vape business to just product creation, filling, or packaging. It can also help in many other key facets in as such as paperwork tracking and compliance, testing and quality control of products, and tracking inventory and sales.
New York’s unique market offers cannabis vape businesses an exciting entry into one of the largest-growing cannabis markets. If you’re looking for an exciting market in which to build a vape brand, New York is a great place to research. When putting together your business plan, be sure to include cost-saving automation and innovative packaging to make the most out of this unique opportunity!