Concerns around how the legalization of marijuana for adult use may prompt an increase in the number of young users have been floated by both parents and health researchers since talks on legalization began a decade ago. Critics against the policy change have even gone as far as to issue warnings with no evidence to back the claims. However, new research has found that the legalization of marijuana does not cause more young individuals to try using the substance.
The study, which was conducted by researchers at Michigan State University, found that legalized marijuana retail sales did not increase the number of underage individuals who consumed cannabis. The researchers cited existing studies on the use of alcohol among the youth to highlight the importance between prevalence and incidence. Research from 2016 and 2018 shows that a big proportion of youth in the United States did not drink alcohol until they could legally. The researchers theorized that the same trend could be true with marijuana.
For their study, the researchers used public data of individuals aged between 12 and 20, then those aged 21 and above, obtained from the National Survey on Drug Use and Health. They analyzed the data using the event study model in an attempt to evaluate the causal effect legalization had on marijuana use. This is in addition to projecting levels of cannabis use if legalization hadn’t been enacted.
They discovered that legalizing adult-use marijuana did increase first-time marijuana consumption — but only among individuals who could use the drug legally once the policy change was enacted. In their report, the researchers noted that they observed no evidence of an increase in use among underage individuals.
The lead author of the study, Barrett Wallace Montgomery, stated that by contrast, the number of individuals aged 21 and above who were trying marijuana for the first time after adult-use legalization could double or triple.
NORML, a marijuana advocacy group, stated in a recent blog post that the study’s findings were consistent with previous research, which had shown that adult-use legalization wasn’t linked to increased access or use among young individuals.
The study was partly funded by the National Institutes of Health and its findings were published in the “PLOS One” journal. The study claims to be the first one designed to assess incidence of use as a result of the legalization of adult-use cannabis. Prior studies have centered on prevalence, trying to measure the effect legalization has had on how much marijuana individuals use or how often they use it.
Marijuana industry actors such as Cannabis Strategic Ventures Inc. (OTC: NUGS) will be pleased to see that independent studies are confirming what they knew all along —rather than increasing underage access, creating legal markets would limit how easy it is for youth to get their hands on marijuana.
NOTE TO INVESTORS: The latest news and updates relating to Cannabis Strategic Ventures Inc. (OTC: NUGS) are available in the company’s newsroom at http://cnw.fm/NUGS
CNW420 spotlights the latest developments in the rapidly evolving cannabis industry through the release of two informative articles each business day. Our concise, informative content serves as a gateway for investors interested in the legalized cannabis sector and provides updates on how regulatory developments may impact financial markets. Articles are released each business day at 4:20 a.m. and 4:20 p.m. Eastern – our tribute to the time synonymous with cannabis culture. If marijuana and the burgeoning industry surrounding it are on your radar, CNW420 is for you! Check back daily to stay up-to-date on the latest milestones in the fast -changing world of cannabis.
To receive instant SMS alerts, text CANNABIS to 21000 (U.S. Mobile Phones Only)
For more information please visit https://www.CNW420.com
Do you have questions or are you interested in working with CNW420? Ask our Editor
CNW420 is part of the InvestorBrandNetwork.