You may have noticed flower pricing across the board has seen a spike. On average, the price of loose flower and prerolls in Washington state has increased 19% year over year in Q3. Let’s take a moment to look into some of the reasons why the Washington flower market is seeing an increase and if this increase is temporary.
Seeing these upticks you might wonder what’s changing. One reason for fluctuations could be that smaller farms, tier-1 and 2, are going out of business – unable to keep up with larger farms that have the ability to offer lower bulk pricing to buyers. When prices hit bottom in 2019 due to oversupply, some smaller licensees chose not to continue growing because the cost of production outweighed potential profit. 
In this already challenging market, cannabis flower demand in Washington is at an all-time high (no pun intended). In simple economic terms, in 2020 the demand out-paced the supply. The arrival of the COVID-19 pandemic created a surge of new buyers as consumers spent more time at home. In an already strained supply chain, prices jumped again to accommodate the demand. The good news is that farms saw this as an opportunity to expand their production and have made it a top priority goal in 2021.
Another cause of market fluctuations comes from growing seasons: a bad outdoor growing season can have a huge effect on pricing. While Western Washington growers typically favor indoor-grown cannabis for flower, a bad outdoor growing season can still affect other products outside of bulk bud. Many concentrates and oils are made with outdoor flower – a bad season can mean higher concentrate prices for consumers. From 2020 to 2021, concentrates have seen a 3% increase and a Washington State LCB 2020 Canopy Report found that the 2020 outdoor crops were impacted by the widespread seasonal wildfires. 
If you’re used to 2019 prices, it might feel a little shocking to see how bud prices have shifted this past year. Not all prices have gone up though. If you’re looking for a product that has seen a decrease in pricing, look to edibles. Edibles have seen on average a 3%-11% decrease in nationwide pricing making them more affordable than ever and a good introduction to cannabis for new users. 
Even with all the price increases, the good news is that Washington State remains one of the most affordable adult-use cannabis markets among legal states, so we feel pretty lucky.  If you’re looking for more ways to save, we offer our lowest prices on bud every Agate Dreams Ounce day. Strains vary by month, so keep an eye out for more information!
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