Edibles containing cannabis have been a widely accepted form of consumption for a long time, even though marijuana has not been a legal drug. However, as the drug becomes more widely accepted and has been legalized in a number of states, new methods of consumption have been created. One of those is the marijuana-infused beverage.
California Dreamin’ is a company that launched in 2017, started with a beverage that came to life in the co-creators’ kitchen. The company has a line of four fruit-flavoured beverages that combine water and THC and carbonate, allowing the consumer the enjoyment of a soda that provides highs similar to alcohol without the corresponding issues. Other companies have followed California Dreamin’ into the fray, offering IPAs infused with CBD. Still others are considering partnerships with marijuana-focused businesses, in an effort to break into the new market.
Both Constellation Brands, maker of Corona Beer, and Molson Coors have announced plans to partner with companies that produce marijuana. Constellation Brands invested $4 billion towards that end earlier this year.
Beverage companies have been struggling with a decline in sales, particularly in sodas and other unhealthy beverages. Beers are being edged out of the market by wine and liquor, and the healthy alternatives are winning out over beverages long known to be high in calories and low in nutrients.
Coca-Cola (NYSE: KO), one company seeing the strain of this shift in societal preference, is looking to create a line of CBD-infused drinks that will be designed to help with pain. These will be marketed as wellness beverages, allowing them an advantage in a market where health is the main focus.
As with any product, the potential success is unknown. However, businesses are looking to provide a new alternative, and with increasing attention to states and legalized recreational use, it’s hard to say what level of reception the drinks will see across the United States.
For now, drinking CBD is limited to California and a few of the other states that have already passed legislation permitting the use of marijuana recreationally. The product may see greater market availability in Canada following the country’s legalization of recreational use of marijuana, which takes effect in October.
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