Cannabis Edibles. A Real Food & Beverage Trend?

What a different world we find ourselves in today. Cannabis as a mainstream product ingredient in your local grocery store products? It just could happen.

Food & Beverage and Cannabis.

Under the 2018 Farm Bill, cultivation of hemp, a plant in the cannabis family, became legal. Derivatives from hemp, including CBD – which is known as an aid for relaxation, anxiety and pain – are no longer considered narcotics.

And while the FDA still prohibits food and beverage containing CBD (across state lines), things are moving forward for acceptance and availability overall.

“There will be a rush for people to incorporate it into their food products” – Phil Kafarakis, President of the Specialty Foods Association

Not to be left out, marijuana is also an up-and-coming food and beverage ingredient. Currently legal in some form in 33+ states, industry watchers predict full federal legalization of marijuana sometime in 2021-2022. Spending (BDS Analytics) on cannabis edibles could grow to as much as $4.1 billion in sales (2022) comparative to 2018’s $1.5 billion industry.

On top of that, starting in Canada, alcoholic beverage companies have made big investments in the cannabis space. Recently, Constellation Brands invested $3.9 billion in cannabis company Canopy Growth as an example.

“There’s not a single large CPG company in the world that doesn’t have somebody, and in some cases, an entire team evaluating the cannabis sector right now,” – Troy Dayton, CEO of The Arcview Group

Safe and the future.

The cannabis industry has done a remarkable job of responsibly self-regulating. The ingenuity and innovation, from safety, to traceability, to packaging, to product development, has been extraordinary.

With some form of legalization now enacted in most U.S. States, and a steady stream of promising health and medical findings, it appears that the policy of cannabis prohibition may be at a permanent end. With that said, look to the near future and what new creations will be had by the Food & Beverage industry.

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