CBD and THC infused drinks are bubbling up all over the place. From Dry January to legal weed, the beverage market is being forced to adapt with new cannabis-infused beverages. But what is the difference between hemp (CBD) beverages and cannabis beverages? Where can you find them and how much THC is in them? Read on for all the answers.
Why are more people drinking THC & CBD beverages?
According to data from Seattle-based cannabis analytics firm Headset, sales of cannabis-infused beverages increased 40.3% in 2020 versus 2019 across recreational markets in California, Colorado, Nevada, Oregon (medical and adult use) and Washington state.
Could it be lifestyle changes during the pandemic? New approaches to work from home? Whatever the reason, the bender appears to be over for booming booze sales sparked by the pandemic. During peak stay-at-home orders, retail alcohol sales shot up as much as 55% in March 2020 with spirits, wine and beer among the top sellers.
For the first time in a year, since Covid-19 began spreading across the United States forcing Americans to stay home, retail alcohol sales have fallen. That's according to data from Nielsen, which reported that total sales declined 1.9% for the week ending March 13.
Healthy options for the New Year
Marijuana beverage companies, for example, have been cashing in on health-related trends such as Dry January, when alcohol drinkers abstain for the month and look for alternative ways to relax. Studies have shown that cannabis helps our bodies regulate stress response. In some research studies, cannabis has been shown to help with depression and alcohol dependencies.
Smaller brands - Wunder, Cann, Rebel Coast, Fable, verywell, Little Saints, to name a few - use botanical extracts and natural flavors to provide a more interesting approach to non alcoholic options.
You can find hemp (CBD) beverages at most health food stores or online retailers that specialize in natural products. Cannabis (THC dominant) beverages are more difficult to come by as they may be restricted in certain states due to state laws regarding marijuana use.
However, some states have legalized recreational marijuana use – so if you live in one of these states, you should be able to find cannabis-infused drinks at dispensaries or other local stores that sell marijuana products. Additionally, some bars offer specialty cocktails made with THC-infused spirits or other ingredients derived from marijuana plants.
Another way to tap into the CBD beverage boom is by adding tinctures, powders, and even drink additives to beverages. It's not uncommon to see a coffee shop or smoothie vendor with the option to add a CBD shot.
What is the difference between hemp beverages and cannabis beverages?
The main difference between hemp (CBD) beverages and cannabis (THC) beverages is that hemp products have less than 0.3% THC, making them non-intoxicating. Cannabis beverages contain higher amounts of THC, with the potential to cause intoxication. . This means that while a hemp beverage can provide a sense of relaxation or calmness without the “high” feeling, a cannabis beverage will give users a more intense experience due to its THC content. Additionally, many manufacturers offer both options so consumers can choose the one that best fits their needs.
All reputable brands will disclose the amount of THC or CBD in the drinks. It is best to be mindful of how many servings are in a bottle/can. While a consumer could easily drink a can of soda and it could be one serving, the serving sizes for cannabis and CBD drinks can vary significantly. If you aren't careful, you could be ingesting more than you bargained for.
CBD stands for cannabidiol, a compound found in the cannabis plant. Unlike THC (tetrahydrocannabinol), which is also found in marijuana plants, CBD does not get users high. The effects of CBD are calming and may help consumers feel more relaxed.. This makes it an appealing option for those who are looking for relief from stress without getting high. The most common uses for hemp-derived CBD products are to assist in pain management, relaxation, and to promote a healthy night’s sleep.
How much CBD or THC is in the drinks?
Hemp-based beverages are lower in THC than their cannabis counterparts – although they can still contain trace amounts of THC depending on how they were made. For this reason, it’s important to read labels carefully before consuming any type of hemp or cannabis beverage product so that you know exactly what you’re getting into.
The amount of THC varies greatly depending on the type of beverage and where it was purchased. Generally speaking, hemp (CBD) beverages contain less than 0.3% THC while cannabis-infused drinks may contain up to 30% THC depending on their strength and potency. It’s important to remember that consuming too much THC can lead to adverse side effects such as paranoia or anxiety – so always start with small doses if you’re unsure about how your body will react.
Curious about how to find quality- verified, hemp-derived CBD products and what type of CBD may be best for you? The team of medical professionals and researchers at Ashford Wellness provide consumers with clarity and confidence in choosing hemp-derived CBD products. They independently evaluate hemp-derived CBD products for more than 150 potential toxins. It is their mission to help consumers find Premium, Clean CBD products. To buy the best of the best CBD products, based on science, visit www.ashfordwellness.com.
THC is Trending
Cannabis-infused beverages are expanding flavor options and overall experience. But in general, beer sales are showing new downward trends for the first time in decades.
“It’s a hard time to be in the beer business,” said Harvard University’s Stephen Kaufman, a senior lecturer who evaluated Molson Coors’ cannabis strategy last month on a Harvard Business Review podcast.
- Baby boomers and Generation X: 50% of alcohol consumption is in beer.
- Millennials: only 25% of alcohol consumption is in beer, with the rest in wine and hard liquor.
- Generation Z: just 12.5% of alcohol consumption is in beer
As cannabis regulation changes around the United States, products are changing, too. From gummies, edibles, and tinctures, beverages make up a small portion of the market. But they may be more available for the average consumer. To put it simply, beverages are more approachable and easier to integrate into your normal daily life.
These Cannabis-infused beverages are going to remain stuck in research and development until more nations join Canada and regulate drinks for national and international distribution.
Good news for Dry January
Hemp and cannabis-infused beverages are a great way for consumers to enjoy the benefits of cannabinoids. They come in many different forms – from low-THC hemp drinks all the way up to high-potency cannabis beverages – so there’s something out there for everyone!