Coca-Cola is looking at pitching cans of cannabis-infused wellness drinks to consumers in the latest bid by a big beverage behemoth to tackle the budding market for potentially potent enhanced potables.
“Along with many others in the beverage industry, we are closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world,” the company said in a statement issued in response to a report from the Canadian BNN Bloomberg new service.
BNN reported that Coca-Cola was in talks with cannabis producer Aurora Cannabis to make marijuana-infused wellness drinks. Aurora Cannabis did not confirm that it was in talks with Coke, but the company’s chief executive did acknowledge that it had been in conversation with several beverage makers over the last few months.
Drinks infused with either cannabinoid-like CBD, which has medicinal, pain-relieving qualities, and THC, which gets users high, have become popular in states in the U.S. where the drug is legalized and in Canada where it has been fully decriminalized nationally.
The experiments in better sales through new chemistry come at a time when demand for both beer and bubbly sodas is slowing. Beer is being supplanted by booze and wine among American consumers (or a rising number of teetotalers are eating into sales of both). Meanwhile, sugary drinks also have seen their popularity dwindle as new consumers reach for the kombucha rather than the Coke.
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