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CBD or cannabis drinks and food items have become very popular over the last year or so. Many companies have realized how people love marijuana-based products and want to make a few bucks off of them. But sadly, it doesn’t always work out because of legalization or a company merger falls apart.
Coca-Cola, a company that was rumored to be getting into the cannabis drink business, has publicly announced that they are not ready to pull the trigger.
Coca-Cola never seemed like the type of company that would be interested in cannabis-related products. But, this past September, there were rumors about Coca-Cola dipping its toes into the CBD waiting pool. The gossip surrounded around Coca-Cola potentially teaming up with the cannabis giant Aurora Cannabis to make a line of CBD drinks and maybe more.
The drink giant made a public announcement last month that drove those rumors through the roof.
Coca-Cola said, “We have no interest in marijuana or cannabis. 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. Space is evolving quickly. No decisions have been made at this time.”
Essentially both Coca-Cola and Aurora Cannabis gave a vague statement that eluded to more happening down the line. This enraged some people who were concerned about a company we all know and love getting involved with a “dangerous drug”. But many others were excited that Coca-Cola was looking into avenues that were healthier than most of their products.
Seeing as CBD helps to lower blood pressure, reduce anxiety, and even help with pain, this would be a big deal for the sugar-filled soda company to turn over a new leaf- a green leaf that is. But, the marijuana-filled dream is being put off for now at least according to a new statement from Coca-Cola that was given this week.
On Tuesday, Coca-Cola released their quarterly earnings on a call with analysts as usual along with a statement about the CBD rumors by Chief Executive James Quincey.
Quincey mentioned in the call that the Coca-Cola team has no intention “at this stage to get into the business of cannabis-infused beverages.” He also expanded further by mentioning that they will most likely not make a move into the marijuana industry until it, or at least CBD, is fully legal and they know that it is 100 percent safe for consumption.
"I think it’s a way away before any large players in the consumer space get to it. Being legal does not make it safe… Our consumers trust us to do the right thing. There’s no way we’re going to put something in unless there’s a high degree of consumer acceptance. We like a broad swath of consensus science and public opinion behind things before we’re going to put them in our drinks.”
While I would personally love to see a CBD drink out on the shelves from Coca-Cola, I do understand where they are coming from. CBD helps many people, myself included, deal with pain and keep our anxiety in check. But not everyone understands that, and this could be a big issue for the major brand who owns most of the worlds popular teas and soft drinks.
Also, just because a bottle says CBD does not mean that it is pure and good for you. Reading the ingredients and making sure it is 100 percent CBD oil is important because there are a lot of impostures and Coca-Cola must be aware of this problem in the market currently. Ultimately, I think holding off until they feel comfortable getting into the CBD market is a smart move to make.
Coca-Cola seems eager to make healthier choices when it comes to their products but they also don’t want to upset their current customer base and potentially put something out that is not what they thought it was in the first place.
With marijuana being illegal on the federal level, it makes it difficult for companies such as Coca-Cola to do specific research that they would want in order to feel comfortable releasing a CBD or even cannabis drink in legal states. So sadly, we will have to wait to see a CBD coke drink on our local Walmart shelves- but I think it will still happen sometime in the future.
With legalization comes a big change in many areas all over the country, and I think that Coca-Cola will be one of the many companies recanting their original statements of not wanting to be involved with the marijuana business. I think in a few years, there will be tons of CBD and THC filled drinks lining the stores for all of us to try.