Marijuana beer sales
With the commencement of marijuana legalization in many US states and beyond, the ensuing decline in sales in the beer industry led many to believe that marijuana will continue to endanger the beer market as the process continues.
However, the opposite might actually be the case, if brewing companies start investing in marijuana companies or mix their products into their own drinks.
The market demand for marijuana-based beer is clearly present, as demonstrated by many successful companies that have begun establishing themselves in their respective areas following or in anticipation of legalization.
Even the production of craft beer, a thriving but competitive segment of the beer industry, could begin to increasingly use marijuana in products in efforts to stand out from the competition.
Marijuana beer brewing
In traditional beer-brewing, hops have been one of the main ingredients and enhancers of beer’s characteristic taste and aroma.
The hop plant is cannabis’ closest botanical cousin and as such has a similar flavor.
Brewing beer from marijuana is the same process as regular beer brewing, with one added ingredient – cannabis. Grains such as barley are converted into a sugary substance called wort and added to yeast, which starts the process of making alcohol. In the following step, hops are added for flavor, but in marijuana beer, cannabis is added either alone or mixed with the hops.
Medical marijuana beer vs. THC marijuana beer
Current marijuana-infused beers on the market do not contain THC, the psychoactive compound in cannabis, because of regulations prohibiting any addition of THC to alcohol.
In such cases the drinks can be considered as medical marijuana beers, retaining the compound CBD or terpenes which are responsible for the medicinal properties of cannabis.
Nevertheless, THC craft beer seems to be just around the corner, with Keith Villa, the creator of the renowned Blue Moon company recently announcing a new line of marijuana infused craft beers.
The production of these beers will be able to circumvent the existing prohibitions because they will contain no alcohol, which should not be mixed with THC in the first place. These beers would, therefore, be able to mimic the intoxicating effects of regular beer, while also taking effect as quickly as they would with alcohol.
Canada’s Province Brands is developing another kind of THC craft beer, by completely replacing the grains traditionally used in brewing with marijuana and filing a patent for the ‘world’s first beers brewed from the cannabis plant’.
Both marijuana beers promise hangover-free intoxication, making these products all the more interesting.
The future of marijuana beer
With all of this taken into account, marijuana beer seems like one of the many up-and-coming products in the flourishing marijuana industry.
The demand is evident, but the legislative obstacles remain in place – even after the legalization of marijuana for recreational purposes, these kinds of products are not a part of the first wave of approvals and take a while to be dealt with.
Marijuana edibles, including marijuana beer, are expected to be legalized in Canada in 2019, while the future of edibles and THC legislation in the US is less predictable, apart from Colorado where THC is fully legal.