Coca-Cola Considering Cannabis-Infused Soda
We've already written about the various beer companies that are considering a jump into the marijuana-infused beverage business, but now Bloomberg is reporting that soda giant Coca-Cola is considering dipping their toes into the cannabis pool with a marijuana-infused soda.
This, of course, would be a major development that could have significant ripple effects throughout the cannabis industry, especially for advocates of full decriminalization and legalization of marijuana. Coca-Cola is said to be exploring marijuana's non-psychoactive compound, CBD, as a potential venture to help raise up sinking stocks.
Interest in CBD has reached new peaks in recent years as CBD oil has become more readily available throughout the country. CBD can often be found in grocery stores, holistic shops and even at some coffee shops, where a shot of CBD can be added to any tasty beverage. Borrowing a cue from that model, Coke is eyeing CBD-infused sodas.
“We are closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world,” Coca-Cola spokesman Kent Landers said in a statement. “The space is evolving quickly. No decisions have been made at this time.”
While it is unclear if Coca-Cola will proceed forward with this new venture, it marks a pretty serious departure from the DEA's current viewpoint that marijuana, and its active components, have no medical or recreational value. What remains to be seen is whether other major companies will follow.
What is CBD?
For those unaware, Cannabidiol, commonly referred to as “CBD,” is the major non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant. It has been found to offer a wide range of medicinal benefits as an anti-inflammatory, anticonvulsant, antioxidant, antiemetic, anxiolytic and antipsychotic agent. It also has the potential to provide neuroprotective, immunomodulatory, and anti-tumor effects.
Other benefits of CBD include pain and inflammation relief, antipsychotic effects, reduction of anxiety, aid to fight cancer growth, relieving nausea, treating seizures and other neurological disorders, lowering incidence of diabetes, and promoting cardiovascular health.
Although marijuana's other major active compound, THC, does have certain benefits that cannot be achieved through CBD use alone, studies have shown that a combination of high CBD with lower THC levels result in the medicinal benefits of both, without any noticeable psychotropic effects from THC. So, for those who are interested in the benefits of medical marijuana, but are wary of feeling the “high” associated with THC, you can be assured that there are medical marijuana products available to meet your needs.
What Can I Do About The CBD Ban In Ohio?
While CBD is readily available in nearly every state throughout the U.S., Ohio has recently banned the sale of CBD unless a patient has a medical marijuana card, which can only be obtained by receiving a recommendation from a state-certified medical marijuana doctor. This ruling, released by the State of Ohio Board of Pharmacy, comes despite all over-the-counter CBD being derived from imported hemp, which cannot get the user high.
Proponents of the CBD ban argue that the CBD oil customers can buy in stores has not been properly tested and may not even contain a drop of actual CBD. Filtering CBD through the medical marijuana industry provides a proper system of testing for CBD quality, giving patients the best medicine for their money.
This is absolutely true, and solid reasoning for regulating CBD. That said, many customers who use CBD may not qualify for a medical marijuana card due to the state's limited list of qualifying conditions. Some consumers even use CBD to ease anxiety in their pets, who most certainly don't qualify for medical marijuana in Ohio.
And like olive oils or vitamins, regulation isn't always on the consumer's mind. Many imported olive oils do not contain olive oil, and many vitamins are essentially useless cellulose with minerals the body does not absorb. But still, both industries are allowed to thrive in our economy, and consumers have the freedom to do their research, find the product with the best testing procedures/oversight, and buy smartly.
Ohio Marijuana Card encourages every reader to contact their local representative and let them know how you feel about CBD and medical marijuana. With companies like Coca-Cola joining the CBD bandwagon, now is the time to let your government know that you support CBD and CBD products throughout the state!
As always, stay tuned for more updates. In the meantime, if you qualify for medical marijuana in Ohio, give us a call at 1-866-457-5559 or click here to schedule an appointment with one of our certified medical marijuana doctors.