As more and more states legalize medical and even recreational marijuana, Coca Cola is talking to Aurora Cannabis about putting non-psychoactive cannabis in beverages. Who wins if Coca Cola adds cannabis to soft drinks? We recently posed the question, are marijuana companies good investments.
Tilray is the second largest publicly traded marijuana company. Their sales have doubled in the last year and the stock recently went up 17%. With more and more states legalizing marijuana for medical or even recreational purposes, are marijuana companies good investments?
Our opinion as expressed at the end of the article:
In the end, the marijuana companies that will be good investments will be those which manage their cost of production, compete well on quality and price, and market most effectively. Right now, it is not clear who that will be!
Well, the business of effective marketing may be taken care of for Aurora Cannabis if they team up with the largest soft drink maker, Coca Cola. According to CNBC, the marijuana infused drinks will contain non-psychoactive cannabis and not the stuff that creates a “high.”
The companies would likely develop health-focused beverages that will ease inflammation, pain, and cramping, the report said.
The health market is full of drinks, pills, and foods offering health benefits. According to Allied Market Research, the natural food and drinks market had a value of $79 billion in 2016 and is expected to hit $191 billion by 2023. This is three-fold growth in just 7 years.
There is always lots of hype about the benefits of health foods and drinks, most of which is not supported by hard facts. However, in the case of cannabis products, real scientists are doing real research and reporting the results. And, it turns out that the constituent cannabidiol (CBD) can be used to successfully treat a real inflammatory process, acute contact dermatitis (think poison ivy!).
When cannabis (the marijuana plant) is processed for its various constituents, there are lots of different chemicals. Several of them appear to provide health benefits without producing the “high” for which marijuana is known. Researchers are now tracking down specific uses for these. The Journal of Pharmacological Therapeutics (2018; Jun; 365(3):652-663) reports that one cannabis compound, cannabidiol (CBD), effectively treated acute contact dermatitis.
This was the first demonstration of the anti-inflammatory properties of CBD in an experimental model of ACD.
Don’t for a second believe that if Coca Cola teams up with Aurora Cannabis that the advertising machine at Coke will not make the anti-inflammatory benefits of a cannabis-infused “health drink” perfectly clear.
Cannabis: More than the “High” and Relaxation
There is another set of neurological and psychological health benefits from cannabis-derived compounds. And these, are not related to the parts of marijuana that create the “high.”
Surgical Neurology International (2018; 9: 91.) reports on the wide range of conditions for which the compounds phytocannabinoids, cannabidiol (CBD), and delta-9-tetrahydrocannabinol (Δ9-THC) are being studied and actively used in treatment.
Recent neurological uses include adjunctive treatment for malignant brain tumors, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease, multiple sclerosis, neuropathic pain, and the childhood seizure disorders Lennox-Gastaut and Dravet syndromes. In addition, psychiatric and mood disorders, such as schizophrenia, anxiety, depression, addiction, postconcussion syndrome, and posttraumatic stress disorders are being studied using phytocannabinoids.
This is a lot of science and most laypersons do not need to know the specifics. What is important for investors is to know that the science behind this is real and not just health product industry hype. With the “real science” in mind, who wins if Coca Cola adds cannabis to soft drinks? Aurora ought to win by teaming up with the Coca Cola Empire. And, a lot of folks who derive real health benefits from their products may do pretty well too.
Will There Be a Recreational Coca Cola-Cannabis?
We mentioned at the start that more and more states are not only legalizing medical marijuana but recreational marijuana as well. In that case, there is nothing to keep Coca Cola and Aurora Cannabis from partnering on a Coca Cola soft drink that creates a bit of a “high” and provides health benefits!