The COVID-19 pandemic has been the main headline for 2020 and 2021. The pandemic has had a huge effect on our lives as it has changed how people interact with each other, with businesses, and in general, how they carry out their daily lives. The pandemic has also pushed forward some new trends in the business world and meant a boon for digital tools for remote workers and e-commerce. Talking about the demand for cannabis products, the cannabis industry as the sales catapulted to a new high. Although CBD was already one of the fastest-growing industries before the pandemic, 2020 has taken CBD products like tinctures, oils, and more to a new level.
Legalization of cannabis
Between the years 1916 and 1931, 29 states in the US have banned the use of marijuana. The Marijuana Act of 1937 was the final nail on the coffin as this law essentially made the use of marijuana illegal in all states. This law applied all over the world as other countries also banned the use of marijuana during the first half of the century. Then more countries followed suit in the next decades.
Because of the benefits of marijuana, the tide has begun to turn. The USA and several other countries have legalized the sale and use of medical marijuana. Some of these states and countries have even permitted the recreational use of marijuana. These changes have created opportunities to invest in marijuana stocks and companies.
But the use of recreational and medical marijuana is still illegal at the federal level in the US. The Controlled Substances Act placed marijuana in Schedule I – the category with the highest restriction. This list contains drugs that are supposedly deemed by the government as having a high potential for abuse and no accepted medical use. It didn’t take long for some states to push back against this federal marijuana policy. This push started with a ballot initiative in California that legalized medical marijuana. This was passed in the year 1996, then other states soon followed suit.
The value of the cannabis industry in the US
Projections have shown that the market value of the cannabis industry in the US will reach the $30 billion mark each year by the year 2025. Despite these projections, cannabis is still federally illegal. Legalization movements have expanded into new states and this has convinced members of Congress to advocate for its reform and legalization on the federal level.
This could lead to the cannabis industry creating new markets too. At present, this industry is a multi-billion business that can potentially grow even more as these new markets open and more states legalize both recreational and medical programs. With this, manufacturers of CBD edible packaging, hemp flower packaging, and other types of packaging will become more popular too.
Many countries have also started legalizing cannabis and those who have joined the global marketplace can take advantage of sustainable advantages as they build their funding and customer base. Countries like Portugal and Colombia were among the first to accept the legalization of cannabis. Now, they’re poised to continue their global dominance. A country with a first-mover status can potentially become a magnet for financial interest.
Enhanced retail experiences
Dispensaries, which are the “digital natives” of retail, welcome opportunities to build physical stores that offer digital or online features. Just imagine customer check-in systems that can give you some suggestions for what you might like, then automatically find those products for you.
High-quality products that come in glass jars with lids, customized cannabis packaging, concentrate packaging, and so on. In such a case, both sellers and customers will benefit. By having nuanced data on the buying habits of consumers in their systems, dispensaries can focus on educational experiences and personalized purchasing to make them stand out against the competition.
When there are more retailers entering the CBD business, consumers will have more options of where to shop. Because of this, retailers need to level up to earn more money in a market that’s becoming increasingly competitive. Although consumers can still find gel capsules, gummies, and CBD tinctures in the market, they have begun to become “things of the past” in 2020.
As such, we can expect to see innovations within the industry, from different strains like CBN and CBD, and new delivery methods that will enhance CBD’s efficacy. Moreover, we can also expect the development of products that will pair CBD with ginger, turmeric, and other natural ingredients, functional products, and broad-spectrum products, all of which will aim to improve and evolve customer experiences.
An essential business
Despite having challenges and uncertainties in 2020, the cannabis industry has continued to thrive. The demand for cannabis products in glass jars, boxes, and other high-quality packaging has increased to unexpected levels during the pandemic. There has been a dramatic increase in sales and some states have even seen their highest cannabis revenue on record.
Cannabis is now considered an essential business in many jurisdictions, not just in the US. Its status has changed from being a mere getaway to an essential item in such a short span of time. It’s also considered a viable therapeutic solution for the treatment of COVID. This summer, governments all over the world have started perceiving cannabis regulation and legalization as a tool for economic recovery too. There are also speculations that CBD may be recession-proof, which has caused public investors, policymakers, and other powerful individuals to pay more attention to the CBD industry.
Although many people have heard about cannabis for decades, the CBD industry is still in its infancy. However, the industry continues to grow as more states have decided to legalize its use. If legal cannabis gets equal financial and technological resources that other mainstream industries get, innovators can gain more freedom to develop modern technology solutions to improve the industry.