Molson Coors is just one of the big businesses to delve into the cannabis-infused beverage market so far. (Wikimedia Commons photo)

As speculation swirls that the world’s largest beverage company is delving into the cannabis industry, Coca-Cola issued a statement regarding its interest in CBD-infused drinks. “We have no interest in marijuana or cannabis,” the company said in a Sept. 17 statement. “Along with many other in the beverage industry, we are closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world. The space is evolving quickly. No decisions have been made at this time.” The corporation wouldn’t be the first beverage giant to enter the cannabis scene, if it ultimately decides to dive in. The makers of Corona announced last month a “significant expansion” of its partnership with cannabis company Canopy Growth. With new shares Constellation Brands is acquiring, Canopy Growth will have $5 billion to “bolster its leadership position in the global cannabis industry.”

Molson Coors Canada also made a big announcement last month, revealing it had partnered on a joint venture with Hydropothecary Corpoation (HEXO) to “pursue opportunities to develop non-alcoholic, cannabis-infused beverages for the Canadian market following legalization” this fall. Sommelier Tereza Roux, Licensing and Operations Specialist for Rising Tide Consultants, said both cannabis and drink companies are seeing “the global potential for market share in the infused beverage space.” “The conversations I have had with the B.C. Liquor Distribution Branch state that they are not intending to allow cannabis-infused alcohol (by way of terpenes, THC or CBD) at this time ,” Roux noted. “Therefore, we may see many more beverage brands delving into the and/or partnering in the cannabis industry.”

If you have questions about liquor or cannabis licensing, please contact the Rising Tide team.

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