With marijuana booming and establishing itself state by state (first medicinally, then recreationally), is it any wonder many alcohol producers want in on the buzz around cannabis? Many predict the demise of alcohol with the legalization of marijuana, considering the two to be competing industries. The Venn Diagram of marijuana and alcohol users does not suggest this sort of total jumping-of-ship; Sure, cannabis might take a bite out of alcohol, but alcohol is here to stay despite many of its renown deleterious effects. Yet, anxiety over weed stealing alcohol’s grip on the market still persists, and many alcohol producers are responding by trying to make a joint effort with cannabis producers to stay relevant.
Marijuana is illegal on the federal level and this prevents Cannabis-infused alcohol from being made, bottled, or distributed on a national level. But, many states have given the green light to do so within their borders, and alcohol companies are taking advantage of this. It is important to note that just because a state has legalized medical and recreational marijuana, this does not mean that they will permit THC infused alcohol to be made, distributed, sold, or served within their state; take Michigan for instance. While Michigan legalized Medical Marijuana in 2008, and Recreational Marijuana in 2018, they have opted not to allow THC-infused alcohol as a consumption method for its citizens.
Cannabis-infused alcohol can actually be a variety of things: from beer, wine, and liquor infused with cannabis, to CBD/THC infused alcohol. Although Michigan doesn’t allow these kinds of beverages, you might still encounter them while you travel, or potentially in the future.
CBD infused beverages have already been around for a while in many places. No surprise given the many benefits of CBD such as pain relief, reduced inflammation, and lowered levels of anxiety. CBD has presented itself in things like breakfast cereal, green tea powders, gummies, sparkling waters, massage oils, lotions, deodorants, bath bombs, facial serums, etc. Despite CBD’s inability to give a high, people are still wild about its potential benefits and the many ways it can be administered.
Hemp oil is also a longstanding additive to food and beverages. While it doesn’t have a reputation for being infused with alcohol, it has still been popular amongst health nuts who wish to get every last drop of benefit from cannabis. Oils in general are popular with people concerned about their health, so it makes sense hemp oil would make the cut and rise to the ranks of coconut oil and avocado oil in their esteem.
THC has the biggest hype for infusion with alcohol, with beverages coming in the form of seltzers, cocktails, wine, and beer! Almost anything you can imagine. While THC-infused alcohol seems to be a basic idea – Like weed? Like alcohol? BAM! Now you like them both simultaneously! It is actually quite a feat! THC is hydrophobic after all, and it has required the development and use of new nano-emulsion technology to pull off the creation of these drinks.
What should be expected from THC-infused alcohol? The unexpected of course! Especially if one is new to weed, or mixing weed with alcohol. Different people metabolize things differently, and react in different ways to different doses and combinations. It is important to check both the percentage of the drink, and the milligrams of THC it contains. One should use their best judgment based on when they’ve had a good experience with alcohol and weed, and how much they had of each of them.
Overall, alcohol (in the midst of fears over cannabis’s popularity and newfound availability) is buddying up to cannabis and exploring new ways to get in on the marijuana market. We are excited to see what effects this combination might have such as: normalizing cannabis consumption, exposing more people to cannabis, and making cannabis less scary to try for some people adverse to smoking. We have “high” hopes for THC-infused alcohol even though Michigan is electing not to participate!