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Marijuana Edibles Industry: Its Challenges & Future

Smoke Gal

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Ever since pot became legalized in Colorado and the other decriminalized states, cannabis-infused edibles have had a growing presence in the marijuana marketplace. Nearly 5 million marijuana edibles were sold in Colorado in 2014 alone, and culinary connoisseurs came out with everything from medicated chocolate truffles, cookies, and popcorn to cannabis-infused coffee and protein bars for health-conscious 4/20 folk. All of these new marijuana snack innovations are making many foodies wonder…what are the implications for this promising new pot edibles industry? How can I, too, become a culinary cannabis connoisseur?

As the marijuana industry gains speed in the U.S., entrepreneurs are definitely seeking out exciting and innovative new ways to combine food and cannabis. However, there is a big challenge to overcome in bringing cannabis into a dining type of environment. When you purchase cannabis from a dispensary, you are not allowed to consume any on the premises. This creates a problem for anyone trying to incorporate cannabis into a restaurant type of environment. There are also no places in Colorado who openly advertise a BYOC “Bring Your Own Cannabis” environment, similar to a “Bring Your Own Beer type of restaurant, but I imagine that that might be one way to incorporate cannabis into the dining world.

Personally, I know that a slice of dark chocolate cannabis-infused cheese cake would definitely be on the bill if offered to me at my favorite local restaurant. I think the issue lies in the licensing problems that would arise from offering cannabis products in a standard restaurant or bar model. One thing people can do today to incorporate cannabis in food is buy infused coconut oil or other types of cooking ingredients from their local dispensary and then use them in their recipes at home. Cannabis-infused butter is perfect for making marijuana brownies, cookies, muffins, and so much more. I think the prospect of pairing cannabis with food like wine or even with wine is an excellent idea and one we will likely see in the near future as cannabis continues to be decriminalized.
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