In Today’s Issue:
→ What Consumers Want. 🍹
→ Cannabis In Nepal. 🏔
→ Let The Lawsuit Begin. 🏁
Choosing Cannabis Over Booze
Are consumers ditching booze in favor of cannabis?
Here’s the billion-dollar question.
As more & more consumers turn to cannabis, how is this impacting the alcohol industry?
Currently, with legal cannabis sales being limited to North America it’s difficult to quantify in dollar terms the impact Cali Sober (consuming cannabis instead of booze) is having on the alcohol industry.
A new report from New Frontier Data does, however, offer amazing insights as to the current percentage of consumers choosing cannabis over booze.
Cannabis vs booze…
When asked why they consume cannabis, 16% of respondents said replacing alcohol was their reason for using cannabis.
Whereas replacing alcohol has clearly caught on, consuming cannabis to reduce one’s alcohol intake is even more popular.
In total, 47% of respondents said they had replaced at least some of their alcohol intake by consuming cannabis instead.
One of the most interesting aspects of cannabis is the wide array of distinct experiences cannabis products can produce — which results in many different desires from a consumer standpoint.
Per their research, the five most common reasons for consuming cannabis were.
→ Relaxation - 67%
→ Stress relief - 62%
→ Reducing anxiety - 54%
→ Improving sleep quality - 46%
→ Pain management - 45%
Additionally, 52% of current consumers reported consuming cannabis to improve their mental health during the pandemic.
What do people do when under the influence?
The most common use case for cannabis is relaxation & the activities consumers engage in when under the influence of cannabis reflect this.
→ Sleeping - 48%
→ Browsing the internet - 38%
→ Listening to music at home - 52%
→ Watching TV/movies at home - 55%
→ Socializing at someone's house - 38%
From booze to buds…
With such a significant change in consumer preferences, alcoholic beverage companies are by no means sitting on the sidelines.
3 alcoholic beverage industry giants have already made moves into cannabis.
→ Molson Coors partnered with Hexo to create Truss Beverages.
→ Heineken created a cannabis beverage under its brand Lagunitas.
→ Constellation Brands invested $4.25 billion USD into Canopy Growth.
Although we are in the earliest days of the development of this industry, it’s becoming clearer by the day why large alcoholic beverage companies have taken such a keen interest in cannabis.
I have a very high level of confidence that many more consumers will adopt Cali Sober as it becomes more known that cannabis is a safer substance when compared to alcohol.
The Effort To Legalize Cannabis
Will Nepal once again legalize cannabis with Canada having already done so…
Located on the southern slopes of the Himalayan mountains is a nation home to 29+ million people.
Whereas once Nepal was called a hippies paradise due to its liberal laws in favor of allowing people to consume cannabis, things changed quickly.
A brief history…
Nepal has had strong links to cannabis for centuries.
In the early 1700s Nepalese “charas” was recognized as being some of the highest quality cannabis anyone could purchase.
During this time cannabis was sold openly on the streets by licensed agents.
In the 1960s, Nepal began attracting droves of young adults from around the world as it gained the nickname of the “Hippie Trail”.
The production of cannabis skyrocketed to meet this new demand, and cannabis was viewed as being very good for the economy.
Despite this success, in 1973 Nepal canceled the licenses of all cannabis shops, dealers, and farmers, under pressure from the U.S & other nations.
Fast forward to today…
Close to 50 years later, campaigners in the region are once again asking for permission to cultivate, consume & sell cannabis.
So far supporters have introduced a bill in Parliament that would legalize cannabis, with the Nepal Health minister Birod Khatiwada lobbying for the proposed bill to pass.
“I am trying to make it a campaign and issue in Parliament because many countries including the most powerful and developed countries have allowed the use of marijuana,” Khatiwada said.
It’s great to see a nation with such a rich history with cannabis once again embracing cannabis.
The emphasis they are placing on small scale production in the region is also amazing to see.
The Million Dollar Court Case
MedMen’s co-founders are accused of a long list of wrongdoings…
One of the most highly anticipated cannabis trials began yesterday with the former MedMen CFO James Parker going head to head with MedMen’s former CEO & President.
Parker is alleging that Adam Bierman (CEO) and Andrew Modlin (President) forced him to resign from his position, in addition to treating MedMen as their “personal piggy bank”.
The lawsuit claims that Bierman & Modlin used the money MedMen had raised to live a life of luxury, purchasing items that had no benefit to MedMen.
→ 24 hour armed security for Bierman, Modlin, and their families.
→ A pearl white Escalades for Bierman.
→ A custom $160,000 Tesla SUV for Modlin.
Beyond this, Parker alleges the two created a work environment where consuming alcohol & cocaine on the job was simply a norm in addition to calling Parker “a pussy” for refusing to break the law.
Additional allegations include:
→ Engaging in stock manipulation.
→ Being forced to use his personal credit card for company purchases.
→ Using company resources to carry out personal vendettas.
Parker, who was paid $750,000 USD annually for his work with MedMen is requesting an unspecified amount in damages.
Should Parker win, this number could very well be in the millions of dollars.
Although these actions were carried out by executives of MedMen, both Bierman & Modlin were named as individual defendants which means they could be personally liable for these damages.
In return, MedMen is accusing Parker of stealing “proprietary company information” based on Parker sending 200 emails from his MedMen email to his personal account & downloading data.
From the outset, the contracts that were signed when James Parker joined MedMen will play a very significant role as we have already seen with MedMen having to pay at least $500K for Parker’s legal fees for this case.
The trial is expected to last about 3 weeks in total and with both reputations & millions of dollars on the line — many in the cannabis industry will be watching closely to see how this case progresses.
Regardless of how this case is resolved, it’s a bad look for the cannabis industry.
This one case does not reflect the entire cannabis industry, however, if nothing else MedMen’s decline highlights what can go wrong when a company seeks to grow at all costs.
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