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Hemp drinks market outlook


Given the rapidly growing hemp business and the ever-decreasing profitability of alcohol sales, cooperation between the alcohol and hemp sectors of the economy in the future is likely to be not the exception, but the norm.

The market for drinks, which contain various constituents of hemp, has been growing quite rapidly in recent years. According to experts, over the next four years, sales of beverages, which include hemp plant (including beer, wine and alcohol), will continue to grow and reach a turnover of $ 155 million. The annual average annual growth rate will be about 19%, most which is supported by large investments from representatives of primarily the alcohol industry.

For example, last year, Molson Coors announced a joint venture with Hydropothecary Corporation, a Canadian medical cannabis company, to produce a cannabinoid-rich beverage line. The world's largest beer producer Budweiser, (a brand owned by the world's largest beer producer, Anheuser-Busch InBev Corporation) has invested about $ 50 million in a joint venture with Tilray, one of the leaders in the hemp market, to create a new line of drinks containing tetrahydrocannabinol and cannabidiol.

InBev’s investment palls compared to the estimated $ 4 billion that Constellation Brands invested in a 38% stake in Canopy Growth, one of the largest legal hemp companies in the world. The decision of alcohol producers to “enter” the legal industry for the production and sale of psychoactive hemp is associated with ordinary economic benefits. Over the past few years, alcohol sales have been falling. In 2017, sales of alcoholic beverages in the United States fell by 0.7%, and in 2018 even more - by 0.8%. Against this background, product sales in all sectors of modern hemp breeding are only growing and the long-term prospects for the further development of the industry are quite optimistic.

While alcohol producers "systematically" penetrate the hemp industry, cannabis producers also began to increase the power of "marketing" strategies, attracting high-class professionals to promote new groups of their products. In the hope of attracting consumers from competing sectors of the economy, companies producing hemp products "entice" personnel from the alcohol industry.

For example, the wine producer Saka, launching a new product with the inclusion of hemp extract in the recipe, announced that it had hired Sue Bachorsk, executive director of the Constellation Brands alcohol company. Thanks to this “investment” roll, the Saka brand quickly became one of the leading brands among drinks that contain hemp extracts, and the company continues to expand its product portfolio that includes hemp ingredients, increasing its presence in the domestic and foreign markets.

Hemp market analysts predict that Mr. Bachorsk may be one of the first leaders in the alcohol industry to switch over to the hemp industry, however, this kind of tendency will clearly manifest itself in a few more similar “acquisitions” of top managers of not only the largest alcohol brands. Given the rapidly growing hemp business and the constantly decreasing profitability of alcohol sales, cooperation between the alcohol and hemp sectors of the economy in the future is likely to be not the exception, but the norm.

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