ben & jerrys marijuana
Marijuana Business News

Large National Brands Have Sights Set On Legal Marijuana Industry

ben & jerrys marijuana
(image via wikipedia)

The recreational marijuana industry is expanding at a rapid pace. Right now there only two states that allow recreational marijuana sales (Washington and Colorado of course). But Alaska will be soon to follow, as will Oregon, and hopefully someday Washington D.C.. Between now and the end of Election Day 2016, I have as many as 16 states in play that could make a move to legalize recreational marijuana. By the end Election Day 2020, we could see over half the states in America with legal recreational marijuana sales occurring.

If that becomes the case, or even mostly becomes the case, the legal recreational marijuana industry will be massive. So massive that it is drawing the attention of some national brands such as Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream company and Whole Foods. Both companies have stated that when marijuana becomes legal on a large scale, they would definitely consider getting in on the next great american industry. Per CBS:

The founders of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream say they would consider selling a cannabis-infused flavor, when it’s completely legal.

Co-founder Ben Cohen told the HuffPost Live’s Alyona Minkovski the idea “makes sense to me,” when asked about a viewer comment suggesting the company make cannabis-infused ice cream.

And per Whaxy:

Could items like these end up on the shelves of large food industry leaders like Whole Foods? ArcView CEO, Troy Dayton, says yes. Dayton reported to Business Insider,

“It’s possible that Whole Foods could be the Whole Foods of cannabis.”

Whole Foods CEO, John Mackey, reportedly acknowledged that he would be open to the idea ONLY if the plant and infused products were fully legalized and accepted by the local communities.

Troy Dayton continued his thought about the possible cohesion of the two markets to Business Insider,

“John Mackey said he could definitely see a gourmet cannabis section at Whole Foods.”

While I wish the marijuana industry would stay a cottage industry, I’m a realist. I realize that where there are lots of dollars to be made, there will be national brands that want to enter the fold. Ben & Jerry’s Ice Cream and Whole Foods would be great for the industry, unlike some national brands/companies. I know some national brands have expressed interest in advertising to marijuana consumers, without the companies even creating marijuana products. However, none of them have made the leap, yet.

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  • Nathaniel

    It was only a matter of time before many DOW companies saw the writing on the wall. I am fine with big business entering the marketplace so long as OG stays Oregon/California OG standards and there is no attempt to ever allow GMOs/GEs.

  • Jean Anne Lewis

    I Scream! You Scream! We All Scream For Ben & Jerry’s Cannabis-Infused Ice Cream! ;-)

  • Sycamore

    Ugh. I thought they were better than this.

  • shmuelman

    Obviously the products would have to be sold at a licensed dispensary. When widespread legalization takes effect, the market will be remarkably different than it is today. I just don’t see infused ice cream as a very inspired idea, but it does point out that a very large proportion of the consumption will not be smoked. I think we will see other routes of ingestion taking hold, such as nasal and buccal routes. There will also be tremendous research into increasing the bioavailabilty of THC so that edibles will be consistent in the amount of time to activation and its uptake and effects.

  • khh

    The more the merrier. Despite Budweiser and Miller (Big Beer?) dominating the market, microbreweries are thriving everywhere. So welcome aboard, Reynolds et al!

  • HeyJah

    Umm – an intoxicant in the Ice cream section at the supermarket? That sounds pretty unlikely. They don’t stock vodka in there, either. And how many kids are going to get a good buzz on after raiding the fridge? I don’t see this going over quite the way it’s being envisioned! :D

  • try

    I just want it legal thats it,i dont givr a shit if i buy it at wal mart or the farmers arket

  • try

    I just want it legal i dont give a shit if i get it at wal mart or the farmers market

  • Whyiowa4medical

    OK, this one rather pisses me off. Those of us who refused to become a homeless statistic on the streets of Portland, Seattle, or Denver and find a job to move into the industry to fill, should be seeing red!!! Some professionals have families and households that for the right position I would move, but to move and occupy a homeless shelter bed, likely separated from my wife, definitely separated from my pets that would be caged and, within a certain time they would be euthanized. Not to mention separated from our guitars, amps, and all of my pending research on my computer’s hard drive. I am also fairly certain that computers are not allowed.
    Now, we may be able to get a national amendment that will legalize cannabis everywhere!!! Will the states still require what is released for sale in their state to be professionally grown in the state? Probably not, with the massive grow-ops in Canada (who do not seem interested in American talent), imports will abound!!! Will corporations like this take the rightful place we have waited years for, our own grow-ops and the patient policies those of us not in the tornado of change can see as clearly as a wart on the Mona Lisa’s nose? I have taken every responsible step to leave the hell we are in, from our illegal state to acceptance. I could risk attempting my own small grow and dispensary operation, but this is then done using OPM and the last thing I want is a profiteer calling my shots. Could it be time for some of us to team-up under the umbrella of our differences, and discover the model that works best for the area served? We have to remember that even I, a once heavy user, am back to the point that Mexican weed would satisfy easily. When I see Columbian Gold and Thai available on most every site online (these were once our power strains), you quickly find these are not strains on store shelves, merely seeds one can buy! With the highest amount of first time smokers/vaper’s since 1966 how dare we start the new young user to what we once hid for the experienced taster? I once met a professional taster who had once performed an interview with High Times, he was actually in the Ames area looking for our collective. He had been to the Fairfield operation and was looking for our multi-flavored operation. What he confessed was he has smoked some of the best weed ever from a window garden in Kansas City, Kansas. I quote, “It had a smooth flavor, but nothing special that one’s taste buds were alerted to. It had an very friendly high, something one could enjoy with friends without shame and without fear of trying to pass off some homegrown field hay!” He could remember the experience and tell you what made such a strain so special. Were these strains tested for CBD/THC content, not at all, but they impressed the taster; a master of black market value, often a price setter, and an honest guy who taught us all a lot about the cannabis industry. Maybe we can together converge his value on cannabis to this new and large beginner set that will soon be joining us, or maybe we will all argue until the corporations feed us whatever they like. When I think back to when we were driving around, almost every area had a “courtesy of Sir Paul McCartney: A Junior’s Farm!!!”

  • Morpheus M. Clerk

    people fearing the worst please relax, its herbs, not crack cocaine.

  • Morpheus M. Clerk

    I understand Marlboro already has the branding in place as well as the facilities… Just like ben & jerry, they are waiting until its completely legal.

  • HeyJah

    Keep the business in the hands of the true activists – the growers who have worked to bring you inspiring Cannabis for many years. Organize to spread the wealth throughout the community. Foster many good lives – not wealth disparity.