Since it became legal in certain states in the United States and across the country in Canada, the cannabis industry has taken off. Cannabis consumables is one sector of the industry that’s doing extremely well. In 2017, consumer spending on cannabis consumables reached about $1 billion in the United States and Canada. According to recent market research, this number is expected to boom to over $4.1 billion by 2022. Cannabis-infused foods, also known as cannabis consumables, are made with differing amounts of cannabinoids, including tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and cannabidiol (CBD).
One sub-sector of the market, low THC consumables, is making a big impact. Low THC consumables offer the best of both worlds – the potential health benefits of cannabis in a microdose small enough that it won’t cause psychoactive or hallucinogenic effects. Here’s more about the market demand for low THC consumables and why it’s growing so quickly.
The Demand for Consumables
Beginning with the legalization of cannabis a few years back, the popularity and use of cannabis consumables has skyrocketed. The market for cannabis consumables is one of the fastest-growing segments in the entire cannabis industry.
The key factor driving the cannabis consumables market is the growing acceptance of cannabis use. Simply put, the opinion about cannabis is changing, and more and more consumers are jumping on board. Additionally, according to MG Magazine, more than 60 percent of new cannabis users say they would prefer to consume it in a way other than smoking. Some of those consumers prefer consumables over other forms of cannabis because they have an aversion to smoking. Others prefer the fact that consumables are inconspicuous, as well as quick and easy to consume. Some consumers can’t smoke for medical reasons, which makes consumables a safer alternative.
Low THC Products Stand Out Among the Rest
Low THC consumables stand out in the cannabis consumables market as a rising star. Any cannabis-infused food or beverage that contains less than 5 micrograms of THC per serving is considered a low THC consumable. These products allow users to experience the potential health benefits of cannabis without any negative effects, such as psychoactive effects that can hinder daily activities. Low THC consumables also reduce the risk of consuming too much THC and experiencing negative effects such as anxiety, sleepiness, or inability to concentrate. At the same time, they allow users with more experience to “stack” doses (in other words, take more than one) to create just the experience they’re looking for.
Microdosing with low THC products can also help new consumers get used to how their bodies react to cannabis. Consumers who are new to cannabis may be more affected by THC the first time they try it compared to long-time users. Low THC products provide a great entryway for users looking to ease into cannabis. Low THC products are also more likely to taste better. Some consumables with a higher amount of THC can have an earthy taste that some consumers find off-putting. Limiting the amount of THC in the product can help improve the flavor.
Older Adults Turn to Low THC
Seniors are an especially interesting segment of the market who have begun turning to low THC consumables. Seniors have been flocking to cannabis looking for relief from ailments such as arthritis and insomnia. In fact, the National Survey on Drug Use and Health found that cannabis usage among seniors grew by 250% between 2006 and 2013 and is expected to grow exponentially from there. Many senior cannabis users have reported feeling less pain, getting better-quality sleep, and even having an improved quality of life after using cannabis. Low THC consumables offer an easy entry point for seniors who are new to cannabis. They’re discrete, easy to use, and seniors don’t have to deal with the steep learning curve of smoking.
Additionally, the senior market offers unique opportunities to low THC cannabis consumable companies looking to grow their business. In 2019, Green Entrepreneur reported that advertisers are focusing their efforts on the millennial generation and aren’t even targeting baby boomers. In fact, advertisers are only allocating 5% of their budget to target this group. That means that there’s a lot of opportunity for advertisers to reach this segment of the market if they position their products in the right way.
Cannabis consumables have been rapidly growing in popularity. A once small segment of this market, low THC consumables, has seen a recent surge in popularity due to their ease of use and reduced risk of psychoactive effects. More and more users are jumping on board to try low THC consumables, looking for the ideal combination of potential health benefits without a high.