Is Marijuana Legalization Good or Bad For the Beer Industry?

Some industry prognosticators question whether legalized weed will compete with alcohol for Americans' tightening recreation budgets.

With marijuana now legal in two U.S. states (and perhaps several more soon), members of the alcohol industry are considering what effects new drug policies will have on their business. As explained by Arjun Kharpal at CNBC, the posited thought is that people who drink and smoke likely file beer and weed under the same line in their personal budgets, thus growers and brewers would be competing in the same market.

Research analysts have looked at the 10 largest states to have legalized medical marijuana and found that beer consumption experienced a short spike before falling into decline, albeit in a short about of time. Those same researchers have also pondered whether legalized cannabis have benefited or could potentially benefit burgeoning craft beer industries in states like Colorado, Delaware, and Alaska.

"Many craft brewers have already embraced the weed buzz through clever marketing ploys. Oskar Blues has signs printed on cans showing how it can be turned into a bong for smoking the drug. Redhook Ale Brewery has released a beer called "Joint Effort" brewed with hemp seeds, but it does not contain the chemical in weed that causes someone to get high."

For more on marijuana legalization and its impact on the alcohol industry, read on at CNBC

Photo credit: / Shutterstock

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