One of the major stories in the hemp/cannabis space in the last year has been the explosion of cannabinoid-infused beverages. Combine that with another major movement in the cannabis industry towards creating products for the cannabis curious and you get Cann, a new “social tonic.”
If you haven’t heard of Cann yet, you probably will (even if you don’t live in a state where you can access it).
That’s because a group of celebrities, including Gwyneth Paltrow, Rebel Wilson, Ruby Rose, Darren Criss, Baron Davis, Tove Lo, Casey Neistat, and Bre-Z have decided to throw their not inconsiderable weight behind the brand, as well as some of their money.
These investments were part of a $5 million seed round that closed earlier in 2020, but the brand waited till now to reveal the names of many of their investors. Luke Anderson, Cann co-founder says the brand is understandably happy to have them on board:
“To have taste-making celebrities who don’t have a ‘stoner’ identity attached to their personal brands wanting to help us spread this message to a mass consumer base is a game-changer for Cann, and a sign for how this industry will evolve in the coming years.”
The rise of brands like Cann really illustrates how far the cannabis-infused beverage trend has come in the last year. In 2019, Anderson was literally driving around Los Angeles, hand-delivering samples of the beverage to influencers. He was also working hard to convince dispensaries to make space (literally) for their CBD/THC beverages on their floors.
Today, Cann has become the fastest-growing THC beverage to date with over 2 million cans sold, and quarter over quarter sales growth for 2020 continuously doubling in numbers. Cann is also the #1 selling THC-infused beverage in California according to BDS Analytics.
‘We couldn't be more excited to welcome this group into our Cann family and have them share in our mission with us,’ said Luke Anderson, Cann Co-Founder. ‘We created this product for consumers that are new to the cannabis industry and looking to moderate or reduce their alcohol consumption.’
So what gives?
Bar graphs illustrating the projected rise in the North American Cannabis Beverages market show a rapid swoop upwards in the next decade, and trends in the broader beverage market illustrate just why that is. Check out this summary from MarketResearch.com:
“In the last five years, consumer preferences have shifted toward healthier, low-sugar, and clean-label beverages due to health concerns and rising cases of obesity and diabetes. As part of this larger trend, consumers are embracing more plant-based beverages with the desire for more natural and environmentally sustainable products.”
Cann has clearly been intentional about checking all those boxes. Most of their social tonics contain around 30 calories and are microdosed with 2 mg of THC and 4 mg of CBD (their highest THC dose is 5 mg, and comes in a Pineapple Jalapeno flavor). There are no artificial sweeteners or flavors, sugar substitutes, or cannabis taste, and their drinks combine all-natural citrus and herbal flavors with an agave nectar blend which, according to the company, creates “a light, refreshing taste that delivers the perfect social buzz.”
But Gwyneth Paltrow believes that Cann hits the sweet spot for more than one reason. She sees the brand “sitting at the intersection” of the “sober curious” and the “cannabis curious” movements:
The “sober curious” movement refers to a rise in interest or curiosity about living life with less (or no) alcohol – even among those who don’t suffer from alcohol use disorder or alcoholism. Cannabis-infused beverages fill the void for an adult social beverage sans the alcohol:
“There’s no reason why alcohol should be so much easier to purchase than Cann,” says Paltrow, “I’m confident the founders will lead the charge in finding ways to integrate it into the same purchasing channels and drinking environments.”
If the market projections are correct, then beverages like Cann are set to become hot commodities over the next five years. For now, Cann is available at dispensaries throughout California, Nevada, and Rhode Island.