Wednesday, September 5, 2018

There Are a Lot of Questions as to How the Legalization of Pot Will Effect the Premium Spirits Industry

Cannabis Crop Awaits Legalization

     Although the impact of legal, recreational cannabis use on alcohol sales remains uncertain, the WSWA’s decision to take a position on marijuana legalization ultimately has little to do with the trade. By supporting and encouraging regulation of intoxicants like cannabis and alcohol, the WSWA hopes to put the health and safety of the consumer first.
     There is no evidence that the increasing legalization of cannabis will result in market share loss for premium spirits, the CEO of Pernod Ricard has said.   Speaking at a roundtable event in London, CEO Alexandre Ricard said the group is monitoring the situation, and has been doing so for some time.  However, there is currently no evidence to show that cannabis will cannibalize spirits consumption, Ricard said.   “We have been monitoring the situation for one clear reason: we want to understand if legalization of cannabis may or may not have an impact on consumption of premium spirits,” Ricard explained.
     “We do not have evidence of any cannibalization or market share loss to cannabis.   “It’s too early to have a clear idea. We are looking to have clarity on whether it will impact or maybe not impact premium spirits. So far, the answer is no.”   The largest liquor producer in the world, Diageo is said to be monitoring the legalization of cannabis in North America very closely and that so far its legalization has not negatively impacted its business.  Earlier this week, the drinks giant was been noted as being in talks with several cannabis producers in Canada, but declined to comment on the rumors. 
     Drinks companies are already making moves into the new sector. US drinks group Constellation Brands has been reported to have funneled some $4,000,000,000 into Canadian cannabis producer Canopy Growth Corporation, signifying the biggest investment in the cannabis industry to date.  Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits has opened Great North Distributors, a wholly owned Canadian subsidiary that will be the exclusive representative for cannabis.

     This is an interesting question that only time will show the true results upon the spirits industry.