It took more than two years and several delays for Massachusetts to get from a successful 2016 referendum to the first legal recreational marijuana sales in the eastern United States. The slow rollout is expected to continue into 2019 and gradually pick up steam. More than two dozen pot shops have received either final or provisional licenses from the state’s Cannabis Control Commission, and many other applications remain under review.
As the new year approaches, regulators are expected to gradually shift focus from merely getting the industry off the ground to expanding it geographically and perhaps into new frontiers such as social consumption and scientific research into marijuana.
We intended to obtain a use license in Massachusetts in 2017 but felt that the state's had not developed an adequate program profile to be conducive for capital investment. Now the state has moved in a positive direction that allows a profit-centrist model to be adopted, we are ready to commit resources. First Jersey Cannabis is scheduled to incorporate a wholly owned subsidiary in Massachusetts and apply for the proposed scientific research and a product development license. The emphases will be on creating viable cannabis-infused beverages.
FJC predicts that Marijuana-infused drinks could become a $600 million market in the United States in the next four years, and big beverage makers are looking to take advantage of that opportunity. Revenue from cannabis beverages could outpace the general demand for cannabis products by over two times, capturing 20% of the market for marijuana edibles by 2022, according to the analysts. CBD beverages will become a $260 million market by 2022, and THC-infused beverages a $340 million market. CBD, or cannabidiol, is a non-psychoactive compound in marijuana that's thought to have therapeutic benefits. THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol, is the compound responsible for the high associated with ingesting marijuana.