How a breakthrough in cannabinoid infusion techniques has led to a new boom in the cannabis industry.
For Millennials, middle school was a wild ride. It wasn’t just our hormones raging and pre-cell phone, pre-helicopter parent freedom to roam around on our bikes until the sunset each night; we had access to something incredible: Surge.
It wasn’t just a new soda pop; it was green, liquid crack for children. The line to the soda machine would round the corner each day at lunch and everyone would get their proper fix for under one dollar. After school, my friends and I would raid the bins around campus, collecting the thrown-away bottles to return them at the grocery store for their deposit, and then buy more.
Much like the rage for Surge that began almost two decades ago, a new type of beverage is taking the cannabis world by storm: cannabis-infused beverages.
The Difficulty of Infusing Drinks with Cannabis
There’s always been a significant difficulty in extracting cannabinoids: their chemistry. Cannabinoids are hydrophobic1–they don’t mix well with water. Cannabinoids keep their water-loving tails enveloped by their hydrophobic heads. That’s why most concentrates are oil-based; cannabinoids do blend well with oils.
However, most people wouldn’t want to drink an oily substance.
That’s where companies like ebbu come in. They’ve designed ways to turn the hydrophobic structures of cannabinoids into water-soluble ones.
New Drinks Being Infused with Cannabis
Now that researchers have developed ways to alter the structure of cannabinoids so that they will blend well with water, a wide range of cannabis-infused drinks have made it to the market. In fact, the boom of these types of drinks has been so overwhelming that Business Insider recently suggested that this portion of the market could expand to over half a billion dollars within just a few years.
Drinks on the market today come in many forms:
- And more
While legislatures around the country are weighing the legality of such drinks–especially alcoholic drinks infused with cannabis–businesses are keen to fill this niche for cannabis consumers.
Your Favorite Cannabis-Infused Drink?
If Surge were to infuse its drink with cannabinoids, it would no longer be the seductive drink that was choice amongst millennials during their middle school years. However, it would likely find a new fan base: those same, nostalgic millennials who are now fully-grown adults.
- Kiran Vemuri and Makriyannis, “Medicinal chemistry of cannabinoids,” Clinical Pharmacology and Therapeutics, 2015, Volume 97(6).