Coca-Cola wants to add

A few days ago Coca-Cola wants to add “marijuana ingredients, this news caught the attention of many people:

What? Coca-Cola started a blatant drug sale?

But in fact, things may not be what you think.

First of all, to say that Coca-Cola wants to add “marijuana ingredients” to its products is a rather imprecise statement, because

There are so many ingredients in cannabis!

We all know that medicinal marijuana can have hallucinogenic effects and can also be addictive. Most countries and regions in the world treat medical marijuana as a drug and strictly control it.

The reason why medicinal cannabis can create hallucinations is because of a psychoactive ingredient in medicinal cannabis, Tetrahydrocannabinol (THC).

Corresponding to medicinal hemp, there are industrial hemp and edible hemp. Industrial hemp is used to make various hemp ropes and hemp fabrics, while edible hemp is used to produce hemp seed and hemp seed oil. Both cannabis is low in THC and can be grown legally in various countries. Chinese law makes it legal to grow cannabis if it contains less than 0.3 percent THC.

THC is strictly regulated as a psychotropic drug in most countries. In the United States, although laws vary from state to state, at the federal legal level, THC is a proper Class 1 drug, alongside heroin, morphine, cocaine, and more. Even if I borrow 10 more guts from Coca-Cola, I would not dare to rashly add THC to my products.

So, what is added to the “marijuana drink”?

It adds another active substance contained in cannabis – cannabidiol, or CBD for short.

Although it seems that the chemical structure of CBD is quite similar to THC, CBD has no psychoactive properties, and it will neither make you hallucinogenic nor addictive. But CBD, as the active ingredient in cannabis, has certain medicinal value.

The clinically proven therapeutic effects are as follows:

May relieve pain in people with multiple sclerosis. Can be used for the treatment of certain types of epilepsy.

Yes, only these. Of course, there is a lot of literature showing that CBD has anti-fatigue, antioxidant, anti-inflammatory, and more. These “effects” are only in preliminary studies, and no comparative “heavyweight” conclusions have been reached.

In some countries, manufacturers have begun to put CBD in beverages, promoting its antioxidant and anti-inflammatory effects as a selling point, and selling it as a “health drink” or “functional food”.

The cooperation between Coca-Cola and Canadian licensed cannabis producer Aurora Cannabis Inc is to enter the market in this segment and seize a certain market share. However, if you want to go public, you must first get the most important thing

Is this drink legally now?

Because the laws of different countries are different. So far, the legality of cannabidiol (CBD) can be divided into 4 situations:

  • Completely prohibited: such in some states in the United States, etc.
  • Can be used as a prescription drug: such as Australia, New Zealand, etc.
  • Can be purchased and used as an over-the-counter drug: e.g. UK, Sweden, Switzerland, etc.
  • The standard is not yet clear: such as in other states in the United States, China, etc.

Have you noticed that no matter which country it is, there is no clear regulation at present that “cannabidiol can be legally added to food to make energy drinks/health food”?

In other words, although cannabidiol can be used as medicine in many countries, it is not a legal food raw material or food additive worldwide. In many regions, cannabidiol is in a regulatory gap.

But in 2018, cannabidiol-added beverages did appear on the U.S. market. Are these all illegal?

It’s hard to say. Those manufacturers themselves will claim that their CBD is extracted from industrial hemp, and industrial hemp is of course legally grown, so there is no problem at the legal level.

But think about it, the situation in the United States is more complicated. Each state has different attitudes towards cannabis, and their attitudes towards CBD are also very different. Some states have fully legalized marijuana, while others have governments that “just haven’t stepped in the field for a while” and can’t say it’s “fully legal.”

What Coca-Cola and other related companies need to do is to provide as much experimental evidence on the safety of cannabidiol as possible, and to advance its legalization process in various countries, so that it can finally be safely marketed.

However, you may be more concerned about the following issues:

Do marijuana drinks have side effects?

Due to the presence of cannabidiol (CBD), this “cannabis drink” should be classified as a “health food”. Many health food products have strict dosages, and if they are ingested in excess, some side effects will occur.

The side effects of cannabidiol that have been found so far include fatigue, appetite changes, diarrhea, and sleep changes. Although not particularly serious, it should also be noted.

In the future, if this “cannabis beverage” is marketed in China, the regulations will clarify the dosage. Take it easy when you drink, don’t drink too much at once.