It just sounds good, doesn´t it.. 2020. As we look back on the year we leave behind, we can look forward with great expectations to what a new decade has to offer us.
Around the world more and more countries are putting cannabis on the pollical agenda. The growing acceptance, especially of the medicinal qualities of the plant, is opening doors to new commercial opportunities, broader scientific studies and sensible regulations. Of course, we can expect some bumps on the road.
For the young Cannabis Economy in the United States it´s been a turbulent year. It all started out well with everyone riding the boom of the past years, but the industry has seen a dramatic downturn since March. This ´shakeout´ has led to layoffs, cut backs, failed mergers and insecure investors. When people started getting seriously ill and even dying from black market vape products, a shockwave went through the country from which the market is still recuperating.
In Canada the cannabis crisis has also been intense the past year, mainly because the complete legalization a year before didn´t lead to the role-out of storefronts around the country. Companies have been so eager to supply Canadian smokers, that they produced way too much. They will now have to put the brakes on production until demand catches up.
“It has been an exciting year, and not in the way that shareholders in this sector would like,” Cam Battley, chief corporate officer of Aurora Cannabis.
In Spain politics has been slow to move in general, and no real gains have been made towards more progressive cannabis legislation. This year we saw one of the big cosmetics companies promote their CBD based Canna cream on national TV, while on the news we watched a grandmother on trial for growing her own medicine. In recent months we´ve also learned that an icon in the 4:20 community, Weedmaps, is stopping its activities in Spain as they commit to their domestic regulation.
It might sound like we´ve had quite a bad year, but this is a matter of perception. The reality is that the cannabis industry has to mature and go through changes.
The current ‘crisis’ is being compared to the burst of the dot.com bubble. It´s a painful process, but as a consumer we can expect to be better off afterwards. The vape scare has led to improved quality control and consumer awareness, as bans instated in several states earlier this year are being lifted. And let´s be honest, if your problem is that you grew too much weed.. you´re not doing that bad. Even in Spain we stay hopeful that growing popular support and progressive legislators will help us move forward into this new decade.
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