Those who didn’t smoke marijuana before the lockdown surely faced themselves with an enormous temptation to start smoking just to calm their nerves during this weird period.
Let’s face it, everything was going up and up before this quarantine, and despite all those obstacles that the weed industry is facing, no one was prepared for a shock that was about to follow.
Overnight, things like basic consumer goods became scarce, so marijuana shared the same fate as all other items not-essential for human survival. That was understandable, but being not essential is irrelevant in the economy that only respects the laws of supply and demand.
AskGrowers experts have written more about possible global changes in the cannabis industry.
Cannabis Industry Position Before Lockdown
Weed consumption is steadily growing for years as social stigma is being lifted steadily throughout the global market. Marijuana is becoming mainstream everywhere, which is already embedded in our popular culture, which constantly reminds us of this fact.
Medical use of ganja was on its all-time peak as deregulation plus lesser pressure made medical benefits recognized even by skeptics who do not look upon casual usage with much approval.
That is why casual users who prefer their self-made brands or sorts of their favorite plants are still lurking somewhere between dark and grey area. These entrepreneurs are investing a lot of time and money into all those resources needed for a few nice plants to grow happy and healthy.
The market outlook was looking well for everyone since the proliferation of products and services throughout the supply chain gave birth to some healthy competition.
Competition, on the other hand, lowers the prices so it is a win-win situation for everyone from the farmer to consumer, which is often the same person.
We witnessed an unprecedented increase in quality products from edibles to vaporizers that bring a touch of hi-tech to the industry. Brands are popping out like mushrooms throughout the legalized domain and that game is becoming tougher every day. Consumer’s expectations are getting higher, which is understandable in this industry whose sole purpose is to get you high.
New products, new technology, new ways of consuming. This is that future we were hoping for a few years ago when we were still battling to be recognized as a worthy industry that deserves to be legalized and regulated.
Then a funny thing happened that no one had predicted. One tiny virus terrified this whole planet, and this economy suddenly went into a halt. Or did it?
How Marijuana Consumption Has Changed in Lockdown
Most economies collapse because of market irregularities that disrupt that balance between supply and demand, which creates a domino effect.
In this new scenario that we faced there was certainly no shortage of demand. In fact, demand steadily went up way before coronavirus landed on our shores. People think ahead and in critical situations, they go into survival mode especially when supplies drop dangerously low.
Casual consumers, as well as those who qualify as medical consumers, quickly started stacking their favorite herbs while crops are still producing, and the delivery system is still working.
According to McKinsey Company, it is expected that after lifting the restrictions, people will still spend a lot of time at home for some time due to danger and cost reduction.
Do not forget that for a person, as a social being, this is primarily stressing. Cannabis will be one of the saving factors for the population in countries with legalized marijuana.
Stacking up is becoming a standard in times such as these, which is understandable and the demand is skyrocketing. More than 60 % of all consumers are planning to stack as many goods as possible before this market goes into a tilt.
This trend is a turning point for every entrepreneur that dreams of going into the marijuana business. Anyone who has some slightest talent for organizing the supply chain will immediately recognize the potential benefits of this situation.
We are talking about new ways of delivery plus online distribution, which suppressed traditional self-serving experience for obvious reasons concerning social distancing.
It is needless to say that the cannabis industry is not subsidized in any way by any government, not to mention the troubles weed lovers are facing in areas still under prohibition.
We are on our own but the good news is that we are used to it, so we adapt and prosper as always. More than 2/3 of all customers switched to alternative delivery services during a pandemic, and once you get used to everything being delivered to you on a silver plate, it is kind of hard to go back.
Interestingly, this shortage of good old ganja gave rise in demand for edible alternatives as well as THC-infused beverages, which we are totally supporting and are looking forward to a boom in this niche.
What Changes are Possible After a Lockdown in the Legal and Economic Sense
One of the biggest expectations after removing the lockdown is the acceleration of the legalization of cannabis around the world.
Thanks to the lockdown, it will be possible to clearly trace the statistics of crime, domestic violence, work efficiency remotely, the level of happiness of people and other indicators in countries with legalized cannabis and in countries where it is illegal.
One of the next referendum on the legalization of cannabis is the cannabis referendum in New Zealand, which will be held on September 20, 2020.
As demand flourishes, so does the online business as consumers experience has been digitalized by an unlikely source, a tinny virus from East Asia.
If there is one thing that this situation is clearly pointing out, that is the fact that people just love marijuana and that global legalization is underway. This is no more just a recreational stimulus but a world-wide phenomenon that has taken this market by storm.
Edibles, beverages, and medical marijuana in all shapes and sizes are conquering all continents, and governments all around the world should pay attention to these statistics right after they figure out how to fix the rest of the economy.
Some kind of economic relief would be a nice touch and a sign of appreciation for this industry so we hope that there are clever minds in legislation areas who think alike.
When this smoke clears, some changes will be more than evident in this market. Maybe we are witnessing some biggest shift in weed consumption in recent years as substitutes like edibles, vaporizers, and THC-infused beverages are getting their share of the market.
Furthermore, many are talking about new markets in general, where each of these categories will proliferate into a special niche with its own brands and sub-categories. This is a great stimulus for a whole industry, which can give birth to many new ideas and inspire creativity, which is so common for new developing industries.
We can certainly expect new brands, new sorts, and new products, which will only add diversity plus quality to already existing catalog of merchandise.
When things go back in normal as far as delivery or infrastructure goes, many predict that this bubble will deflate, which can happen to a certain extent, but those structural changes that were made will transform the industry forever.
This lockdown is a stepping stone that shows a way where this industry should be heading on its way to prosperity. It should go toward diversity plus branding and it is essential to embrace all those benefits of online trade and digital marketing to reach its goals.
The future seems bright for this industry but inside a big cloud of smoke around it.