Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks

Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks

A partnership between Coca-Cola and Aurora would be the first partnership between a non-alcoholic beverage company and cannabis producer.

Shares of Aurora shot up 17 per cent Monday after a report by BNN Bloomberg claimed that "serious talks" had taken place between the Alberta cannabis grower and Coca-Cola Co., the Atlanta-based beverage giant.

Molson Coors Brewing Co.is starting a joint venture with Quebec's Hydropothecary Corp.to develop cannabis drinks in Canada.

Could your can of Coke one day come infused with cannabis oil?

Shares of Aurora were up almost 17 percent on the Toronto Stock Exchange on the report. "The space is evolving quickly", Coke spokesman Kent Landerstold the wire service. CBD, or cannabidiol, is the chemical in the pot plant often used for medicinal purposes, and doesn't produce the high that comes from THC, or tetrahydrocannabinol. She said she would not be surprised to hear of a similar deal by PepsiCo for its Gatorade drink.

Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks
Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks

Canada is set to legalize cannabis on 17 October after both houses of Parliament voted to make the drug available for recreational use.

Sales in US legal markets should almost triple to $16 billion by 2020 from $5.4 billion in 2015, according to market research firm Euromonitor International, and Constellation says cannabis globally could be worth $200 billion in 15 years.

Sources told BNN Bloomberg that the world's largest beverage company is interested in developing drinks that are infused with cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive element in cannabis also known as CBD. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the difference is that marijuana, which is the dried leaves of the cannabis plaint, does contain THC. It does not cause intoxication.

Moving into this area carries little reputational risk for Coke, said Liberum's von Stackelberg. Tilray jumped 6.8 percent, adding to its 40 percent gain last week; Cronos rose 3.1 percent and Canopy's US shares climbed 2.9 percent.

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