With the cannabis drinks industry currently segmented along with a state-by-state basis, the Cannabis Drinks Expo, organized by Beverage Trade Network, is thought to be the largest global gathering of the cannabis drinks industry and represents an attempt to widen the perspective of market participants on the national dimensions of the industry. Regulatory and legal changes at the state level are showing the potential to be expanded to a truly national level, and that has raised the interest level of all participants within the global drinks industry.
One focal point of the one-day expo in San Francisco in November 2021 was the emerging relationship between the state’s wine industry and the legalized recreational cannabis industry. While many winemakers and grape growers initially viewed the rise of the cannabis industry as a threat, the competitive dynamics recently shifted. Now, winemakers appear ready to seize new opportunities for collaboration.
The Canabis Drinks Expo featured wine and cannabis industry experts, distributors, and retailers, as well as political and legal analysts, medical researchers, and marketing and branding experts. They discussed topics including the regulatory and policy landscape for cannabis drinks, licensing requirements, and market opportunities within the hospitality and tourism sectors.
In addition, the event offered a trade-show floor showcasing the latest products and services.
“Choosing San Francisco as the host city for the venue just made a lot of sense,” said Sid Patel, chief executive officer and founder of Beverage Trade Network. “We’ve hosted events in San Francisco previously for the global wine and spirits industry, and California has now emerged as an influential voice determining the future growth of the cannabis drinks industry.”
All images by Mike Rosati.