Understanding the Legal Issues Around Cannabis-Infused Alcoholic Drinks

Hoban Law Group attorney Ryan Malkin discusses what brands need to know about using cannabis, CBD, THC, and hemp derivatives

The green rush is upon us. Overall marijuana sales in the United States amounted to approximately $9 billion in 2017, according to BDS Analyticsa market research company in Boulder, Colorado, that specializes in tracking cannabis; sales of hemp products for the same period hovered at just under $1 billion, according to the Hemp Business JournalThe U.S. is witnessing widespread interest in, and legalization of, cannabis in a variety of forms: medicinal, recreational, and nutraceutical. Alcohol beverage companies are scrambling to stake their claims, get involved early, and find their niches. As cannabis laws evolve and marijuana’s popularity grows and becomes more mainstream, it’s no surprise that we’re seeing a rise of alcohol products produced with parts of this notorious plant. Yet with federal prohibition, trying to navigate and comply with alcohol and cannabis regulations can leave someone in need of a drink—or a smoke.