Hello, my name is Rodney Boast. I am a Co-Owner and Chief of Operations at Ray’s Lemonade. Recently I have seen more and more content aimed at high dose Cannabis Beverages and potential lobbying against them, which is alarming. Questions keep coming up about the safety of high-dose drinks to the end consumer, and I felt it was essential to address what a high-dose drink is and what it is not. I am not here to discredit low-dose Cannabis Beverages; we have some and plan to make more. I am also not here to start an adversarial conversation. At Ray’s Lemonade, we feel a need for both low and high-dose Cannabis Beverages in the Cannabis Beverage market.
What is a high-dose drink?
High-dose Cannabis Beverages are any beverage with more than one serving. For the sake of this information, I am sharing that I will use the safe dose that most states have, 10 mg. Canada has the same requirement of a 10 mg dose; in Massachusetts, the state requirement for a Cannabis Beverage is 5 mg.
Doses per package:
Most 100 mg Cannabis Beverages have ten doses of 10 mg each in the bottle or can they are packaged in. Some like our Lil Ray’s product line, have up to 20 servings of 5 mg each in the package. It provides the consumer with a cost-effective way of purchasing their Cannabis Beverages. I stress that we all need to understand that 100 mg Cannabis Beverages are not intended to be consumed in a single setting. Consumers must follow the dosing instructions on the labels of the product they purchase. Follow them closely and fully understand how their body reacts to the product.
Typically, a 100 mg Cannabis Beverage in the USA sells for 15 to 20 dollars. At the $15 per bottle price point, consumers pay 75 cents per 5 mg serving or $1.50 per 10 mg serving of Cannabis Beverage. This works out to 15 cents per milligram. At the same time, a low-dose drink offers a consumer a beverage at an average price of $7 for a 5 mg drink. I Purchased one in NM yesterday that had 2.5 mg THC and 2.5 mg CBD. At this price, the consumer is paying $1.40 per mg of Cannabis. There is more value per milligram in a high-dose drink, and the consumers respond accordingly. Over 50% of the Cannabis Beverages sold in the USA are 100 mg drinks. With the current economy and rising costs that we are all faced with price per milligram matters to the customer. Compared to a 5 mg Cannabis Beverage consumers get 20 servings (19 more) for a price that is double what they pay for the 5mg drink and they get 50 servings (49) more than a 2 mg drink. Consumers would need to pay $140 for an equivalent amount of 5 mg drinks to get the 100 mg. Below are the stats on what dosages of Cannabis Beverages are moving in the USA.
What is selling in the USA:
In this table, we see that 100 mg Cannabis Beverages make up 50% of the total market share. This is many consumers saying that price per milligram matters. They get 10 to 20 servings in a bottle for a price that works best for their budget.
In Massachusetts, the maximum is 5 mg per Cannabis Beverage, and when they are taken out of the data pool, around 55% of sales and 57% of units sold go to 100 mg drinks. The important takeaway from the table below is that there is room for all potencies in the Cannabis Beverage category. I believe the Cannabis Beverage industry will see sales trends that mirror alcohol over time. The number one factor that limits this today is the cost of low-dose drinks compared to the cost of high-dose drinks. For low-dose drinks to get more market share, the price needs to come down, which is hard with our current regulations.
Last 365 Days of Cannabis Beverage Sales in WA, OR, CA, NV, CO, MI and MA
|MG of THC||Total Sales||Total Units||% of Total Sales||% of Total Units|
Are they Safe?
Which is safer, a bottle of beer or a mixed drink? That is like saying how long is a piece of rope. Drink too much of either and they are not safe. When it comes to Cannabis Beverages, it is no different. Each person that consumes a Cannabis Beverage is different and the effect on them will be vastly different, person to person. It is very important for consumers to understand their own dose, or what I like to call “Know Your Dose.” I have met people who can drink 300 mg of Cannabis Beverages, and there are people like myself that only need 5 to 10 mg to achieve the desired effect.
How does a new consumer Know Their Dose?
We recommend that consumers start with 5 mg. For some, they will feel the effect, and they may want to scale down from there. For others, 5 mg may not have the effect they desire. If they need more to get the desired effect, we do not recommend having more the same day they try it. We like consumers to wait and try 10 mg on the next trial. They are increasing by 5 mg each time until they identify their dose. Once they Know Their Dose they can plan accordingly.
When industry members or government authorities attempt to put high-dose Cannabis Beverages into a higher-risk category, this is a dangerous and slippery slope. If the opposition to high-dose drinks is successful, what will they attack next? Will they next go after Concentrates, vape pens, and infused pre-rolls? As an industry, we must stand against this type of regulatory effort as it is bad for consumers and the entire Cannabis industry. Safe dosing is set by each state, and Cannabis Beverage manufacturers must follow the rules in the states they operate in. There is plenty of room in the industry for Cannabis Beverages in a wide variety of dose options for consumers’ needs, both in effect and budget.
I hope you find this information helpful and welcome a good conversation around the issue. I am proud of almost all of the things the Cannabis Beverage industry is doing to grow the category. If you like high-dose drinks or if you like low-dose drinks, buy them. I don’t care where your views align on this issue, posturing against a brand, dose, or market plan is not something any of us in this great industry should nor can afford to do. We have all worked too hard to get here and there is much more work to do in days to come. What we must do is continue to produce the best-tasting, highest-quality drinks possible to grow the entire segment.