Opinion

Wild Predictions for the Cannabinoid Industry – the End of 2020 Edition

Jason Lupoi, Ph.D.
Written by Jason Lupoi, Ph.D.

Summer is almost among us, but somehow it doesn’t quite feel that way. Many human beings are hibernating like winter bears when we all want to romp around outdoors, with beer or pools or cigars but always decent music and cannabis.

So, in that vein, here are some 2020 predictions to splash around in until you can cannonball into something aqueous (or whatever it is you’re itching to do).

The progress of the industries encircling Cannabis sativa does have a fluid-like grace. Like the graphs regarding global warming, our industry will have its ups and downs. But, the main thing to consider is its overall trendline. What’s fashionable today might be historical (or hysterical) tomorrow.

From my vantage point, there’s been more product manufacturers migrating away from the concept of cannabidiol (CBD) isolate. This isn’t to discredit CBD isolate’s medicinal merit. It’s just that many cultivators are no longer growing traditional industrial hemp. Rather, their plants sparkle with dazzling trichomes rich with cannabinoids and terpenes.

The medical benefits of terpenes have been bolstered with science for decades, and most terpenes have similar medical benefits as cannabinoids, like anti-cancer, antibacterial, or anti-anxiety properties.

The ensemble effect harkens to the fact that the community is stronger when whole than in isolation, a lesson more relevant with every passing day.

Curiously, in parallel to this augmented interest in terpenes and building out the ensemble or spectrum, many manufacturers are interested in minor cannabinoid isolates, especially when conducting research where the data from a single molecule provides the scientific journey’s foundation.

Both trends will continue their own diverse trajectories as our amazement at what cannabis offers and corresponding inquisitiveness to dig a little deeper parallel our understanding at what these plants confer as a community. By the end of 2020, we’ll have the data in hand to identify opportunities for designing customized formulations based upon the maximum ensemble effect for a given suite of molecules that also provides some level of “spectrum.”

Lastly, perhaps 2020, this year of perfect vision, won’t be lost to “the virus” after all. Perhaps it’s given us the opportunity to take stock of what’s important and useful, while shedding unnecessary debris. Given the levels of unemployment sweeping across the world, wouldn’t it be perfect to see governments of the world find their humanity and eradicate the B.S. notion that a medicinal plant is devilish a or “Schedule I drug”, devoid of actual medicine? Wouldn’t it just resonate to know that cannabis helped the globe recover economically, providing jobs that translate to livelihoods for people in need?

The beauty of our industry is that we need every type of person, every skill level, from regulator to dabbing consumer, and every point in between. The real wildness, therefore, will come when legalization swarms dry states, when governments preventing humankind from accessing a wonderfully effective medicinal plant finally come to their senses, perhaps through the intoxicating bouquets of more terpenes in the air.

So, let’s plan to add three medical and three recreational states this year. Maybe Virginia, Kentucky, and Texas finally get medicinal and Pennsylvania, New York, and Florida get recreational. Or insert your preference, just as long as we get rational.

About the author

Jason Lupoi, Ph.D.

Jason Lupoi, Ph.D.

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