- Jones Soda expanded its Mary Jones cannabis soda line with a 100-milligram variety. It previously launched a 10-milligram THC-version of the beverage in California in June.
- The 100-milligram THC drink comes in four Jones Soda flavors — Berry Lemonade, Root Beer, Green Apple and Orange & Cream — in 16-ounce cans. The drinks are resealable, which the company said was designed for consumers looking to pace their consumption and share the beverage with friends.
- With a ten-times higher dose of THC in its soda, Jones Soda believes it can drive further interest in the beverage among consumers looking for a stronger high from the product.
The growth potential Jones Soda sees in the cannabis space will drive the company’s future, the company’s president and CEO Mark Murray boldly proclaimed in a statement. The executive said that since its launch, Mary Jones has surpassed its expectations, with placement in over 150 dispensaries in California.
Jones picked California because of its mature legal cannabis market worth about $4 billion, allowing the company to benefit from other businesses that have figured out how to operate in the category while tapping into infrastructure already in place.
“Building on our initial success, this new higher-potency 100mg product unlocks a valuable category with a higher value product aimed at a more mature cannabis consumer,” said Murray. “With our ambitious product roadmap and new partnerships enabling us to expand to other states, I’m confident that our Cannabis Division will be instrumental in our growth in 2023 and beyond.”
While the drink contains high amounts of THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana, the company believes it will appeal to regular soda drinkers as well. Jones Soda said in a statement the drink tastes like its traditional soda flavors. The recipes were customized to accommodate THC emulsions.
Upon announcing the Mary Jones brand earlier this year, Bohb Blair, Jones Soda’s chief marketing officer, told Food Dive that taking advantage of the California market will “set ourselves up for really a great path of success as we go into the Midwest and go east as we expand into all legal states.”
The fractured legality among different states within the cannabis space has frustrated companies who bet big on wider adoption across the U.S. Currently, 37 states and Washington, D.C. have approved marijuana for medical use, with 10 passing laws allowing the use of low THC, high CBD products, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
Alcohol giant Constellation Brands recently recorded a $1.1 billion writedown in the value of its investment in cannabis producer Canopy Growth, in which it has a nearly 40% stake. CEO Bill Newlands said on the company’s earnings call on Oct. 6 that while the result was “clearly disappointing”, Constellation continues to stay optimistic about the prospect of legislation.
Cannabis companies and advocates are hopeful President Joe Biden will move toward national legalization of the drug. He announced earlier this month that he had pardoned all federal marijuana simple possession offenses, and asked the Department of Health and Human Services to “review expeditiously” how it is classified under federal law.
A bipartisan group of lawmakers in Congress is aiming to take advantage of this momentum by passing legislation allowing cannabis businesses to have easier access to banking services and loans.