It’s non-alcoholic, available in “lite” and has been described as “swift, smooth, and winningly mild.” Within about five or 10 minutes of consumption, it imparts either a pleasant buzz or a headier high depending on the strength of the brew and, according to one source, “tastes like weed La Croix.”
More Choices, More Opportunities
From Lagunitas, California’s Hi-Fi Hops (the “weed La Croix” mentioned above) to Portland, Maine’s Pumpkinhead THC Elixir, cannabis beverages are popping up everywhere. More and more states are legalizing recreational cannabis, and both producers and consumers are looking for novel possibilities.
Various sources predict an end to cannabis prohibition on the federal level soon, and this trend is ripe and ready for creative entrepreneurs and brewmasters looking for opportunities in one of the fastest-growing commercial sectors.
New Ways To Drink Responsibly
Cannabis craft beverage makers may be on the cusp of meeting a growing demand for products on the lighter side of the green gradient. While breeders and growers have been fixated for years on producing the most potent strains of cannabis, new consumers are smitten with a recent trend among connoisseurs of psychoactive substances.
Microdosing or the consumption of much smaller quantities of psychoactives, has been gaining in popularity. The jury may still be out on its benefits as far as mainstream science is concerned, but all the cool kids—and some well-informed doctors—are big fans of tiny doses.
With dispensary-available cannabis strains topping THC content of 30 percent or more, microdosing with traditionally available sources might be difficult, but one source promises to be perfectly suited to the task: cannabis beverages.
Preserving the Craft
Discerning craft brewers everywhere are noticing the trend and are looking to get involved in the field. Many entering the cannabis market for the first time are faced with a bewildering array of questions and some uncertainty about parts of the process with which they may not be familiar.
Where to procure cannabis for use in their nascent art might be one of the first questions, but one of the last steps in the process is at least equally important: how to prepare the final product for distribution and consumption. Chief among these concerns is that cannabis beverages, which may not typically contain alcohol helpful in keeping a beverage potable, require special handling and expertise for successful finishing.
Velcorin may supply one of the answers many are looking for. A trade name for dimethyl dicarbonate, this microbial control chemical has been in use since 1988, the year “Never Gonna Give You Up” won Rick Astley the number-one spot in the Billboard Hot 100.
It’s been added to low- and non-alcoholic beverages since and provides an excellent way to keep a beverage fresh and drinkable from canning to consumption. Though once chiefly used by makers of wine coolers (to reference another iconic 80s phenomenon), Velcorin is attracting attention from a new sector these days: makers of cannabis beverages looking to market products free of bacteria-killing alcohol.
Making sure a drink is free of bacteria is a problem with a readily apparent solution in Velcorin. Ensuring a brew is only skunky because of the cannabis strain used in its production is an excellent first step, but a last-mile problem still proves puzzling—canning is still a big question mark for many.
Unlike many lagers, stouts, and IPAs that dominate the craft beer landscape, cannabis-based beverages require special handling to maintain their potability and appeal… but this isn’t the only hurdle before the finish line.
Codename: Regulatory Compliance
These new beverages are subject to regulations and code requirements the likes of which have not been seen in this country since the end of prohibition. Even after “jazz cabbage” becomes legal on the federal level, it will continue to be highly regulated, requiring any brewer who wishes to use it to be well-versed in crossed Ts and dotted Is.
This regulatory labyrinth requires careful navigation and the cannabis craft beverage field will require agility to adjust to new types and forms of products as they are developed. Flexibility in bringing these beverages to market will be crucial as both the nature of the product and that of the venues in which it can be brought to sale change shape over time.
Choosing the right equipment—and the right supplier—is critically important. The provider of a canning solution that can meet the needs of the burgeoning cannabis beverage market should be well-informed and provide flexibility, reliability, scalability, and multiple packaging forms and formats.
If only there were a cannabis canning machine and a company that stood behind it, ready to help with these various challenges …
Twin Monkeys, No Problems
You saw this coming: there is.
Twin Monkeys Beverage Systems, founded by a brewer and an automation engineer, focuses on meeting the unique needs of their clients—and is looking forward to supplying cannabis-centered craft beverage creators with every necessity for success.
With a company culture focused on listening to each customer’s unique needs and providing a scalable, reliable solution, they’re the best bet—and the greatest ally—a cannabis craft brewer could ask for.
Providing flexible canning solutions carefully configured to meet the changing needs of cannabis beverage brewers and the technical expertise needed to customize a system to satisfy both quality and code requirements, Twin Monkeys provides solutions to the most pressing problems in cannabis beverage distribution.
You may not have anticipated the need for a cannabis canning machine, but luckily someone has. Twin Monkeys presents the best option available to the cannabis craft beverage producer and would love the opportunity to discuss your specific goals and how best to meet them.
As founders, Josh and Brian are fond of saying, “Let’s Talk Monkey” to learn more about how Twin Monkeys can help you bring your craft cannabis beverage to the folks who want it.