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Coca-Cola in Talks to Make the Next CBD-Infused Beverage

by High Times | Updated on 9.17.18

The Coca-Cola Company is in “serious talks” with Aurora Cannabis to develop a CBD-infused beverage, according to a report from BNN Bloomberg Television. The news sent shares of Canadian marijuana producer Aurora Cannabis up as much as 23 percent to $8 in early trading on Monday. The stock had settled to a gain of about 14 percent by noon Eastern time.

Coca-Cola, the world’s largest beverage maker, and Aurora Cannabis are “pretty advanced down the path” of coming to an agreement, according to an unnamed source familiar with the negotiations between the two companies.

“It’s going to be more of the ‘recovery drink’ category,” the source added.

The source also said that talks between the two companies are ongoing but are not certain to succeed. Even if they are successful, any deal reached may not be made public, according to the source.

Another source told BNN Bloomberg that Coca-Cola also held preliminary talks with Aphria, another Canadian cannabis producer, but that the negotiations had not advanced.

Companies Decline to Comment on Deal

Coca-Cola spokesperson Kent Landers declined to comment on Aurora Cannabis directly. But he did say in an email to BNN Bloomberg that “along with many others in the beverage industry, we are closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world. The space is evolving quickly. No decisions have been made at this time.”

Heather MacGregor, a spokesperson for Aurora Cannabis, also declined to comment on a potential deal with Coca-Cola. However, she did confirm that the company is interested in pursuing opportunities in the CBD beverage market.

“As a rule, we do not discuss business development initiatives until they are finalized, however, we have a responsibility to our shareholders to give proper consideration to all relevant opportunities that are presented,” MacGregor said.

Martin Landry, managing director of equity research at GMP Securities LP, told BNN Bloomberg that many consumer packaged goods (CPG) companies were looking to enter the CBD market and that the impending legalization of cannabis in Canada presented an opportunity to do so. The recreational use and sale of cannabis products will become legal in Canada this October under Bill C-45, which was passed by Parliament this summer.

“If I’m a big CPG company, the reason I’d want to partner with a cannabis producer is to use them as a test market to develop products here in Canada and perfect them, so then I can enter the U.S. down the road when it’s more appropriate to do so,” Landry said.

Landry also noted that large corporations in other product sectors were also eyeing cannabis and CBD as a promising business opportunity.

“There’s a lot of interest from [consumer-packaged goods], and liquor and tobacco [companies] to look at cannabis as a new growth vector,” said Landry.

Landry also said that he expects even more opportunity as the newly legal marijuana industry matures.

“What’s happening is that the cannabis industry is still in its infancy and there’s not a lot of partners to dance with,” he said.

The post Coca-Cola in Talks to Make the Next CBD-Infused Beverage appeared first on High Times.

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(23)
  • Shelby
    09/17/2018
    ···

    I don’t want to see any more wealthy white people benefiting off of marijuana sales until all nonviolent marijuana offenders are released from prison and records expunged, most of which are people of color. People are still dying in prison over marijuana. Federally legalize it. I also need to stress that diet sodas are sweetened with aspartame, a neurotoxin which needs to be removed from all food, drink and medicines. Aspartame screws up peoples minds and is said to cause mental illness symptoms.

    Like (16)
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  • Countryfirst
    Voted Excited
    09/17/2018
    ···

    Sounds like a forward thinking idea..works for most American citizens!

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  • Joshua
    Voted Apathetic
    09/18/2018
    ···

    Hard to judge without more information. I know CBD can be immensely beneficial, but it seems like it should undergo slightly more oversight than just selling it from a beverage case.

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  • Lynne
    Voted Sad
    09/18/2018
    ···

    Should not be available to children. Can interact with medication s both OTC & RX in negative ways.

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  • J. scott
    09/17/2018
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    Hopefully they won’t ruin the benefits with all the sugar and artificial sweetener.

    Like (16)
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  • Branden
    Voted Excited
    10/08/2018
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    This is a truly amazing plan! This will hopefully make advancements with the legalization of marijuana too!

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  • Hulagurl1
    09/17/2018
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    If this is real I sure hope Coca Cola would stop using Aspartame and go back to cane sugar or a natural plant derivative. CBD is natural and they would just be defeat the benefits of a natural product that would help you.....

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  • Marylynn
    09/17/2018
    ···

    Our entire country could benefit greatly from the tax revenue from cannabis products. I hope this story is real and Coca Cola is making plans to manufacture this product.

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  • burrkitty
    09/18/2018
    ···

    Can’t say I’m a fan of this idea, but it’s not my company. Also, not sure how that’s going to go legally until the federal legal status changes. At minimum it will have to be manufactured in the state it’s sold in. I don’t drink that crap anyway, it’s super bad for you.

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  • Jim2423
    09/18/2018
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    Cannabis will not help the taste of your drink.

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  • Hillary
    09/18/2018
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    Coke has all ready proven they are not to be trusted with the health & safety of the public. They take the fresh water supply from villages and make it illegal for them to draw water from their own streams or even to catch rain water! Do we really want Coke to patent every way to use cannabis-the affordable, renewable plant that fights pain right at the moment in time when we are struggling with opioid problems?

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  • KansasTamale
    09/18/2018
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    Coke had cocaine in it to start with. This doesn’t surprise me st all. Just another way to get people hooked on their sugary, killing drinks. Good Lord. When are people going to get smart about the addictiveness ic soft drinks. They are killing us almost worse than alcohol and both of those are worse than marijuana.

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  • Adrienne
    09/18/2018
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    No thank you I echo a prior comment. I do not what to see white men getting millions of dollars, while thousands remain in jail for the very thing they wish to profit off of

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  • Mark
    09/17/2018
    ···

    I’m sure it’s a lot more than just “in talks.” It’s a done deal $$$$$$$$$$

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  • Shai
    09/18/2018
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    Proves the point that Capitalism will keep things it can’t profit off illegal - until it can. The FDA is a joke.

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  • SneakyPete
    09/18/2018
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    I’m one for HOPING that the sugar or other sweeteners tamper the effects of the MARIJUANA additives added. 9*17*18 ..... SneakyPete.....

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  • Jim2423
    09/17/2018
    ···

    I don’t know what Coke has done to their product, but it has the nastiest after flavor, I have never tasted before. Not just one bottle either. Go back to your original recipe. I have switched to Pepsi when I order a soft drink. Which is not very often.

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  • Jan
    09/18/2018
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    This is just another way to tax drugs again. I would like to see studies done on the benefits of this concoction and never put in the hands of a child w o proper identification.

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  • Dave
    09/18/2018
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    Non-psychoactive CBD would be more healthy, if they put in all natural foods as well.

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  • Jann
    09/18/2018
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    No no and NO. Is coke trying to counter act the effects of sugar poisoning? Really? What’s up with this? That choice would be only to increase sales! If they cared about people’s health the drink would not exist. Over sugared or poisoned with aspertame. Really this is a no brainer Just say NO

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  • Nick
    Voted Excited
    09/19/2018
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    Having a drink with marijuana would be great because it could benefit many people.

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