13:07 GMT24 January 2021
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    Coca Cola confirmed its interest in exploring the possibilities of using a cannabis compound in some of its drinks. Looking at what affects this would have on industry and attitudes towards pot in the UK, Sputnik spoke to Peter Reynolds, President of CLEAR Cannabis Law Reform and a member of the advisory board of the Cannabis Trades Association.

    Sputnik: Coca Cola has confirmed it is interested in exploring the possibilities of using a cannabis compound in some of its drinks. How significant is this for the cannabis industry?

    Peter Reynolds: I think it’s very significant but it’s happening not just with Coca Cola but with every major food organization. It’s been clear that there have been CBD-infused drinks around, probably the first on the market was Love Hemp Water, which is now available in Sainsburys, Ocardo and Holland and Barrett. The roll out of cannabis and cannabis derived products into mainstream business and culture is happening.

    Sputnik: Do you think this a good step for the industry or is it another step in the gentrification of cannabis products?

    Peter Reynolds: I do think it’s a good step. I don’t think it’s about gentrification, I think it’s about the world coming to terms with the reality of cannabis and cannabis-derived products. We had this experiment with the prohibition of cannabis, which start about 80 years ago, it’s been proven to be a total disaster in terms of the fact that’s its proven (to create) more harm than it’s ever prevented and we’ve also recognized, and more and more doctors and scientists are recognizing, that the removal of cannabis and cannabinoids from our diet may have had severe health impacts. Endocannabinoid System Deficiency, which was something that in the past would have been alleviated by having hemp as part of a daily diet, is on the rise and is associated with many modern conditions such auto-immune disease and allergies. You’ve got to remember that hemp used to be as widely grown across the British countryside and the European countryside as wheat or barley and suddenly for no good reason it was stopped all together. We’re just coming back to a place of rationality.

    Sputnik: We have these developments, could we see the law and attitudes changes towards legalizing cannabis in the UK, opening Britain up to a multi-billion pound industry?

    Peter Reynolds: I think so, very much so. What started the prohibition in the first place was big money and big industry. Big industries being afraid of the effect of hemp on the oil market, on the timber market and on the cotton market. In all of these areas, hemp was offering a very viable and some would say a better alternative. Big organizations, in particular DuPont, the chemical company, saw hemp as a threat; so that’s why it all happened in the first place and that’s why now we’re coming back to a place of rationality.

    The views expressed in this article are those of the speaker, and do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


    The views and opinions expressed in the article do not necessarily reflect those of Sputnik.


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