Coca-Cola looking at cannabis-infused drinks

They would act as a mild painkiller and help reduce muscle inflammation and cramping

They would act as a mild painkiller and help reduce muscle inflammation and cramping

The Atlanta-based soft-drink giant - whose earliest beverages included trace amounts of cocaine - is now in talks with Canada-based pot farmer Aurora Cannabis to create beverages infused with marijuana, according to a Bloomberg report Monday.

The discussions over a possible product tie-up could help overcome slowing demand for sugar-heavy sodas by diversifying into caffeine-infused and healthier drinks.

Neither company would comment directly on the talks to Bloomberg, although Coke said it was "closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world".

'The space is evolving quickly.

Regardless, if Coca-Cola decides to make a CBD-infused beverage, it could become hugely profitable at a time when Americans are trying to cut back on sugar and embrace "natural" cures. It should be noted that Coca-Cola shares have risen since the news was announced.

And the Green Party leader says he is now vindicated on the question of mass production of cannabis for medical purposes.

Marijuana remains illegal at the federal level, but drinks containing THC can be sold legally in dispensaries in states where recreational marijuana is legal. The new beverages will be pegged to drinkers who suffer with inflammation, pain or cramping.

Canada officially legalised the use of recreational cannabis back in June and apparently the United Kingdom could follow suit within five years.

Coke says these cannabis drinks appear to be gaining ground globally. The biggest deal so far is the $4 billion investment by Corona-maker Constellation Brands (STZ) into Ontario-based cannabis company, Canopy Growth Corporation (CGC).

A number of Canadian cannabis companies, including Cronos and MedMen Enterprises, now trade on USA stock exchanges, and some American companies have taken stakes.

Coke is said to be in talks with a Canadian cannabis company, Aurora Cannabis, on potential products. CBD-infused beverages harness the power of the plant's cannabidiol, the non-psychoactive ingredient in marijuana purported to have various health benefits.

'It's going to be more of the "recovery drink" category'. She estimates that cannabis-infused drinks could become a $50 billion annual market in the United States - almost half the size of the $117 billion market for U.S. beer sales.

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