As the cannabis industry grows and develops, so too do the cannabis cultural events like 4/20.
It seems that each year, 4/20 gets larger with more companies throwing events and more states allowing recreational usage.
Given that this event isn’t going away any time soon, it’s interesting to look back at previous years and see what predictions we can make for what to expect.
For example, this is the first year that we’ll see trends and data in Canada’s first 4/20 post-legalization.
With the upcoming cultural holiday, I spoke with several industry leaders to see what their take is on last year’s 4/20 compared to what they expect to see this year.
This is what they had to say.
“Last year it was all about the promise in Canada with the legalization of recreational cannabis looming in the back end of the year. This year we are now several months into a live recreational program and it is all about results. Quarterly earnings results actually mean something and metrics like sequential quarter over quarter revenue growth and margins to a lesser degree can have a significant impact on company valuations. This 4/20, the measuring stick is moving away from who has the largest facility to who has an effective brand in a given vertical.
For the largest cannabis companies, the focus is starting to shift to international markets that are now coming online where potential customer pools are larger and pricing is better than in the Canadian recreational market. Also, more niche segments of the supply chain are suddenly becoming investor darlings as focus shifts away from growers.”
— Khurram Malik, CEO of Biome, a diversified Canadian cannabis conglomerate steered by leaders in the cannabis space – in finance, growing technologies, regulatory affairs, business building, and marketing. Biome has also taken a different approach to the market than its competitors. It is focused on the local consumer – what they want in a product, and in a buying experience. It is focused on regional cannabis growing and business growth with an emphasis in Atlantic Canada. And it has the expertise to attack the burgeoning global market from its Canadian base.
“This 4/20 is a milestone for the cannabis community in Canada. It’s their first since legalization, and I think a lot of activists will spend the day taking stock of their achievements and what they have left to do. I think that the lack of commercial edibles will result in a surprising number of patients familiarizing themselves with the process of making edibles at home.
— Shanel Lindsay, CEO, and Founder of Ardent, a biotech and medical cannabis device company that produces the NOVA™, a laboratory-grade precision decarboxylator for medical cannabis patients.
“4/20 seems to become a bigger and bigger event each year. It went from being a counterculture college campus event to a nationally recognized industry holiday; with millions of people attending large organized events and concerts throughout the United States. We expect this year to be the largest 4/20 yet. This year, it happens to fall on a Saturday, which means that even more people will have the opportunity to participate than in previous years.”
— Chirag Sadana, Founder of Stratum Brands, whose portfolio of brands include 2018 Cannabis Cup winning luxury concentrates maker Cobra Extracts.
“I predict this year we will see more people participating in 4/20 due to more states coming online for recreational use. I also believe that the recent passage of the Farm Bill and subsequent proliferation of CBD has aided in reducing the stigma associated with using cannabis. As far as trends, dabbing usage continues to increase as concentrates have become more mainstream. This is a result of companies figuring out new means of extraction and delivering the medium for high doses of THC.”
— Danny Davis, Managing Partner at Convectium, a one-stop-shop for cannabis retailers’ sourcing, packaging, shipping or domestic/international manufacturing needs. They developed the 710 Shark Filling machine, which fills thousands of oil cartridges per hour. Convectium has also produced some of the best b2c products and companies on the market
“If I were to suggest a shift in trends between 4/20 last year and 4/20 this year, I would suggest that brands are becoming a more prominent feature in the market, particularly as consumers buy more oil and concentrate-based products. Likewise, we continue to see a cultural shift away from the ‘stoner images’ of the 20th century, and a shift toward more sophisticated consumers.”
— Steve Gormley, President, and CEO of International Cannabrands, a company focused on acquiring successful mid-market cannabis brands with a goal of bringing together unique and emerging legal cannabis brands and core cannabis capabilities that resonate with evolving consumer lifestyles. ICL has created a powerful growth engine through investing in and partnering with leading cannabis visionaries, leveraging manufacturing and distribution scale and focusing on profitability and value.