Moosehead to introduce cannabis-infused drinks this fall

Canada’s oldest brewer has joined forces with a Vancouver-based company to make THC-laced beverages that get you high in five

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Canada’s oldest brewer has joined forces with a Vancouver-based company to make THC-laced beverages that get you high in five minutes

 

By ERIK TANNER

“But, I don’t feel anything.” It’s a common refrain from impatient and inexperienced users or marijuana edibles and drinks laced with THC. That’s how the uninitiated often overdo it and soon they are buzzing in a place in their heads they don’t want to be. The time it takes to feel the high is the main issue with marijuana edibles and drinks – until now.

 

A little-known Vancouver-based cannabis company Sproutly says it has cracked the time barrier with a technology called Aqueous Phytorecovery Process (APP) to make THC-laced beverages that get you high within five minutes.

 

“Other companies are creating beverages and edibles that are taking an oil base and adding a chemical modifier to be able to blend the oils back into water,” says Sproutly chief executive officer Keith Dolo. “We are able to create a truly water soluble cannabis solution (called Infuz2O) that can be instantly formulated into a beverage without the use of harsh-tasting chemicals.”

 

In May, Sproutly entered into an agreement with Canada’s oldest brewer, New Brunswick-based Moosehead, to introduce non-alcoholic cannabis-infused drinks this fall. Sproutly and Moosehead are aiming to create eight or nine different-flavoured drinks. Sproutly also has plans to develop “fast-acting and long-lasting edible products” in the near future.

 

Dolo says that, “Without being an oil, Infuz2O is able to be integrated into the body much quicker.” As a result, Dolo says the “highly predictable” onset time of five minutes or less allows users to “self-monitor” and control dosage in real-time. Dolo adds that Infuz2O is free from harmful chemicals and only utilizes ingredients that are common in our normal diet.

 

Sproutly has given Moosehead the exclusive rights to its APP technology for five years, with a possible two-year extension. Sproutly said in a statement announcing the partnership that, “Moosehead will provide infrastructure support such as research and development, operations, finance, and distribution.”

 

Former Moosehead vice-president Matthew Oland says, “As one of the oldest brands in Canada, and a leader in the beer category, we believe we are uniquely positioned to be a leader in the cannabis beverage category.”

 

Oland is a member of the family that founded the brewery 152 years ago. Oland has stepped down from Moosehead and taken the chief executive officer position at the joint venture with Sproutly.

 

Oland says: “Canadians impression of cannabis has changed. It’s legal now and there is a growing interest among consumers. And so we too are changing with Canadians to meet that need.”

 

 

Another issue with cannabis beverages and edibles is the prolonged “offset time,” that is, the length of time it takes you to come down. When you ingest regular edibles or drinks, you typically have to set aside the whole day. With Infuz2O you are high for only 90 minutes, a similar timeframe experienced when smoking marijuana. Sproutly says this will allow for “casual” or “lunch time” consumption.

 

Dolo notes that in the U.S. big brands are shying away from cannabis because of federal regulations.

 

But federal regulation in Canada has allowed big name companies to invest in cannabis.

 

Already, we have Molson Coors Canada working with licensed producer Hexo. As well, licensed producer Canopy Growth is partnering with United States-based beer, wine and spirits maker Constellation Brands. But so far, Canopy and Hexo are mum on what products they will have on offer when marijuana-infused drinks are legal later this year.

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High in five: a little-known Vancouver-based cannabis company says it has cracked the code to make THC-laced beverages that get you high in five minutes