Foodservice Equipment & Supplies

AUG 2019

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48 FOODSERVICE EQUIPMENT & SUPPLIES AUGUST 2019 E rnest Hemingway once spoke of change as coming about in two ways: "gradually, then suddenly." But we're not talking about bank- ruptcy, as he was then; we are talking about pot. Indeed, the cannabis conversation continues. Every day, it seems, there's a whirlwind of new education and pro- posed legislation aimed at decriminal- izing the possession of cannabis while also changing the myths and stigmas associated with its use. Cannabis is also big business. The U.S. cannabis industry could reach a whopping $75 billion in sales by 2030, according to estimates from research ˆrm Cowen & Co. In the food and foodservice indus- try, speciˆcally, experts predict can- nabis and CBD will continue to have an impact. The National Restaurant Association's What's Hot culinary forecast for 2019 cites CBD and cannabis-infused food and beverages as the year's overall top two trends. The tide has certainly turned when it comes to cannabis legalization and use. In the U.S., medical marijuana with active THC is legal in 33 states plus Washington, D.C., as of June 2019, according to workplace safety and com- pliance services provider DISA Global Solutions. Due in part to the 2014 and 2018 Farm Bill, hemp is now legal for industrial production nationwide. That most recent change has per- haps opened the ›oodgates for CBD, a non-psychoactive compound made from hemp, to become legal for use in an additional ˆve states, according to DISA. The collective market for CBD sales in the U.S. will surpass $20 billion by 2024, according to projec- tions from a study by BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research. This forecast includes CBD products sold through licensed dispensaries, pharmaceuticals and general market retail, from cafes and smoke shops to grocery stores, pharmacies and mass merchants. Recreational marijuana use contin- ues to see increased legalization. It is currently legal in Washington, D.C., and in 10 states: Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan, Nevada, Oregon, Vermont and Washington. In late June, the governor of Illinois, J.B. Pritzker, signed legislation making Illinois the 11th state to legal- ize recreational marijuana, effective Jan. 1, 2020. Recreational use is now legal in Michigan as well. A handful of other states are also considering legislation to relax laws on cannabis and bipartisan lawmakers have pro- posed federal legislation for national cannabis legalization, according to cannabisMD, an online platform for cannabis/CBD education. Last year, Canada became the second nation after Uruguay in 2013 to legalize marijuana on a federal level. As more states set legal precedents, the stigma around marijuana fades. That also turns the tide for more chefs, food makers, restaurateurs and others in the foodservice world who are becoming "canna-curious," which is now a term. All of this means it's time to learn the basics around the terminology and trends as it relates to cannabis cooking and kitchens. Cannabis 101 More THC-infused products are on the market today than ever before, from sweet and savory edibles to vape pens and capsules. Cannabis is arguably one of the oldest cultivated crops in the world. It has been used for both medicinal purposes and recreational purposes, including in cuisines, for thousands of years spanning multiple continents. In North America, some Native American tribes have historically considered cannabis a sacred herb and used it in ceremonies as well as for medicinal purposes. According to the Bonn Institute of Molecular Psychiatry, the human body has receptors for cannabinoids, part of the endocannabinoid system, which regulates appetite, pain sensa- tion, mood and memory. THC acts on these cannabinoid receptors, which are deˆned by two types: CB1, expressed mainly in the brain and central ner- vous system as well as in the lungs, liver and kidneys, and CB2, found in the immune system. Studies show that both THC cannabis and non-THC cannabis (CBD) can have positive effects on these receptors. The medical marijuana community brought forward the notion that can- nabis could be important for treating a handful of diseases. Many cancer patients rely on cannabis when they start losing their appetite after undergoing chemo- therapy. It's also common among those who suffer from chronic pain. The growing body of research and education around medical marijuana and its uses has trickled into the rec- reational cannabis community. It's also re›ected in the range of products now available legally in some states without the need of a medical marijuana card. Once mostly smoked in hash form by rolling and smoking joints or lighting up bongs and bowls, canna- bis now seems to be more frequently consumed in a distillate, wax or powder form that users can inhale via vape pens or vaporizers. Edibles offer another option in the form of tinc- tures, candies and pills. There are also a number of different strains on the market now, from heavier psychedelic ones to those meant to spe- ciˆcally assist with creativity, anxiety and stress reduction or to enhance sleep. Cannabis Consumption Lounges The tricky thing about cannabis legal- ization is that, while it may be legal to canna- curious

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