3 Ways Cannabis Legalization Will Impact the Food, Beverage, Travel and Hospitality Industries in 2019 and Beyond

Restaurant + Hospitality Professionals: If you’re a restaurant + hospitality professional, there might be a slight chance you live in one of the 25+ states who have recently decriminalized marijuana.

If that sounds like you, keep reading to learn how marijuana legalization will impact the restaurant, food and beverage, hospitality and travel industries in 2019 and beyond.

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With it becoming clear that marijuana isn’t going anywhere, you might be curious: how will this impact your restaurant or food business?

The best way to prepare is to hop online to research the issues.

Which is where Food Tribe comes in - this post is here to help you learn about the impact of new cannabis laws and the way restaurants and hospitality professionals can stay ahead of the curve - our customers tastes are changing, Food Tribe is here to help.


Cannabis Hotels, Coffeeshops, Cafes, Restaurants and Lounges

As cannabis use becomes more mainstream, local businesses are starting to get in the mix.

How you might be wondering?

By providing cannabis enthusiasts with a safe and relaxing place to consume.

Canna-newbies and vets alike are interested in consuming their edibles, vapes and joints in a safe space, hence the rise of community centers designed to cater to these marijuana foodies.

West Hollywood and other local cities in Los Angeles are looking to copy the Amsterdam model - combining cannabis use with functional shops like restaurants, cafes and lounges - to provide a new and unique experience.

Photo:  @manuelmx

Photo: @manuelmx


Cannabis Tourists, Vacationers and Travelers

If travel - hotels, tours and transportation, are more your speed, then you’ll want to keep reading about cannabis tourism.

In Colorado alone, cannabis tourism has grown 51% since 2014, according to a report from the state’s department of revenue.

The state attracted some 6.5 million cannabis tourists in 2016, according to the most recent figures available.

It estimates that number will have grown by at least 6% in 2017 and will match or exceed that figure this year.

The report said those 6.5 million tourists logged nearly 18 million cannabis-use days in 2016, a clear demonstration of how the state racked up more than $5.2 billion in marijuana sales since it legalized cannabis in January 2014.

Which means if you live in a tourist destination, think of fun and creative ways to welcome cannabis users to your place of business.

Cannabis and CBD Infused Dishes and Beverages

While still technically illegal under federal law, cannabis and CBD infused dishes, menu items and beverages are popping up everywhere from LA to Austin.

New and exciting trends include cocktails, ice cream and more! Typically, chefs leverage the use of CBD and THC oils to combine with their culinary creations.

Which means that if you work in the restaurant space, you might want to consider staying ahead of the trend.

While you might not be able to sell fully enhanced dishes (yet) stay ahead of the curve by incorporating oils into your test kitchen - get feedback from friends and family, and think of ways to prepare for when consumption becomes fully legal.


Terence Latimer