The war against cannabis in the United States and other Westernized countries has been raging for a long time. But as our planet becomes more progressive and forward-thinking, people are beginning to ask “why?” The discussion is starting to focus on whether or not marijuana is actually a harmful substance and a gateway to more extreme and dangerous drugs. The trend of questioning the very fabric of our society is strong in millennials nowadays, and this is a very relevant, hot-button example.
This questioning and discussions are leaving investors with some new decisions to make involving their opportunities, particularly when it comes to firms that manufacture and distribute cannabis. Since people are opening up to the idea of using the plant in various applications, there are new business opportunities to consider. It’s easy to argue for untapped potential here.
While a state-by-state legal cannabis industry is new, it is only going to grow stronger and bigger with the social fight for nation-wide legalization seen within the United States. There have already been some significant players in the industry experiencing ups and downs as if they’d been there for some time. Some stocks, like that of marijuana company Tilray, have dropped, but there are still plenty of other cannabis-based opportunities to invest in. As the market develops, it’s important for investors to know what kinds of projects they’re investing in, how they might be able to invest in them, and when they shouldn’t.
The Rise of Hemp/Marijuana/CBD Investment Opportunities
There are odd overlaps of drugs and investment news in the past — anyone remember the video of Rob Ford smoking crack cocaine in 2013? And with social stigmas still surrounding marijuana, it’s important to be able to ethically defend your investment choices. That means you should have extensive knowledge about the products and companies you’re putting money into, not just the profit they could bring you.
That said, you may be surprised to know how many people don’tknow the differences among CBD, hemp, and marijuana. Each one has different investment opportunities and preconceived public notions surrounding it. Knowing those, you will be able to invest more wisely in new opportunities.
- CBD: CBD oil is derived from the stock, leaves, and flowers of a cannabis plant. Some believe that it can be used as an alternative painkiller to opioids, but the verdict is still out on that due to a lack of regulated studies. It is supposed to give one the calming effects of smoking marijuana without the psychoactive side effects usually associated with it.
- Hemp: Hemp is derived from a cannabis stock and contains too small of an amount of THC to get someone high from it. It’s often used in clothing and fabric. It is highly regulated across different states, but is now legal to ship across state lines. Hemp oil can be used as a moisturizer or for cooking purposes.
- Marijuana: Marijuana is a generic name for cannabis. It is typically smoked or baked into food as a means of getting high. Recreational use of the drug is only legal in 10 states. Proponents say it has pain relieving effects as well, and it is sometimes used medically. There is a lack of information about the level of driving impairment present after smoking marijuana.
As far as investments go, tread carefully due to the collective opinions surrounding these three forms and uses of cannabis.
The Use of Cryptocurrencies For These Means
Add the popular push for cannabis legalization to what’s going on with cryptocurrencies and nontraditional investments, and nothing really seems impossible. It is possible that people will soon be able to buy recreational weed from a local dispensary with cryptocurrencies. We may already be seeing the beginning steps of such a world.
With recent bitcoin ATMs making their way into Colorado, it’s very possible that there could be overlap impacting the state’s cannabis industry. Imagine if someone was able to fill a card from a bitcoin ATM, and use it at the local dispensary down the street from them. The ATMs were installed in Colorado last year, so this dream for some could soon be a reality.
Even so, marijuana has long had a place in the cryptocurrency argument. Cryptocurrencies like Hempcoin have worked to serve hemp manufacturers, as well as agricultural and cannabis growing entrepreneurs. Hempcoin was one of the first 30 cryptocurrencies and still exists today, boasting the mission statement of “revolutionizing the cannabis, hemp, agricultural & tobacco industries through the decentralized, convenient and safe THC payment system.” It is possible that, in the future, more cryptocurrency influencers will work closely with cannabis-related companies.
When You Shouldn’t Invest
Whether it’s marijuana, hemp, or CBD, it’s important to understand that, despite the growing legalities of cannabis use, there are cases when it would not be good to invest. Even people in Colorado are wary of it because marijuana, though legal, still has an unprofessional reputation. For instance, P2Binvestor’s Krista Morgan, based out of Denver, has actually made note that they “‘do not finance marijuana operations,’” despite it being a booming business.
But there’s another time in which it’s a more serious issue, and that is if you’re a government employee. As Marketwatch reported, federal employees who own stock in marijuana companies may face serious problems. Even though the Pentagon is researching the topic currently, due to the new business interest in it. Still though, if you’re a government employee (even on the state or local level), this may be the one kind of job that you don’t want to mess with for now.
Buying shares in individual cannabis companies is another matter [despite no formal Pentagon policy forbidding marijuana investments]. “If you are purposely seeking out marijuana stocks and intentionally investing in what the federal government sees as an illegal drug, you run the risk of losing your clearance,” said [attorney Anthony Kuhn], who chairs the national security practice group at law firm Tully Rinckey.
And thus, cannabis is certainly a nontraditional investment that carries important weight to it. The possibilities of users purchasing it with cryptocurrencies make an interesting case for investors to look into. But it is one that requires some extra research and social awareness and is cause for caution if you work in a federal or local government field.