UK: Cannabis economy brings in 11bn pounds

Discussion in 'Marijuana News from The USA' started by weedboss, Mar 16, 2003.

  1. Cannabis smokers just want to stay on the sofa and snack, spending hours
    engrossed in home entertainment. Red Bull and smoothies, 'Munchie'
    snacks such as Mars bars and Haribo jellies. Pizza chains. Video stores.
    Games consoles. Multichannel TV. And what scares them... Shiny, noisy
    places with too many choices such as Starbucks and McDonald's
    High-alcohol drinks and strong lagers such as Stella Artois Pubs with
    bouncers on the door: Businesses alerted to huge profits as study shows
    dope users have money to burn

    The stock market is faltering and house prices are on the edge of a
    precipice. Could cannabis smokers be the unlikely saviours of the
    British economy?

    A major new study is being used to advise well known household and
    high-street companies about the gains and losses they face as cannabis
    smoking becomes commonplace.

    Research has revealed that Britain's 'cannabis economy' is worth £5
    billion a year in sales alone.

    Now it has been discovered that a further £6bn of consumer expenditure
    each year is closely linked to the growing cannabis-users' market.

    'Young people between 15 and 30 are very trend-conscious and
    aspirational,' said Andy Davidson, who commissioned the study for The
    Research Business International, trend analysts who tracked the spending
    habits of young people for six months.The study found that cannabis
    users spend an average of £20 on products that accompany their drug use
    each time they smoke.

    Because smoking cannabis heightens appetite, users are providing a £120
    million weekly windfall to a string of takeaway food suppliers, such as
    Domino and Pizza Hut, and manufacturers of 'munchie' products such as
    Mars bars and Haribo jellies.

    Video suppliers and manufacturers of home entertainments such as
    PlayStation and Nintendo GameCube are also benefiting from the need of a
    generation of users to keep themselves occupied at home while their drug
    of choice remains unlawful.

    'Some of these brands benefit at the moment,' said Davidson, 'but if
    people become more willing to smoke in public when the law is relaxed
    next year, they may be hit.'

    The Government has announced that cannabis will be 'downgraded' to a
    class C drug next summer making arrest and prosecution for possession
    less likely. The move follows a controversial experiment in Lambeth,
    south London, where police attention focused on hard drug users and
    suppliers rather than cannabis smokers.

    'Cannabis users also have discretionary expenditure of tens of millions
    of pounds each week on places to meet and eat,' said Davidson. 'They
    don't like shiny, noisy environments with lots of choices such as
    McDonald's. On the whole, they prefer somewhere with low-key lighting
    and a straightforward menu.

    'And they don't like venues solely devoted to heavy drinking. That
    doesn't mean that they won't still go out for a big night once a week,
    but they avoid the sort of pubs that have heavy bouncers on the door.'
    Many cannabis users also avoid high alcohol drinks, even strong lagers.

    'Thursday is now my biggest night,' reported a 22-year old woman from
    London. 'I hate Saturday, it's full of idiots, it's expensive. That's
    when I love to stay at home and smoke [cannabis].'

    'I don't visit big chain bars any more,' said Anthony Green, a student
    from Leicester. 'They're very intolerant of anything that's outside
    their obvious remit of drinking and pulling.

    'When we use cannabis at home, there are some things we always consume
    at the same time. Red Bull or smoothies, for example, and takeaway food.
    There's a sort of conspiracy between consumers and retailers nowadays.
    You know why you buy these things and they know why you're buying these
    things, but no one says anything.'

    Drug use may even affect radio and TV scheduling in future, the research
    suggests. A typical 24-year old male admitted: 'I've started taking much
    more interest in the Discovery Channel. Cannabis really gets you
    thinking deeply about things.'

    Government research has already confirmed that more than 15 million
    people in Britain have tried cannabis. There are six million regular
    users, more people than attend church, play Sunday league football or go
    jogging. TRBI's Project Edge is the first study which has openly
    monitored cannabis use for commercial, rather than medical, purposes.

    Tobacco companies have worked secretly for years on trials of cannabis
    cigarettes, in spite of the fact that their scientists working on the
    projects risk arrest for drug possession.

    However, manufacturers such as Imperial Tobacco still insist that their
    'King Size' Rizla cigarette papers are intended solely for making
    handmade cigarettes rather than rolling joints.

    Carl Ratcliff of advertising agency TBWA said: 'As cannabis gets closer
    to decriminalisation, you'll see more brands recognising that through
    their advertising. It won't be explicit, but will be heavily implicit in
    terms of the signs and symbols that they use.'

    'It's no longer a moral issue,' said Davidson. 'Businesses targeting the
    youth market can no longer ignore the fact that almost half of their
    customer base is getting stoned every day. They need to make specific
    projections about how that affects them.'
     
  2. reading that has given me the munches....
     
  3. hey of that 11bn i've been responsible for approx 3 billion of that munchie money.....Peace out.....Sid
     

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