The green rush. A Snapshot of the cannabis industry.
I don’t know about you but recently everywhere I look I see news, updates, conferences and articles about cannabis. A few weeks ago I started reading a bit more about this booming eco-system and meeting some industry experts. The deeper I get into it, the more fascinating it gets. This is, no doubt one of the rising and most interesting industries today. It is already estimated at billions of dollars and more importantly, it is expected to grow exponentially in the coming years as regulation unwinds around the globe allowing cannabis trade and export.
So let’s dive into some details, 10 U.S states have already legalized recreational use of Marijuana. Canada has gone all-in and legalized recreational cannabis federally on October 17th, 2018. Sales at cannabis stores in the first 15 days after legalization in Canada totalled $43 million according to Statistics Canada. What about Israel?
Well, despite the fact the recreational cannabis is still illegal, a survey in 2017 found that 27% of Israelis between the ages of 18 and 65 had consumed cannabis in the last year, the highest rates of annual cannabis usage in the world! followed by Iceland and the US at 18% and 16% respectively. Now that Telegrass has disrupted the Israeli market and caused a sharp 30–50% price decline I am pretty damn sure that the number has grown significantly.
Those are just some interesting anecdotes in the recreational market, however, the most interesting aspect of the Israeli cannabis market, lays is the fact that Israel is known as a global leader when it comes to medical cannabis research and innovation. Israel is probably the most progressive country in the world when it comes to Medical cannabis with a local market that has been active since the early '90s! Recently, following the big cannabis boom we are witnessing a growing number of startups, incubators and investment funds in this field. An interesting organization I’ve been watching closely recently is ICAN, a platform that is covering everything from producing conferences all over the globe to incubating cannabis related startups in the super cool hub they work from in Beit Shemesh called SUBS. If you haven't been, you should definitely visit the SUBS hub and experience the great vibes. The hub, by the way, was established by Saul Kaye, the same dude that founded ICAN.
Another interesting organization that is actually somewhat of a direct competitor to ICAN is CANN10. They have some similar activities such as a large international conference and a cannabis-focused startup incubator. In addition, they also have their own cannabis brand called canareet and special education programs all about cannabis in partnership with leading academic institutions from across the globe. They recently released a special edition in partnership with TheMarker that provides a great overview of the industry — check it out (It’s in Hebrew).
Ok, this piece is getting way too long and it's ruining my snapshot concept. So I will stop here. Thanks for reading! feel free to comment, like, share or whatever. See you next week.