Coca-Cola Co.is in "serious conversation" with Aurora Cannabis about producing marijuana-infused drinks. "The space is quickly evolving".
Coca-Cola insisted "no decisions have been made at this time" and said it would not comment on further speculation.
The company is reportedly watching the cannabis industry and is intrigued by the idea of drinks infused with CBD. Molson Coors Brewing stated they were planning on making cannabis-infused drinks with Hydropothecary, while Corona-beer maker Constellation Brands invested $4 billion more into pot firm Canopy Growth.
"So there's a lot of focus on beverage alcohol, there's a huge huge market, but if you see the other infused drinks it could be a much bigger", Athaide said. The company last month said it would acquire the Costa Coffee chain for $5.1 billion.
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Coke and Aurora would likely develop beverages that will ease inflammation, pain and cramping, the BNN report said, citing sources familiar with the matter.
While CBD does not have the same psychoactive effect that THC does, it has been touted by some as having therapeutic effects, such as pain relief. Coca-Cola shares were marginally higher in a US market struggling against expectations of another round of Chinese trade tariffs.
Coca Cola's new venture follows in the wake of a wave of countries legalising the use of cannabis products. That's a non-psychoactive ingredient derived from marijuana.
The marijuana industry has been attracting interest from a handful of big corporate names as Canada and a wave of US states move to legalize recreational use of the drug.
In June, the US Food and Drug Administration approved the epilepsy treatment Epidiolex, the first cannabis-based drug allowed in the United States. The company is the world's largest beverage maker, responsible for 1.9 billion of the 60 billion beverage servings every day. The BI Canada Cannabis Competitive Peers Index has more than doubled in the past 12 months, though has dropped 24 percent in 2018 on concern that the stocks are overvalued.