The cannabis maker and brewing king will work together to produce and market nonalcoholic beverages containing cannabidiol (CBD). The CBD-infused drinks will go on sale in Canada once regulations allow, and potentially as early as December.
CBD is a nonpsychoactive component of the cannabis plant. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive component of marijuana, CBD doesn't get people high. But thanks to its perceived health benefits, CBD is becoming increasingly popular. Analysts at market research company Brightfield Group forecast the CBD market to grow to nearly $24 billion by 2023, up from approximately $620 million in 2018.
Anheuser-Busch InBev and Tilray first announced a research partnership in December 2018. The companies' plan to commercialize CBD-infused drinks represents a significant progression for the joint venture, which is now named Fluent Beverage Company.
"To be Fluent means to have mastery of a subject or skill," Fluent CEO Jorn Socquet said in a press release. "We have assembled a team with best-in-class expertise from the beverage and cannabis industries, and together we are reaching higher for our consumers, with a shared commitment to setting the standard for product quality and responsible marketing."
Fluent also intends to further its research on THC. The company would eventually like to sell THC-infused beverages, in addition to those that contain CBD.