Tobacco and Alcohol Companies Moving into the Marijuana Business

Tobacco and alcohol companies are starting to move into the cannabis business, The New York Times reports.

Altria, which manufactures Marlboro and other cigarette brands, paid $1.8 billion last week for almost half of Cronos Group, a Toronto-based cannabis company. Constellation Brands, which owns Corona and other beers, paid $4 billion in August for a major stake in another Canadian marijuana company, Canopy Growth. Another brewer, Molson Coors, has formed a joint venture with a third Canadian cannabis company.

Brightfield Group, a cannabis market research group, estimates that global legal cannabis sales will reach more than $31 billion in 2021—up from less than $8 billion in 2017.
“There’s always been the expectation that big business was going to come in; we’ve been hearing rumors about ‘Marlboro Greens’ for decades now,” said Bethany Gomez, Director of Research at Brightfield Group. “Now we’re past the point of no return.”

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