Edibles helping marijuana industry grow

Critics worry that children might find the edibles

NORTHAMPTON, Mass. (WWLP) – Marijuana edibles are big business.

According to Forbes, the marijuana industry is growing larger and faster than the dot-com era, with sales expected to surpass $20.2 billion by 2021.

U.S marijuana sales grew 30 percent in 2016, topping out at $6.7 billion. Part of that success is due to edibles.

Edibles are an alternative to smoking marijuana. “Some people prefer smoking, others vape, but for many, edibles is a really good choice,” said Leslie Laurie, Regional Director of Netacare, a marijuana dispensary in Northampton.

Marijuana edibles are offered in a variety of products, including chocolates, lozenges in various flavors and tinctures, which is an oil based product you place under your tongue.

22News went to Netacare Medical Marijuana Dispensary in Northampton. One of Netacare’s two Massachusetts dispensaries.

A 25-year-old Montague resident was diagnosed with a bowel disease, five years ago.

“The option for products were very limited back then, so now that a place like this is available for me, it’s amazing, because with edibles they’re a lot more available in a retail setting, then they would have been, when you needed to know a guy,” said Alex Westfall of Montague. “It takes about 2 hours for an edible to take effect.”

“For people who have issues with insomnia it’s a really good choice to take an edible or two before they are wanting to have slumber and this will help with that,” Laurie told 22News.

Laurie said edibles work well for patients who can’t tolerate smoke.

Critics worry that children might find the edibles.

Netacare told 22News, their products are not marketed to kids, and adults should use the same discretion, they use with alcohol.