Molson Coors exits U.S. CBD market
By Food in Canada StaffBusiness Operations Beverages Editor pick Molson Coors
Molson Coors and joint-venture partner Hexo Corp have decided to unwind their Truss USA joint-venture and exit the CBD beverage business in the United States due to market uncertainty.
While several U.S. states have legalized cannabis products in recent years, there remains no near-term pathway to federal legalization. Some chain retailers and distributors are hesitating to accept CBD beverage brands, which has complicated distribution and made the path to profitability a challenge for Molson Coors. The company said it would re-enter the space if the regulatory landscape changes.
In related news, Molson Coors and La Colombe Coffee Roasters have jointly agreed to end their distribution agreement, effective March 31, 2023.
The decision comes as La Colombe seeks to combine operations of its ready-to-drink coffee business, which the Molson Coors network distributed, with its bagged coffee and cold brew coffee multi-serves.
“Over the past few years, we have opened new lines of revenue for all our businesses as we leverage the competitive strengths of Molson Coors and expand beyond the beer aisle,” said Pete Marino, Molson Coors’ president of emerging growth, in an email to U.S. distributors.
“We’ve had some hits and some misses, but we’ve learned a ton and we have positioned ourselves for a bright future,” he said. “One of the lessons we’ve learned is to quickly identify when something just isn’t going to work for us, or for you.”
Hence the mutual decision to part ways with La Colombe, whose desire to consolidate distribution of its ready-to-drink coffees with other products “creates significant logistical challenges for our distributor partners while still requiring similar levels of investment on their part,” Marino said.
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