Edible Marijuana Preferred By Consumers Due To Lack of Smoke and Convenience

MedicalResearch.com Interview with:

Sheryl Cates RTI International

Sheryl Cates

Sheryl Cates
RTI International
Durham, NC

MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?

Response: The goal of this research was to provide a better understanding of consumer perceptions of edible marijuana products, including why users prefer edibles relative to other forms of marijuana such as smoking and vaping and concerns regarding the consumption and questions related to, how long do edibles last? And many more! This is important as more states legalize the use of recreational marijuana products. With the increasing popularity of edibles, concerns exist that do not exist with other methods of using marijuana, such as smoking or vaping. These concerns include delayed activation time; accidental ingestion, particularly by children and older adults; and dose titration.

The study team conducted eight focus groups (four groups in Denver, Colorado, and four groups in Seattle, Washington) with users of edibles. Most participants preferred edibles to smoking marijuana because there is no smell from smoke and no secondhand smoke. Other reasons participants like edibles included convenience, discreetness, longer-lasting highs, less intense highs, and edibles’ ability to aid in relaxation, reduce anxiety, and alleviate pain more so than smoking marijuana. Concerns and dislikes about edibles included delayed effects, unexpected highs, the unpredictability of the high, and inconsistency of distribution of marijuana in the product. No participants in either location mentioned harmful health effects from consuming edibles as a concern. Although focus group findings are not generalizable, the findings are useful for helping inform policy makers and regulators as they establish regulations regarding the manufacture, labeling, and sale of edibles.

“Marijuana-infused pizza @ Mega Ill Pizzeria in #Vancouver” by Cannabis Culture

“Marijuana-infused pizza @ Mega Ill Pizzeria in #Vancouver” by Cannabis Culture

MedicalResearch.com: What should clinicians and patients take away from your report?

Response: As more states legalize marijuana for recreational use, it is important to understand consumer preferences for edibles and their concerns about edibles. Such information would be useful to policy makers as they make decisions about how to regulate edibles, especially with regard to product packaging and labeling to ensure that the products are used safely and as intended. Edibles are available easily in states which have legalised marijuana, for example, most people buy edibles online canada due to convenience. If you are thinking of getting marijuana edibles, then the responsible thing to do would be to get quality marijuana packaging to keep it safe.

MedicalResearch.com: What recommendations do you have for future research as a result of this study?

Response: Because this was qualitative research, the focus group findings cannot be generalized to the population of users of edibles. As more states legalize marijuana for recreational use, it may be useful to conduct quantitative surveys to provide additional data on consumer preferences for edibles and their concerns about edibles.

Disclosures: The study was funded with internal funding from RTI International.

RTI International is an independent, nonprofit research institute dedicated to improving the human condition. For more information, visit www.rti.org.

MedicalResearch.com: Thank you for your contribution to the MedicalResearch.com community.


Subst Use Misuse. 2017 Sep 14:1-7. doi: 10.1080/10826084.2017.1343353. [Epub ahead of print]

Consumers’ Perceptions of Edible Marijuana Products for Recreational Use: Likes, Dislikes, and Reasons for Use.

Giombi KC1, Kosa KM1, Rains C1, Cates SC1.

Note: Content is Not intended as medical advice. Please consult your health care provider regarding your specific medical condition and questions.

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Last Updated on October 19, 2017 by Marie Benz MD FAAD