Getting Toasted For Dry January? You’re Not Alone.

Survey shows almost a quarter of Dry January participants are replacing alcohol with cannabis and CBD products.

Dry January is in full swing, and the month-long sobriety challenge is more popular than ever. With reasons for abstaining ranging from improving sleep and mental clarity to boosting energy levels and losing weight, drinking-age adults are embracing the benefits of hopping on the temperance wagon. And, as an added twist, an increasing number of Dry January participants are reaching for cannabis and CBD products as an alcohol alternative.

On January 11, CivicScience, an opinion analytics platform, published a survey of Dry January participants showing that 21% of respondents are enjoying cannabis and CBD products in lieu of alcohol.

While the survey shows that older adults (age 55+) are less likely to replace alcohol with any of the polled alternatives (non-alcoholic/alcohol-free beverages, cannabis/CBD products, soda/seltzer, kombucha), 34% of Gen Z adults (age 21 to 24) are substituting cannabis/CBD products for alcohol, followed by 24% of 25- to 34-year-olds, and 22% of 35- to 54-year-olds.

Awareness of the adverse effects of alcohol consumption, supported by a report from the Canadian Centre for Substance Use and Addiction that asserts that “even a small amount of alcohol can be damaging to health,” along with growing public perception that cannabis is safer than alcohol, is making cannabis and CBD products an increasingly attractive option for Dry January participants. Premium cannabis and CBD products may also be less expensive than top-shelf liquors, safer to use (compared to the 140,000 alcohol-related deaths reported in the U.S. each year), and less addictive than alcohol.

Teetotalers in cannabis-legal states also have more options for getting their alcohol-free buzz on - from THC-infused shots and aperitifs to CBD craft tonics and mixers.

As more states push to legalize recreational cannabis use, and researchers look at data that may suggest a decline in alcohol sales in states where cannabis is legal, will cannabis and CBD beverages eventually become the elixir of choice for drinking-age adults? Will the cannabis industry help some make the leap from a month-long challenge into a long-lasting change in lifestyle?

Time will tell if alcohol drinkers end up pouring one out for Dry January before pouring the rest out for good. 

Sources:

https://civicscience.com/ninety-percent-of-gen-z-dry-january-participants-are-leaning-on-other-drinks-and-substances-to-fill-the-void/

https://www.ccsa.ca/sites/default/files/2023-01/Canada%27s%20Guidance%20on%20Alcohol%20and%20Health%20Final%20Report.pdf

https://www.monmouth.edu/polling-institute/reports/MonmouthPoll_US_102422/

https://www.cdc.gov/alcohol/features/excessive-alcohol-deaths.html

https://jcannabisresearch.biomedcentral.com/articles/10.1186/s42238-021-00085-x