Why Recreational Cannabis will not Ruin Medical Marijuana
Posted by Glenn Beierle on 11/13/2014 in Medical Marijuana
Updated on January 31, 2019. Medical content reviewed by Dr. Richard Koffler, MD, Board Certified Physiatrist
Many medical marijuana patients and dispensaries talk about their “fear of recreational marijuana’. Understandably, a medical marijuana patient who depends on cannabis in order to stay healthy should be concerned if his or her “source of medicine” is in jeopardy. I’m here to let you know, your medicine is fine, in fact, recreational cannabis will make it better!
Why Medical Marijuana needs the Recreational Market
Currently the Medical Cannabis field is doing very well. The system in place allows sick people to gain access to life saving cannabis. However, the medical industry isn’t up to par with the “pharmaceutical” industry in terms of product development and research mainly because they don’t “have’ to.
The Medical cannabis industry has been benefiting from a cannabis monopoly for the past 20 some years. Without any competition from the “legal market” these companies could merely supply the current demand for cannabis without really having to worry about developing better strains, more refined techniques, quality control and so on.
With recreational marijuana allowing people to access cannabis as any marijuana patient would, this brings a problem for some companies that have been reaping the benefits of their medical monopoly. Now, suddenly a recreational store can offer a marijuana patient the same product as the medical dispensary can, which means there is competition. With competition comes innovation and if the medical industry cannot evolve with the times, they deserve to be shut down.
The companies that will survive the shift from medical to recreational cannabis will be the ones pushing the boundaries on cannabis research and product development. The clinics who have their own personalized strains for autism, Parkinson’s and so on will be the ones receiving major grants from companies to develop designer medicine. For the Cannabis patient this is good news. This means that one of these days you will be able to take cannabis medicine specifically created for your condition. This will make the medicine safer, more efficient and more effective.
Designer Marijuana Strains
We are already seeing some growers pick up on this trend and over time, there will be medical growers creating unique cannabis genetics to treat a wide array of conditions and diseases. Strains like Charlotte’s Web will become commonplace in the near future, and even at a more accelerated pace as more states begin to legalize recreational cannabis.
We know that cannabis treats over 100 conditions but we aren’t quite sure exactly how it works. With recreational cannabis in the picture, people within the medical cannabis field will have to focus on the medicinal properties of the plant as opposed to “just selling the plant”.
The Medical Cannabis field have had a long run in establishing the medical validity of the plant. More than twenty years post medical legalization we can see that the entire public perception of cannabis users have changed tremendously, now it is time to deepen our understanding of cannabis as a medicine, and extract the specific medicinal properties of it. Recreational cannabis will force medical cannabis to pursuit this even quicker, and that will benefit us all!