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Is ‘Green Wednesday’ More Than a PR Stunt?

PHOTO Gracie Malley for Cannabis Now

Culture

Is ‘Green Wednesday’ More Than a PR Stunt?

‘Green Wednesday’ is upon us, but as with most newly created holidays, there’s a capitalistic benefit to the celebration: selling more stuff.

There’s a new name for the day before Thanksgiving, when people head to their local dispensary to stock up on cannabis products before feasting and celebrating with family: Green Wednesday. But is this holiday a real stoner event — or just a creation of PR firms?

Based on interviews with industry insiders and the relevant data, the holiday appears to be both driven by organic consumer demand and by excitement from stores offering deals and promotions. It might not be a unique cultural event born from cannabis culture like 420 or 710, but regardless, it’s a thing!

Long before the Golden Age of cannabis public relations was kind enough to bestow the title of ‘Green Wednesday’ on Thanksgiving Eve, people were definitely buying pot at higher rates the day before Thanksgiving.

According to the data miners at Headset who analyze pot numbers and trends, there is a considerable boost in sales the day before Thanksgiving. According to their data across California, Colorado, Nevada and Washington, the daily sales averages increased from $10.8 million on regular Wednesdays to $17.6 million on the day before Thanksgiving. That means Green Wednesday in 2018 saw a 63% increase in sales in comparison to an average of the previous four Wednesdays.

Some retailers and delivery services see an even bigger boost. According to company data, California delivery service Eaze saw a 136% increase in deliveries on Green Wednesday last year compared to a typical Wednesday in 2018.

“Honestly, I think [Green Wednesday] is just a smart response to pre-existing consumer behavior,” said Morgan Fox, the media relations director for the National Cannabis Industry Association. “If people are already going to be stocking up on a particular day, why not make it more attractive and affordable for them to shop at your store? It also seems like a clever way for the cannabis industry to set itself apart from all the other consumer noise happening around this holiday.”

While Black Friday is traditionally known as a good day for pot deals, as with many other consumer goods, Green Wednesday is starting to catch up. Headset reported that across California, Colorado, Nevada and Washington, the average discount of all products increased from 9.3% to 9.8% on Green Wednesday. In comparison, the average discount on 420 in 2019 increased from 8.5% to 14.7%.

One of the things helping bump sales on Green Wednesday is the popularity of edibles, since a lot of people are scared to smell like pot around grandma. Leading the edible charge last year was cannabis-infused beverages. Headset reported that cannabis-infused beverages saw the biggest growth in sales on last year’s Green Wednesday with a 101% increase. Edibles saw the second-biggest growth, with an 85% increase in daily sales.

Headset said of the things that made the beverage bump pretty interesting was that it happened despite the fact that retailers offered more discounts on traditional edibles than beverages on Green Wednesday last year. The average discount rate of traditional edibles increased from 8.2% to 10.1%, while the average discount rate of beverages decreased from 10.4% to 9.4% on Green Wednesday, Headset reported. That means despite the better deals on brownies and gummies, beverages still won out on Green Wednesday 2018.

The U.S. Department of Transportation also notes that the Wednesday before Thanksgiving is also the start of a more nefarious period.

“Unfortunately, excessive alcohol and drug intoxication are increasingly rampant over Thanksgiving due to events like ‘Blackout Wednesday’ and ‘Danksgiving’ that highlight and even encourage the heavy consumption of alcohol and marijuana throughout the holiday weekend,” the agency said on its website.

Despite the fact that the department blames alcohol for the deaths of 800 people in “alcohol-impaired driving crashes” on the holiday weekend from 2013 to 2017, the DOT is sticking with the weed-themed “Ditch Danksgiving” name for the campaign.

So have a great time this Green Wednesday. Hell, try the new weed gravy from Kiva. Just don’t forget this was already one of the most dangerous holiday on American roadways long before marijuana was legal anywhere and wait until you’re done being high to drive.

TELL US, are you loading up on cannabis before the holiday?

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