A recent poll of 29 CEOs of some of the top U.S. and Canada-based cannabis companies revealed that just over half of them (58%) would admit to using cannabis themselves.
BNN Bloomberg reached out to over two dozen top execs to see if they ever actually put their money-maker where their mouth is and the results are really not that shocking given the state of the cannabis industry today.
In the completely anonymous poll, 17 high minded leaders came right out and said that they use cannabis, either medically or recreationally, in one form or another.
Six others stated outright that they do not use the plant, they just utilize it.
Six more still –even after being guaranteed their anonymity – refused to answer one way or the other.
Those interviewed certainly have their own reasons for answering the way that they did.
One example that has been in the news quite a bit lately is Elon Musk and his now infamous visit to the Joe Rogan podcast when he shared a fat joint with the show’s host live on air. While Mr. Musk was not one of the 29 CEOs polled by BNN Bloomberg, the backlash that he has received in the aftermath of that harmless couple of tokes is enough to make any businessman pause.
The Washington Post is reporting that Musk’s kush puffs have “rankled” some folks “at NASA’s highest levels” and now, allegedly, a months-long safety review of both Boeing and Space X have been ordered to investigate the “culture” at both companies to ensure a drug-free workplace.
That example may be a bit extreme, but one need look no further than the news we saw last week of a Canadian businessman who received a lifetime ban on entry into the U.S. while on his way to Las Vegas for a cannabis related business conference.
He didn’t have a suitcase full of weed or dirty money.
He wasn’t running from the law or trying to hide his intentions.
His honesty with U.S. border agents cost him dearly, so perhaps it shouldn’t be a surprise when a handful of the CEOs in this recent poll refused to even answer.
Some wonder how a person can effectively navigate an industry founded on such a deep and rich culture if they have not, and are not, a part of that culture.
Others compare it to running a pharmaceutical company saying that you don’t have to eat painkillers in order to sell them.
On the other hand, those who readily admit their cannabis use probably benefit from their openness by adding an air of legitimacy and authenticity to their brand through their embrace of the plant.
This poll illustrates that it can be done both ways these days.
Certainly, 29 people do not represent the entirety of cannabis business ownership, but that 58% number sure does feel about right when networking in today’s cannabis industry. The truth is, that number will probably drop even further before it levels out as more people get into the industry for the potential profits, rather then by pursuing a genuine passion for the plant itself.
But from their seat atop multi-million (or billion) dollar weed regimes, many of these leaders have proven that getting baked is not a prerequisite to getting rich in today’s cannabis industry.