“High January” Tips & Trends - A Cannabis Alternative to Dry January

“High January” Tips & Trends - A Cannabis Alternative to Dry January

January presents a unique opportunity for individuals to kick-start their New Year's resolutions focused on wellness and fitness through initiatives like Dry January. With an increasing number of people choosing to abstain from alcohol year-round, the gap is being filled by cannabis products.

This shift aligns with broader trends seen in movements such as 'cali sober' and the sober curious community, emphasizing a reassessment of one's relationship with alcohol and overall well-being.

According to consumer data fromBrightfield Group, 57% of Americans in 2022 said they were using less alcohol than in the past. The COVID-19 pandemic prompted many to rethink their alcohol use, resulting in the trend away from alcohol that we still see today.

Every quarter since Q2 2021, more than half of surveyed adults said they were using less alcohol than in the past. And since 2021, the number of those consumers swapping in cannabis instead of alcohol has increased.

What’s driving “High January?”

Among those cutting back on alcohol, 58% consciously replace it with cannabis. Seen as a safer alternative and increasingly accessible due to more states legalizing recreational cannabis use, the plant is gaining popularity as a substitute for alcohol.

As anticipated in Brightfield’s early2021 alcohol trends report, the trend of mindful and reduced drinking has persisted in the post-pandemic world. Approximately 54% of consumers cite a desire to be healthier as their primary motivation for consuming less alcohol.

Simultaneously, a third of surveyed consumers mentioned saving money as a reason for reducing alcohol intake. With inflation on the rise, financial considerations may play a more significant role in motivating individuals to cut back on alcohol consumption. In 2022, the cannabis market experienced price compression, making legal highs more affordable for consumers.

Alcohol trends across generations

The trend towards sober living is particularly pronounced among younger generations. Throughout 2022, over half of Gen Z and millennial consumers expressed a preference for non-alcoholic alternatives. They are more likely to turn to options like soda, sparkling water, kombucha, cannabis, and CBD. Additionally, younger consumers are more inclined to reduce alcohol consumption for the sake of improving their mental health compared to older generations.

While older consumers also report drinking less alcohol, they are less likely to substitute it with cannabis. Over half of baby boomers consuming less alcohol have less than 10% opting for cannabis as a substitute. If baby boomers do choose an alternative, it is often soda.

Cannabis brands embrace the trend

With increasing cannabis legalization and growing consumer familiarity, cannabis is poised to become a primary substitute for alcohol. Cannabis brands are quick to recognize the business potential of the Dry January trend.

For instance, Consume Cannabis, a multi-state dispensary brand, has launched a marketing campaign targeting Dry January participants. Shoppers in its dispensaries can enjoy special deals on Tonic beverages throughout January 2023.

Cannabis product brands are actively positioning themselves as alternatives for relaxation and unwinding without alcohol. Cann, a THC & CBD-infused beverage brand, has recently launched a holiday advertising campaign showcasing a family whose celebration is dampened by traditional alcoholic beverages. Capitalizing on this success, Cann is now targeting Dry January participants with ads referring to 'Cannuary.'

Alcohol brands enter the cannabis arena

Even traditional alcohol companies are joining the cannabis beverage market, capitalizing on the growing movement. Lagunitas, now part of Heineken International, partnered with AbsoluteXtracts to produce its Hi-Fi Hops Weed-Infused Seltzer. Similarly, The Boston Beer Company, known for brands like Twisted Tea and Truly hard seltzer, has introduced its own line of cannabis beverages, TeaPot, with the Head of Cannabis, Paul Weaver, suggesting that Dry January doesn't have to mean total abstinence.

As the Dry January trend continues, cannabis brands are strategically positioning themselves as viable alternatives to alcohol. By promoting relaxation and unwinding without the drawbacks associated with alcohol, these brands are capturing the market share left behind by those opting to abstain from alcohol not only in January but throughout the year.

Tips for Dry January - And how to switch to “High January”

Here are some tips to help you successfully navigate Dry January and make the switch to “High January” instead. 

High January tips

Know the laws

Be aware of the legal status of cannabis in your area. Laws regarding possession, use, and cultivation vary widely, so make sure you are in compliance with local regulations.

Consume responsibly

If you choose to use cannabis, do so responsibly. Start with low doses, especially if you are not a regular user, and be mindful of the potential effects on your mental and physical well-being.

Choose the right strain

Different cannabis strains have varying effects. Sativa strains are often associated with more energizing and uplifting effects, while indica strains may be more relaxing. Experiment with strains that align with the experience you're seeking.

Stay hydrated and nourished

Cannabis can sometimes cause dry mouth and increased appetite. Ensure you stay hydrated and have healthy snacks on hand to maintain your well-being.

Create a comfortable environment

Set up a safe and comfortable space for your cannabis experience. Consider factors like lighting, temperature, and the presence of supportive friends if you're in a social setting.

Use proper tools

Vessel vape pen

If you're using cannabis through smoking or vaping, ensure you have the appropriate tools and equipment. Keep in mind that there are various consumption methods, including edibles, tinctures, and topicals.

Vessel one hitter

Be mindful of tolerance

If you're a regular cannabis user, be mindful of your tolerance level. Taking breaks can help reset your tolerance and make your cannabis experiences more effective.

Avoid driving or operating machinery

It's crucial to avoid driving or operating heavy machinery under the influence of cannabis. The impairment can affect your reaction time and coordination.

Communicate openly

If you're using cannabis in a social setting, communicate openly with those around you. Make sure everyone is comfortable with the situation, and respect each other's boundaries.

Take breaks

Even during a month dedicated to cannabis use, it's essential to take breaks and assess your overall well-being. If you find that your cannabis use is impacting your daily life negatively, consider seeking support.

Remember that moderation and responsible use are key. If you have any health concerns or are unsure about using cannabis, it's always a good idea to consult with a healthcare professional.

Dry January tips

Set clear goals

Clearly define why you're participating in Dry January. Whether it's to improve your health, save money, or break a habit, having a clear goal will help you stay motivated.

Plan ahead

Anticipate situations where you might be tempted to drink and plan alternative activities. This could involve finding alcohol-free events or suggesting non-alcoholic options when socializing.

Communicate your goals

Inform friends, family, and colleagues about your decision to participate in Dry January. This creates a support network and helps to avoid situations where others might unknowingly encourage you to drink.

Explore non-alcoholic alternatives

Discover and enjoy non-alcoholic beverages as alternatives to your usual drinks. There are various alcohol-free beers, mocktails, and other beverages that can provide a similar experience without the alcohol content.

Stay busy

Engage in activities that keep you occupied and distracted. This can help reduce the temptation to drink out of boredom or habit.

Find support

Connect with others who are also participating in Dry January. Joining support groups or online communities can provide encouragement and a sense of community.

Educate yourself

Learn about the benefits of reducing or eliminating alcohol consumption. Understanding the positive impact on your health, sleep, and overall well-being can serve as motivation.

Reward yourself

Set up a reward system for reaching milestones during the month. Treat yourself to something enjoyable that doesn't involve alcohol, such as a spa day, a new book, or a favorite meal.

Create new habits

Use the opportunity to establish new routines or habits. Whether it's exercising, meditating, or pursuing a hobby, replacing the time spent on drinking with positive activities can be fulfilling.

Reflect on the experience

Take time to reflect on how you feel physically, mentally, and emotionally during and after Dry January. This reflection can help you make informed decisions about your alcohol consumption in the future.

Remember, the key is to approach Dry January as a positive and empowering experience. If you find it challenging, don't hesitate to seek support from friends, family, or professionals who can provide guidance.

Leave a comment (all fields required)

Comments will be approved before showing up.