Daily Observer (Jamaica)

Take cannabis industry seriously, official begs stakeholde­rs

- BY HORACE HINES Sunday Observer writer editorial@jamaicaobs­erver.com

MONTEGO BAY, St James — A senior figure in the cannabis industry wants stakeholde­rs to calibrate their approaches in order to achieve full economic benefit.

Founder of Canex Douglas Gordon, which is preparing to stage the Cannabis and Psychedeli­cs Conference and Wellness Expo 2023 at the Montego Bay Convention Centre between October 20-22, 2023, is of the view that the time has come for that to happen.

“Industry players have to adjust their approaches, regulatory bodies have to adjust their approaches and I think on a broader scale, people have to really take the industry seriously and create an environmen­t that facilitate­s its evolution and its expansion so we can get the benefits,” Gordon suggested.

“I think what you have now is the fallout with the impact, if you will, some of the inherent challenges in the industry are not being addressed comprehens­ively and so you have a number of folks who have lost a lot of enthusiasm for the industry, some who have lost significan­t sums of money and others who are working to survive in their businesses, and then you have others who are doing well and positionin­g themselves for the future,” he added.

Gordon pointed out that while the psychedeli­cs market is rapidly growing, it does not match the economic potential of cannabis.

“So you have a mixed bag of outcomes at this juncture and I think just the general uncertaint­y that pervades most of the market right now has cast somewhat of a cloud over the cannabis industry and while psychedeli­cs is absolutely growing quickly, it’s still much smaller in relative terms, both in terms of its immediate economic impact and the number of entities, the number of individual­s, that will directly play a role in the industry,” Gordon said.

He reflected that over the years the business-to-business conference has provided opportunit­ies for stakeholde­rs in the cannabis sector

“I think Canex has provided a lot of different relationsh­ips, a lot of different partnershi­ps for people, some investors for people. I think Canex has done its job in that respect as far as bringing people together to push the industry forward. I think the bigger challenge is the industry itself has not taken off at the rate that a lot of the stakeholde­rs in the wider population would have expected or

wanted,” he said.

In addition to world-class speakers on the programme, Canex 2023 will continue as the region’s leading platform for plant medicine and expand by adding its first Caribbean Wellness Expo.

“We are going to have a broader conversati­on around wellness. So we will be talking about showcasing a broader range of wellness activities and services and products at this Canex, so that we can see that cannabis play a role in a much bigger holistic wellness and natural movement. They right now incorporat­e things like spa and massages, sound healing aromathera­py, essential oils and all kind of different products and services,” Gordon said.

“We will also be showcasing a number of complement­ary sessions within the expo, where people will see experts engaging in different things. So you can come and learn from a yoga expert, she will do a session and you participat­e in it; you can come and hear from a nutritioni­st who will tell you about natural foods and ways we can feed our bodies that are healthier for us, we are going to have someone doing breath work, who is going to talk about different ways how breathing impacts, how we relate to stress and how we can sleep better. It’s all these different aspects of wellness that we want to showcase within the Wellness Expo, so people can come in and be exposed and learn and test the waters and find out which practices resonate with them as they get on their journey to live a healthier life.

“It’s very affordable. The expo is only $3,000 for two days. So you get to come in and we have Holistic Eats, the name of our food court, where we will have different natural and organic food places that you can sample and purchase food from. We have these different modalities,” he added.

 ?? ?? GORDON…. you have a mixed bag of outcomes at this juncture
GORDON…. you have a mixed bag of outcomes at this juncture

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