Cannabis has always been popular among various types of individuals, especially during the Psychedelic 60s, when consuming psychedelics became a major part of counter-culture in the United States. Today, there is a push to legalize marijuana not only as a recreational drug but as a medically beneficial one. In fact, there is some stir around the legalization of magic mushrooms.
With marijuana being more acceptable to the mainstream public, the opportunity to create media content about the plant and the community surrounding it is more expansive. The topic has even penetrated the very mainstream realm of Netflix with the films Dude and Someone Great, as well as the shows Cooked with Cannabis and Disjointed.
For audio-focused material about the plant, we can always turn to music, with a wide variety of genres and styles. if you are looking for a more conversational approach, then podcasts are your best bet.
While the topic of marijuana has managed to reach mainstream consciousness, many still consider the plant and its consumption as something that is out of what is considered normal. Thus, there is a need to further normalize marijuana as a medical and recreational product. The rise of podcasts offers a new opportunity for the community to introduce the idea to the general public to make it familiar and accepted.
The Popularity of Podcasts and Cannabis
With the popularity of podcasts, especially among the younger generations, it comes as no surprise that the consumer base of marijuana is also fans of one podcast or another. Podcasts are the modern versions of radio, although traditional radio still exists. It uses the internet as a venue, which means that listeners can use devices that can connect to the internet and launch a browser or app.
Simply speaking, podcasts are digital audio files published using podcasting service and accessed using internet-enabled devices. They are in spoken format with episodes released every so often.
The rise of podcasts came with the popularity of on-demand media. Where in the past, you need to sit in front of your television or radio to wait for your favorite program, streaming services has allowed individuals to simply pull up their preferred content on their device to consume them.
One of the strongest reasons that the demand for podcasts sky-rocketed is the need for background content. In this fast-paced world, many people prefer listening to shows while doing something with their hands to maximize their time, something that watching videos cannot offer optimally. The best solution came in the form of an on-demand audio listening service like podcasts.
Perhaps this is why cannabis and podcasts go well together. Individuals who consume marijuana for medical and recreational reasons do not need to choose between the plant and consuming content. They can easily do both while enhancing their experience.
The Need for Non-Traditional Channels
When it comes to normalizing the plant, there is a need to use non-traditional channels. Traditional channels such as television and radio have strict regulations that limit the airing of cannabis-related advertisements, for example. One clear instance of this is the National Association of Cannabis Businesses’ (NCAB) adoption of radio advertisement rules back in early 2019. Some states like Maryland have prohibited marijuana ads.
Even the more accepted marijuana by-product, cannabidiol (CBD), is also facing the same issues on TV and radio. While many programs tackle the benefits of CBD, laws surrounding networks airing advertisements are confusing and unclear. This is because the marijuana plant remains to be illegal on the federal level. Just like banks refusing to serve the cannabis industry, broadcasters are also taking the safe side because of its federal status.
Nevertheless, there is still a need for audio-only and on-demand content about marijuana, and as radio cannot provide it, podcasts take over this particular market. As a non-traditional channel that can be available worldwide, the possibilities are boundless when it comes to topics. Of course, this includes marijuana, whether just a feature or as a focus of the entire show.
The Value of Podcasts in Normalizing Cannabis
Now, podcasts as a traditional channel may be a significant thing for both industries. In fact, it can be beneficial for the cannabis community in many ways. The value of this platform to the marijuana sector includes:
A Venue for All Kinds of Voices
Cannabis is yet to become fully mainstream, which means that having the opportunity to enter the mainstream arena is a great thing in itself. However, representation always matters to show that everyone can participate in the community in whatever role they choose. Podcasts offer a platform for all people, including minorities.
It is no secret that the industry in the US is dominated by white men. While there are measures to ensure that the sector is diverse, – Maryland’s social equity program in MMJ is an example of this – the market still falls short.
Having a platform, in which all kinds of people can join is important in encouraging minorities to enter the industry. Moreover, it lets them talk about the experiences they have with marijuana within their respective communities. Just look at The Canna Mom Show Podcast with Joyce and Annie, which gives a glimpse of women and mom’s perspectives.
While television and radio may have limitations on the plant, it is important to acknowledge that they do talk about it. They talk about it in a talk show and news segments, especially when new discoveries are announced or when new legislations are passed. However, as mentioned, broadcasters are wary about airing marijuana-related content. This results in inadequate discussions of what the plant is and what the industry is all about.
Podcasts give marijuana experts a platform to give comprehensive information. With podcasts, various players in the community can talk about their area of specialization in a much more detailed and unrestricted way. This addresses the constant need to educate the public about the benefits and risks of the plant in various aspects such as health, economy, society, and politics.
With such conversations happening, listeners who have been interested in marijuana will be able to know enough about it in order to consume it safely. Such information can also help entrepreneurs to enter the market in a smart and well-planned manner.
Lastly, podcasting is a valuable platform for the industry because it helps push the advocacy for legalizing the plant. Currently, more than 30 states have legalized medical marijuana and 11 including DC have made it fully legal, while only three strictly prohibit all kinds of products including CBD.
While this is great progress for the industry, this fails to address the needs of individuals with debilitating and chronic medical conditions and symptoms who could benefit from what the plant has to offer. This is why there is a need to stir conversations about the benefits and risks of cannabis. It helps gather support for the movement and eventually provide medical access to individuals in need.
Additionally, podcasting has the potential to direct attention to new developments surrounding marijuana, from science and technology to cultural and social impacts, allowing a deeper understanding of the sector and culture.
Cannabis Culture Podcasts You Should Check Out
With the value podcasting adds to the community, individuals who are into podcasts and the plant may be looking for the shows to listen to while doing chores, during commutes, and other tasks. Here are some of the most valuable cannabis culture podcasts to add to your routine:
Let’s Be Blunt with Montel
Those who are into talk-show type of podcasts will definitely like what Let’s Be Blunt with Montel has to offer. Montel Williams brings in guests with knowledge and expertise in different areas of the cannabis industry. The show talks about cannabis in light of what people commonly known about the plant and gives it a deeper context.
Williams, an Emmy awardee and a long-time medical MMJ user and advocate shares his perspective about various topics ranging from advocacy and activism, lifestyle, and wellness with the help of high-profile guests. Some of his guests include former football player Nate Boyer and cannabis doctor Manisha Singal.
Chronic Relief with Rachel Wolfson
For those interested in the potential of cannabis for wellness, especially during trying times, this show is a great recommendation as it takes a look at mental health and wellbeing in relation to marijuana. Host Rachel Wolfson provides a view into the struggles and triumphs of guests, as well as how marijuana helped them get through their experiences.
The guests on this show are varied. From comedians Davina Joy and Arthur Hamilton to podcast host Abdullah Saeed from Great Moments in Weed History. Their experiences are sure to lift your spirits. Plus, it is focused on humor, which makes it the right choice for those striving during these unprecedented times.
Great Moments in Weed History
Hosts Abdullah Saeed and David Bienenstock talk about, well, the greatest moments in history involving weed. Particularly, they look into humans’ relationship with marijuana over the course of more than 10,000 years, all while blazing up. This show offers a unique perspective of the plant as it is used in ancient cultures, modern milestones, and more current developments.
They also talk about significant figures in marijuana history such as Bob Dylan and the Beatles and Dennis Peron. The best thing is, they encourage listeners to light up as they listen, something you would not hear in traditional media!
Created by marijuana grower Jordan River, this podcast looks into the different effective techniques of growing the plant while talking about various aspects of cannabis culture. The shows tackle pop culture and history as they relate to growing the plant. The GrowCast team is composed of cultivation experts and specialists, which guarantees that each episode contains science-backed and experience-based information.
In each episode, the show brings in guests to talk about their experiences and give inputs. Some guests are ganjapreneurs, chemists, filmmakers, and musicians. Listeners are up for an informative and fun listening session with GrowCast.
Cannabis Tech Talks
This show is created by the team responsible for Cannabis & Tech Today, an award-winning publication. This publication, and consequently the podcast, tackles the business innovations and tech advancements that can potentially improve the landscape of cannabis. So, you can expect an educational and enlightening experience when listening to this podcast.
It features a lot of interesting personalities who specialized in their respective areas. Plus, they talk with individuals who formerly worked in other sectors but are not active in developing technology and innovating the industry.
Seth Adler hosts this show, focusing on the more practical and serious matters behind the cannabis industry. It deals with the regulations, laws, science, and business around the plant. Plus, it brings in activists, CEOs, officials, and scientists to talk about relevant topics concerning the industry.
At its core, the show seeks to shed light on the risks and opportunities offered by the industry, especially when it comes to the economy. This podcast takes on a more serious tone, so if that is what you are looking for, then this is the one for you.
The Cannabis Conversation
The shows given above give perspectives about the plant in the context of the US, American companies, and citizens. However, if you want to learn about the cannabis conversation Europeans are having, then this is your best bet.
This podcast looks into the economic, social, political, and health impacts of the plant in Europe. Host Anuj Desai talks with people with experience with marijuana such as lawyers, doctors, patients, and investors to see unique and varied views about this plant.
The Bottom Line
Podcasting definitely offers a valuable platform for the cannabis industry, especially as it provides a relatively unrestricted channel for people of all kinds. With its potential to bring a deeper understanding of marijuana into the mainstream consciousness, podcasting can be used as a powerful tool to normalize cannabis culture. So, make sure to check out existing marijuana podcasts, share them with your friends, or join in on the conversation by creating your own.