What Will Cannabis Vape Manufacturing Be Like in 2024?

Happy New Year, dear colleagues, friends, and clients! As we embark on this new year, we wanted to share a couple of thoughts on what to expect in 2024 within the realm of cannabis vape manufacturing. Predicting the future in this industry is a tough endeavor. The landscape is in constant flux, with some 2023 trends evident while many others remain uncertain. However, staying ahead of these shifts is our business, and here are a few bold projections for the upcoming year.

Let’s get to it!

Disposable Vapes Will Continue to Surge: In California, one of the prime cannabis vape markets, all-in-one disposables soared to over 23% of sales in the third quarter of 2023, a remarkable leap from 15% in 2022 and 11% in 2021. As more regions (and countries) embrace legalization, the interest and scale of this category shows an unmistakable upward trajectory.

Challenges for Parallel Import Channels and Tax Invasions: The cannabis manufacturing industry's recent path shows striking parallels to e-cigarette manufacturing, particularly when it comes to regulatory scrutiny. For example, consider the rise and fall of Juul, an episode marked by a two-year investigation and a hefty $438.5 million fine. This serves as a cautionary tale, signaling potential challenges in regulatory compliance for the cannabis vape industry waiting in the near future.

Also the recent seizure of 1.4 million single-use disposables by US Customs and Border Patrol has exposed fraudulent importing practices that have allowed importers to take advantage of tax evasion strategies. This discovery will likely cause disruptions in supply chains or potential price increases.

Consumer Safety Focus: While regulations encompass oils and cannabinoids, the hardware realm remains in a gray zone. The absence of comprehensive hardware testing poses significant risks. Take the prevalent trend of larger cartridge capacities, now extending to 2-3 ml. Then inquire whether manufacturers have conducted tests for these capacities, or if they rely on the same coils as the 0.5/1.0 ml counterparts. Often, the latter is the case. However, generic cartridge coils may not be suited for capacities beyond 1.0ml, resulting in thermal degradation issues. This is only one of the myriad of potential problems that at some point will require an industry awakening.

Sustainability: No longer viewed as just a passing trend, sustainability stands as the foremost movement to embrace. While consumers and governments grasp its importance, unfortunately, many Chinese manufacturers remain fixated on patent theft rather than true innovation. To thrive in this changing landscape, it's crucial for manufacturers to explore sustainable solutions, and to steer clear of superficial and ineffective "green" efforts.

Absolutely, predicting the future is no easy feat, but some trends are too significant to ignore. It's crystal clear that giving priority to safety, sustainability, and ethical practices isn't optional anymore; it's a shared responsibility. Perhaps it's time to shift gears and start being part of the solution rather than the problem in this industry’s dynamic nature.

February 12, 2024

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