I never thought I would be into cannabis, my experience was that it was a smokable party drug and I’m both not a smoker or the partying type. “I’m high on life,” has been my standard answer when declining the inevitably passed joint at social gatherings for over 2 decades. No one, especially me, would have ever predicted that I’d found Ellementa, a women’s cannabis wellness network and media company with fellow web pioneers Aliza Sherman and Ashley Kingsley.
But times and laws are changing, and like Joni Mitchell sings “I’ve been making changes.”
Though it is still illegal at the federal level, 95% of the American population lives in a state where there is some form of legal cannabis on the books. Even with the legal risks and hurdles, the sale of medicinal marijuana is projected to grow to $5B by 2020, ancillary companies are projected to grow to $44B. With women making up a majority of alternative medicine consumers (we will spend over $40B on alternative medicine this year alone) you can bet that more and more women will be turning to cannabis in the near future for health and wellness.
There is not a lot of information out there about women’s health and cannabis. Most everything written about cannabis use is written by and for young men or focuses on recreational use of the plant. This is not necessarily a sexist slight. The lack of credible medical information rests partly on the US’s embargo of cannabis research funding at the federal level, partly on the plethora of advertising regulations placed on cannabis companies at the state level, and partly on the frank reality that until recently, most healthcare research has been designed with men as the default.
Women will spend nearly $240B on health and wellness this year, and that’s a very large market segment to ignore.
As entrepreneur and women’s advocate Cindy Gallop says, “There is a lot of money to be made in taking women seriously” and taking women seriously is just what Ellementa is banking on. We not only provide credible and relevant information to women about cannabis wellness through our media network, we also act as the bridge between the cannabis industry and women who are looking to cannabis to care for themselves and their loved ones.
We believe that by convening women and giving them room to tell their stories and learn from one another, we can amplify our collective voice. Not just within our own communities but within the larger cannabis wellness and healthcare ecosystem. And that is not just profitable, it’s powerful.