Posted on November 29th, 2023 by Dan McCarthy

Berkshire Business Journal: Dispensaries like Canna Provisions help seniors find wellness with cannabis

In the November op-ed for the free monthly newspaper, the Berkshire Business Journal (put out by the Berkshire Eagle), Canna Provisions CEO Meg Sanders has one key point to drive home for her “Cannabis Corner” column.

More and more seniors are turning to legal cannabis and the availability of an array of safe, tested products for repeatable experiences ranging from sleep, to chronic pain, anxiety, and a host of other issues. And taking advantage of the legal dispensaries offerings are more and more helping seniros find wellness with cannabis.

The article is seen and linked below, with a full text transcript at the bottom for easy reading.

Berkshire Business Journal Canna Provisions CEO Meg Sanders November 2023
Pictured: Canna Provisions senior citizen active retail store guides, Bob Donahue (L) and John Pitha (R). Consumers love their knowledge and understanding of how cannabis can be an alternative for wellness for seniors.

From the November 2023 Berkshire Business Journal:

According to a federal survey by the National Survey on Drug Use and Health, a significant paradigm shift in the consumer demographic of cannabis is blooming – the seasoned, silver-haired generation is progressively embracing cannabis, notably soaring from 11% in 2009 to a striking 32% in 2019 amongst the over-65 age group. 

There’s a mosaic of aspects fueling this trend. From the breaking down of long-standing stigmas through extensive research and tireless advocacy by medical professionals, in concert with a collective awareness and openness to explore alternative wellness avenues, as well as an ongoing need to find ways to improve sleep, reduce anxiety, and deal with general chronic pain, the driving factors are a key aspect to focus on in order to serve them better. 

In an epoch where wellness is not merely the absence of disease but a holistic embodiment of physical and mental well-being, cannabis continues to usher in the promising of potential relief and comfort from ailments often accompanying seasoned years: chronic pain, sleep disturbances, anxiety, and a quest for overall wellness of continued life. The insights reveal that over half of those in the 60-64 demographic have also embarked on their cannabis journey, symbolizing a strikingly sharp uptick.

It is now ever more important for the health of the members of our community we serve, who, as emblems of the ongoing narrative of compassionate service and tailored offerings Canna Provisions has pioneered, is a welcome and growing national trend. Dispensaries have emerged as a pivotal educator and guide to those in the winter years of their lives. Aiding them in navigating through the myriad of choices as seniors charter their course towards understanding the beneficial uses of cannabis will benefit both the health of seniors as well as the health of the local industry.

The journey into cannabis for seniors is not a mere transactional experience, but an expedition that often commences with curiosity, burgeons with knowledge, and quite often culminates into a personalized wellness regime. Having a well-versed, empathetic staff facilitate a nurturing, consultative environment where questions are welcomed and discussed one-on-one, apprehensions are eased, and a symbiotic relationship between the plant and the consumer’s unique needs is meticulously forged.

This underscores how the assortment of products available, with the right guidance, can be seamlessly integrated into the daily routines of our seniors, addressing their specific wellness objectives. From tinctures that may potentially soothe arthritic joints, to edibles providing a peaceful night’s sleep, the offerings are myriad, yet personalized.

Recognizing that technology might pose a daunting frontier for some seniors, etching a thoughtful approach with in-store consultations, educational sessions, and establishing the of ensuring safety and confidence in product selection, conjure a space where seniors don’t merely purchase but immerse, learn, and adapt to a potentially life-enhancing wellness alternative. We’ve done that at Canna Provisions. It’s why we sponsor and build partnerships where the seniors are. Shakespeare and Co., Tanglewood, our wellness program over the summer at The Constance in Lenox and The Mount. 

At the local level we’ve always been aware of seniors, and the 50+ crowd for that matter (of which I at 57 am a card-carrying member), being a key legal cannabis demographic. But the new data constantly emerging says it loud and clear, so we’ll continue to do what we do for seniors which is to encourage one-on-one guiding in the store, letting them take their time asking questions, and launching local senior center outreach programs. 

From an industry perspective it’s clear why this shift is paramount and deserving of our collective attention. The self-propelled interest and growing consumer base of seniors seeking legal cannabis is a mirror reflecting our society’s progressive adaptation towards accepting and implementing alternative, plant based wellness solutions. Cannabis is assisting in cannabis increasingly stepping into the spotlight. Furthermore, it signals the eroding barriers of stigmas that have long shackled our perception and utilization of cannabis.

In CNN’s August 2023 special feature, “Cannabis is having a senior moment”, Dr. Sanjay Gupta writes:

Since 2020, The United States has spent $4 trillion a year on health care, of which almost $580 billion was spent on pharmaceuticals alone in 2021. When it comes to seniors, 30% of people over the age of 65 take five or more pharmaceuticals every day. But as they have increasingly turned to cannabis instead of pills, the expectation is that prescribed medication use may decrease.

CNN cannabis seniors marijuana plants over pills canna provisions meg sanders
CNN’s “Plants over Pills” special report from Dr. Sanjay Gupta.

Our silver citizens are redefining the canvas of their golden years, exploring and embracing avenues that promise enhanced quality of life and wellness. Having an attentive, educative, and personalized approach for them stands as a testament to how dispensaries can pivotally shape, guide, and nurture this exploration, ensuring that the intertwining paths of seniors and cannabis are not merely met but journeyed with understanding, empathy, and respect.

It’s an expedition where the flourishing buds of cannabis meet the autumn leaves of life, crafting a tapestry that intertwines wellness, acceptance, and a progressive stride towards holistic health. In the leafy embrace of cannabis, our seniors find not just a product, but a companion in their wellness journey, promising potential relief, comfort, and peaceful twilight years. 

Dispensaries catering to this important consumer class can easily observe a blueprint, signaling the ways in which the cannabis industry can evolve, cater, and lovingly serve the growing, exploring, and ever-curious senior demographic, ushering in a future where wellness knows no age and exploration knows no bounds.

Curious about how cannabis and wellness is coming together through bespoke experiences with Canna Provisions? Check out this Spectrum 1 News video on our “Weed and Wellness” series we put on for Summer 2023, which kicked off that the historic Gilded Age home of Edith Wharton, The Mount.

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