CBD Consumers Defy Age Assumptions

Carol Feigenbaum |
 07/16/21 |
4 min read

CBD Consumers Defy Age Assumptions

CBD is the ingredient of the month right now – the year, in fact. Wherever you look, CBD-infused items are popping up. The opportunities for food and beverage businesses in the CBD realm are incredible, and there are key audiences they’ll want to pay to close attention to as they plan out new products and marketing campaigns. Let’s take a look!

Interestingly, we’re seeing older folks indexing higher for this topic than they do in the general Twitter population’s conversations. They’re talking more about CBD to relieve ailments – and are much more open to considering holistic options than many brands seem to realize. A recent High Yield Insights survey saw a “solid majority of respondents [saying] they were taking a CBD product to treat some kind of chronic pain: More than two-thirds said they used cannabidiol to treat joint pain or arthritis while more than half said periodic or chronic muscle pain was the cause.”


Olders & Others Falling in Love with CBD

Beyond joint and muscle pain management though, older folks – and others – are finding CBD useful for other ailments as well, including:

  • Anxiety and stress
  • Insomnia and sleeplessness
  • Depression or low mood
  • ADHD and seizures
  • Aggression problems with pets
  • Acne, digestion, mood disorders, and so on

A 2019 Gallup Poll revealed 14% of Americans had tried CBD, and where in the U.S. those respondents lived:


This ties in with geographical data connected to those interacting online about the topic, with 21% of the CBD conversation taking place in California. And we can clearly see which states make up the rest of the conversation. This intel can help marketers better target campaigns and understand what level of CBD awareness they’re dealing with before diving in:


CBD usage has become more widely accepted in general society since that 2019 survey. In fact, that number more than doubled according to a 2020 SingleCare survey – putting usage stats at 33%. And 2021 stats are sure to see that number increase, with most consumers taking a neutral stance on the additive, and more online participants sharing positive sentiment than negative.


And many envisioning a CBD-infused future for families:

CBD-infused Everythings Headed Our Way

Looking at that short list of current consumer uses for CBD, it’s easy to see the potential for savvy retailers and food and beverage industry insiders to get onboard this holistic train as it begins to pick up steam. And many have – or are jogging alongside, ready to jump on when the time is right.

For example, in 2019 we saw Carls Jr launch a CBD-infused burger on 4/20 – and it was priced at $4.20. Only available on that day and in only one CBD-friendly Colorado location, it was more of a litmus test for the brand than anything else. This makes sense as it prides itself of offering new flavor combinations ahead of the pack, and approvals are still fuzzy for some locales.

And we can see Nestle, Kraft Heinz and Seneca Foods each either embarking on joint ventures with subsidiaries offering CBD-infused products or investing in dispensaries. Others are more direct – and those brands typically inhabit the adult beverage subset of the industry. Moosehead and Molson Coors, specifically, with plans to offer non-alcoholic CBD-infused beverages:

Truss CBD USA, a joint venture between beer maker Molson Coors Beverage Company and HEXO Corp., announced plans in January to debut a line of non-alcoholic CBD-infused sparkling waters in the US after introducing the products in Canada last year. The drinks, sold under the VeryVell brand, are currently manufactured in Colorado and distributed by the Coors Distributing Company within the state under its regulatory framework for hemp-derived CBD in food and beverages.

But the call for cannabinoids travels beyond the expected to a wide variety of unmet consumer needs, including coffee, water, tea, snacks, cotton candy, honey, skincare and a wide variety of health and wellness items.


These are things consumers are posting about and searching for – and businesses able to meet these needs are undoubtedly scrambling with product development, so they’re ready to launch once legislative hurdles are cleared.

How Brands Can Meet This Need

As brands navigate consumer needs in 2021, the biggest CBD hurdle they’ll face will be around continuing to generate positive sentiment and awareness around its benefits. And the best way to accomplish this will be with the help of some relevant influencers who speak the same language as the audiences they’re wanting to reach. And researching older influencers with authentic and relevant pain challenges will be a must for brands.

It’s easy for brands to continue on the same path and target Millennials or Gen Z, and it’s definitely wise to do so – but the golden ring here resides with the older consumers. They have the longest laundry list of painful ailments that CBD targets and anything that relieves pain while creating a smaller pharmaceutical footprint for them is a win-win.

And with CBD soon-to-be infused into so many products, directing their dollars toward drinks and lotions that have added pain alleviating benefits is really a no-brainer.

From our conversation on geographies above, we can see areas in the U.S. where the conversation has started to pick up and those locations could be prime spots to build upon existing buzz with targeted campaigns – but anywhere is ripe for the picking with the right messaging! Reach out and we’ll show you how to hone your message and make the most of this and other emerging health and wellness trends!

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