Is 4/20 on the way to becoming marijuana's Hallmark holiday? - Sat 20 Apr 07:24 GMT

Once an underground celebration of weed smoking, the annual event is turning into big business in the era of legalization

Is 4/20 on the way to becoming marijuana's Hallmark holiday?

  Some say it was once police code for “marijuana smoking in progress” – apparently untrue – and others claim it was invented by high school stoners in Marin county, California, who would meet at 4.20pm to get high.

  According to Kit Yarrow, a consumer psychologist at Golden Gate University, 4/20 is on its way to becoming a mainstream national holiday and that’s largely a function of the booming marijuana business.

  “It’s still a celebration of marijuana but the conversation has been expanded by brands that tie into the cannabis industry and for marketers to tie into something that has a coolness to it,” Yarrow says.

  The marijuana business could soon be dwarfed by the market for products using CBD, a cannabis compound from the hemp plant that supposedly has health benefits but doesn’t get you high.

  According to Louis Zerobnick, a veteran Colorado cannabis promoter, the CBD industry has the potential to become a far larger business than an industry based on THC, the psychoactive ingredient in cannabis.