August 23, 2022
Results Nine major cannabis companies in the US and Canada engaged in CSR activities that encouraged increased consumption and targeted marginalized communities. Companies claimed these activities would mitigate the harms of cannabis prohibition, promote diversity, expand access to medical cannabis, and support charitable causes. They developed educational programs, sustainability initiatives, and voluntary marketing codes and used strategies similar to those used by tobacco companies to recruit public interest organizations as allies.
Conclusions and Relevance These findings suggest that cannabis companies developed CSR strategies comparable to those used by the tobacco industry to influence regulation, suggesting that cannabis companies should be included when addressing commercial determinants of health.