In the far off future, will people still be smoking blunts? Will the colonies on Mars still stand in circles and pass joints to each other? Will there be any arable soil on earth to grow fields of reefer? We’ve scoured the research and found an expert, Roy Blunty (who looks an awful like Rutger Hauer) to tell you about the weed of the future.
1. Cannabis will be grown almost entirely indoors
While this has been true for many growers for years, improvements in lighting technology and automation makes growing indoors increasingly efficient. Grow lights are quickly producing more light and less heat, improving their capacity to be used indoors. Additionally, smart home programming will allow growers to control their lights from computer modules or smart phone apps. They can control the brightness, light/dark cycles, and other technical aspects to maximize the efficiency of their grow-ops throughout the lifespan of the plants.
Additionally, advances in hydroponics will make it a more efficient medium to grow weed in, especially compared to semi-legal fields outdoors. New pumps, management software, and sensors will allow growers to control their hydroponic systems with touch of a button and monitor the current nutrient levels, signs of infections in the system, and other aspects of plant health. In a world in which cannabis is legalized in the United States, we can anticipate multi-story warehouses of cannabis crops, to meet the widespread demand for high-quality bud.
2. We no longer need seeds.
While fertilizing, crossbreeding plants, and selecting the best has been the work of cannabis farmers for thousands of years, advances in cloning technology and DNA editing will make manually crossbreeding plants and hoping for certain traits a thing of the past. Cloning will make seeds irrelevant, as tissue samples can be used to create exact copies of ideal specimens. Gene editing will allow pro-breeders to select genes they hope to remove and insert genes into specimens and customize the traits they’re after.
For the wealthiest clients, this could end in custom strains that are literally designed to fit their tastes. Imagine rappers with signature strains designed in labs to meet their specifications. Instead of celebrity growers named Dr. Greenthumb, we could be staring at a future of weed cultivators named Dr. Plant Geneticist (PhD). Old school cross-breeding may still be a hobby for enthusiasts and home growers, but for commercial cultivation, look forward to advanced science becoming increasingly relevant to the industry.
3. Pharmaceutical Cannabis
One of the chief complaints of opponents to medical marijuana is that the industry has so far failed to produce carefully regulated products with controlled dosages and chemically pure formulas. While proponents of medical marijuana might say that avoiding the pharmaceutical industry is one of the benefits of cannabis, we can expect that the pharmaceutical industry will manage to create widely available versions of cannabis products eventually.
The industry has already produced medications like dronabinol, an antiemetic used for some cancer patients, but we expect that in the future the pharmaceutical industry will expand the uses of cannabinoids to treat epilepsy, anxiety, depression, glaucoma, and any other condition currently treated with medical marijuana.
4. Vaporizers may become more popular than smoking, but including joints, pipes and continued evolution of dry herb vapes, flower remains the single most popular category for users.
In the tobacco industry, we see the trend among the youth where cigarettes were once king but they now seem to prefer vapes and vape pens to traditional smoking products. Herb vaporizers have two primary types: for oils and concentrates and then for dry herb.
Concentrate vapes may use a 510 cartridge that produces an odorless, quickly dissipating cloud. Oils and extracts made from trim and leaves can be used in portable vaporizers with similar highs as premium flower, although vapes can be harsh, and much about their impact on health is still unknown. Still, we can expect people to continue experiencing flower with the whole mix of bongs,joints, dry herb vapes, one hitters and pipes.
That said, even in a legal world, anti-smoking laws will continue to drive this most discreet of inhalation methods to be a staple in anybody’s canna quiver.
5. Cannabis will be used by far more people.
Whereas cannabis was once highly taboo, its use has become increasingly popular among younger generations. If current trends continue, we can expect cannabis use in some form, whether its THC or CBD, to become widespread.
CBD products will become popular ways to treat inflammation, arthritis, and other common conditions, while THC-heavy forms of cannabis will continue to be used for both medical and recreational purposes. In the future, visiting the dispensary will be as common as stopping off at a liquor store for a bottle of wine.
This kind of culture has already arrived in states where legalization is widespread and usage is socially accepted, such as the West Coast. As the fight for legalization spreads and eventually wins out, we can expect the cultural shift to occur across the United States.
We’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Fat blunts on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched pollen presses glitter in the dark near Tannhäuser Gate. All those joints…will be lost in time, like tears in bong water…Time to smoke…Visit RYOT.com to see the very latest in smoking technology, the likes of which even Roy Blunty would approve of.
Predictions for the future of weeds reveal five transformative trends. Thriving indoor cultivation leverages advanced lighting and automation, yielding heat-efficient growth in hydroponic warehouses. Seed-based methods evolve, replaced by cloning and gene editing for novel strains. Cannabis merges into pharmaceuticals, potentially treating epilepsy and anxiety. Vaporizers gain discreet use popularity, while cultural shifts destigmatize cannabis, driven by youth acceptance. These trends outline an advancing landscape, featuring inventive cultivation, genetics, medical applications, diverse consumption, and evolving perceptions.