Since sometime last year, there has been a “Coming Soon” sign on the Durango Organics building in Grandview. Nothing has happened in six months. Did they space it and forget? And speaking of pot, I noticed frozen vegetables at Walmart get a quarter of one side of an aisle, but snacks take up two entire aisles. How much have snack sales gone up since marijuana legalization? And do you have any Twinkies? Just sign me: Oh wow, why is the sun setting in ... What was I sayin’? ... Gnarly, dude
Distorted time perception and forgetfulness are two of marijuana’s well-known effects. But neither is responsible for a six-month “soon,” and soon enough it will be a moot point.
“We could open as early as Monday or as late as the end of the month,” said our bud, the phone-tender, at Durango Organics.
“It takes a while, but we’re down to getting some operational issues worked out,” the person said. “We’ll need to complete training, move product over, things like that.”
Let’s just say an “open” sign will resin-ate for those who say it’s high time for a Grandview MJ shop.
As for legal marijuana’s influence on snack sales at Walmart, the specific data is just not available.
But that won’t stop Action Line from blowing smoke at you, compiling random facts and presenting the result as Quality Investigative Journalism. So here goes.
There are 93 billion reasons why Walmart devotes eight times the space to snacks as it does frozen vegetables.
Ninety-three billion is the number of dollars Americans spent on snack foods last year, and Walmart is America’s largest grocer.
In comparison, sales of “frozen foods” in the U.S. are projected to keep declining 4.2 percent annually for the next couple of years to around $21 billion. By the way, that’s not just vegetables. “Frozen foods” includes dinner entrées, pizzas, side dishes and iced snacks.
Frozen vegetables can’t seem to come in from the cold.
For the past decade, the “annual eatings per capita” of frozen veggies has held steady at around 46 “eatings,” according to the “State of the Plate” report by the Produce for Better Health Foundation.
But it gets worse. Nowadays, most people get a quarter of their daily calories from snacks – and that trend began 35 years before Colorado legalized wacky tobacky.
“For all U.S. adults, there was a significant increase in per-capita energy intake from snacks from 1977 to 2012,” notes a study in a scholarly journal appropriately called Nutrients.
By the way, 2012 was the year in which Colorado legalized recreational weed. Even so, the link between nibbling and toking is clear.
A John Hopkins University School of Medicine study found that “smoked active marijuana significantly increased total daily caloric intake by 40 percent ... due to an increased consumption of snack foods.”
So that brings up another question.
Are the munchie-mad masses massing on fast-food joints (so to speak)?
A recent five-state survey shows 43 percent of people who purchased recreational weed in the previous four weeks opted for McDonald’s. About 18.3 percent went to Taco Bell, 17.8 percent ordered Wendy’s and 17.6 picked up Burger King. But it turns out, this “feeding frenzy” was a nothing burger.
Sense360, a business-intelligence firm that analyzes quick-serve restaurants, crunched the numbers.
The firm compiled information on more than 150 million consumer trips to quick-serve restaurants over two months, then compared sales in Colorado with sales in two Midwestern states where marijuana isn’t legal.
Traffic “wasn’t different in states without legalized marijuana, compared to QSR traffic in one that is – Colorado – during the same time period,” the firm reported.
It’s certainly food for thought.
Regardless, take it from Mrs. Action Line: Eat your vegetables, frozen or fresh – they’re good for you.
Email questions to firstname.lastname@example.org or mail them to Action Line, The Durango Herald, 1275 Main Ave., Durango, CO 81301. You can request anonymity if there’s a bag of corn in your freezer that predates the millennium.