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Auroa has a "specific interest in the infused beverage space" and intends to enter that market, the Canadian company told CBS MoneyWatch in an email.

Coca-Cola may be looking into a new ingredient. "The space is quickly evolving". Should Coke move forward with the plans, it would likely supercharge efforts to thrust legal marijuana products into the mainstream, as the beverage giant is easily one of the world's most recognizable brands.

Coca-Cola has already been diversifying as consumption of soda continues to decline. "There is so much happening in this area right now and we think it has incredible potential", said Aurora's director of communications Heather MacGregor in an emailed statement. The biggest deal so far is the $4 billion investment by Corona-maker Constellation Brands (STZ) into Ontario-based cannabis company, Canopy Growth Corporation (CGC).

"It's like so many things we see with Canada and the United States", Greenwood added.

Coca Cola's statement follows reports that it had been discussing a tie-up with the Canadian marijuana company Aurora Cannabis to produce a health drink.

If true, the talks could represent the most significant deal in the history of the cannabis industry.

The move by Coca-Cola comes at a time when Canada prepares to follow certain USA states in legalising cannabis for recreational use, after years of permitting it for medicinal purposes.

While the THC in weed gets you high, the CBD that's also present in marijuana has been promoted as a natural method for reducing pain and inflammation, as well as treating anxiety, depression and sleeplessness. She said in a note to clients Monday that Coke is positioning itself for the long-term.

But testing the waters of cannabis-themed drinks could backfire, he said.

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau had made legalising recreational use of cannabis part of his 2015 election campaign, arguing the new law would keep the drug out of the hands of underage users and reduce related crime. It includes CBD as well.


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