Cannabis and tourism: a future UK industry perspective

Wright, Daniel orcid iconORCID: 0000-0001-9976-5799 (2019) Cannabis and tourism: a future UK industry perspective. Journal of Tourism Futures, 5 (3). pp. 209-227. ISSN 2055-5911

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Purpose – The purpose of this paper is to offer original ideas into a potential future cannabis industry in the UK.
This paper presents novel approaches regarding the potential existence of cannabis for the tourism industry. It
presents an idea in which the UK Government could produce, distribute and control the industry. The proposed
idea presents a scheme in which the UK could encourage regional tourism (inclusive to domestic and international
travellers) through a controlled but innovative cannabis market scheme. This paper presents a future scenario
aiming to encourage dialogue and critique, at a time when attitudes to cannabis are changing.

Design/methodology/approach – This research takes a scenario narrative approach in presenting and
exploring a potential future cannabis market in the UK. The importance of narrative writing as a method is
recognised by Lindgren and Bandhold (2009), who identify the significance in telling a story to the reader. Taking
a pragmatic approach, embracing diverse philosophical methods, this research explores past and current
trends via a mixture of secondary data sources to create and present a scenario narrative of the future.

Findings – This paper identified that trends in legalising cannabis for cultivation, medical and recreational
purposes continue to become more liberal globally. However, cannabis lawsmainly focus on the use for residents.
Consequently, domestic tourism markets have the potential to grow. However, there is limited consideration
regarding the potential for international tourism cannabis markets. Thus, the findings of this research are based on
the potential for the UK to implement and promote a cannabis industry for international travellers.

Originality/value – This paper offers original ideas in exploring a future cannabis market in the UK, one
where regional tourism is considered. The paper presents a novel approach that encourages domestic and
international tourists to engage with the cannabis industry by navigating a well-managed, local approach to
supplying cannabis in the UK.

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