Send Your Sweetheart A Different Kind of Flower

As with all holidays over the last unprecedented year, Valentine’s Day 2021 will be marked by the realities of limited travel, social distancing, and Covid-era shopping trends that have consumers preferring to fill their virtual shopping carts rather than plucking their purchases from retailer shelves. 2020 was a big year for Valentine’s Day, with celebrants spending a record-breaking average of $196.31 per person according to a National Retail Foundation survey. Though Valentine’s Day 2021 spending is projected to total 21.8 billion dollars, it will not reach 2020 proportions, especially when it comes to spending on evenings out. According to the NRF survey, less than one quarter of consumers plan to celebrate their Valentine with an evening out, which is the lowest percentage in the survey’s history.

 V-Day dinner plans aren’t the only things that have changed due to the pandemic. Spending on gifts has dropped as well, down $32 per person on average. Still, 73 percent of consumers who intend to celebrate the hearts and flowers holiday this year feel that it is especially important to do so given the pandemic. 41 percent of those surveyed plan to cook up a special celebration in the safety of their own homes. 

Restaurants may suffer from reduced safe seating capacity and the number of diners electing to observe the holiday from home this year, but certain product categories (like topicals, beverages and edibles) see regular gains around this time of year, with 2021 looking to be no exception. Sales of cannabis-infused massage oil and lube enjoyed a 20% sales jump relative to the four weeks preceding Valentine’s Day 2020 according to Seattle-based Headset Analytics. Apothecanna’s Sexy Time Personal Intimacy Oil is poised to capitalize on that trend, as is CBD by Playboy’s Pleasure For All kit, which includes intimacy gel, arousal spray and bath bomb. If a bath with your boo ends up being your favorite way to ring in a new year of romance, Love Spell CBD Bath Bomb infused with essential oils that act as aphrodisiacs as well as tension tamers might be just the thing.

On the edible front, CBD and THC chocolates are a favorite gift item on just about any holiday, but as candy is the currency of Valentine’s Day, it’s only natural that an array of sweet treats get top billing in the month of February. Papa & Barkley’s Releaf Chocolate bars (available in milk chocolate or dark chocolate and sea salt) are slow-churned, cannabis-infused creations with Fair Trade certified ingredients. Chill Chocolate offers an array of THC-infused “Mood” chocolate bars, including “Peace”, “Inspire”, and “Dream” to set the tone for a special night. If gummies are more your sweetheart’s speed, Select Nano Gummies (in Lemon-Berry or Strawberry-Peach) or Deli Nickels Passionfruit Gummy Rounds might make better stuffers for that heart-shaped box. Whatever your solo or partnered pleasure this Valentine’s Day, there will be no shortage of cannabis-infused ways to pursue it and restore a little pre-pandemic pleasure to February 14th.

Julie Aitcheson

Julie Aitcheson is a freelance writer, author and educator. In addition to Green Market Report, her work has appeared in Vanguard Magazine, The Fresh Toast, Green Entrepreneur, Daily Press, The Baltimore Sun, LA Weekly and The Chicago Tribune. She received a full fellowship to the 2013 Stowe StoryLabs and won second place in the 2014 San Miguel Writers' Conference nonfiction writing competition. She has published two young adult novels and is currently at work on a piece of adult fiction.

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