Safe Spaces: Why Indoor Air Quality Has Never Mattered More
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Safe Spaces: Why Indoor Air Quality Has Never Mattered More

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The following content is sponsored by mCloud.

Why Indoor Air Quality Has Never Mattered More

Indoor air quality affects everyone, but many of us take it for granted.

From workplaces and retail spaces to restaurants and long-term care facilities, any air-conditioned or heated space needs good ventilation. Proper airflow in indoor spaces is also critical for curbing the spread of airborne viruses such as COVID-19, especially as more and more of these communal places open back up.

This visualization from mCloud looks at why indoor air quality matters, and unearths potential technical solutions that can help keep people safe and ensure businesses run smoothly.

Silent Threats: The Viral Potential of Airborne Viruses

Most respiratory diseases, including the flu virus and COVID-19 are transmitted through three typical methods.

  1. Contact Transmission
    Through direct contact
  2. Droplet Transmission
    Through close-proximity, large respiratory droplets
  3. Airborne Transmission
    Through small droplets suspended in air

It’s this last factor in particular to keep an eye out for. In a study, over half (53%) of flu patients produced aerosol particles of the virus while coughing—and viral droplets can travel more than 10 meters when exhaled by an infected person. In addition, pollutants and other small particles are 2-5x more concentrated indoors.

While most respiratory diseases are preventable, it’s clear that handwashing and social distancing are not enough. Alongside other measures, experts recommend improved ventilation to help prevent the spread of COVID-19 in indoor spaces.

Avoid Sick Building Syndrome with Good Indoor Air Quality

Prior to the pandemic, 157 million people in the U.S. workforce spent the majority of their waking hours in shared areas like offices, stores, and more. In fact, there are 5.9 million commercial buildings in the U.S. alone, totaling 97 billion ft².

Within these indoor spaces, heating, ventilation, and air-conditioning (HVAC) systems help to keep the air fresh. But have you ever gone to work and realized that there’s a flu bug that everyone seems to be catching? Poor air flow could be the culprit behind what’s called “Sick Building Syndrome”.

ℹ️ Airflow: measured by cubic feet per minute (CFM), calculated per person.
Example: A movie theater with a 100-person capacity would require 500 cubic feet of air cycled per minute to maintain adequate fresh airflow.

Most buildings are designed to recirculate air to boost energy efficiency. However, this doesn’t always occur evenly—causing air to stagnate.

If what should be fresh air becomes stagnant air instead, this can result in the distribution of allergens and pathogens, including COVID-19 and the flu. Symptoms of Sick Building Syndrome include:

  • Itchy, watery eyes
  • Stuffy, runny nose
  • Lethargy
  • Cognitive issues
  • Headache
  • Dry throat
  • Skin irritation

Studies show that air-conditioned buildings exhibit a higher prevalence of workers with these symptoms compared to naturally ventilated buildings. Many different types of buildings are at risk—although air is replaced in operating rooms every 3-6 minutes, it is only replaced every few hours in office buildings.

Proven Solutions to Keep Spaces Safe

Indoor air quality has a significant impact on containing respiratory diseases, including COVID-19. In fact, proper air ventilation can have the same impact as vaccinating 50-60% of people in a building.

mCloud partners with businesses to help augment their technical needs, and help manage workplace challenges associated with indoor health risks.

Workplace ChallengesmCloud’s Strategies
Aerosol transmission is a main contributor to respiratory illnessesUse technical solutions that include constant monitoring
Improved airflow is critical to reopening infrastructure and ramping up operationsImprove humidity levels: spikes in respiratory infections occur when humidity drops below 40%
Solutions must be cost-efficient, but measuring and improving indoor air quality is extremely difficultImprove indoor air quality with ventilation and filtration technology

Semiconductor-grade cleanrooms—filtered, controlled environments—improve HVAC systems, allowing for remote monitoring, and temperature and humidity control.

How do mCloud’s solutions help improve indoor air quality?

  1. HVAC & Ventilation
    Full ventilation that maximizes influx of outside air
  2. Filtration & Purification
    Ionization and ultraviolet light can capture and kill up to 99.9% of viruses, including COVID-19
  3. Monitoring
    Real-time monitoring by an expert team, with 24/7 monitoring
  4. 24/7 Compliance
    Businesses ensure they meet local and federal safety guidelines

Combining connectivity with air purification can improve HVAC systems, allowing for remote monitoring, temperature and humidity control. This can result in a 95% reduction in airborne particles (compared to standard filtration in operating rooms), and could have a 95% pathogen kill rate within just three hours.

As a myriad of shared places from offices to retail stores reopen, physical safety and health is a top priority for employers. Businesses can partner with experts to create healthy, safe spaces that protect people, companies, and entire industries.

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Every Cannabis Product In One Graphic

The cannabis industry is growing by billions every year. This graphic provides an overview of cannabis products and ranks their popularity.

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Every Cannabis Product In One Graphic

There are few markets experiencing growth quite like cannabis, which in 2020 had an additional 7,000 products hit dispensary shelves compared to the year prior. However, for novice cannabis consumers and investors, the different products and their uses can be overwhelming.

This sponsored graphic by Tenacious Labs provides an overview of cannabis products, and is part of a multi-part series that covers different factors affecting the future of cannabis.

Let’s break down cannabis products on the market today.

1. Flower

First, is cannabis flower, which is the ingestible part of the cannabis plant and is the most popular way to consume. It is cultivated, harvested, dried, and cured, as part of the preparation process before making its way to the end consumer. Due to its popularity, it also represents the largest component of the U.S. legal market.

In 2021, some $10.9 billion in dried herb or “buds” were purchased. In addition, pre-rolls generated $2.2 billion, which are pre-rolled products prepared by dispensaries. The psychoactive effects from consuming flower are felt almost instantly, which remains a key appeal.

2. Cartridges, Concentrates, and Extracts

Cannabis concentrates are a growing category which have taken the market by storm in recent years. They come in various forms including raw concentrates, cartridges, and extracts. Preparing them involves removing impurities form the plant, leaving only the desired compounds such as cannabinoids and terpenes.

This highly concentrated form of cannabis results in THC levels of 80-90%, compared to the 10-20% range most commonly found in dry herb flower. Raw concentrates hit $2.2 billion in U.S. legal sales in 2021. And cartridges, which are products intended to be vaped and are typically paired with a battery accessory, were worth $5.1 billion.

The appeals associated with concentrates include a higher dose which results in stronger effects, plus a more discrete experience given they have little to no smell.

3. Edibles

Next, are edibles, where the THC is metabolized by the liver and consumed through infused food and drinks. This leads to an different experience relative to inhaling. For example, the euphoric or psychoactive effects typically last much longer and can take 1-2 hours to kick in.

The legal U.S. edibles market is growing fast. It recorded revenues of $2.3 billion in 2021 but is expected to reach a value of $8.5 billion by 2027. These growth prospects have not gone unnoticed, in fact, the alcohol industry is betting big on cannabis. As of late, waves of investments and acquisitions are occurring targeting cannabis-infused beverages.

A key driver of growth comes from the health conscious consumer who may want to avoid the smoking process altogether.

4. Topicals and Others

Last are topicals and other products. Topicals are CBD-infused non-psychoactive products like lotions, balms, and oils. These are gaining notoriety for their wellness properties including the relief of pain, soreness, and inflammation. However, the market remains relatively modest, with a market value of $200 million. Furthermore, the topicals market appeals to those not interested in any psychoactive effects, and is particularly popular amongst women and pet owners.

Other products include papers, pipes, batteries, and all other accessories, which also provide notable revenues and opportunities.

Measuring Market Share of Cannabis Products

With all these products in mind, let’s take a look at market share. Although edibles, vapes, and concentrates have risen tremendously in value over the years, flower still remains number one, representing 43% of legal sales, followed by cartridges at 20.3% market share.

ProductMarket Share (%)Market Value ($B)
Flower43.4%$10.9B
Cartridges20.3%$5.1B
Edibles9.2%$2.3B
Concentrates8.8%$2.2B
Pre-rolls8.8%$2.2B
Topicals0.8%$0.2B
Accessories8.8%$2.2B

Seasonality also plays a role in cannabis consumption. Since dry flower tends to be consumed outdoors, the data shows that it loses market share during the cold winter months.

The Next Chapter

Cannabis products have come a long way from their early days when variety was considered a choice between an indica or sativa strain. As the industry develops and more money is injected into the space, we should see product innovation accelerate even further.

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Visualizing the Evolution of the Global Meat Market

The global meat market will be worth $1.8 trillion by 2040, but how much of that will plant-based alternatives and cultured meat command?

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The Evolution of the Global Meat Market

In the last decade, there has been an undeniable shift in consumers’ preferences when it comes to eating meat.

This is partly due to the wide availability of meat replacement options combined with growing awareness of their health benefits and lower impact on the environment compared to conventional meat.

In this infographic from CULT Food Science (CSE: CULT), we examine how meat consumption is expected to evolve over the next two decades. Let’s dive in.

Taking a Bite out of Meat’s Market Share

The COVID-19 pandemic triggered a massive turning point for the meat industry, and it will continue to evolve dramatically over the next 20 years. Taking inflation into account, the global meat market is expected to grow overall by roughly 3% by 2040 as a result of population growth.

However, as consumption shifts, conventional meat supply is expected to decline by more than 33% according to Kearney. These products will be replaced by innovative meat alternatives, some of which have yet to hit the mass market.

  • Novel vegan meat replacement: These are meat alternatives products made from plants that resemble the taste and texture of meat.
  • Cultured meat: Also referred to as clean, cultivated, or lab grown meats, cultured meat is a genuine meat product that is produced by cultivating animal cells in a controlled environment without the need to harm animals.

Aside from new meat replacements, biotech will also transform adjacent industries like dairy, eggs, and fish.

The Future of Food?

Meat replacements and cultured meat could overtake the conventional meat market, with cultured meats reigning supreme overall with a 41% annual growth rate (CAGR) between 2025 and 2040.

New technologies for cultivating non-animal based protein will provide one-third of the global meat supply due to an increase in commercial competitiveness and consumers becoming more accepting of these kinds of products.

Meanwhile, conventional meat will make up just 40% of all global meat supply by 2040, compared to 90% in 2025. For this very reason, conventional meat producers are investing a significant amount of capital in meat alternative companies so they can avoid disruption.

Invest in the Revolution

The changing tides in the industry have sparked a variety of undeniable opportunities:

  • Regulatory approvals: Singapore is the first country to legalize cultured meat for consumers, and many more will no doubt follow behind in the coming years.
  • Lower production costs: Cultured meat and dairy have made quantum leaps in reducing production costs.
  • Changing consumer ethics: Consumers are demanding a more ethical approach to factory farming and cultured and plant-based alternative products are becoming a more accepted solution.

CULT Food Science (CSE: CULT) is a cutting edge investment platform advancing the future of food. The first-of-its-kind in North America, CULT aims to provide unprecedented exposure to the most innovative start-up, private or early stage lab grown food companies around the world.

Will you be part of the revolution?

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