New York61°

New York61°

Denver77°
September 20, 2020 CONTACT

Julie Aitcheson, Author at Hemp Market Report - Page 2 of 3

Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonMarch 5, 2020
raw-greens-1280x1707.jpg

5min00

On a recent trip to my local market, picking through early spring produce and studiously avoiding my most overworked winter staples, I came across a new contender for my next vegetable serving– baby hemp leaves. Layered in a clear plastic clamshell, the distinctive emerald leaves were curated by a lengthy, laminated discourse affixed to the produce cooler on the culinary benefits of the hemp plant.

The baby hemp leaves, which came from South Mountain MicroFARM in Boonsboro, MD (and which I purchased for $6, took home, steamed, and served with a dash of apple cider vinegar and spoonful of kimchi), were advertised as having zero THC content and below 1% CBD. What the leaves did contain, according to the write-up, was a veritable smorgasbord of nutrients including folate, iron, calcium, and Vitamin C. This was preceded by language regarding the benefits of consuming greens in general for digestion, immunity, and alleviating arthritic conditions. 

I contacted South Mountain MicroFARM for comment on their baby hemp enterprise but did not receive a response. This is likely due to the spring farmer’s scramble rather than any desire to avoid scrutiny. Hemp containing no THC and less than 1% CBD lands well within Maryland State guidelines approving the sale and transport of industrial hemp not exceeding .3% THC, a law that has recently been modified to stipulate that plants be tested no more than 15 days after harvest.

Though the advent of baby hemp to the market in my home state of West Virginia was news to me, the first farmer to take hemp to the grocery aisle did so in New York state back in 2017. An article for Bloomberg News by Kate Krader profiled J.D. Farms in Eaton, NY, which specializes in organic food products and was the first agricultural operation to sell fresh hemp for culinary use.

Though co-founders Mark Justh and Dan Dolgin originally planted hemp as a cover crop, they soon found that the untapped market for culinary hemp held great potential. They marketed their hemp greens as the “new kale”, along with more tried and true hemp seed oil and hemp seeds, whose attributes have long been extolled by nutritionists and Whole Foodists alike.

Appealing adjectives like “lemony”, “minty”, and “sweet” have been used to describe the taste of hemp leaves, so I had high hopes for my culinary adventure. After receiving a recommendation from the clerk at the market (she prefers them sautéed in eggs with feta), I elected to steam the hemp in order to experience it in a relatively unadulterated form.

What resulted was something similar in texture to steamed nettles (which can be a little gritty and fuzzy-textured) and tasting, to me, like the hoppiest IPA imaginable. I could not detect anything “sweet” or “lemony” in the greens, and wished (after my addition of apple cider vinegar and kimchi failed to mask the taste) that I had taken the store clerk’s advice. Even if “baby hemp” is the new kale, I’m sticking with kale.

 


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonMarch 2, 2020
shutterstock_309992177.jpg

5min00

Hemp industry darling, Charlotte’s Web (OTC:CWBHF), which bills its product line as “the world’s most trusted hemp extract” and was ranked as the top brand by market share for CBD by Nasdaq in 2019, is one of the most recent examples of a large-scale CBD producer to be targeted by a class-action lawsuit.  Litigation ranging in focus from CBD content to marketing (e.g. treatment claims) and stock pricing are on the rise as the Federal Drug Administration issues increasingly tighter restrictions on what is permissible in the world of hemp products. 

In the case of Charlotte’s Web, a class-action lawsuit was filed in the state of California alleging that the company has been marketing its products as “dietary supplements”. This is a designation strictly prohibited by the FDA due to the fact that CBD is an ingredient in an FDA-investigated and approved drug (the anti-epileptic, Epidiolex). The FDA claims that this occurred before any CBD products were marketed as dietary supplements which, under the dietary supplement act, are regulated as food. This timeline distinction is crucial, as companies may have been able to avoid this scrutiny if the dietary supplement designation in their marketing had occurred before CBD came under investigation as a drug by the FDA. Charlotte’s Web and Infinite Products, another big name in CBD also based in Colorado, are both standing by their products and marketing and are determined to fight the litigious wave currently on the rise.

Big companies make big targets, but there are still thousands of products and retail outlets across the country slipping through regulatory loopholes. Which is not to say that they are necessarily angling for this state of affairs to continue. The longer FDA guidelines remain inconclusive and enforcement inconsistent, the more vulnerable companies (particularly smaller operations) become the kind of litigation that could drive them out of business permanently. A recent article on cnbc.com went so far as to say that producers are begging for regulations in order to better protect themselves from these risks.

Though the first lawsuits against CBD product companies date back to the earliest days of the CBD boom, these mostly pertained to an inconsistency between the advertised versus actual potency of products or baldly inflated claims about the products curative capacity, particularly in regards to chronic or life-threatening illnesses. With more definitive censure from the FDA of CBD brands that market themselves as dietary supplements, the field is wide open for litigators to go after any product that has CBD as an ingredient, even if the company is not making unsubstantiated claims or falsifying CBD content. 

This being the case, the hemp industry can expect to see more lawsuits crop up in the weeks and months to come. In the meantime, the FDA continues to play a game of catch up to try to get a handle on hemp and how to ensure consumer safety before even more serious consequences of a still-arbitrarily regulated industry come calling.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonFebruary 26, 2020
shutterstock_1624552150-scaled.jpg

5min00

Those within the U.S. cannabis industry concerned that President Trump’s trade war with China would present significant difficulties to their sector are finding distraction, if not relief, from an unlikely source– the now-global coronavirus outbreak. As a major supplier of cut-rate hemp fiber and CBD for the world market, China has proven stiff competition for United States’ suppliers both domestically and internationally. The disruption of that supply chain by the coronavirus outbreak means that U.S. producers could finally gain an advantage in domestic and international markets.

This does not mean that there won’t still be a significant downside to slowed or stalled production in China due to the necessity of managing this new, virulent strain of coronavirus identified as COVID-19.  The majority of parts that go into manufacturing vaporizer devices, greenhouse components, LED lighting, and products with Chinese-made steel and aluminum packaging are all sourced in China. Delays in accessing these components could cause serious issues for businesses who rely on their ready availability to meet the demands of consumers in a competitive market. The impact will primarily be felt in the hardware manufacturing sector, as a number of factories supplying vaporizer components are in viral “hot zones” in China, and have been shut down until the virus is brought under control. 

About 90 percent of vaporizing products are manufactured in Shenzen, China, where manufacturers were hit hard by a sharp drop in demand brought on by the vape health scare that began dominating headlines in fall of 2019. This created a glut of vaping hardware, though this glut has been all but exhausted by rising demand due the shutdown of multiple Shenzen factories. How long these facilities will stay offline is unknown, as China remains the epicenter of the disease that the World Health Organization maintains has not yet reached pandemic status.

Some CBD product manufacturers in the U.S. have been quick to pivot their marketing campaigns to promote cannabidiol’s potential as a preventative for coronavirus due to its ability to promote restful sleep (important for immune function) and as a treatment for coronavirus symptoms. While this practice is not yet widespread, it will undoubtedly draw considerable ire and negative attention from the FDA, which has already gotten more serious about cracking down on unsubstantiated health claims in the CBD industry. 

While there may yet be a plausible medicinal use for cannabidiol in the unfolding drama of COVID-19, the industry remains focused on coronavirus’s impact on the market for cannabis and cannabis-derived products. Financial markets across the globe (which as of February 26, 2020 were experiencing a definitive downward turn) have been far from immune from the rising hysteria that a pandemic is inevitable. What this means for the hemp industry, and so many others who trace the origins of their manufacturing pipelines back to China, is a question whose answer may yet be many months down the road.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonFebruary 20, 2020
Capital-1280x480.jpg

5min00

Amidst concerns on the federal and state levels about violations of FDA regulations regarding CBD products, efforts are being made to allocate more money in the upcoming fiscal year to further define and more stringently enforce CBD laws. President Trump’s proposed budget for fiscal year 2021, should he gain re-election and have the opportunity to present it to Congress, allocates an additional $5 million to the Food and Drug Administration specifically for further regulation and law enforcement pertaining to cannabis and cannabis-derived products. This is the first time that CBD has been mentioned in a federal budget proposal, which suggests that hemp and CBD may be buzzwords cropping up in Presidential debate topics alongside marijuana  leading up to the election.

So where would it leave the future of CBD regulation if Trump is ousted from the White House? Democratic Presidential frontrunners Bernie Sanders and Elizabeth Warren both support legalization of cannabis, with Sanders proposing to legalize within 100 days of his election to office. A historically outspoken proponent of the war on drugs, Joe Biden is sticking to a half-measure platform with a focus on decriminalization, allowing states to regulate hemp for themselves. Michael Bloomberg supports putting legalization in the hands of individual states, though he is personally opposed to legalization. Pete Buttigieg takes the side of veterans with PTSD who often use cannabis and its derivatives to deal with the aftermath of military service, advocating for the decriminalization of all controlled substances. 

As  hemp has yet to be a talking point for presidential candidates, overshadowed as it is by the larger topic of marijuana as a flashpoint for racial justice issues (as criminalization disproportionately affects people of color), what Americans can expect from future budgetary support should a Democrat win office is unclear. What is clear is that the time for comprehensive, consistent regulations and enforcement of cannabis laws on the part of the FDA is long overdue.

 During his January 2020 testimony before the Subcommittee on Health, Committee on Energy and Commerce, and the U.S. House of Representatives, Douglas C. Throckmorton, Deputy Director for Regulatory Programs at the FDA, highlighted the current illegality (per the Food, Drug, & Cosmetic Act)  of interstate commerce of food with CBD additives. He also described in some detail concerns with current CBD marketing tactics that put consumers at risk, such as those products that claim to treat cancer or Alzheimer’s. Throckmorton also identified some particular concerns related to the potential negative health impacts of CBD use, such as liver damage, problematic drug interactions, male reproductive toxicity, and various ill side effects. 

While studies of these impacts are still ongoing and inconclusive, the FDA is clearly intent on taking them, and the future of CBD in the U.S. market, seriously. Whether the President-elect of the United States, whoever he or she may be, manages to pass a budget that supports the FDA in its mission to ensure public safety in regards to CBD is, in many respects, for voters to decide.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonFebruary 19, 2020
burger2-1280x851.jpg

6min00

Even though the FDA has expressed its displeasure at adding CBD to food, that hasn’t stopped hamburger chains from tossing in some cannabidiol to enhance their burgers. The trend was started last year when on April 20th   of 2019 (yep, that’s 4/20), Carl’s Jr. became the first fast-food chain to sell a CBD burger at one of its franchises in Denver, Colorado. The ambitiously named “Rocky Mountain High: Cheeseburger Delight” was composed of two beef patties, pickled jalapenos, pepper jack cheese, fries, and a Santa Fe sauce infused with 5mg of CBD. And the price? $4.20, of course.

The “Rocky Mountain High”, which was only available for one day, was more of a concept test than a menu change, and given that the location sold more than 100 of them within the first hour and ran out entirely by 4 pm, it was one that the CBD burger passed with flying colors. 

That has sparked Colorado-based Illegal Burger to offer what it calls its biggest differentiator, “its exclusive line of CBD products.” The chain is using the idea of CBD burgers as a way to entice new franchisees. On its website, it states, “As an Illegal Burger franchise owner, you will: Be part of the first CBD restaurant franchise in the U.S.” The company backs its decision by saying, “Cannabinoid, or CBD, is attributed to many health benefits. Recently, the FDA approved of its use to treat two forms of childhood epilepsy, and consumers report it positively impacting anxiety, sleep disorders, and even chronic pain.”

The CBD burger was good for business and, according to reporting by Mike Adams at Forbes.com, even healthier for consumers than a dose of CBD all by itself. Adams cites a study that dosed two separate groups of participants with CBD. One group was placed under fasting conditions (no breakfast), while the other group was fed a high-fat meal. Those who partook of the high-fat meal before consuming a dose of CBD appeared to have a higher absorption rate (as demonstrated by a higher concentration of CBD in their systems) than their fasting counterparts.

So will Carl’s Jr. and Illegal Burgers along with the absorption rate study lead more fast food restaurant chains to jump on the CBD bandwagon in the months and years to come? To a large extent, this depends on how far the FDA goes in doubling down on restrictions prohibiting the addition of CBD to foods and dietary supplements in interstate commerce. Food safety officials in Maine, New York City, Ohio, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, and Georgia have all banned the addition of CBD to food.

An April 2019, an  Inverse article on the Carl’s Jr. CBD burger reveals that the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act prohibiting any active substance in a pharmaceutical (which, thanks to the advent of  FDA-approved anti-seizure medication Epidiolex, CBD is) from being added to food products further empowers regulators to crack down on the issue. Yet despite the fact that these laws are clearly worded with little room for interpretation, their enforcement still appears to be discretionary, as both the FDA and hemp companies scramble to definitively ensure that the CBD available to the public is pure, potent, and safe.

While private chefs and smaller-scale restaurants are still tempting fate (and upping their prices) to bring CBD and cannabis to the dining public, higher-profile establishments are taking the precautionary principle until federal regulations and law enforcement sort themselves out. Still, given that a National Restaurant Association survey identified CBD and cannabis-infused foods as the top restaurant trend in 2019, there’s still a chance that American consumers might be seeing some “special sauce” on offer at their local drive-thru. 


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonFebruary 14, 2020
shutterstock_1107237284-scaled.jpg

4min00

It’s no secret that advertising channels including Facebook, Instagram, Snapchat, Amazon, and Google do not allow brands to promote any form of ingestible hemp or marijuana, forcing companies to find other ways to advertise and generate interest in their offerings. What is often mysterious to those most impacted by these restrictions, such as hemp start-ups, is why some brands seem to slip through mysterious loopholes while others find themselves banned.

Facebook has done some waffling on the issue, allowing some ads for topical hemp that direct to landing pages featuring ingestible forms of CBD. Facebook claims “sole discretion” in determining what constitutes advertising or paid promotion of ingestible hemp, leading many businesses to have their accounts deleted without fully understanding why. The action is typically a result of a violation of Facebook’s “Community Standards”, which forbid paid distribution of ads related to CBD (which Facebook classifies similarly to drugs or alcohol). There are instances, as was the case with Cannaramic promoter Felicia Palmer (profiled by The Verge), whose ad account was disabled entirely even though she was not paying for distribution of her posts about CBD.

Instagram, owned by Facebook, is reportedly somewhat more lax. Users are not penalized as often when advertising CBD products for internal use. With Instagram and Twitter, there is still a risk of having an account permanently shut down if there is an attempt to sell products. According to a Digiday article published in June 2019, Google has begun experimenting with allowing ads for topical products as long as they don’t explicitly state that they contain CBD. Users still complain that some ads clearly promoting ingestibles get featured while others do not, to which Google Support’s primary response seems to be “we can’t check all ads all the time”. If a company chooses to run a Google AdWords advertisement promoting CBD and gets caught, it runs the risk of being prevented from future advertisements whether they are related to CBD or not.

Advertisers are finding ways to circumvent these systems with the help of various marketing experts. Focusing social media posts on education (i.e. “content marketing”) is one such strategy, as is being careful not to use words that are commonly flagged. Ecommerce platform BigCommerce suggests focusing on SEO (search engine optimization), or even hiring an SEO expert. A professional can ensure that keywords (which would be considered marketing and advertising materials in the event of an FDA or FTC investigation)  do not go against FDA or FTC guidelines such as those pertaining to health and medical claims.

Events, sponsorships, cross-promotion, storytelling (e.g. Charlotte’s Web’s epilepsy narrative), e-newsletters, local and national TV ads, and influencer endorsements are also strategies that the industry’s marketing professionals recommend. They encourage hemp entrepreneurs not to be forestalled by the limitations of social marketing. Despite the fact that, according to eMarketer, Facebook and Google accounted for 57 percent of the U.S. digital ad market as of 2018, emphasizing quality, verifiability, and price point can help producers come out ahead.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonFebruary 10, 2020
shutterstock_531543478.jpg

5min00

As more consumers turn to medicinal herbs for their wellness needs or simply to keep current with trendy boho culture, CBD is proving a ubiquitous addition to the scene.  Everyone from CBD industry giants like Charlotte’s Web to boutique brands with witchy cred like Sacred Smoke Herbals is marketing soothing CBD smokes without the addictive chemicals of conventional tobacco products in the form of pre-rolled CBD joints, and consumers are lining up, and lighting up, in response. 

In its forecast of leading trends in 2020, Canna Trading Company featured CBD pre-rolls as a way to consume CBD in its most bioavailable form. (Bioavailability refers to the amount of a consumed substance that actually becomes available for uptake in the body.) When smoked, CBD enters the body through two pathways, the mouth and also the lungs, which deliver CBD directly to the bloodstream. 

Jacob Eppinger, writing for online platform Odyssey, differentiates between CBD pre-rolls, which look exactly like a joint made with THC-rich cannabis, and CBD cigarettes, which are also experiencing a popularity surge. CBD cigarette manufacturers such as Wild Hemp offer smokable CBD without the visual stigma of smoking a joint. CBD manufacturers are eager to cater to the segment of the population that wants to inhale its CBD incognito, without exhaling that signature funky-smelling cloud of smoke. Vendors like Hemp86 have developed smokable CBD products without the funk, and are ranked among the most popular brands on the market. 

Smoking herbs in order to benefit from their medicinal properties is not a new concept. People have long used herbal cigarettes containing such lung-supportive herbs as mullein and coltsfoot, either blended with tobacco or on their own as a way of cutting back on tobacco or making a smoking habit “healthier”. Other relaxing herbs like damiana, lavender, mugwort, and now CBD, are smoked for their non-psychoactive “chill out” effect. 

Pre-rolls provide a cheap, easy way for CBD novices to dip a toe into the cannabidiol world without a huge initial investment. It is possible to buy high-quality hemp flower (which contains the highest potency of CBD) by the gram at a fraction of the cost of oil, though the health benefits appear anything but comparable. Mathew Gold, a staff attorney for the Federal Trade Commission, warns that “simply being free of additives—or, in the case of herbal cigarettes, nicotine, doesn’t make them safer. Any kind of cigarette you smoke has tar and carbon monoxide, which have very real health hazards associated with them.” 

Despite this fact, sales of hemp pre-rolls remain strong. In an article for Hemp Industry Daily, Brightfield Group analyst Bethany Gomez estimates that the smokable hemp market has grown 250 percent since 2017. By 2018, 41 percent of CBD users of the 5,000 surveyed had entirely replaced tobacco with CBD. It remains to be seen whether the pre-roll trend will burn itself out in 2020 or become a new fixture in the CBD consumer’s daily routine, but for now, smokable CBD is sparking plenty of interest.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonJanuary 29, 2020
shutterstock_1557675734-1280x854.jpg

5min00

The term “disruptor” is being flung far and wide these days, applied to everyone from climate crusader Greta Thunberg to companies reimagining the consumer status quo such as Beyond Meat and Thinx. CBD also makes the disruptor spectrum, at least in the context of the beauty industry according to “The Impact Series: Disrupting Beauty”, a report published by research and content consultancy Prohibition Partners. 

The report documents CBD’s popularity in the beauty industry, which is growing by leaps and bounds due to its purported benefits, including being anti-inflammatory, anti-oxidant, antibacterial, antipollution, and having collagen-promoting properties. Testing that substantiates these claims and determines the concentration of CBD necessary to ensure therapeutic value is still in progress, but that is not preventing big names from jumping on the CBD bandwagon. Retailers like Walgreen’s, Walmart, CVS, Ulta, Nordstrom, and Sephora already stock topical CBD beauty products on their shelves. 

Prohibition Partners projects that the CBD skincare market sales will reach $959 million by 2024, yet the lack of regulations or industry standards for quality and strength makes CBD skincare a bit of a Wild West into which many investors hesitate to venture. Hemp seed oil has long been a favorite ingredient of companies looking to blend nourishing creams and lotions with “all-natural” cachet, but some producers are now deliberately conflating hemp seed oil with CBD in order to sell products at a higher premium. This sleight of hand is not expected to outlast 2020 as the FDA begins to crack down on such claims and more customers demand a COA (Certificate of Analysis) from an accredited third-party laboratory in order to verify CBD content and potency. As these pieces fall into place, major beauty brands like Estée Lauder and L’Oréal test out the market by featuring hemp seed oil (without CBD) in a few of their products, part of a “wait and see” strategy until CBD catches up with its own hype. 

Indie brands are the real disruptors in this market, forging ahead with actual CBD products from pillow mists (OTO) to lip gloss (Saint Jane). The need to stand out in an indie market over-saturated with personal care brands puts positive pressure on start-up companies to innovate and distinguish themselves. The new frontier of CBD provides just that opportunity. Indie brands are succeeding by finding novel uses for CBD that present a whole new paradigm for what a beauty product can do. Kana Vita, an indie luxury brand selling “clean”, top-quality beauty unguents formulated in a Swiss lab by “CBD experts with a background in Medical Cannabis”, is a prime example. 

With an increased emphasis on purity and consumer education, indie brands like Kana Vita ride a new wave of CBD products, in response to a call from discerning customers demanding more for their money. If Prohibition Partners’ projections for CBD beauty are accurate, this is a model that the larger brands would do well to emulate, when and if they decide to double down on CBD’s future in the beauty industry.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonJanuary 23, 2020
hemp-farmer.jpg

4min00

Just over a year from the date when the 2018 Farm Bill removed hemp from the list of controlled substances and legalized it for industrial growth, issues plaguing hemp producers in 2019 are coming to light. The most dominant pitfalls include a glutted market, unpredictable climate, problems with mold and pests, and a chronic shortage of adequate drying facilities.

Seasoned farmers are no strangers to these types of problems, but industrial hemp poses a new challenge: how to bring a crop in under the .3% THC limit mandated by the federal government.

In an October article by Chuck Abbot at www.agriculture.com, analysts at agricultural lender CoBank forecasted that changing federal regulations would make it difficult for growers to keep up with guidelines for testing plants for excess THC. The National Law Review published a piece on Jan. 19, 2020 entitled “Key Takeaways From USDA Final Interim Rules for Domestic Hemp Production”. (These interim rules are set to expire in 2021 and will be replaced by finalized regulations.)

The scope of the rules includes conditions for growing, processing and/or selling hemp, and requires an approved testing and sampling procedure to ensure that no plant exceeds .3% THC content. Unfortunately, the currently approved method focuses solely on identifying the THC content of the plant rather than its genetic profile (which can definitively identify the plant as hemp). Testing only for THC content leaves this undetermined.

A hemp plant can “go hot” (aka experience a spike in THC levels) due to using a new seed variety, environmental factors, or a plant left to flower for too long. This can lead to what the National Law Review article describes as “excessive non-compliance and crop destruction”, not to mention devastating financial losses for growers. Writing for local Denver publication Westword, Mathew Van Deventer reports that fourth-generation farmer Randy Taylor was forced to destroy eighty acres under hemp production when that hemp tested at .47% THC by the Colorado Department of Agriculture. The CDA is attempting to address this conundrum by approving and overseeing the development of industrial hemp seeds specifically engineered for low THC/high CBD content.

Theresa Bennett’s Q&A with Vote Hemp President Eric Steenstra at www.hempgrower.com  provides further insight into the issue. Steenstra shares that there has been almost a 500% increase in the number of people growing hemp nationwide over last year. These new growers are largely unfamiliar with the complexities of the genetic seed make-up required to keep THC in crops from spiking. As a result, buyers are favoring larger-scale operations with tested seed stock and reliable facilities, which edges new growers out of the market before they gain a foothold.

Despite the obstacle that regulations regarding THC content pose for unseasoned producers, industrial hemp still shows a profit margin generous enough to lure those willing to educate themselves and keep abreast of the changing guidelines into the industry. Hopefully, the lessons of 2019 will make for a less perilous and more profitable learning curve for aspiring hemp entrepreneurs in 2020.


Julie AitchesonJulie AitchesonJanuary 21, 2020
CBD-2.jpg

4min00

To say that 2019 was a boom year for the CBD industry would be a massive understatement, and 2020 is primed to top the record sales and product innovation that have come to characterize this surging market.

On December 20, 2018, President Trump signed the Farm Bill into law, a move which removed hemp from the government’s controlled drug category and spurred farmers across the country to repurpose agricultural land previously used to grow feed and food crops such as corn and alfalfa for hemp varieties with high CBD and low THC (.3% or less) content. Farmers experiencing demand and profit surges since converting their land for hemp cultivation were profiled in a CNN report in April that projected sales of hemp products to be over 2.2 billion dollars by 2022.

Market activity in 2020 will go a long way towards determining whether or not hemp’s profitability can sustain its robust trajectory. Alexi Korybut, CEO of EcoGen Laboratories (one of the largest hemp manufacturers and suppliers in the U.S.) predicts that CBD consumers will skew increasingly Baby Boomer and become more conscientious about the quality and safety of the products they buy. Korybut also projects a greater focus on other cannabinoids such as CBG and CBN as their specialized effects become more widely known.

A 2020 forecast by Rich Maturo of information, data and measurement firm Nielsen predicts that cannabinoid education efforts, especially those targeted towards health care providers, will greatly increase in 2020. (Nielsen data shows that primary health care providers do more than any other demographic to drive brand loyalty and customer usage in the CBD market.) In addition, Maturo projects that CBD prices will fall while the number of hemp farmers entering the industry will continue to rise, as will the percentage of current farmers increasing acreage dedicated to hemp cultivation.

Despite these positive projections, the hemp industry has experienced its share of problems, as outlined in an October article by Iris Dorbian for Forbes.com. These issues include a lack of widespread, scientifically sound information about the legality and benefits of CBD products, which often deters retailers from carrying hemp products. In addition, changing regulations make it difficult for manufacturers and retailers to keep up as new data emerges about drug interactions and the viable use of CBD as a food additive.

The quality and efficacy of products vary greatly as consistent industry-wide standards are still in process. Dorbian cites a press release from CEO of ValidCare Patrick McCarthy, who echoes Alexis Korybut’s predictions of a growing emphasis on safety and quality, escalating Baby Boomer consumption, and interest in CBG and CBN as features of the hemp industry’s growth in 2020.

Though projections may vary, there do appear to be strong commonalities that provide a clarified, if not completely clear, view of what 2020 holds for the CBD/hemp industry.  What is clear is that the impact of hemp-derived cannabinoids will be felt in the health care industry, agricultural system, and consumer market far beyond the coming year.

 



About Us

The Hemp Market Report will target news from the fast growing worlds of cannabidiol (CBD) and hemp. As a sister site to the Green Market Report, HMR will cover financial stories, but also take a look at lifestyle news as well. The Hemp Market Report will also publish sponsored content as we seek to expand our content offerings.


READ MORE



Recent Tweets

@GreenMarketRpt – 2 days

Cannabis Subscription Boxes Grow By 550% ⁦@cratejoy⁩ ⁦@CureCrate⁩ ⁦@hempcrateco⁩ #cannabis…

@GreenMarketRpt – 3 days

The Green Market Report’s Marijuana Money September 18, 2020 ⁦@WallandBroad⁩

@GreenMarketRpt – 3 days

RT : With 48 days until the election, we are finding ways to let voters in New Jersey know Cannabis is on the ballot and why t…

Back to Top

You have Successfully Subscribed!