“One of the things that is really important as a community trying to have this budding business, pun intended, I believe we have to look and understand what the consumers are wanting.”
—Jason Mitchell, N.D., Hemp Fusion
Part 1: The business of hemp
- The business development of hemp should be measured by categories and size.
- The growth of the hemp business is a phenomenon that is rarely seen.
- How important is legalizing marijuana to the business of CBD?
- For people in nutrition products to be successful, it’s about engaging with the consumers and the value-added proposition.
Part 2: Hemp as an ingredient
- Look at hemp as a whole food, utilizing the whole plant, the seed, the stalk and the oil.
- There is value in creating a product that combines hemp with other ingredients to maximize effectiveness.
- In this fledgling industry, scaling and consistency are considerable issues.
- Companies can build trust and relationships by having a consistent source of ingredients. Don’t prioritize price, prioritize quality.
- Transparency is about education on every aspect, from growing to processing.
Part 3: Regulations
- The rise of the CBD industry allows the opportunity to refresh regulations across all channels in the food and nutrition industry.
- Canada is a good test market because it does not have the same constricting regulations as the U.S., especially with banks.
- Research is valuable for start-up brands. “Where science leads, markets follow.”
- The challenge will be to work with companies that are delivering a consistent quality and supporting the science. It’s a symbiotic relationship.
Part 4: Brand differentiation
- Consumer needs should drive innovation.
- Address common health issues, and embrace the whole food category, using products that are backed by science.
- Stress, sleep and pain are the main reason people try CBD products initially.
This session—Merry Hempsters & Ganjapreneurs: Innovation at the Brand Level—was recorded at Natural Products Expo West 2018.