Author: Nicole Brown
December 13 – 10 min read

What’s new, what’s next, and what it means for our business.

Published monthly, the OBX Innovation Briefing is presented by the OBX team as a way of highlighting the latest developments and innovations within the global cannabinoid industry. Each curated volume features insights and commentary on industry and category trends, regulatory updates, key initiatives, and upcoming events.

BRAND NEWS

PepsiCo’s Rockstar Turns to Hemp Seed to Help Consumers Unwind

  • PepsiCo is introducing Rockstar Unplugged, a functional beverage line that contains hemp seeds, the company announced at the National Association of Convenience Stores’ recent NACS show. The drink is described by the beverage and snack giant as a way to encourage relaxation and improve mood. 

 

    Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. Announces Distribution Agreement with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits for Curaleaf Hemp and Select CBD

    • Curaleaf is the latest brand to join the growing CBD portfolio at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, for their eponymous Hemp and Select CBD product lines.

    • Southern Glazer’s already distributes CBD products including Martha Stewart CBD and Quatreau CBD beverages, both owned by Canada’s Canopy Growth Corporation, Docklight Brand’s Marley CBD beverages, and Kill Cliff.

    CBDistillery™ Announces New Sleep Results in Collaboration with the MoreBetter (Releaf App)

    • CBDistillery™, one of the top CBD brands in the nation, in partnership with MoreBetter (dba Releaf App™), the highest rated application for individuals to track and improve their use of cannabis and CBD, today announced the results from a 31-day Sleep Pathfinder Mission utilizing CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Synergy Tincture.

    • This first Pathfinder Mission conducted by CBDistillery™ using MoreBetter’s tech stack analyzed how CBD and cannabinol (CBN) can work together to improve sleep. The results showed that those who started to regularly use the tincture found it easier to stay asleep while also reporting to have slept for 30-40 minutes longer on average. Additional insights include:

      • 72% agree that CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture performed better than any other sleep aid they’ve previously tried

      • 81% stated they achieved more quality sleep when using CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture

      • 78% were likely to continue using CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture after the study ended

      • 82% would recommend CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture to others

      • 61% felt refreshed in the morning after using the CBDistillery Regular Strength Sleep Tincture

    Kristen Bell’s Happy Dance Hemp-Derived CBD Personal Care Rolls Out To CVS Pharmacies Across US

    • Happy Dance, actress Kristen Bell’s line of premium hemp-derived CBD skincare, bath and body products, is rolling out to over 950 CVS Pharmacies. 

    • Launched in 2020, Happy Dance made its brick-and-mortar debut at over 550 ULTA Beauty stores in March. In September, the brand expanded to over 900 ULTA Beauty stores within its “New & Loved” section. Today, Happy Dance’s total retail footprint now includes over 1,850 U.S. stores. 

    • Happy Dance’s signature product assortment includes All-Over Whipped CBD Body Butter, Head-to-Toe CBD Coconut Melt and Stress Away CBD Bath Bomb.    

    Fleur Marché Transforms From E-tailer to Private-Label Brand 

    • After launching its first private-label products in February this year, Fleur Marché is winding down its multi-brand sales model. Effective December 31, the Fleur Marché site will exclusively stock the brand’s private-label products, which currently consist of a collection of transdermal CBD patches.

    • “We came out with our first product early this year. The response has just been so overwhelming that it makes us feel like we’re really onto something,” said Ashley Lewis, co-founder and CEO. “The marketplace is really the foundational element of Fleur Marché. But at this point, we actually have to spend more of our energy and resources on thinking about our own label and how to keep building that and expanding it.”

    ‘There was nowhere to air it’: Why a CBD Brand is Leveraging Digital Video as Part of its Ad Strategy

    • CBD company Sagely Naturals has taken its first foray into television and streaming advertising. The six-year-old, California-based company rolled out a six-week, 30-second video spot running across digital, OTT and local linear television in California.

    • The spot by Willa Creative Agency features active women using Sagely Naturals to relax and recover. 

    High Tide to Buy 80% of Colorado CBD Manufacturer NuLeaf for $31.2 Million

    Transaction Follows Recent Acquisitions of U.S. Based FAB CBD and U.K. Based Blessed CBD

    • Highly accretive transaction for shareholders, as NuLeaf generated revenue of US$19.4 Million and Adjusted EBITDA of US$5.26 Million during the 12 months ended September 30, 2021, of which direct-to-consumer e-commerce revenue represented US$16.3 million.

    • NuLeaf continues to drive innovation in the cannabinoid market through their new Multicannabinoid™ oils and softgels. NuLeaf’s Multicannabinoid™ is a comprehensive formula designed to supercharge the endocannabinoid system. This blend contains several key cannabinoids including CBD, CBG, CBN, and CBC in a balanced profile.

    • NuLeaf has a strong distribution reach in the natural products channel and recently announced an expansion with Sprouts Farmers Market from 33 retail locations to an additional 235 stores, bringing this to a total of 268 Sprouts stores, in addition to other retail accounts across the U.S.


    TREND PIECES AND EDITORIAL

    What Cannabis Brand Leaders Should Know About the Evolving Vape Culture

    • In a recent article for Rolling Stone, Canopy’s Chief Innovation Officer Julian Cohen looks at how the cannabis vape industry is evolving to meet consumers’ needs around wellness and self-care in surprising and innovative ways. 

    • Consumer needs around stress management look different today than they did pre-pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, people had time to transition through the different parts of their day. There was the morning and evening commute to separate work from home, and lunch and coffee breaks to add moments of reprieve and socialization during the day. 

    • As the world around us continues to shift, people are focusing on self-care, in small and big ways. Cannabis and CBD in particular have a powerful role to play as people redefine what this means. In today’s world, vaping isn’t about a new type of smoke break, it’s about helping people take a self-care break.

    Opinion: Why Every Hemp Company Should Prepare Its Own NDIN

    • If Congress approves one of two pending bills, this will officially allow CBD to be sold as a dietary supplement and open the door for a wide range of new dietary ingredient notification (NDIN) submissions.

    • This gives companies two main reasons to go through the process of completing this dossier.

    • First, when “Company A” has the first successful submission, it is a success for Company A and Company A alone. It’s not a win for the entire industry.

    • Second, when the door opens and Amazon and mass retailers begin vetting for safe, legal brands, some may consider selling only brands that can prove successful NDIN submissions.

    Beverage Market Rides the CBD Wave

    • Bottled water sales have remained robust, making it the top commercial beverage category in America. This ascent of water product popularity has coincided with a steady decline in other beverage categories like soda. Consumers are looking for better-for-you beverage options that help them reduce calories, contributing to a healthier lifestyle.

    • According to IRI, the bottled water category generated dollar sales of $19.6 billion for the 52 weeks ending May 16, 2021, up a 7.2% increase over the previous year. The subset of sparkling waters generated a year-over-year increase of 18.2% to sales of $4.2 billion, per IRI.

    • This makes water products enhanced with hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) particularly inviting. CBD offers a range of potential health benefits, and is poised to invigorate enhanced water sales across the country as CBD builds a name for itself in the health-and-wellness product arena.

    CATEGORY & RESEARCH TRENDS

    Dose-Related Inhibition of Capsaicin Responses by Cannabinoids CBG, CBD, THC and their Combination in Cultured Sensory Neurons

    • When applied individually, THC, CBG and CBD were able to block the capsaicin responses in the sensory neurons, and THC+CBD+CBG combined in a 1:1:1 proportion was more effective than these compounds applied alone. This combination also made THC more effective at a lower concentration, with the potential to reduce its unwanted psychoactive effects. 

    • The findings of the study will enable the testing of these compounds in human studies, to develop more effective cannabis-based drugs for treating chronic pain, and with reduced side-effects.

    Willingness to Use Cannabis for Gynecological Conditions: A National Survey

    • In this cross-sectional survey of a diverse sample of U.S. women, a majority of both women with a history of cannabis use (92%) and no history of cannabis use (65%) reported willingness to use cannabis to treat a variety of gynecological conditions, including gynecological cancers as well as mental health conditions, chronic pelvic pain, and endometriosis.

    Endocannabinoids and the Anti-inflammatory Power of Exercise

    • Psychology Today shares how working out increases self-produced cannabinoids and reduces inflammation. 15 minutes of strength training per day increases endocannabinoids and reduces inflammatory cytokines.

    Radicle Science Releases Initial Findings From Largest Real World Evidence Study Evaluating Effectiveness Of CBD Products

    • Radicle Science announced initial findings from the Radicle ACES (Advancing CBD Education and Science) study–history’s largest longitudinal real world evidence (RWE) study of nearly 3,000 participants to determine effectiveness of botanical products containing CBD.

    • Key findings include:

      • Participants experienced a 71% improvement in their well-being, on average

      • 63% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in anxiety

      • 61% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in sleep quality

      • 47% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in pain

      • 61% reported an effect within one to four hours of taking their product

    • A full report of the anonymized, aggregate findings will be released in early 2022.

    UPCOMING EVENTS & WEBINARS

    Got Innovation? If you see an interesting new brand, trend or other innovative idea, please feel free to share directly to [email protected]

    Author: Nicole Brown
    December 13 – 10 min read

     What’s new, what’s next, and what it means for our business.

    Published monthly, the OBX Innovation Briefing is presented by the OBX team as a way of highlighting the latest developments and innovations within the global cannabinoid industry. Each curated volume features insights and commentary on industry and category trends, regulatory updates, key initiatives, and upcoming events.

    BRAND NEWS

    PepsiCo’s Rockstar Turns to Hemp Seed to Help Consumers Unwind

    • PepsiCo is introducing Rockstar Unplugged, a functional beverage line that contains hemp seeds, the company announced at the National Association of Convenience Stores’ recent NACS show. The drink is described by the beverage and snack giant as a way to encourage relaxation and improve mood. 

     

      Curaleaf Holdings, Inc. Announces Distribution Agreement with Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits for Curaleaf Hemp and Select CBD

      • Curaleaf is the latest brand to join the growing CBD portfolio at Southern Glazer’s Wine & Spirits, for their eponymous Hemp and Select CBD product lines.

      • Southern Glazer’s already distributes CBD products including Martha Stewart CBD and Quatreau CBD beverages, both owned by Canada’s Canopy Growth Corporation, Docklight Brand’s Marley CBD beverages, and Kill Cliff.

      CBDistillery™ Announces New Sleep Results in Collaboration with the MoreBetter (Releaf App)

      • CBDistillery™, one of the top CBD brands in the nation, in partnership with MoreBetter (dba Releaf App™), the highest rated application for individuals to track and improve their use of cannabis and CBD, today announced the results from a 31-day Sleep Pathfinder Mission utilizing CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Synergy Tincture.

      • This first Pathfinder Mission conducted by CBDistillery™ using MoreBetter’s tech stack analyzed how CBD and cannabinol (CBN) can work together to improve sleep. The results showed that those who started to regularly use the tincture found it easier to stay asleep while also reporting to have slept for 30-40 minutes longer on average. Additional insights include:

        • 72% agree that CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture performed better than any other sleep aid they’ve previously tried

        • 81% stated they achieved more quality sleep when using CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture

        • 78% were likely to continue using CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture after the study ended

        • 82% would recommend CBDistillery’s Regular Strength Sleep Tincture to others

        • 61% felt refreshed in the morning after using the CBDistillery Regular Strength Sleep Tincture

      Kristen Bell’s Happy Dance Hemp-Derived CBD Personal Care Rolls Out To CVS Pharmacies Across US

      • Happy Dance, actress Kristen Bell’s line of premium hemp-derived CBD skincare, bath and body products, is rolling out to over 950 CVS Pharmacies. 

      • Launched in 2020, Happy Dance made its brick-and-mortar debut at over 550 ULTA Beauty stores in March. In September, the brand expanded to over 900 ULTA Beauty stores within its “New & Loved” section. Today, Happy Dance’s total retail footprint now includes over 1,850 U.S. stores. 

      • Happy Dance’s signature product assortment includes All-Over Whipped CBD Body Butter, Head-to-Toe CBD Coconut Melt and Stress Away CBD Bath Bomb.    

      Fleur Marché Transforms From E-tailer to Private-Label Brand 

      • After launching its first private-label products in February this year, Fleur Marché is winding down its multi-brand sales model. Effective December 31, the Fleur Marché site will exclusively stock the brand’s private-label products, which currently consist of a collection of transdermal CBD patches.

      • “We came out with our first product early this year. The response has just been so overwhelming that it makes us feel like we’re really onto something,” said Ashley Lewis, co-founder and CEO. “The marketplace is really the foundational element of Fleur Marché. But at this point, we actually have to spend more of our energy and resources on thinking about our own label and how to keep building that and expanding it.”

      ‘There was nowhere to air it’: Why a CBD Brand is Leveraging Digital Video as Part of its Ad Strategy

      • CBD company Sagely Naturals has taken its first foray into television and streaming advertising. The six-year-old, California-based company rolled out a six-week, 30-second video spot running across digital, OTT and local linear television in California.

      • The spot by Willa Creative Agency features active women using Sagely Naturals to relax and recover. 

       

      High Tide to Buy 80% of Colorado CBD Manufacturer NuLeaf for $31.2 Million

      Transaction Follows Recent Acquisitions of U.S. Based FAB CBD and U.K. Based Blessed CBD

      • Highly accretive transaction for shareholders, as NuLeaf generated revenue of US$19.4 Million and Adjusted EBITDA of US$5.26 Million during the 12 months ended September 30, 2021, of which direct-to-consumer e-commerce revenue represented US$16.3 million.

      • NuLeaf continues to drive innovation in the cannabinoid market through their new Multicannabinoid™ oils and softgels. NuLeaf’s Multicannabinoid™ is a comprehensive formula designed to supercharge the endocannabinoid system. This blend contains several key cannabinoids including CBD, CBG, CBN, and CBC in a balanced profile.

      • NuLeaf has a strong distribution reach in the natural products channel and recently announced an expansion with Sprouts Farmers Market from 33 retail locations to an additional 235 stores, bringing this to a total of 268 Sprouts stores, in addition to other retail accounts across the U.S.


      TREND PIECES AND EDITORIAL

      What Cannabis Brand Leaders Should Know About the Evolving Vape Culture

      • In a recent article for Rolling Stone, Canopy’s Chief Innovation Officer Julian Cohen looks at how the cannabis vape industry is evolving to meet consumers’ needs around wellness and self-care in surprising and innovative ways. 

      • Consumer needs around stress management look different today than they did pre-pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, people had time to transition through the different parts of their day. There was the morning and evening commute to separate work from home, and lunch and coffee breaks to add moments of reprieve and socialization during the day. 

      • As the world around us continues to shift, people are focusing on self-care, in small and big ways. Cannabis and CBD in particular have a powerful role to play as people redefine what this means. In today’s world, vaping isn’t about a new type of smoke break, it’s about helping people take a self-care break.

      Opinion: Why Every Hemp Company Should Prepare Its Own NDIN

      • If Congress approves one of two pending bills, this will officially allow CBD to be sold as a dietary supplement and open the door for a wide range of new dietary ingredient notification (NDIN) submissions.

      • This gives companies two main reasons to go through the process of completing this dossier.

      • First, when “Company A” has the first successful submission, it is a success for Company A and Company A alone. It’s not a win for the entire industry.

      • Second, when the door opens and Amazon and mass retailers begin vetting for safe, legal brands, some may consider selling only brands that can prove successful NDIN submissions.

       Beverage Market Rides the CBD Wave

      • Bottled water sales have remained robust, making it the top commercial beverage category in America. This ascent of water product popularity has coincided with a steady decline in other beverage categories like soda. Consumers are looking for better-for-you beverage options that help them reduce calories, contributing to a healthier lifestyle.

      • According to IRI, the bottled water category generated dollar sales of $19.6 billion for the 52 weeks ending May 16, 2021, up a 7.2% increase over the previous year. The subset of sparkling waters generated a year-over-year increase of 18.2% to sales of $4.2 billion, per IRI.

      • This makes water products enhanced with hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) particularly inviting. CBD offers a range of potential health benefits, and is poised to invigorate enhanced water sales across the country as CBD builds a name for itself in the health-and-wellness product arena.

      CATEGORY & RESEARCH TRENDS

      Dose-Related Inhibition of Capsaicin Responses by Cannabinoids CBG, CBD, THC and their Combination in Cultured Sensory Neurons

      • When applied individually, THC, CBG and CBD were able to block the capsaicin responses in the sensory neurons, and THC+CBD+CBG combined in a 1:1:1 proportion was more effective than these compounds applied alone. This combination also made THC more effective at a lower concentration, with the potential to reduce its unwanted psychoactive effects. 

      • The findings of the study will enable the testing of these compounds in human studies, to develop more effective cannabis-based drugs for treating chronic pain, and with reduced side-effects.

      Willingness to Use Cannabis for Gynecological Conditions: A National Survey

      • In this cross-sectional survey of a diverse sample of U.S. women, a majority of both women with a history of cannabis use (92%) and no history of cannabis use (65%) reported willingness to use cannabis to treat a variety of gynecological conditions, including gynecological cancers as well as mental health conditions, chronic pelvic pain, and endometriosis.

      Endocannabinoids and the Anti-inflammatory Power of Exercise

      • Psychology Today shares how working out increases self-produced cannabinoids and reduces inflammation. 15 minutes of strength training per day increases endocannabinoids and reduces inflammatory cytokines.

      Radicle Science Releases Initial Findings From Largest Real World Evidence Study Evaluating Effectiveness Of CBD Products

      • Radicle Science announced initial findings from the Radicle ACES (Advancing CBD Education and Science) study–history’s largest longitudinal real world evidence (RWE) study of nearly 3,000 participants to determine effectiveness of botanical products containing CBD.

      • Key findings include:

        • Participants experienced a 71% improvement in their well-being, on average

        • 63% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in anxiety

        • 61% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in sleep quality

        • 47% experienced a clinically meaningful improvement in pain

        • 61% reported an effect within one to four hours of taking their product

      • A full report of the anonymized, aggregate findings will be released in early 2022.

      UPCOMING EVENTS & WEBINARS

      Got Innovation? If you see an interesting new brand, trend or other innovative idea, please feel free to share directly to [email protected]

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