NEW YORK, Aug. 28, 2020 /PRNewswire/ — After the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which legalized production of industrial hemp, transforming it into a mainstream agricultural product, numerous categories of CBD products started to appear. Now, the growing awareness about the therapeutic benefits of cannabidiol has influenced people to buy such products, even at relatively high costs. As a result, mainstream retailers are now focusing on selling CBD-based products, as these have a higher profit margin. According to data provided by the Brightfield Group and published by Hemp Industry Daily, a survey of more than 5,000 CBD users in the U.S. reveals that 24% have used it to help quit smoking and quitters are often replacing cigarettes with either smokable hemp or vaping. And, 41% of quitters have entirely replaced tobacco with hemp CBD. MediPharm Labs Corp. (OTC: MEDIF) (TSX: LABS), Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: NEPT) (TSX: NEPT), Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON), Village Farms International, Inc. (NASDAQ: VFF) (TSX: VFF), Cresco Labs Inc. (OTC: CRLBF)
In recent years, cannabidiol-based (CBD) products have swiftly emerged. And the growing popularity of CBD is largely attributed to various medical applications that are associated with the products. For example, full-spectrum CBD oil is considered to be a great source of Omega 3 and Omega 6; Omega 3 plays a vital role in creating hormones that regulate inflammation as well as contractions and relaxation of arteries. As a result, the CBD oil industry became a booming marketplace as many businesses have hopped on the CBD craze and began to sell oils and topicals in physical retail locations and even on e-commerce sites. Now, consumers can find CBD health and wellness products at major international chain stores such as Walgreens, CVS, Amazon, and Walmart.
MediPharm Labs Corp. (OTCQX: MEDIF) (TSX: LABS) announced breaking news this week that, “its wholly-owned subsidiary, MediPharm Labs Inc., has launched and completed production of a new product format, sublingual sprays, as part of its multi-faceted strategic pharmaceutical manufacturing agreement with Avicanna Inc. (TSX: AVCN) (OTCQX: AVCNF) (FSE: 0NN) (“Avicanna”), a leading biopharmaceutical company.
Marketed under Avicanna’s RHO Phyto™ medical brand, the high-performance RHO Phyto Rapid Act Sprays will be available nationally to Canadian medical patients through the Medical Cannabis by Shoppers™ online healthcare platform in the coming weeks. RHO Phyto Rapid Act Sprays are optimized for increased absorption and faster onset in comparison to basic MCT (medium-chain triglyceride) sublingual sprays. The products are discreet, easy to use, administered under the tongue to provide more direct absorption into the bloodstream, convenient and pleasing to taste.
“Avicanna chose MediPharm Labs to be their manufacturing partner across a wide range of product formulations because of our pharmaceutical-quality production capabilities and I’m proud to say these were used to great effect in fulfilling this important order,” said Pat McCutcheon, CEO, MediPharm Labs. ‘Medical cannabis users will be delighted with the quality and reliability of RHO Phyto Rapid Act Sprays and more broadly with the fact that Avicanna is leading the way in bringing new and innovative sustainable plant-derived cannabinoid-based products to assist in their care and wellbeing.’
The alliance between the two companies is designed to provide patients and the medical community with the most advanced product offerings backed by scientific rigour, data and world-class quality standards. Avicanna has a rich pipeline of formulations that it has developed over the past four years in collaboration with leading Canadian research institutions.
“The team at MediPharm continues to impress as they deliver sophisticated cannabinoid formulations in innovative delivery formats with pharmaceutical level quality standards,” said Aras Azadian, CEO, Avicanna. ‘Our RHO Phyto Rapid Act Sprays, which are the second set of products delivered by MediPharm’s technical team within only one month, provide patients and the medical community with an advanced solution for acute relief and an incredible candidate for replacing inhalation products.’
On May 14, 2020, MediPharm Labs entered a 3-year, multi-faceted agreement with Avicanna involving production, domestic and international distribution and intellectual property licensing that will drive growth for both parties. Under the manufacturing segment of the agreement, MediPharm Labs uses its specialized capabilities to produce Avicanna’s advanced RHO Phyto™ medical cannabis products and Pura Earth™ dermacosmetic topicals. The RHO Phyto Rapid Act Sprays represent the second Avicanna product format produced at MediPharm Labs GMP-certified facility in Barrie, Ontario. The first was Rho Phyto’s Blood Orange flavoured Micro Drops, in both high CBD and medium CBD formula made from full spectrum cannabis distillate. Additional product formats, including topicals, capsules and transdermal patches, are being finalized for production under the contract manufacturing agreement…”
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Neptune Wellness Solutions Inc. (NASDAQ: NEPT) (TSX: NEPT) introduced earlier this month its proprietary Mood Ring cannabis brand for the Canadian market. The Mood Ring brand and product line will officially launch in select Canadian markets this fall to meet consumer demand for high-quality, affordable and environmentally friendly cannabis products. “Mood Ring is directly aligned with our strategy to move closer to the consumer and drive our growth with unique, high-quality and affordable health and wellness branded products,” said Michael Cammarata, Chief Executive Officer of Neptune Wellness Solutions. “Our initial launch of Mood Ring will focus on CBD and THC products that we can immediately scale up to support the volumes required to meet demand, with future products in development. We intend to price our products to be competitive with the illicit market, which will provide legal options for legacy consumers that meet their needs and expectations, while attracting new consumers in a friendly and approachable way.”
Cronos Group Inc. (NASDAQ: CRON) (TSX: CRON) announced last September that it had closed its previously announced acquisition of four Redwood Holding Group, LLC operating subsidiaries. The transaction provides Cronos Group with a leading U.S. hemp-based products platform, including hemp-derived cannabidiol infused skincare and other consumer products that are sold online and through retail and hospitality partner channels in the United States under the brand, Lord Jones™. Mike Gorenstein, Cronos Group’s Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer, said, “This acquisition is one of a number of new growth opportunities that is differentiating our company and our strategic direction. We are pleased to have completed this acquisition and look forward to working closely with Rob and Cindy to further build on their record of innovation and fully capitalize on the platform they have created.”
Village Farms International, Inc. (NASDAQ: VFF) (TSX: VFF) announced recently that Governor Greg Abbott has signed into law Texas House Bill 1325 (the “Texas Hemp Legislation”), which effectively legalizes the cultivation of hemp and processing of hemp and hemp-derived products, including cannabidiol (CBD) in the State. As previously announced, in anticipation of the passage of the hemp legislation in Texas, Village Farms has begun conversion of half of its 1.3 million square foot, ultra-high-tech Permian Basin greenhouse (which utilizes the Company’s proprietary GATES® technology) for cultivation of high-CBD hemp and CBD extraction. The Texas Hemp Legislation will require licenses for both the cultivation and processing of hemp and Village Farms plans to apply for the requisite licenses as soon as it is permitted to do so. No time frame has yet been provided by the State of Texas for the licensing process.
Cresco Labs Inc. (OTCQX: CRLBF) reported this month its unaudited financial results for the second quarter ended June 30, 2020. All financial information presented in this release is in U.S. dollars, unless otherwise noted. “While Q2 continued to be about building, scaling and refining our operations in the largest and most important cannabis markets in the U.S., we are also beginning to see the fruits of our labor come to bear,” said Charles Bachtell, Co-founder and CEO of Cresco Labs. “We grew revenue in every single one of our U.S. markets sequentially by more than 30%, with the exception of Massachusetts, where adult use was halted for part of the quarter. Cresco Labs is the largest wholesaler of branded cannabis products with nearly $55 million in revenue and our Sunnyside* retail strategy is outperforming with $39 million generated from our 17 locations. We are accelerating growth and beginning to generate substantial leverage as we scale our operations and benefit from the investments we’ve made over the past 12 months.”
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