Batory Foods is a leading distributor of organic and non-GMO ingredients across various food and beverage categories. As an industry leader, they provide opportunities for inspiration and training through their Batory Smartboards. A new component of this digital learning center is the SMARTPOSIUM™, with a mission to ”nourish training and deliver informative content on consumer market insights and introduce cutting edge ingredient solutions and technologies.” Additionally, the platform introduces its partners in the industry to give them a platform to share their expertise.
KND Labs was honored to be featured as a guest presenter on one of their recent SMARTPOSIUM™ CBD: From Soil to Oil™. KND’s President, Nich Wilson, alongside respected leader in the natural food industry, Terry Howell, shed light on the CBD and cannabinoid industry.
This article will dive into our SMARTPOSIUM™ discussion, including the intricacies of these compounds, their impact, and the evolving landscape of the cannabinoid industry.
Unleashing the Power of Hemp
So, what is it about hemp cannabinoids that is causing such a stir in the health and wellness industry? Let’s start by looking at the difference between hemp and marijuana.
Of the same species, Cannabis Stavia, these plants have fundamental differences. First, marijuana contains higher levels of THC (5-35%) and minimal levels of CBD. Hemp, on the other hand, contains higher levels of CBD (12-25%) and, by its legal definition, must have less than 0.3% THC. In addition to CBD, the hemp plant contains a gold mine of potential nutritional ingredients known as minor cannabinoids.
While more attention has been focused on major cannabinoids like THC and CBD, there are 100 minor cannabinoids found in the hemp plant containing unique properties that address a variety of health issues. The most common minor cannabinoids used include CBN, CBC, CBG, and CBDV. What makes these compounds so attractive is their ability to address specific health concerns like anxiety, stress, sleep, and pain.
Subsequently, consumers are showing increased interest in the potential of minor cannabinoids to treat common health issues. In 2021, CBD Insider polled more than 3,500 consumers, and one of the questions they asked was, “What do you use CBD for?” The leading reasons consumers said were relaxation, stress relief, pain relief, focus, and sleep improvement. Another area that has seen rapid growth is pet nutrition.
How these various cannabinoids help our health and wellness is they work with the endocannabinoid system found in humans and other species. Officially named in the late 20th century, it is a complex cell signaling system that plays a crucial role in regulating various psychological processes, such as pain perception, mood, appetite, immune function, sleep, and more.
The endocannabinoid system is made up of three components:
Endocannabinoids – some of which are made in the body itself
Receptors or surface cells – CBD1 and CBD2
Enzymes – responsible for synthesizing and breaking down endocannabinoids
Within this system are CBD-1 and CBD-2 receptors. These receptors are like locks waiting to be engaged by a key. The keys to these locks are the cannabinoids found in the hemp plant. While CBD alone isn’t a perfect fit, it has a unique shape that allows it to interact positively with these receptors. When CBD engages with the receptors, it has a balancing act that promotes equilibrium. CBN, on the other hand, is a nearly perfect fit for the CB2 receptor.
Each of the more than 100 minor cannabinoids has a unique shape and engages with different receptors in the endocannabinoid system. Combined, they create a symphony of effects that help regulate various bodily functions depending on the receptors they unlock. The cannabinoids balance the system without overpowering it to contribute to our well-being.
What Does the CBD Industry and Regulation Look Like Now?
With the passing of the 2018 Farm Bill, states had the freedom to dictate how cannabinoids could be used. With states like California leading the way, several state governments have determined that hemp cannabinoids can be used in food and beverage applications, giving them a leg up on researching, regulating, and fine-tuning the extraction process.
With renewed activity from the FDA and Congress, large consumer brands want to know how they can jump in the game ahead of the federal regulations that are coming down the pipeline. Nich recommends brands do a soft launch and look at one of the states that have already approved the consumption of hemp cannabinoids and would allow for a national or regional brand to test the market.
Some hurdles consumer brands face with CBD are water solubility (hemp cannabinoids are oil-based), muting the flavor of cannabis to make a product palatable, and consistency in active ingredients. Each of these takes a great deal of chemistry and craft.
KND Labs is positioned to provide products that meet the needs of consumer brands in the CBD industry. Some of the products we have helped create. CBD gummies, water-soluble infused beverages, lotions, tinctures, balms, bath bombs, and pet treats are all CBD products that KND has sourced with high-quality hemp cannabinoids, guaranteeing consistency in active ingredients every time.
Driven by the desire to feel and live well, consumer interest has led to a real need for wellness brands, grocery stores, and other retailers to consider participating in the CBD market. As this demand continues to ramp up, brands need to find supply chain partners that are committed to ethical practices and provide consistently high-quality cannabinoid ingredients.
Critical Success Factors
A poll completed by SMARTPOSIUM™ attendees showed that 40% were already in the industry, while 60% were interested in breaking into it. This echoes the collective ripples of interest gathering strength across our society as we await news of federal regulations. This collective enthusiasm bodes well for the future of hemp cannabinoids in the health and wellness industry.
Regarding critical success factors, cannabinoids are still considered a novel ingredient, so it is essential to work with a manufacturer who has strong self-governance and adheres to state and federal guidelines.
Some items you should look for include the following:
- In-house testing
- Documentation of each ingredient or certificate of analysis
- Chain of custody
- Technical specifications
- Safety data sheets
- Third-party shelf life testing
- Certifications from leading auditors within specific sectors (dietary supplements, human food consumption, cosmetics, active pharmaceutical ingredients, etc.)
- Kosher and Halal certifications
- Registration with the FDA
- USDA certified organic
- Demonstrated involvement with industry organizations
- NASC Quality Seal (for pet supplements)
Ensuring that your manufacturer reflects the pertinent factors listed above is critical to ensure the safety and success of your hemp cannabinoid-containing products. With organizations like the NSF providing certifications for hemp cannabinoids in sports and the NBA and MLB creating pathways for the use of NSF-certified hemp-containing products, it will be essential for brands to seek manufacturers that hold multiple certifications in the areas that are important to their consumers. KND has all of these.
Hemp Cannabinoid Ingredients
To understand where cannabinoid ingredient offerings are today, we must know where they started. Before improved technology and research illuminated the existence of minor cannabinoids, cannabinoid industry products were launched using full-spectrum distillate, broad-spectrum distillate, and CBD isolate. At that point, the focus was on CBD in the full and the broad spectrum distillates.
As research into the hemp plant expanded, and extraction and purification technologies improved, there was an emergence of minor cannabinoids as ingredients. The initial discovery of minor cannabinoids like CBC, CBDA, and CBN was just the tip of the iceberg, as we are starting to see a new generation of minor cannabinoids enter the market.
Additionally, new technology has allowed us to make any hemp cannabinoid water soluble in a liquid or powder format. We can even deliver water-soluble hemp cannabinoids that dissolve into a clear solution, making them ideal for use in clear beverages like seltzers.
The extensive discussions showcased during the SMARTPOSIUM unveiled the intricate world of hemp cannabinoids, emphasizing their profound effects on the health and wellness landscape. KND Labs' commitment to excellence and innovation positions them as a pivotal partner for brands seeking to navigate the burgeoning hemp cannabinoid market. As regulations evolve and the industry expands, the emphasis on quality and compliance remains paramount.
If you want to watch a replay of this SMARTPOSIUM session with KND Labs, it is available on Batory Smartboards.
Contact us today and learn more about our products and offerings.