US – Quatreau sparkling water brand, Canada’s top-selling ready-to-drink CBD beverage, has launched in the United States and will be available in states that permit the consumption of cannabidiol (CBD).
The beverage which is available in four flavors would be sold online for starters as its producer makes arrangement to have it stocked on store shelves before the end of the year.
In an interview with CNBC, Canopy CEO David Klein told the business network his company would benefit from its relationship with Constellation Brands, which owns nearly 40% of its company, to manage the distribution to retailers.
The U.S. market for CBD is very fragmented, so having a partner in Constellation, the marketer of Corona, Modelo and other alcohols, would give Canopy an experienced partner it can tap into immediately to roll out Quatreau and other legalized drinks nationwide.
The partnership would give it a first-mover advantage over its competitors who would all be scrambling to woo and keep curious consumers.
Canopy’s rollout of Quatreau, while limited across the U.S., will give the cannabis maker a head start in anticipation of potential regulatory changes on the horizon.
So far, 36 states and Washington, D.C., have approved marijuana for medical use or cannabis programs, with 11 passing laws allowing the use of CBD with little to no THC, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.
The passage of the 2018 Farm Bill, which allowed hemp and its derivatives to no longer be classified as controlled substances, was a significant move for CBD, which can be sourced from this relative of the cannabis plant.
However, unlike its Neighbour Canada which has legalized Cannabis, it is still federally illegal to add cannabis and its derivatives to food and drink.
Wider rollouts have thus not happened with major food manufacturing companies choosing to stay away from the product until clear federal laws are put in place.
Mike Gruber, vice president of regulatory and government affairs at the Consumer Brands Association, however, says he is optimistic progress could be made on CBD in the U.S. this year.
CBD gains popularity as an ingredient.
Meanwhile, a recent research from Brightfield Group’s Evergi platform revealed that CBD is the most talked-about ingredient in the wellness space, appearing in 19% of conversations on social media in January,
This placed it ahead of ingredients such as garlic (15% of mentions) and ginger (9%).
Sleep support was the main reason consumers were looking for the cannabidiol as an ingredient in the products they buy, with almost half seeking this benefit from CBD, according to the research.
In the last quarter of 2020, the most consumers said they were using CBD for sleep — the first time it beat relaxation and physical relief, according to Evergi’s consumer research platform and social listening.
Overall, Evergi noted that its latest study showed that there is plenty of room for growth for CBD in the coming years, beyond its traditional applications.
This provides CPGs with plenty of room to get in the space while it’s still developing and make their mark.
A 2019 survey conducted by High Yield Highlights show 40% of consumers are willing to try CBD.
That number increases if the consumer is able to learn more information about CBD, according to a report from FMCG Gurus cited by Natural Products Insider.
Liked this article? Subscribe to Food Business Africa News, our regular email newsletters with the latest news insights from Africa and the World’s food and agro industry. SUBSCRIBE HERE