A Harbinger for Hemp

Written by Adam English
Posted October 22, 2019

Few stories are more important to the growth of cannabis legalization than that of Charlotte Figi.

The name may not ring a bell, but the events around her certainly will.

CNN made a documentary back in 2013 titled “Weed” that brought her story to the world.

Born in 2006, she suffered crippling epileptic seizures due to Dravet syndrome. Since her first dose of medical cannabis at age five, she's seen a dramatic reduction in seizures.

It changed her life. It probably saved her life.

Then the legal fights started, and the media attention, and it went from there.

Most Americans may not be familiar with what happened behind the scenes to make it happen. They certainly aren't familiar with how something similar is happening now.

What made the use of medical cannabis acceptable was the use of what was originally called “Hippie’s Disappointment,” which is one of the better groan-inducing names for a strain.

We’re talking about a strain of cannabis that was very high in CBD and very low in THC, making it virtually impossible to induce any kind of high without an incredible amount of processing and extraction.

This set a clear path for companies, leading to the first patent of a pharmaceutical derived from cannabis to get FDA approval — Epidiolex from GW Pharmaceuticals.

Now the same company behind Charlotte’s Web — Charlotte’s Web Holdings (CWB Holdings) — just achieved a milestone with hemp.

It has successfully earned patent approval for a hemp strain.

Until now, hemp has mostly been a workaround of sorts for deriving CBD from something that is controlled but legal, as opposed to its long-maligned cousin, marijuana.

Since products containing hemp-derived chemicals, or just seeds or fiber, have long been unregulated due to the almost complete lack of intoxicating effects, it was the easiest path forward.

The plants themselves — so-called “industrial hemp”— were functionally all the same. Some strains were identified as better than others, but it was just a volume game.

You grow countless acres to extract a tiny amount of CBD. There was no differentiation in the game except for scale.

This is the start of the end of that paradigm.

This new cultivar, called CW2A in filings, has the regulatory advantages of being hemp, plus the resistance to cold and general hardiness of hemp compared to marijuana.

And the big money maker is that it is capable of producing up to 6.24% CBD while keeping THC under 0.27%.

That makes it immediately legal to grow with the terms set in the 2018 farm bill.

CWB Holdings has a strong start in the latest race in a sector that has deflated but is rapidly evolving.

Hemp strains are considered CBD-rich if they contain 4%. This new strain boosts that by over 50%.

That means to get the same amount of CBD you can cut land use, and water, and fertilizer, and manpower by a third. Savings and profits will surge.

This also comes at a time when Americans are spending more and more on CBD products every year.

Brightfield Group, an analysis and market research company, predicts a 706% jump in sales in 2019 to $5 billion.

Then sales up to $23.7 billion by 2023.

And this is just the first move of what is bound to be many involving hemp and CBD production.

Make no mistake about it, the cannabis sector is still in its earliest days. Now is the best time to jump on with the best names, and to make sure you get the best possible analysis.

The hype is dying down, but the business is heating up. The days of profits based purely on buzz are winding down. The days of profits based on real, meaningful, long-term results are beginning.

Take care,

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Adam English

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Adam's editorial talents and analysis drew the attention of senior editors at Outsider Club, which he joined in mid-2012. While he has acquired years of hands-on experience in the editorial room by working side by side with ex-brokers, options floor traders, and financial advisors, he is acutely aware of the challenges faced by retail investors after starting at the ground floor in the financial publishing field. For more on Adam, check out his editor's page

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