There’s a fine line between the differences of hemp-derived cannabidiol (CBD) and cannabis-derived CBD. While both are up-and-coming industries, one new study predicts that the hemp CBD product market will rise to $1 billion over the next three years.
According to Forbes, The Brightfield Group recently published a report, which states that hemp CBD sales have already risen to $170 million during 2016 with a 55 percent compound annual growth rate expected for the next five years or so.
The Brightfield report also noted that an estimated 64.5 percent of hemp-derived CBD product sales are purchased online, versus 17.8 percent at “smoke shops” specifically. At dispensaries, the percentage drops to nine percent of sales, and five percent representing purchases at health stores and doctors’ offices.
According to the report, the top five brands selling hemp derived CBD products online are: CW Hemp, PlusCBD Oil, HempMeds (RHSO), Elixinol and CannazALL. CW Hemp is the company that produces and sells the famous Charlotte’s Web strain of hemp. Brightfield Group’s Director of Research, Bethany Gomez, notes that these companies are the ones with the most success. “One of the most surprising things we found during this research was how many companies are currently operating in the space, and how few of them are generating significant revenue,” said Gomez. “Essentially everyone is trying to do hemp, but only a handful are doing it well. It’s seen as easy because it can be sold online but, with restrictions on traditional marketing, it is very difficult to connect with your core consumer and even communicate why they need your product.”
There has long been a learning curve when it comes to defining hemp- or cannabis-derived CBD, but the 2014 Farm Bill helped separate hemp from its cannabis counterpart. Although the Drug Enforcement Agency has lumped hemp into the cannabis category as a Schedule I substance, which has caused waves in the industry, there’s a clear need for hemp-derived CBD products.