Last week, Hemp Industry Daily announced that grocery chain Kroger will be adding CBD topical lotion to stores in 17 states. According to the article, Kroger joins CVS, Rite-Aid and Walgreens.
This news is important to the packaging industry for several reasons. CBD contains no THC (or a negligible amount), and yet many consumers are still confused and lump news about potential healing effects of CBD with the more controversial growth of recreational cannabis and prejudice against drug use.
The evidence indicates CBD tinctures, lotions and oils may have a positive impact on some users’ health, (real testing by the FDA may finally be gaining traction) but the internet is chock full of hundreds of websites and a myriad of product offerings, delivery systems, and dosages. With major retailers standardizing on brands and offerings, CBD will now enjoy wide-spread exposure and convenient availability.
Shoppers trust their local drug stores for their prescriptions and will feel good about CBD brands offered on their neighborhood shelves, safe in the knowledge these products have been vetted by a responsible source.
Currently, many of these operations are relatively small and only produce on a local scale, sold through the internet. With Kroger and others serving large regions of the country, CBD producers will have to step up to the next level of processing and packaging. And those providing materials and machinery to do the job should benefit. Also, contract packagers may find themselves with more business than they can handle.
In a soon to be released PMMI Business Intelligence study on the nutraceutical market, CBD is being credited with growing the nutraceuticals category. According to the report, the U.S. retail market for CBD alone is projected to grow from an estimated $2 billion last year to $16 billion by 2025.
CBD may not be for everyone, but hopefully the stigma still associated with recreational cannabis will finally be cleared up. That’s incredible growth in a few short years that will benefit consumers, brands, retailers, materials providers and machinery builders.
See a related article on the long-term future of the cannabis industry here.
From glass vials, rigid dispensing containers, flexible pouches and cartons, to filling and capping machinery with tamper-evident capabilities, labelers and cartoners, PACK EXPO Las Vegas September 23-25, and the accompanying Healthcare Packaging EXPO, will offer the CBD industry a wide range of solutions to scale up for mass retail distribution.