Summit sees growth in CBD businesses as hemp products become popular nationwide
FRISCO — CBD businesses are popping up all over the state as a way for people to enjoy the purported physical and emotional benefits of the cannabis plant without the THC, or psychoactive response. Businesses have gotten especially creative with the ways in which their customers can use and administer CBD and are working to educate people on how the cannabidiol can be used and how it’s different from marijuana.
“Marijuana was Beyonce. Hemp is Adele. They’re both superstars. There’s just a different following of people,” said Tyler Lehmann, owner of Breckenridge Hemp Co., which opened in August 2017 as the first CBD-exclusive shop in Summit County.
“We were the only one in town when we first started.” Lehmann said. “Now it’s everywhere.”
There are three CBD-exclusive shops in Summit County along with more than nine dispensaries that sell CBD in addition to other cannabis products. This explosion of CBD is nationwide, but Summit County’s shops cater to visitors and the local market.
“Summit County is interesting in that a fair amount of my customers are from out of state, so they come to Colorado because we’ve been doing it longer. But they aren’t sure what CBD is, so I think we’re in a great position to educate people,” JP Oils owner Jill Thornton-Winckler said.
As competition grows, each company attempts to differentiate itself in order to grow its customer following.
Breckenridge Hemp Co. takes pride in its manufacturing process, touting an extraction process that doesn’t use chemicals. This process of extraction using only roasting and coconut oil can take two to three months, but Lehmann swears by the purity of the technique.
JP Oils markets its CBD products as “farm to table.”
“I sell only Colorado farm-to-table CBD products, so to speak. So the people who own the company farm it, manufacture it and label it. I think it’s really important that you know who’s growing the hemp in order to hold them accountable,” Thornton-Winckler said.
The third company, Pharmstrong, is unique in that it creates CBD products with zero THC while conventional CBD products contain as much as 0.03% THC. The products also are produced in a pharmaceutical-grade lab, and the certificate of analysis is posted online.
Local dispensaries also are getting into the CBD game, selling pure CBD as well as a mixture of CBD and THC.
Joseph Lindsey, education specialist at High Country Healing, said the mixture is beneficial due to the entourage effect, or the idea that the effects of CBD are stronger when combined with THC. Lindsey explained that customers taking the mixture will feel some psychoactive effects but that the effects will be lessened by the CBD.
Lindsey said he thinks CBD is especially popular in Summit County because of its ability to help manage pain in a place where residents experience a higher volume of injuries recreating in the outdoors.
Thornton-Winckler added that the popularity correlates with the high volume of out-of-state visitors, who trust local cannabis and hemp companies to deliver a quality product because Colorado has been in the business for longer than other states and has more regulations.
“CBD has made its mark, and it’s going to stay there. The customers’ mentality has already changed. We have more people who accept it and understand it and know that it works. We’ll always need pain relief … that need is just going to grow,” Lindsey said.
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