TMCnet Feature
May 13, 2020

How innovative technology is continuously reshaping the CBD market

The CBD market is surpassing all expectations, leading many to describe it as the modern-day gold. In fact, it is estimated for the CBD market to surpass $20 billion by 2024, as the magic compound finds its way into industries such as food and beverage, pharmaceuticals, cosmetics, and pet care. If we were to take a look at how the market has changed in the past few years, these numbers seem very realistic.

In 2019, the U.S. CBD market grew by 706%, as country after country starts looking into the legalization of medicinal cannabis use. Sure, we still have a long way to go until medicinal cannabis becomes legal worldwide, but CBD, which has no psychoactive effects, can be legally used in many countries.

With the wide spread of popularity regarding CBD products, one can’t help but notice one thing that is continuously reshaping the market as we know it – technology. If you come to think about it, this is what technology does in many other sectors, so why would the CBD industry be having it any other way?

If you are curious to see how technology is reshaping the CBD market, search no further. Below are what we believe to be the most important ways technology is changing the CBD industry for the better.

Improving growth and cultivation

Cannabis plants are very expensive and difficult to cultivate, mostly because it needs a special kind of light for it to properly grow. In warm regions, this is often not an issue, as the plant can get all its light from the sun. However, companies that grow plants indoor need to invest in some expensive equipment; mainly high-intensity discharge bulbs. Besides being quite expensive, these bulbs also consume a lot of electricity.

Fortunately, there happens to be a more cost-effective and sustainable solution – LED bulbs. Yes, LED bulbs are not for household use only; they can help hemp or cannabis growers as well. Besides being cost-effective, these bulbs also produce a wider light spectrum, without emanating too much heat, which makes it easier for growers to control the temperature as well. What’s more, these bulbs can be used together with directional lamps, which help send light exactly where it’s needed.

Using AI to improve market research

Big data will soon be the future of any industry, and CBD is no exception. By getting access to valuable information regarding product use, customer preferences, and buyer habits, CBD companies can learn how to improve their products so that they are more appealing and helpful to consumers.

With the help of Artificial Intelligence, producers, researchers, and sellers can get access to massive loads of data and analyze it for both commercial and scientific purposes. More information on CBD use will be available and companies can gain valuable insight into competitors, this making more informed marketing, sales, and branding decisions. As data becomes more and more accessible, it is clear that data-driven companies will have better chances of surviving in a competitive market. 

Cutting-edge extraction technology

CBD products can be quite pricey, but that is because making them is an extensive and costly procedure. One of the most difficult things to achieve when it comes to making CBD is the CO2 extraction process. For optimum delivery, experts use a rosin press, which heats and cools the substance very fast. While the procedure is effective, it could use some improvement.

A typical rosin press applies 1,000 pounds of pressure, but a company in Los Angeles is working to create a rosin press that will apply almost double the pressure. By applying 1,900 pounds of pressure, they believe can help the CBD production quadruple.

Creating personalized products

Each person is different, meaning 5mg of CBD will most likely never impact two people the same. This happens due to our individual biochemistry, which makes people process certain ingredients differently. But because people are responding to CBD in various ways, it makes it difficult for them to find the right type of product. For some, CBD oil can work miraculously, while others feel effects only when using hemp pre-rolls.

This could all be solved through biochemically-tailored CBD products. By determining how a person’s body reacts to different cannabinoids, CBD companies can create individualized products to maximize efficiency.

One company is already conducting saliva-based swab tests, which can determine how a certain person’s body is influence by various cannabinoids and even determine compatibility with certain cannabis strains. This has enormous potential for the CBD industry and could help the market reach new levels.

Increased bioavailability through nanoencapsulation

One of the major problems when it comes to CBD products is that they have low bioavailability. In fact, only 20% of consumed CBD will reach the bloodstream when consumed. That is, because CBD is, in its essence, oil, which makes it non-soluble in water.

It is known that water-based products have higher bioavailability, meaning they get absorbed faster into the bloodstream, but CBD can’t be added to most liquid products, because it will not combine with them.

Through nanoencapsulation, however, CBD could become water-soluble and could be added to many new types of products. Encapsulating CBD will also increase its bioavailability and improve efficiency.

Blockchain can improve transparency

Consumers want to know what is in the CBD products, but sometimes companies intentionally leave out some information. Through blockchain technology, CBD products can be traced back to their growers and producers, making valuable information available to the public.

We could know where, when, and how the hemp plants were grown, how they were processed, and exactly what ingredients products contain.

A Vermont-based startup is already on its way to make this possible, and soon we could be able to scan CBD products and get all the necessary information about its origins and production. If this becomes available, it could help set up a gold-level industry standard. What’s more, it could give a major competitive advantage to companies that meet those standards and can be used as an effective marketing tool.

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