Transparency, quality, standards, compliance and novel food status – all good news for the CBD industry says Chief Executive, Regan Saveall of Dragonfly Biosciences. Read on to hear why.
Cannabis – a mystery and health secret for many years but very popular in the UK back in the 1800’s, today, in the form of cannabidiol-based products (CBD Oil) is very much part of the healthcare offering. In fact, recent market data shows the as a sector it is worth set to be worth a staggering $40 billion by 2027.
But with growth CBD oils have been in the spotlight when it comes to quality, standards, safety and being legal. And Novel Food Status, which comes into play in just 6 weeks is going to be our biggest change this year, not forgetting to the challenging trading times that we will continue to live through thanks to COVID-19.
Transparency, quality, safety, standards and being legal must become the norm. At Dragonfly Biosciences we have always welcomed the Novel Food regulatory status of cannabidiol.
Right from the start as a business, our seed to shelf strategy sat at the heart of our brand – Dragonfly CBD – ensuring always that what we were putting on the shelves and online for consumers to buy was a quality product, containing the advertised amount of CBD oil; THC-free; has a batch number and use-by date on every pack and compliant with all regulatory status have complied with.
We have always ticked every box on transparency and quality, ensuring consumer safety with CBD. And we have always been legal. That’s why we were the first CBD oil to be stocked by Boots and subsequently on shelf in Tesco and Sainsbury’s to name but a few retailers, despite our humble origins.
From start-up to award winning
Beginning in 2017 we set up as a start-up. We had a vision to create a Dragonfly CBD brand, which we could distribute via bricks-and-mortar retail outlets and directly to consumers online.
Since our initial company beginnings, we have navigated EU and UK food supplement regulations as well as how to cultivate and process cannabis sativa, the low tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) hemp plant from which CBD is derived.
Key to our approach at Dragonfly was always having products that are safe, legal, effective and where every step from seed, harvesting to extraction, quality testing and being on shelf is totally transparent.
To do this properly, we have our own vertically integrated supply chain.
In 2017, we started with 10 hectares, and made sure we were organically certified, because we knew that it was with quality ingredients that we were going to win the hearts and minds of consumers and retailers. And that’s where we grew as a company, increasing our cultivation to 650 hectares.
Seed To Shelf Integrity
Quality, safety and being legal has been a bit of a ‘thorn in the side’ for the booming CBD industry in my eyes.
In 2019, a third-party blind test of 30 CBD oil products on the UK market conducted by the Centre for Medicinal Cannabis found that almost half (45%) had measurable levels of psychoactive substance tetrahydrocannabinol (mean content 0.04%) and were thus “technically illegal.”
11 of the oils tested had less than 50% of the advertised CBD content, the CMC reported, with one CBD oil sold in a high street pharmacy containing 0% CBD yet retailing for £90 ($110).
Our Dragonfly CBD product was one of a few products that passed the CMC’s test, confirming our oils contain the stated amount of CBD as advertised, no THC and no harmful solvents or contaminants.
We have always been committed to the highest production standards, and work with chemists, pharmacists, regulators and have our own laboratory for extraction, toxicity testing and processing.
That’s why we have High-Performance Liquid Chromatography tests, which as well as testing for cannabinoid and water content, also review the oils’ microbiology, looking for the presence of heavy metals and herbicides or pesticides.
As a result, each batch of our Dragonfly CBD product has a supporting Certificate of Analysis from a third party, ISO accredited laboratory confirming CBD content and the absence of THC.
A Bright Future
Our Novel Food application has been submitted and we now wait, like the rest of the sector. Investment and innovation continue for us at Dragonfly Biosciences. We are fine-tunning our very latest track-and-trace platform, born out of pharmaceutical industry practices. This will allow consumers to scan a QR code on the pack and see exactly where their CBD oil was been grown and processed, what standards it has gone through with details on the relevant batch test. And by investing as a company, we can ensure our CBD brand is as always, safe, legal, best in class when it comes to quality and consumer transparency.
By Regan Saveall, Chief Executive at Dragonfly Biosciences, www.dragonflycbd.com
Dragonfly CBD offers a range of oils in varying strengths and spectrums. Dragonfly CBD narrow spectrum is the company’s award-winning product and is available in a range of UK retailers including Boots, Tesco as well as online at dragonflycbd.com.
The company is also working to support charities which help and assist vulnerable individuals with mental health issues. This is done through the Dragonfly Community and £1 from every product sold goes towards that cause.