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CannabisNewsWire Editorial Coverage

Cannabis companies are seeing substantial growth, with the popularity of cannabidiol (CBD) playing a significant part in their positive outlook.

— CBD is an active ingredient in cannabis.

— It can provide health benefits without the psychotropic effects of other cannabis chemicals.

— This has led to a growth in companies selling CBD treatments, sometimes alongside more conventional wellness products.

Youngevity International, Inc. (NASDAQ:YGYI) (YGYI Profile) is one of these companies, having recently expanded its range of products to include CBD therapies for muscle pain, sleeplessness and mood improvement. GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (NASDAQ:GWPH) has created a CBD treatment for child-onset epilepsy and received approval from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for its sale as a medicinal product. Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) has also developed a cannabis-derived epilepsy treatment, even as it makes deals to expand its distribution network in Canada. Aphria, Inc. (OTC:APHQF) (TSX:APH.TO) has seen a steady rise in profits based on its cannabis work and is now working with branding specialists to capitalize on its opportunities. Isodiol International, Inc. (OTC:ISOLF) (CNSX:ISOL.CN) is providing not only a range of CBD products but also a platform for patients to connect with doctors to help manage cannabis-based medical treatment.

Cannabis Growth Continues

The past few years have seen substantial growth in the cannabis industry. As the plant’s legalization spreads, an increasingly diverse range of businesses have appeared to fill the needs of a growing wellness market. From hydroponic supply companies to seed providers, the industry is expanding at a rapid pace, and at its heart are the cannabis companies themselves, several of which have seen their stocks soar.

One of the reasons for recent growth is the development of a market in cannabidiol (CBD) drugs and wellness products. One of the active ingredients in cannabis, CBD is being used in a wide range of treatments to help with everything from epilepsy to mental alertness. A growing body of research and increasing range of uses have seen CBD oil become a significant part of the cannabis market, distinct from recreational marijuana. For companies invested in CBD, this trend is providing a fresh surge of growth.

The Power of Cannabidiol

A growing number of companies are producing and supplying CBD products – not just specialist firms, but other suppliers such as lifestyle company Youngevity International, Inc. (NASDAQ:YGYI). So what’s the fuss about?

CBD is one of the most prominent active ingredients in cannabis plants. Unlike tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), CBD does not cause users to get high, but it can have other effects on the body and mind. Those beneficial effects have led to CBD’s rising popularity for use in a variety of medicines and wellness products as researchers have learned more about it.

The distinction between CBD and THC is an important one. In some jurisdictions, industrial hemp, a type of cannabis plant that includes CBD but non-noteworthy amounts of THC, can be grown in circumstances where marijuana can’t. The legality of CBD products is different from that of cannabis cultivation itself in some places. Even in places where cannabis is legal for both medical and recreational uses, CBD is preferable to many health-conscious consumers who want its health effects without getting high.

It’s this potential that has drawn companies such as Youngevity to CBD. This market is expected to see tremendous growth based on forecasts for a range of uses beyond oils, such as CBD’s inclusion in food, drink, cosmetics and emerging health products. That’s a pretty impressive reason for companies to take an interest in CBD, whether they’re experienced cannabis insiders or newcomers such as Youngevity.

Wider Market Growth

Medical cannabis is now legal in more than half of North America. Legal recreational use has been enacted within nine states and the District of Columbia in the United States, and it will premiere nationwide in Canada in October. The cannabis plant’s ardent fan base is increasing public awareness and a growing acceptance of the potential benefits of products derived from it. Companies are moving to make the most of the opportunity as a previously frowned-on and illegal industry shifts into the mainstream.

This means that Youngevity’s cannabis-derived products will benefit from a wave of public awareness, publicity and market growth. The global value of this market was estimated at $7.7 billion in 2017, and it’s been predicted to reach $34.1 billion by 2021.

That growing market means that there’s now space for CBD products both on the shelves of high street stores and in the inventory of companies such as Youngevity.

Youngevity’s first entry into this market is the HempFX(TM) product line, introduced at the company’s 2018 convention in San Diego, Calif. A set of three distinct hemp-derived CBD oil products under the HempFX banner use organically grown products in proprietary formulas to help users through their day. The products include Soothe(TM), a blend of botanicals designed to relieve muscles by calming aches and pains; Uplift(TM), which combines CBD with St. John’s Wort to improve cognitive performance and mood; and Relax(TM), which combines CBD with a variety of herbs and melatonin to bring relaxation and a better night’s sleep.

This diverse range of uses shows why CBD is becoming so popular. By applying it to a variety of wellness issues, companies are able to market their products to a broad range of consumers, increasing sales and awareness.

Youngevity CEO Steve Wallach highlighted the strong potential link between CBD and broader trends in healthy living. “We firmly believe in plant-based nutrition, and hemp-derived (CBD) oil perfectly complements our product development philosophy. Entering this market, which is growing almost exponentially, also should offer a tremendous advantage to our many distributors around the world,” he stated in the company’s news release announcing the HempFX line.

The Power of Existing Pipelines

Wallach’s reference to distributors highlights why a company such as Youngevity is so well-positioned to benefit from the surge in CBD. New companies set up to cater to the CBD market have to build their sales pipelines from scratch, whereas established operators already have those pipelines in place. Youngevity’s massive network of direct sellers means that it has an immediate way of getting new products into the hands of consumers. Experience derived from 21 years of development has provided the company with the tools it needs to carve out its place in the market.

Being on-brand is important to such a move. Not just any company can jump into CBD and expect customers and distributors to come along with it. But according to Wallach, this isn’t a problem for Youngevity.

“Hemp-derived cannabidiol aligns with what we do very well,” he stated. “We’ve taken what we know about essential nutrients, along with decades of knowledge specializing in natural, plant-based nutrition and their most beneficial nutrients, and put that knowledge to work to develop high-end cannabidiol products.”

More Companies Take Up CBD

While CBD is often used in over-the-counter medicines and wellness products, it is also finding use in prescription medicines. GW Pharmaceuticals Plc (NASDAQ:GWPH) has created a CBD-based medicine to tackle child-onset epilepsy, a condition that can make a normal life almost unmanageable for the children it affects. This treatment has been approved by the FDA, making it the first cannabis plant-based prescription medicine to be legalized by the U.S. federal government (once the Drug Enforcement Administration reclassifies CBD, as expected this month in response to the FDA’s decision).

A global leader in the medical cannabis market, Tilray, Inc. (NASDAQ:TLRY) works in research, cultivation, processing and distribution, providing cannabis extracts and flowers to patients, researchers and medical professionals on five continents. As Canada prepares for growth in the cannabis market following legalization, the company has made deals with Canadian partners to sell its products into that market. It has also developed a CBD and THC oil that has shown promising results in tackling drug-resistant epilepsy.

One of the more successful companies in the cannabis sector, Aphria, Inc. (OTCQB:APHQF) (TSX:APH.TO) saw its profits and revenues rise steadily through 2016 and 2017. Aphria recently signed a letter of intent to form a joint venture with Perennial, Inc., in which the companies will collaborate on developing products for the Canadian cannabis market. Perennial’s expertise in strategic brand development will help Aphria reach more customers with its leading cannabis-based products, expanding its presence in one of the world’s most important cannabis markets.

Isodiol International, Inc. (OTCQB:ISOLF) (CNSX:ISOL.CN) is focused on CBD product development, with a range of offerings that includes skin cream, pain management and help with sleeping. It has recently expanded beyond its core products into support for those using cannabis-derived medicines through the creation of ISOCare. This secure platform will help to connect patients, their family doctors and physicians working with cannabis to ensure that patients receive the best possible longitudinal care.

The health benefits of cannabis and its derivatives are increasingly widely recognized. With huge potential for growth over the next few years, CBD and cannabis are drawing customers and companies like never before.

For more information about Youngevity International, please visit Youngevity International, Inc. (NASDAQ:YGYI).

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