Long BEach, ca
Cannabis Edible Manufacturing: 2021 and beyond…
Danny Weis – Vice Legal/Nola-Weis: So, it is January 13, 2021. Sitting here with Eric Bingham with Granny-B Goods, a CBD edible manufacturer. And he’s been making CBD and THC-infused edibles for a few years?
Eric Bingham – Granny B Goods: A few years, yeah.
Danny: Yeah. And using a lot of his grandmother’s recipes.
Eric: The recipes are a 200-year-old caramel recipe and our cookie recipe is a 100-year-old family recipe. So, yeah. We’re using our family’s recipes to infuse in…well, infusing these products with cannabis.
Danny: Perfect. Currently, you’re servicing both the THC & CBD markets making your edibles?
Eric: Yes, correct. So, we’re going to be in both markets, but currently, we’re doing pretty much just strictly THC, but we will be doing a CBD line eventually.
Danny: Yeah, very cool. As far as the jurisdictions that you’re operating in, like, right now, you’re in California, but I know you’re…
Eric: Currently, we’re… Yes. Currently, we’re in California. And we will be expanding into other states after we first, stamp out in California. And once we…kind of have established our proof of brand concept here in California, we’ll be expanding into other states, probably Nevada, Oklahoma, and Michigan.
Danny Weis: Okay. And where are you currently operating in California?
Eric: Currently, we are operating from a space in Desert Hot Springs, California.
Danny Weis: And so, serving Northern and Southern California?
Eric: Yeah. Distribution-wise, we’ll have access to the whole state. So, we’ll be able to distribute throughout the entire state of California.
Danny Weis: Very cool. And so, in terms of your actual business, how many licenses does it take for you to run a THC edible company?
Eric: For us, on the manufacturing side, it requires two licenses: manufacturing and distribution, only because we need to be able to handle oil from a producer, from a processor. So, in order to handle that oil from a processor, we need a distribution license or transportation license. And then, of course, the manufacturing license to manufacture edibles.
Danny Weis: Perfect. And in terms of your source material, you’re not growing the cannabis that’s going into edibles. But where are you currently sourcing that sort of ingredient?
Eric: What we’ve done is we’ve…for the actual cannabis that is being infused in our products, we’ve partnered with a processor to do the processing side of it and the actual infusion part of it. And then we get that from our partner and then infuse it into our branded products at our facility.
Danny: And do you have varying strength levels on your end product?
Eric: We do. We actually have our main product, which is 10 milligrams per caramel and is the state, I limit that we are allowed to produce per piece. And then we have another product that actually has five milligrams of CBD and five milligrams of THC. And then on the medical side, we’re allowed to go a lot higher. So, we will be doing a medical edible that will be 20 milligrams per caramel.
Danny: Oh, very cool. And in terms of putting the CBD and THC compounds into your specific edibles, why do you do that?
Eric: We do that in order to give a more balanced effect. So, by blending both five milligrams of CBD and five milligrams of THC, the CBD actually counters the psychotropic effects of THC. And by creating that one-to-one ratio, what you get is a very low psychoactive high, but you receive all of the benefits from CBD because there’s a reaction with CBD and the THC actually helps ignite that CBD within your body. And then the CBD also counters the the psychotropic effects of THC. So, by doing a one-to-one ratio, what you get is a product that doesn’t really get you “high” but you get all the benefits from the CBD compounds.
Danny: So, if you’re a new person looking to try a THC product made by Granny-B Goods, it sounds like a CBD and THC sort of mix would make a lot of sense for people who’ve never tried edibles before.
Eric: Definitely. And in fact, when I meet people that have never tried this before, I always tell them to try the one-to-one ratio edibles first. And in fact, I usually tell people to just try half and see how you feel after 30 to 45 minutes to an hour. And then if you don’t really feel much effect, then take the other half. And slowly work your way into it so that you don’t get what many people have had, which is you’re getting that too high edible moment.
Danny: Like, stoned. Yeah.
Eric: Yeah, that too high moment on edibles because it’s never fun to get too high and you just never know because of the individual effects.“Now, one thing that our company does that’s different than most is we’re infusing our products with a new form of water-soluble THC powder. And by doing this, it has eliminated the time of efficacy required within your body.”
Meaning, most of the time, most edibles, because your body has to process it, and it has to process an oil, takes anywhere from 30 minutes to 45 minutes to sometimes an hour before you feel any effects. Whereas, the products that are being infused in our products is a water-soluble THC powder. So, because it’s a water-soluble powder, it hits your body and your body is able to process it a lot faster. Therefore, you feel the effects within anywhere from 5 to 15 minutes.
Danny: Wow. So, that’s a really quick absorption rate.
Eric: Yeah. It’s a huge advantage, one, for our company, but it’s a huge advantage for our customers as well, for our clients as well because our consumers don’t have to wait 45 minutes to an hour to find out whether they’ve had enough, or not enough and they need more to get that perfect ratio.
Danny: Yeah. It sounds like knowing how to micro-dose is very important.
Eric: Absolutely.“Knowing your tolerance level is key to getting that best edible experience and that enjoyable edible experience. And in my opinion, edibles are the wave of the future…”
and they’re the best way to consume cannabis because you’re not damaging your lungs, you’re not getting any of that. You get more out of it. It lasts longer within your system. So, your body is able to utilize those health benefits for a longer term. And so, it’s just better for your body. So, having a product that actually hits you quicker is better for our consumers.
Danny: Yeah, absolutely. So, tell me a little bit about yourself. Like, why do you love working in the cannabis industry?
Eric: I came from corporate America. I saw an opportunity to do something good from a humanitarian standpoint. And being from a family that is riddled with cancer and has had a lot of family members with cancer, I saw an opportunity to really help people. And I saw the benefits that cannabis brought to people. And when I first started this, it was more of a project. It was something that I saw an opportunity that I could do for myself. It was something that I really wanted to start my own business, start my own company. And then when I saw the effects that my products had on people and receiving the testimonials from people and how much it helped them and how much it affected them, it was the biggest motivator I’ve ever had in any project I’ve ever worked on. It became more of a humanitarian project more so than just my own individual project. And it became something that I truly, truly love. And it’s something I’m very passionate about. I love being able to provide that to people and give people that benefit. And so, to me, it’s just been the greatest reward ever being able to do this.
Danny: In the past few years, what is the most fucked up situation that you have had to get past? – Your biggest obstacle.
Eric: The biggest barrier to entry has absolutely been the real estate. I mean, real estate, real estate, real estate. It’s finding a city that you can actually operate in. And I guess, the other barrier to entry is raising capital. But the capital raise is due to the real estate issue. You know, the biggest problem is real estate because you have to figure that it’s going to take a minimum of two years to get your licensing fully approved. And so, for those two years…and you can’t even start your licensing until you have real estate. So, once you have real estate, you have to basically have enough capital to sit on it for two years and know you’re not going to make any money for two years while you’re trying to get your licensing. So, that’s the biggest barrier to entry, really, is real estate and then investment capital and having to have enough capital that you can float for those couple of years while you’re trying to get your licensing.
Danny: Yeah. That’s definitely a lot of clients that we’ve seen where they just, you know, think they have enough money out of the gate. And then they have to go looking for more.
Eric: Yeah. I don’t know that there’s one cannabis company that hasn’t had to go seek more capital, and usually about twice as much as they thought.
Danny: It’s a big learning curve from the black market days, you know.
Eric: Oh, huge.
Danny: Yeah. So, as far as you mentioning that you were looking at other jurisdictions. But are there any other states besides California that you’re excited about?
Eric: I’m really excited actually about Oklahoma because I’ve just heard nothing but good things. We have friends that have cannabis operations there in Oklahoma and they’re just booming. I mean, it is crazy out there right now. And they’re doing so well. You don’t have the reach like California, obviously, because you don’t have the population. But being in a smaller state, it’s so much easier for distribution, in those channels. And to really get a brand presence is a lot easier in a smaller state. So, I’m actually really excited to see what we can do with a brand like ours.
Danny: Yeah. Absolutely. I’ve noticed the brands are just not as well developed over in other jurisdictions as they are here in California. Luckily, you know, you’ve already been put to the test here.
Eric: Yeah. Well, It’s really funny because, we’re waiting to release products and yet on our Instagram, we have almost 3,000 followers. And yet, we still haven’t even fully launched the brand yet. And it’s all organic traffic and all organic people. We have a really solid brand despite the fact that we have no products out to market yet.
Danny: What are your plans for 2021 and beyond for the next two to five years?
Eric: Our plans for 2021, really, are just to get up and operational out in Desert Hot Springs and to really expand our capabilities from a distribution standpoint and see how many shops we can get into in California. And then just to analyze all of that and see how we can take that and move it into other states. And so, our probably two- to five-year plan is just that, is expansion. You know, get a really solid production out of our Desert Hot Springs facility. And then take that and, you know, get the efficiency there in Desert Hot Springs and then take that and move it into other states in the next two to five years.
Within five years, I’m hoping that we’ll be in at least 5 to 10 states. And then beyond that five years, I have a sneaking suspicion that we will probably be bought out by that point.
Danny: Okay. So, that’s sort of, like, the exit strategy in the distance. You know, go public or get purchased.
Eric: Yeah. Our exit strategy is just that. It’s either… If going public makes sense, then we’ll go public. If not, then we’ll try to sell to either a pharma brand or to possibly a candy brand. Like, a Mars or a Nestle or someone like that.
Danny: Oh, yeah. That makes sense. Yeah, because I haven’t heard a lot of people discussing, you know, candy companies getting into the space.
Eric: I would be shocked if they (candy companies) wouldn’t be thinking about that and that’s one of the reasons why, for our brand specifically, I want to have a channel in the CPG market where there’s a non-infused product, but it’s really the same type of candy, just not infused. And there’s no other company that’s really done that yet. So, if we can do that, we can bridge that gap. And we can have the same brand, Granny-B Goods in the non-infused market and then Granny-B Goods in the infused market. I think, to me, that just seems like a perfect opportunity for a Mars or a Nestle to come in and snatch us up because now that automatically enters them in both sides of the marketplace. And it’s already a brand that’s established in the CPG market and a brand established in the cannabis market. And then that’s their way to kind of bridge that gap, you know.
Danny: Yeah. That makes a lot of sense. Yeah. And as far as the new administration, I mean, are you expecting it to favor the industry?
Eric: I actually am. I am expecting it to be in our favor… I mean, that’s supposedly what Biden and Kamala Harris both have said; that they are onboard with cannabis. And I’m interested and really curious how things are even going to go here in California because they’re talking about bringing all three cannabis-regulating bodies into one and curious how that’s all going to work. Because does that mean that everybody that licensed under the previous CDPH and CDFA are going to have to get new licensing under the BCC?
Danny: No, I don’t think so.
Eric: You don’t think so.
Eric: I’m really…I’m curious how that’s all going to play out or how they’re going to migrate all three into one. I feel like that’s just going to be a nightmare.
Danny: It’s going to be crazy. Yeah. That’s true. It’s more than ABC, you know.
Eric: Totally. Yeah.
Danny: Cannabis is going to end up being, I think, a lot bigger than alcohol at least here.
Eric: Way, way bigger. Oh, it absolutely is. And people also have to remember, we’re still in the infancy stage of cannabis. I mean, yeah, it’s been legal for…was it two years, three years? Two years? But it’s still really in its infancy. So, I mean, we’re still going to be going through growing pains and hurdles. And there still really isn’t a defined best practices yet on how to operate. So, we’re still learning.
Danny: Yeah, With all the experience that you’ve had these past years and you’re talking to yourself, three years ago or four years ago, what’s the one thing you would tell yourself, or advise yourself?
Eric: Oh, man. Be very cautious about who you partner with and really do your due diligence on your investors and the people you partner with. I think that would be my biggest thing that I would tell myself. And also just to not rush, and be patient. And do everything the right way and just take your time.
Danny: Okay. Well, thanks so much for taking the time. And I appreciate you, Eric.
Eric: You, too. Thanks, man.
Danny: Look forward to working with you in 2021.
Eric: Always.Categories: Cannabis Edibles, Cannabis Industry Leaders, Cannabis Industry News, Cannabis Law Tags: California, Cannabis Caramels, Cannabis Industry, Cannabis Licensing, CBD Edibles