Joe: On this episode of the "CBD University Podcast," CBD Gummies Done Right. Our award-winning gummies are setting standards in the CBD industry. We take you behind the scenes of one of "CSP Magazine's" Retailer Choice Best New Products of 2020. This is the "CBD University Podcast," and it starts right now. I'm Joe Agostinelli, host of the "CBD University Podcast." If you're a returning listener, welcome back to our podcast. If you are a new listener, we are glad you found us on your podcast platform of choice. Don't forget that you can see full video episodes of our podcast on the Global Widget YouTube channel, and the YouTube channels of our brands, Hemp Bombs and Nature's Script.

Earlier this year, we launched our new and improved CBD gummies, and we think they're awesome, but don't take our word for it. Our Hemp Bomb CBD gummies were named the Retailer Choice Best New Product for 2020 in the CBD hemp category, in a vote of more than 1000 retailers nationwide in "CSP Magazine." So how do we get our gummies right? Welcome back to the podcast, our chief compliance officer, Margaret Richardson, our research and development specialist Sara Brown, welcome you both back to our podcast.

Margaret: Thanks, Joe.

Sara: Thanks for having us back.

Joe: Still decorated out here in the holidays as we wrap up 2020, and we hope you guys had a nice Thanksgiving. And just about a week and a half away from the original publish date of this podcast until we get into Christmas, and then two weeks out, it's 2021, which I think everyone's excited to hear and see.

Sara: looking forward to it.

Joe: Yeah. This year, our CBD gummies, bestseller in the retail industry, a favorite of our customers and our online channels. We've talked about the award that they won through "CSP Magazine." So, before they get our gummies, whether it's on retail shelves or buy them online, where does this start? Where does this whole process begin? Who wants to talk a little bit about the behind the scenes formulation of the gummies?

Margaret: Yeah, start with Sara.

Sara: I mean, a lot of time and effort went into developing our new formula. We spent probably over a year coming up with the base formulas, finding out what worked best, what the flavors were gonna be, and then colors and combos and all that fun stuff. So a lot of effort and research and development goes into it, and then getting them tested by people and figuring out, well, what combinations of flavors and colors are the best, and people like the most.

Joe: And, Margaret, all of our CBD gummies are developed, manufactured right here in-house, so what goes into that process to ensure safe and effective gummies each time we produce them?

Margaret: Yeah, well, as Sara said, I mean, any formulation starts with the initial R&D. You have to have good base formulas. We spend a lot of time doing stability testing to make sure that those products are gonna be shelf-stable out at the retailer location or when you order online, so that's very important. Picking the right vendors, so from beginning to end, making sure you understand where all the ingredients are coming from, and that you're comfortable with using those ingredients. And then during the manufacturing process, ensuring that you're doing your in-house testing, you're using your QC lab to confirm potency, and that the gummies are meeting the standards that you've set for releasing the product, so we do that with every single batch.

Joe: And in talking with a reporter earlier this year on the podcast, Thomas Mulloy of "CStore Decisions" he talked about how much he enjoyed those flavors that you talked about. How do we decide on which flavors to incorporate, and how hard is it to add flavors once the product is readily available?

Sara: Adding flavors is a relatively easy process. We just kind of pick things that we find, what we think will do well in the marketplace, or just really good, tasty flavors. I mean, that's, you know...

Margaret: I mean, for us, the flavor selection, we used panels to test the flavors. So we have folks come in and kind of look at the flavors and also make sure the color matches the flavor. That's also important, because there's a certain, you know, visual perspective to also the way the flavor tastes, and the smell. So those are important. The other thing you have to look at is natural versus artificial. Looking at things like shelf life and stability, that's really gonna help in terms of, you know, product selection, but as Sara said, I mean, you can sometimes switch flavors out, in and out.

With CBD, obviously, there's always the issue of making sure you have the right masking agent, so it's not as simple as just saying, okay, well now we're gonna make peppermint-flavored gummies. You have to make sure that that flavor selection is gonna hold up, you know, over a long term and then, of course, how does it work with the CBD? You might have to add bitter maskers and things like that to kind of help with that overall flavor profile.

Joe: And in a marketplace that's saturated with the number of new companies trying to get a piece of the CBD pie, how important is it for retailers and consumers to turn to award-winning companies that are doing things right in all they do?

Margaret: Yeah, I mean, it is confusing. I think if you were a consumer out there and you're just kind of new to CBD, it's like there's, you know, endless supply of gummies. That's the number one way of taking CBD. I think three things that any consumer, whether they're purchasing it at retail or online that they really need to look at, and we talk about it all the time, make sure that your products have the QR code, so that you can really see the potency, that it's confirmed for that particular batch, not just a random batch record out there or certificate of analysis that doesn't really confirm the batch potency.

The second thing you really want to look at is make sure that there's clear information on dosing, how much you should be taking, especially if you're new to CBD, so that you understand the best way to take the product. We give really clear dosing instructions, suggest that you take, particularly the gummies, with things like food. It helps a lot in terms of the digestive process and making sure that you're getting the full effect of CBD. And then the third thing is, you know, does the company have information on the label about how to contact them, or if they have questions? And again, high-quality manufacturers are going to have that information, so that if you have a question, you've got a 1-800 number to call, or an email address to send to so that we can answer questions in real time.

Joe: And I'm gonna see if I can do this without knocking down the display we have here. But when we talk about packaging, and I'll turn to this camera, so this is the high-potency version of the Hemp Bomb gummies. It's an eight-count package, which you may see frequently on the shelves of retailers and convenience stores who carry our products, available in over 25,000 retail locations nationwide. So if you turn the bag around, that's where you see all that information that Margaret just talked about. You'll have your QR codes, your nutrition facts, and also your dosage instructions, and where you can go for extra education on CBD products.

That's what one of the bar code does, it's labeled "Learn CBD." The other one, "Compliance And Lab Testing," will take you to those independent third-party, verified lab results, full panel results that show you exactly what are these gummies, how much CBD there is, what else is in there, and then all of our ingredients and information is there, along with all of our social media networks that you can follow us on. That was the cheap plug. But hey...

Margaret: That's fine.

Joe: ...when you win awards, why not?

Margaret: Yeah. We allow it one time.

Joe: Yeah. So, as we head into the new year, what's on the horizon regarding our CBD gummies that retailers and consumers can watch out for?

Sara: We are working currently on a CBD infused with some immunity-boosting ingredients, so that might be something that we will be possibly launching next year, something to look forward to.

Margaret: Yeah, and I think some new flavors, maybe some fun flavors, more flavors related to seasons or holidays, those kinds of things, I think that's, again, having our own manufacturing lines, you know, our own confectionary lines, we're gonna have two running, we're have a third up and running, really gives us that flexibility to respond to seasonal changes or consumer preferences that a lot of other CBD manufacturers just don't have the flexibility to do.

Joe: And along with this episode of our "CBD University Podcast," speaking of a little behind the scenes look, you can also check out a video that Margaret and I were recently in just a little while ago, introducing everybody to our CBD gummies. You can take a look at the machine that makes the gummies and everything that goes into doing CBD gummies right, as we continue to do across all of our brands. Well, as we get into 2021 and more exciting news about our gummies and potential new products, we'll be sure to update you right here on the "CBD University Podcast." Margaret and Sara, I thank you for joining me for this episode on the "CBD University Podcast."

Margaret: Thank you.

Sara: Thanks, Joe.

Joe: And I thank you for tuning into this episode. A reminder, if you have not yet done so to please subscribe to our podcast on your favorite podcast platform of choice. You'll get notifications each week when new episodes are published. You can also watch full video episodes on our YouTube channel and the YouTube channels of our brands, Hemp Bombs and Nature's Script. You can also subscribe on YouTube to get notifications when new videos of each episode are uploaded. I'm Joe Agostinelli, the host of the "CBD University Podcast." Thanks for tuning in.

These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. The CBD products are not intended to treat, cure, or prevent any disease or condition. Always consult your personal physician about CBD and using CBD products. CBD should never be used by anyone under the age of 18. This content is not intended to provide legal advice regarding the legal status of CBD and CBD products.