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CBD Nestle Launch

Nestlé Health Science is entering Europe’s cannabidiol (CBD) dietary supplements market with a launch under its Pure Encapsulations brand.

Having achieved a successful roll out in the US, the Swiss food and drinks giant said it was expanding its partnership with Colorado-based cannabis development firm Geocann to take a slice of Europe’s CBD market.

A spokesperson for Geocann told HBW Insight Pure Encapulations would introduce to the UK a soft gel capsule with a 2-to-1 ratio of CBD to beta-caryophyllene (BCP) from broad spectrum hemp extract. The supplement utilizes Geocann’s VESIsorb delivery system, which the firm claims dramatically improves absorption and bioavailability.

The launch was imminent, the spokesperson revealed, with Geocann having completed production earlier this month and delivered the product to Nestlé.

As in the US, Pure Encapsulations would distribute the CBD soft gel through the healthcare professional channel, the spokesperson added. Pure Encapsulations is already well-established in the UK offering a wide range of vitamins, minerals and supplements.

Backed By Science

As part of its marketing efforts, Nestlé will leverage a peer-reviewed, published CBD study of VESIsorb and new product safety data from Geocann to build momentum behind the European launch.

Geocann describes VESIsorb as a “naturally self-assembling colloidal droplet delivery system,” which it says is the industry leader for improving the bioavailability of poorly absorbed natural ingredients, like cannabinoids and terpenes.

The company bases its claims on a recent double-blind, cross-over design study – published in the journal Molecules – comparing the pharmacokinetic (PK) parameters of a broad spectrum hemp extract formulated with VESIsorb to that of the same broad spectrum hemp extract combined with medium chain triglyceride (MCT) oil.

Overall, the VESIsorb formulation showed statistically significant improvements for all measured pharmacokinetic parameters, including maximal plasma CBD concentration (Cmax), area under the curve (AUC), and time to peak absorption (Tmax). 

Further investments in new clinical research focused on both PK performance and clinical end points are well under way, according to Geocann.

Preparing Novel Food Application 

The company has also completed multiple toxicology studies which it intends to publish this year as part of a Novel Food application to market VESIsorb CBD in the European Union, as well as for a US Food and Drug Administration GRAS Notification.

With the EU’s plans for CBD regulation up in the air – since the European Commission said it was considering classifying CBD extracted from hemp as a narcotic – Geocann and Nestlé’s decision to enter Europe through the UK seems like a smart one, with the former EU member state following a much clearer path. (Also see "EU CBD Market Under Threat With Narcotic Classification Favored" - HBW Insight, 22 Jul, 2020.)

The UK – which is Europe’s largest CBD market – has said it will not classify CBD as a narcotic or a medicine, with the country’s Food Standards Agency favoring the novel food route. (Also see "UK CBD Pathway Clear As EU Decides" - HBW Insight, 18 Aug, 2020.)

Geocann’s CEO and founder Jesse Lopez said the company was “extremely proud” to expand its relationship with Nestlé into Europe following the US deal, which has seen Pure Encapsulations launch four VESIsorb supplements, one of which contains a hemp extract.

“Their leadership team’s validation of science-backed and clinically-proven hemp products is an important milestone for our industry and provides exceptional credibility to the therapeutic benefits of cannabinoids formulated with VESIsorb,” Lopez added.

Pure Encapsulations’ chief science officer, Dr. Barry Ritz, said Nestlé and Geocann were committed to offering “the most science-backed CBD products in the world, setting the benchmark for what consumers expect and healthcare professionals demand.”

“Together with Geocann, we share a passion and commitment to product safety, purity, and performance.”

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