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CBD & SPORTS

Published on 14 February 2020 at 17:05

-Roald Tromp #1 CBDSPORTS

 
 
 

The CBD market is booming all over the world. You hear a lot of people talking about it and some make more sense than others. My intention is to share my experiences in this niche. A niche that in the last few months became a serieus industry sector that a lot of brands are jumping into at this moment.

I grew up in Amsterdam, The Netherlands. City of Coffeeshops (since 1968) where you can freely buy and smoke marihuana. Note: Cannabis is not legal in the Netherlands by the way. Open minded, free spirits and very direct in their approach is what people often say about the Dutch. "Amsterdammers" in particular. Although having traveled many countries in the world and living in Spain/Madrid for almost 8 years, my roots are still obvious. I do have the typical Amsterdam accent and, yes, I can be very direct. Bare in mind that for the Dutch this is very common and never intended to be offensive or by any means an indication of our feelings towards the third party we address with a very direct remark, opinion or respons. In this article I share my experience in this crazy industry and especially CBD & Sports. Warning: It can be sometimes typical Dutch direct, no offence ;-)

CBD & SPORTS is no rocket science. Yes there is a big stigma amongst the target group. Stoners and athletes are simply two very different worlds. Predicting how this sector will evolve isn't very hard to do. Just take a good look on how the sports nutrition industry evolved in the last 30 to 40 years. It started out with just a few users taking protein powder in their daily regimen. You could only find the "magic" powder in a few specialised stores or you had a "guy" that could provide you with some. Not very different from what is happening now in the CBD industry. A couple of idols in the body building scene (read influencers, when your under age 30) started sharing their experiences with the product to people and created a demand. Yes, I am talking about Arnold Schwarzenegger for example.

If you look at Aminovit protein powder in this picture from the eighties and you look at the products nowadays available, you'll see a big difference in branding and packaging.

 

In this industry you have the brands doing it the right way and you still have the unicorns too.

There are MLM companies (Herbalife, IsaGenix, Thrive etc), with people selling the product, but having no clue what they are talking about and are only driven by getting resellers that chip in the necessary fee for their expensive sports cars and living the dream lifestyle full of exotic travels and designer clothing without having worked a normal day in their lives. Sounds familiar, Kannaway, HempWorx crowd? (Just being Dutch, no offence, I'm simply not a fan of MLM organisations). You have the big brands like Glanbia PLC Global Nutrition Group, Abbott Nutrition Inc., PepsiCo Inc., Ultimate Nutrition Inc., PowerBar Europe GmbH for example that rule this very regulated market and you have the players in different niches like Orange Fit (plant based protein). Nocco and LifeAid in beverages (Fitaid) {they have introduced the CBD version recently}, Grenade in protein/energy bars and a lot more brands taking a piece of the 44 billion dollar industry worldwide. You can buy your protein powder in your local grocery store for under 10 bucks and you can buy your 100 dollar plus version in your specialised store and all varieties of supplements online at platforms like Body & Fit, XXL Nutrition, BodyLab that have their own branded product lines too. You'll find them all at the FIBO Power in Europe, Body Power Experience in the UK and more expo's all over the world. That's what the CBD & Sports niche will look like in a couple of years too. No rocket science here.

 

What I don't see them doing here on LinkedIn or other media is falling all over each other, pointing fingers how they might ruin the industry, making inferior products, being unicorns or making claims they shouldn't make. No, this is a grown up industry doing business from out of their own strengths and minding their own business. Note that the majority of the people using their products might not feel any effect in their daily lives and are motivated just by following their influencers in their desire to become just like them.

 

Having said that, back to CBD & SPORTS. This industry is gaining more popularity. I see more and more brands coming out with topicals like muscle relief creams, balms, salves, roll-ons, energy drinks, protein bars/powder and targeted tinctures. No brainer: THC is on the forbidden substance list of the World Anti Doping Authority (WADA), so it needs to be absolutely THC-free. When you bring out your sports related CBD products be aware that athletes (or jogs if you like that better) are on the other end of the world when it comes to cannabis.

 

 

 

The leave is simply not appealing to athletes without making a statement on the quality of the shown product. Whatever you think of Jacob Hooy, kudos to them for opening up the EU market and making CBD mainstream for the seniors with artritis and rheumatism issues.

 

CBD Performance from the UK is one example on how the CBD & Sports products will look in a more grown up CBD Sports market. Branding, Ingredients and labeling all in order. Off course there are more examples to be found. NanoCraft, CBDMD, Beam to name a few. Taste is a big issue! Healthy minded, athletes, jogs will go for the fruity flavours. Mixes with terpenes (essential oils) that enhance effects will be on top. Athletes know what Turmeric, Saffron, Lemongrass, Acai Berries, Lavender, Mint and so on can do with the human body. Healthy Vegan, sugar free, no GMO's etc. will be appealing to them and consider that a must in your CBD & Sports targeted products.

In sports nutrition Protein Powder has always been one of the best selling products, next to the categories:

  • Iso drink Powder
  • Capsule/Tablets (Creatine, BCAA etc.)
  • Supplement Powder
  • RTD protein drinks
  • Iso and other Sports Drinks
  • Protein Bars
  • Carbohydrate drinks
  • Carbohydrate Energy Bars
  • Other Supplements

 

Iso & other Sports drinks segment generated the highest revenue and is expected to do so in 2021 as well.

CBD & SPORTS will in my opinion be no different from the Sports Nutrition industry and the CBD industry has no need to invent the wheel all over. Take a good look at this industry when you get involved in CBD & Sports.

Last but not least, topicals! Athletes use lots of balms, gels, creams, salves and oils. Thinking of Tiger Active Muscle Balm, Cramer's Red Hot, Bio Freeze roll-ons, Kneipp Arinca Cream, Dr. Bronner's Arnica Menthol Cream, Icy Hot Vanishing Scent, Apothekers Original all these products are found in every athletes sports bag.

 

No big surprise that all versions with CBD will soon be in their bags too. Strangely enough all topicals are not submitted under the Novel Food regulations of the EU. Every other supplement taken orally is. Is anybody going to explain the authorities that the CBD molecules end up in the same blood flow and ECS of every human body to do the magic, or do we let them think that's another process? The more curious I am what CBG version will do in the near future.

 

Out of experience with our own #teamcbdsports athletes and all athletes that I have talked to during events like the Lowlands Throwdown (CrossFit), SAP Cup (Body Building) and Fitfair (Fitness) amongst many more, I know by now that topicals are the first introduction to CBD that athletes are willing to do and they also immediately feel the benefits what CBD can do for them. In a later stage they will use tinctures and other supplements with CBD after they got rid of the stigma on cannabis that they have. Some nationalities more than others. Funny enough the stigma in Europe is the highest in the Netherlands, home of the Coffeeshops since 1968! So much for open mindedness and free spirits.

The best thing about being in CBD & SPORT is the feedback of athletes and other "ordinary" people on how they benefit from different CBD products and, as I love to say it, go natural in their daily lives to deal with pain, recovery and sleep.

Conclusion:

Yes CBD & SPORTS is a very rapidly growing industry. It will grow up in terms of regulations, branding and variety of products. Big Sport Nutrition Companies will jump in and very specialised companies will tag along in the growth of the "niche". Next to CBD & SPORTS the cosmetic and animals niches will rise. My guess is that the generalists, trying to have all niches in their product lines will eventually disappear. Same as all the companies entering the CBD industry with all the wrong intentions. Don't write about them, don't get frustrated over another useless product coming out, don't be surprised over a new test result of claims on labels of products not met by lab results. It will settle down to companies that specialise and will be excellent in what they do.

CBD & Cosmetics? Be like Rituals. CBD and Pets? Be like Beaphar. CBD & Sports? Be like me, no just kidding, be like GlanbiaPlc.

 


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