Relaxation Solutions, a subsidiary of Bebida Beverage Company (BeBevCo), has partnered with 80s comedy duo Cheech and Chong to launch a hemp-infused relaxation ice cream in the US.
Cheech and Chong’s Nice Dreams Ice Cream, named after the 1981 film in which Cheech and Chong (played by Richard 'Cheech' Marin and Tommy Chong) make millions of dollar selling marijuana while disguised as ice cream vendors, contains “a high level of supplements” around 5mg of hemp per half pint serving.
“If you ate half a pint, it would be very effective,” Brian Weber, CEO of BeBevCo told DairyReporter.com.
Weber dreamed up the product, which comes in Chillin' Chocolate and Groovy Vanilla variations, in 2009. He imagined a product that combined ice cream with BeBevCo's own Koma Unwind relaxation drink.
“The concept came to me while I was sat on the sofa eating ice cream," he said
"Relaxation and after-dinner ice cream just seem like a good marriage to me.”
Set on developing the concept, Weber decided to “latch on to a recognizable brand” and thought no further than Cheech and Chong.
“I just reached out to them,” he said. “Within a couple of hours I had an email from their team. Within two or three days we had come to an agreement.”
The licensing agreement secured by Relaxation Solutions enables it to use the Cheech and Chong brand for three years. After this, Relaxation Solutions has the option to renew the license for a further five years.
Weber expects the product, which will initially be available in pint tubs, to hit the US market “in the next four or five weeks.”
“We have just signed off on everything. The functionality has been approved. We’re ready to go, and we have a number of people that are keen to distribute it," he said.
“We have had interest from distributors in the Northeast, on the East Coast, in Arizona, and Colorado."
“And I suspect that California, where these guys are still big Hollywood stars, will come around quickly as well.”
Once on shelves, Weber added that Relaxation Solutions will consider other pack sizes, such as an on-the-go 4oz single serve tub.
“I am absolutely confident we will do well with this product," he said. “They’re on royalties as well, so the better we do, the better they do.”
Already confident of the success of Cheech and Chong Nice Dreams Ice Cream, Weber revealed that Relaxation Solutions plans to market an own-brand version brand called Tranquil Moments in the US “in February or March of next year.”
He then dismissed concerns about the potential for competition in its newly-formed category from US ice cream giants such as Ben & Jerry’s.
“Ben & Jerry’s could make it,” said Weber. “They have more money than us, but I think they would have trouble peddling it.”
“But in time I can imagine a big company saying, ‘We have the distribution.We have a bite of your ice cream; you have a bite of ours'.”