CBD awareness on the rise, sparking need for consumer education, reports A.T. Kearney

By Mary Ellen Shoup

- Last updated on GMT

 ©GettyImages / Aleksandr_Kravtsov
©GettyImages / Aleksandr_Kravtsov

Related tags Cbd A.T. Kearney

Retailers have a major role to play in consumer understanding of hemp-derived CBD products, according to A.T. Kearney's 2019 CBD Market Survey.

A.T. Kearney polled 1,000 US and 1,000 Canadians consumers in a two-part survey about their experience with and knowledge of hemp-derived CBD products.

According to the survey, 68% of respondents have used or know someone who has tried CBD, while 73% report having had positive experiences and intend to use it again.

CBD and wellness

Despite the lack of clinical data, many consumers equate CBD with wellness. The survey found that 72% of respondents believe CBD provides wellness and therapeutic benefits, but only 29% felt well-informed on its uses. 

"CBD-based items are becoming a significant part of daily wellness routines, both as replacements for and/or additions to existing products,"​ said A.T. Kearney.  

More than half (57%) of respondents responded that they are turning to CBD as a substitute for existing wellness products; 56% have already replaced wellness products with CBD; and 44% use CBD as a complement to other wellness products. 

Despite increased usage, a significant CBD information gap still exists, according to A.T. Kearney. Respondents reported turning to the internet (63%) or word of mouth (49%) for information on CBD.

"We believe that, if they really want to be successful in this market, consumer goods companies and retailers have to get actively involved in consumer education while establishing a reputation as sources of accurate, fact-based, information,"​ said Bryson Waterman, a principal in A.T. Kearney’s New York office, although he did not explain what this might look like in practice, given the lack of clinical data to support any 'wellness' claims about CBD, and the fact that CBD is not a legal dietary ingredient in foods and supplements.

A.T. Kearney added, "Before they can gain full advantage of a CBD market value estimated to reach $24bn by 2023, branders and retailers need to take a more aggressive role in consumer education, use integrated merchandising strategies to position CBD as a destination category, and mandate supply chain transparency to drive trust and guarantee quality."

Are you attending the 2020 CBD Global Summit?

The two-day event​, held in London’s Park Plaza Victoria hotel on 16-17 March 2020, will bring together key themes linking the consumer demand and innovation that is propelling CBD, to the tough questions around science, supply, and legality. Register HERE​. 

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1 comment

Dearth of Data

Posted by Anthony L. Almada, MSc, FISSN,

If clinical data are lacking where are the claims that ARE used arising from? Clinical trials done with pure, often drug-shape CBD (sans other mythical "entourage effect" bioactives), a product that is not available in commerce, anywhere in the world (save Epidiolex®). The doses used: a median daily dose of ≈ 400 mg, a financial leap that very few can or want to take.

The timeline to obtain published "clinical data" on products in commerce that are CBD (most products are not CBD, per se; rather, they are extracts of hemp wherein CBD makes up a minority percentage) is at least 1.5-2 years (for just 2-8 published studies). The only hemp extract to date that has shown "efficacy" is positioned for (and tested in) DOGS only, and the effective dose cost is ≈ $14-26/DAY.

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