Purity Enters CBD Market Via Kadenwood Partnership

Natural beverage brand Purity Organic is teaming with CBD supplier Kadenwood on a partnership to produce a range of CBD-infused food, beverage, personal care and pet products.

In addition to supplying hemp and hemp seeds wholesale, Newport Beach, California-based Kadenwood markets its own line of CBD topicals, Level Select, aimed at athletic recovery and promoted by former pro athletes including NFL quarterback Carson Palmer and MLB star Steve Garvey. Under its agreement with Purity Organic, Kadenwood controls the use of the Purity Organic trademark for all CBD-infused products, while Purity’s non-infused portfolio will continue to operate as a standalone company.

Founded in 2003, Purity Organic has a long history in ready-to-drink beverages, with products including juice, tea, coconut water and flavored sparkling water. Yet despite its track record, Purity’s first release under its agreement with Kadenwood — a four-SKU line of CBD-infused tea bags launching this spring — is outside the category. Containing 15 mg of full-spectrum CBD per bag, the line will be available in 18-count boxes in four varieties: Sleep (chamomile), Revive (Earl Grey) and Focus (green tea), plus an English Breakfast Tea. The suggested retail price is $24.99 per box.

Kadenwood co-founder and chief operating officer Doug Weekes said that tea was one of several CBD products Purity was considering, but that its development accelerated after national retailers expressed interest. He also noted that the format allowed Kadenwood to create a shelf-stable product that sidesteps certain challenges in formulating a ready-to-drink CBD beverage, such as solubility and taste.

“Across food, beverage, personal care and pet care, there’s a movement towards cleaner and cleaner ingredients,” Weekes said, speaking about how the brand’s existing equity will be leveraged for CBD products. “We really like the Purity trademark entering the CBD space for that reason. We believe it’s very telegraphic in terms of the purity of all the ingredients, including the high quality that Kadenwood brings. It helps consumers make a choice that they may be otherwise still confused about as they are learning about the CBD category.”

The launch of CBD Hot Teas comes as Purity is undergoing a series of structural changes. Late last year, the company appointed former Coca-Cola director Mary Page Platerink as its new CEO. In January, Purity completed the purchase of Dunn’s River Brands from Fireman Capital, a deal which saw the company acquire Sweet Leaf and Tradewinds iced tea labels.

Kadenwood is the latest in a growing line of hemp and cannabis suppliers to stake a claim to the growing CBD-infused drink market by working with an established brand. In 2018, Vancouver-based Harvest One cannabis company purchased sleep shot maker Dream Water for $26.7 million, with an eye towards exploiting synergies between the commercial cannabis and sleep aid markets. Last May, cannabis brand Caliva acquired California-based Zola with the aim of using the latter’s distribution network and in-house R&D teams to help broaden its vertically integrated cannabis business through innovation. The brand’s first infused product — Soul Grind, a three-SKU line of shelf-stable cold brew coffee with 10 mg CBD per 8 oz. can — launched last month.

According to Kadenwood co-founder and CEO Erick Dickens, a former SVP and CMO at King’s Hawaiian, Purity’s CBD innovations across all categories will emphasize the brand’s “clean” credentials.

“We felt like what we are doing is capturing or piggybacking off a brand that has a 20-plus-year history of being purchased by consumers who are on the cutting edge of organic, clean living,” he said. “We are taking those more progressive consumers and bringing them CBD. We see this as a way to rapidly start and accelerate our launch with consumers who are already interested in what our brand is doing next.”

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