CBD

Louisiana medical marijuana grower releasing CBD products

A diagram of the cannabidiol molecule which was identified in 1940 and isolated in 1963.

A diagram of the cannabidiol molecule which was identified in 1940 and isolated in 1963.

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) – Louisiana’s second medical marijuana grower, a contractor chosen by Southern University, hasn’t started selling therapeutic cannabis yet, but the company is offering an over-the-counter CBD product at the state’s marijuana dispensaries.

Ilera Holistic Healthcare said it will sell CBD products nationwide, including at each marijuana pharmacy in Louisiana except for the one in Monroe. Southern and Ilera officials are hosting a Thursday event to tout the new products at H&W Drug Store, the medical marijuana pharmacy in the New Orleans area.

“We’ll be the first university in the United States to do a national CBD launch,” Ilera CEO Chanda Macias told The Advocate.

The CBD comes in a liquid tincture form, a bottle containing a dropper to use. Branded as Alafia Healthcare, the tinctures were made from hemp and formulated in a North Carolina facility, Macias said. Four types of CBD tincture bottles will range in suggested retail price from $40 to $80.

Macias wouldn’t give a timetable for when Ilera will start selling medical marijuana in Louisiana, only saying it will hit the market “very soon” and the company has 2,300 plants growing at a facility in Baker.

Southern experienced years of delays in getting its marijuana program off the ground. Ilera bought out the majority stake in the original company selected by Southern in late 2018 after that first firm made little progress. Wellcana, a separate company contracted with LSU, started selling medical marijuana in Louisiana last year. Only LSU and Southern are authorized to grow marijuana.

The hemp-derived CBD products Ilera is selling contain 0.3% or less of THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, and won’t get users high. Wellcana is selling CBD and marijuana tinctures across the state, but those products come from marijuana plants and have more than 0.3% of THC.