A Recap of the Hemp & CBD Summit at Expo East 2019

Virginia Lee

Retailers interested in CBD and members of the U.S. CBD industry gathered in Baltimore at the Natural Products Hemp & CBD Summit held at Natural Products Expo East. New Hope Network organized the Hemp & CBD Summit, the inaugural Hemp Pavilion, and the trade show that attracted over 29,000 attendees and more than 1,550 brands to the Baltimore Convention Center from September 11-14, 2019. Expo East is a trade show that encompasses natural, organic, and functional foods & beverages, vitamins & dietary supplements, beauty & personal care, and more. CBD-infused products could be found in every area of the show.

The Hemp & CBD Summit informed retailers on the latest in consumer trends, the importance of educating consumers, the benefits of organic hemp production, and how to label hemp CBD products correctly. Representatives from the Council for Responsible Nutrition, Natural Products Insider/ New Hope Network, and Vote Hemp discussed how to market hemp CBD supplements in a responsible, compliant manner. Speakers representing Elixinol/Hemp Industries Association/U.S. Hemp Authority, Neptune Wellness Solutions, Savant Sciences, and SummitVenture Management shared updates in new product development.

The brand new Hemp Pavilion brought together about 40 exhibitors in the hemp industry offering everything from CBD tinctures, topicals, dietary supplements, skincare to snack bars and butters featuring hemp seeds. With the growth of CBD products outpacing the general consumer packaged goods industry and the total market for hemp-derived CBD products expected to reach $23.7 billion in the U.S. by 2023, retailers of all sizes are eager to introduce CBD into their stores while working around the patchwork of state regulations and waiting for the FDA (U.S. Food and Drug Administration) to allow for the use of CBD as a food additive and as a dietary supplement.


‍There were plenty of CBD-infused topicals and skincare products at the show as these items are viewed as less risky for retailers to offer than ingestibles and dietary supplements. Bluebird Botanicals, a manufacturer of CBD hemp extract tinctures since 2012, offered its three new topical skincare lotions - Hemp Essential CBD Lotion, Hemp Sport CBD Lotion, and HempSilk CBD Lotion – that contains full-spectrum hemp extract (with 1,250+ mg cannabinoids in a 6 oz tube) in addition to coconut and jojoba oils. Soji Health offered its Intense Recovery Eye Cream that uses a nano-liposomal delivery system with 15mg of pure hemp CBD. Papa & Barkley Essentials HempBalm offers 180mg of phytocannabinoids in addition to beeswax and an extracts from eucalyptus, tea tree, peppermint and lavender plants.

Notable hemp CBD food products at Expo East included CBD cotton candy from Pure Fluff Co. and Evo Hemp CBD Bars (with 15mg of full spectrum hemp oil and 12g of protein), CBD-infused beverages at the show included hot and cold options including Green Roads CBD Coffee (with 100% organic and sustainably sourced ground coffee beans), Performance Tea’s Snooze With CBD Instant CBD Blend (instant tea with chamomile, passionflower and 420 mg of CBD from full-spectrum hemp), PLNT Blend Hemp Infused Hydration (a juice drink made with organic ingredients and full-spectrum hemp extract), and Raw Karma Calm + CBD (a USDA Organic certified, cold-pressed juice with 100% organic ingredients including lavender and chamomile flowers and 25mg of CBD).