…Once upon a time in a rich and verdant land…We achieved something that no one had ever accomplished before. It was a moment our founding team will remember forever: the moment that we grasped that first 30 pound bag of cannabis seeds in our hands. To anyone else, that bag wouldn’t cause even a blink of an eye. Its woven fibers held bulb-like seeds with an extraordinary texture and color to them. That bag of seeds was a tremendous feat for us; It signified our commitment to our cause and was the first milestone towards bringing people across the world an amazing phytocannabinoid – CBD.
Our story began in 2008, back when CBD, known also as cannabidiol, was only a whisper in the cannabis industry. This phytocannabinoid had been overshadowed for decades by THC (tetrahydocannabinol), the psychoactive compound that can be found in the cannabis plant. What was interesting to us was that CBD was non-psychoactive, meaning that it did not give you the ‘high’ or euphoric feeling that THC would, yet the multitude of research showing what it could do was undeniable. We knew there was more to the story, so we invested millions into developing a source for this amazing plant and its phytocannabinoids.
What we found would define our mission as Medical Marijuana, Inc. and Kannaway.
We discovered that there were cultivars of a category of cannabis, known as “hemp,” that contained only trace amounts of THC (0.3 percent or lower) and therefore, was non-psychoactive. In hemp, all the other cannabinoids and nutrients are also present, including the cannabinoid we were looking for – CBD.
Today, cannabis is considered a controlled substance and it is federally illegal to grow in the U.S., regardless of its THC content, except for extremely limited uses in research. However, it is legal to import hemp products (cannabis with 0.3 percent or lower THC) into the country, which is how we would become the first to develop and market legal cannabis products in America and beyond.
We would derive CBD from hemp in Europe and import it into the U.S., getting it into the hands of the people who need it most worldwide. We sent teams of researchers across the world to learn about the political, economic, and agricultural landscape of growing hemp internationally and developing the best way to bring CBD to the masses.
Over the next few years, we covered an immense amount of ground and collected research from industry experts from all corners of the world leading us to three potential regions where we could plant our first crop – Romania, Czech Republic, and Austria.
When you are pursuing a mission as delicate and powerful as ours, you have to work with people you can trust and respect. We found that in a farming cooperative of 750 individual families in Austria.
It was in that first harvest that our founding team came to know and learn more about the people behind each grow. As we walked under that charming hacienda-style archway, we looked out on its expansive green acreage and knew that this was the place; the perfect community, climate, and region to grow a hemp crop that would change the world!
Our cultivators in Austria are a group of individually-owned family farms whose techniques and expertise come from numerous generations before them. They are people who value the land, live simply, and have the integrity and soul we’d spent years searching for in a cultivation partner.
So at this time, we had done the research, narrowed down the region, and shook hands with our community of cultivators. Now, it was time to find the perfect cannabis seed, the perfect cultivar that would naturally yield a crop high in CBD. Many sources will tell you that there are only about 1,500 possible cannabis cultivars, but there are many more than that – We tested a total of 3,000!
And at end, it all came down to one seed. It was this seed that after countless trials and weeks spent tending the fields, flourished in the region’s climate, yielding hemp highly concentrated with CBD.
This was a monumental feat! Previously thought to be impossible, we were able to plant our first harvest of hemp – rich in cannabidiol. While celebrations were in order, we went straight to work to bring products to the people who needed them most.
To this day, this moment inspires everything we do. The people who use our products are the core reason why we do what we do! Our products are part of a captivating story about defeating the odds and persevering for health.
We are in the business of ensuring that as many people as possible are able to experience the benefits of cannabis. Every day we work towards accessibility, affordability, and securing the future of cannabis for generations to come!