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Is White-Labeling Right for Your Cannabis Business? These 6 Vendors Think So.

Opening a cannabis shop can be costly — white label products wearing your logo can help you build a brand for less.

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Cannabis retailers can build inventory and brand presence purchasing white label products. Medford, OR-based HHemp.co, the maker of a wide-ranging portfolio cannabis products, offers retailers white label renditions of its products. The company sees its white label program as an innovation and a science partnership. PHOTO COURTESY HHEMP.CO

THE COST OF starting a business can be prohibitive in any industry, but that’s especially true in cannabis. Building an entire seed-to-sale operation is an entry barrier that’s too steep for many cannabis startups to overcome.

Enter white labeling, a process that allows a cannabis retailer to put their own logo on product from a third-party vendor and price it how they see fit. Because the same white labeled product can be sold by multiple retailers as their own, costs and/or minimum order requirements are typically kept low. White labeling is distinct from private labeling, which involves a vendor crafting an exclusive product that only the contracting retailer/e-tailer can sell as their own.

Cannabis retailers can go from a first consultation with a white label vendor to stocking a fully finished product in as little as six weeks, says Brittany Giovenniello, head of white label services at EcoGen Biosciences.

Here are some notable cannabis vendors offering white label services.

Hhemp.Co

When a company partners with HHemp.co, they are getting more than a white label service, according to founder and CEO Bao Le. The Medford, OR-based maker of a wide-ranging portfolio of flower, concentrates and CBG + CBD edibles pitches its white label program as more of an innovation and science partnership than just a resale arrangement. HHemp.co operates a state-of-the-art, compliant lab and manufacturing facility in Hayward, CA that produces white label-ready products featuring cannabinoids like Delta 8, CBG, and THC in raw flower and edible form.

Sunset Connect

Sunset Connect is a pioneering, San Francisco, CA-based social equity manufacturer and distributor of a wide selection of cannabis products. The company began its white labeling program in 2020—founder Ali Jamalian, pictured left, says Sunset Connect’s first white label client wound up ordering 60,000 pre-rolls plus packaging. “Our white label services expand and contract depending on the success of each particular client, but at this point we work for and have done work for some of the biggest names in the business,” Jamalin says.

Palm Organix

When Palm Organix started its white label program in 2019, the West Nyack, NY-based CBD maker wanted to ensure partners understood the ropes. “We work closely with all of our white label partners, including recommending service providers, such as merchant processing and banking to help improve their chances of success in this highly competitive market,” Palm Organix founder Karen Herrera says. The family-owned company advises smaller white label partners to focus on a niche category, like CBD beauty products or a line for athletes.

Aevum Therapy

Aevum Therapy’s extensive selection of transdermal patches, capsules and creams include cannabinoids like CBG and CBN to provide targeted relief for conditions like chronic migraines. CEO Christina DiArcangelo brings two decades of clinical research experience to the formulation of Las Vegas, NV-based Aevum’s products, which are available through a white label program launched in 2019. DiArcangelo’s advice to cannabis companies seeking white label vendors: Do your due diligence about vendor compliance with manufacturing and quality control regulations.

Ecogen Biosciences

Companies outside of North America looking for a white label partner should keep an eye on this Grand Junction, CO-based wholesale CBD manufacturer which started its white label line in 2020. EcoGen Biosciences, a subsidiary of Newport, CA-based Kadenwood, has already launched UK-compliant, THC-free and CBN-free CBD distillate for products like gummies, soft gels, tinctures and topicals. It’s part of EcoGen’s effort to expand its international reach and its white label services arm, the latter of which is led by Brittany Giovenniello. EcoGen’s distillates, isolates and finished products like gummies and pet CBD treats bring to bear the company’s wholly owned plant genetics, greenhouses, farms, processing and extraction operations.

Empower Bodycare

Founder Trista Okel started her Clackamas, OR-based company in 2013, making it one of the first LGBTQ- and woman-owned CBD companies in the United States. Empower BodyCare has its roots in Okel’s own home kitchen, where she experimented with CBD-infused, natural, homeopathic remedies for her mother’s chronic pain. Nearly a decade later, the company is a leading maker of spa-quality, healthful CBD-infused tinctures and topicals like lotions, oils and bath salts. Empower curates its white label retail partners to prevent oversaturation in a geography.

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