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“Once topicals are legal in Canada, the sky’s the limit. Also, there’ll be a lot more research focused on topicals and we’ll learn more about the health benefits CBD can provide to the body.”

When David Wilfert played college baseball, he would rely on rubs like Icy Hot and Bengay to soothe his worn-out body. “But when I moved to California from NYC, I found out about cannabis topicals, and they’re so much better,” says Wilfert.

His passion for these all-natural topicals inspired him to get involved in the market himself. With his fiancée, he co-founded CannaSport which developed Weed Sport CBD, a new muscle rub derived from hemp. Harnessing CBD was critical to setting this product apart from the Big Pharma products clogging shelves.

“When you look at a popular rub, you see all these ingredients that you don’t know,” Wilfert says. “We didn’t want anything synthetic in our rubs. We use coconut oil and ingredients like menthol that is known to have anti-inflammatory properties.”



The firm also offers CBD capsules, although the rub is their most popular item.

Sales increased by 200 percent this year over last year, so far, Wilfert says. “Not just athletes are using our rub, but all kinds of folks, like moms doing yoga.”

As for the science behind topicals, the evidence is so far anecdotal, with many cannabis users claiming cannabis-derived creams help them with muscle pain. While double-blind research is scant, one 2016 study did take a step forward in analyzing topicals’ positive properties. The TLDR version: “Topical CBD application has therapeutic potential for relief of arthritis pain-related behaviours and inflammation without evident side-effects.”1

Wilfert is stepping into a burgeoning space. Cannabis researchers BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research project that the collective market for CBD sales in the U.S. will surpass $20 billion U.S. by 2024.2 Kroger, one of the world's largest grocery chains, will soon sell CBD products in 945 stores across 17 states.3

A Deloitte report focusing on the Canadian market estimates topicals, concentrates, tinctures and capsules could combine for more than $400 million in sales annually.4 Topicals will be legal to sell in Canada in October, 2019.

“Once topicals are legal in Canada, the sky’s the limit,” says Wilfert. “Also, there’ll be a lot more research focused on topicals and we’ll learn more about the health benefits CBD can provide to the body.”

As for Wilfert’s background in cannabis, he’s plied his trade primarily in advertising and branding, and notably developed the first cannabis-movie tie-in when he worked on the Kevin Smith horror film Tusk. He brought together the film studio and a California dispensary to promote two Tusk-specific strains – White Walrus, a sativa, and Mr. Tusk, an indica. “Oh yeah, it was popular, so much so the cannabis sold out within a week.”

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