The headline story of the last few weeks has been about the dangers of vaping. It has been the subject of news articles, editorials, and presidential pronouncements. As Cannabiz Media has been evaluating and measuring licenses across the country through the Cannabiz Media License Database, we’ve learned that some states have licensed the retailers and manufacturers of e-cigarettes in their states, and we also discovered that at least one state is regulating CBD retailing and wholesaling.
Quietly this summer, Louisiana’s Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control issued 903 CBD permits to vendors all over the state. While many states have jumped onto the hemp bandwagon with the 2018 Farm Bill, Louisiana, from what we can tell, is the first to issue these kinds of licenses. We think this represents a big turning point in the industry as to how “retailing” may play out with CBD and Cannabis.
Here are a few key facts and figures about Louisiana CBD permits:
- Number of licenses = 903
- 424 entities hold one license
- 86 entities hold two or more licenses
- Louisiana convenience store retailer, Shop Rite, owns 62 of the licenses. Tobacco Plus is second with 44 licenses. However, these two brands are part of the same company and account for 13% of the licenses overall. Chevron rounds out the top three with 24 licenses.
What’s Significant about Louisiana CBD Licenses?
Most of the companies on this list would be considered chain retail stores. Many are local or regionally focused and a review of their information shows that many already sell regulated products like tobacco, gasoline, e-cigarettes, alcohol, and now CBD.
Unlike some of the entrepreneurs who poured into the cannabis space, these companies already have a regulatory compliance infrastructure. Their alcohol, tobacco, and CBD sales are regulated by Louisiana’s Office of Alcohol and Tobacco Control while their gasoline is handled by the Department of Environmental Quality. Lottery tickets are handled by the Louisiana Lottery Corporation.
This compliance skill set coupled with mainstream retail know-how may set these companies up to be a critical component of any go to market strategy. Moreover, they may have market power like Shop Rite / Tobacco Plus where they can exert control on market exposure through slotting fees and other mechanisms.
Other winners in this battle would include those companies that have branding and consumer packaged goods experience on their teams.
What’s Next for CBD Licenses in Louisiana and Beyond?
The growth in licenses in Louisiana is not surprising as the number of issued licenses has more than doubled since August 1 from 431 to 903 retail and wholesale CBD licenses as shown in the graph below.
With over 2,900 storefronts selling lottery tickets in the state, there will be many more CBD licenses issued in the coming months.
While we can’t extrapolate all the findings in Louisiana across the United States, it is highly likely that more states will license CBD retailers for revenue and also for safety and recall issues.
Cannabiz Media clients can find these 903 licenses in our database by selecting ‘hemp’ and ‘retailer’ or ‘wholesaler’. We will continue our research into these licenses and companies in the coming weeks and welcome your questions.
If you’d like to diver deeper into this data and access more information related to hemp and cannabis licenses across the United States and globally, schedule a free demo to see the Cannabiz Media License Database in action.
Ed Keating is a co-founder and Chief Data Officer of Cannabiz Media and oversees our data research and government relations efforts. He has spent his whole career working with and advising information companies in the compliance space. Ed has overseen complex multijurisdictional product lines in the securities, corporate, UCC, safety, environmental and human resource markets and focuses on workflow products over the last twenty five years. During that time he has worked for both startup and established information companies where he has led marketing, product management and sales organizations. These companies include Wolters Kluwer/Commerce Clearing House, CT Corporation, EDGAR Online and Business & Legal Reports. At Cannabiz Media Ed enjoys the challenge of working with regulators across the globe as he and his team gather corporate, financial, and license information to track the people, products and businesses in the cannabis economy. Ed graduated from Hamilton College and received his MBA from the Kellogg School at Northwestern University.