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All times are listed in Central (CT). Schedule is Subject to Change
 
Thursday, April 28, 2022
8:00 AM - 9:00AM
Registration and Breakfast
9:00 AM - 10:00 AM
Keynote:
What’s In & What’s Out: Value Driven Product Development
Jake Bullock, Cann
Jake Bullock
Co-Founder and CEO, Cann
As consumers expect high quality, well branded cannabis products, brands are faced with important tradeoffs between quality, cost, and time to market. With significant regulatory, manufacturing, and distribution challenges, differentiated product and brand development become table stakes. Nowhere is this more evident than in the cannabis beverage segment, which is the industry's bleeding edge for mainstream consumer adoption. Brands that cut corners will fail to gain traction, but those that are values-driven in their approach will rise to the top. Topics covered in this session will include:

 

  • State of play in cannabis beverages segment today
  • Growing consumer interest in microdosed, social products 
  •  Product differentiation through values (both inside and outside of the packaging)
  • Tradeoffs in formulation that drive differentiation and resonate with consumers
  • Distribution challenges for growing brands today
Sponsored By
MTI Bioscience
10:00 AM - 10:30 AM
Networking Break in Exhibit Hall
10:30 AM - 11:15 AM
Market Outlook and Retail Sales Performance for Cannabis-Infused Foods & Beverages
Join BDSA’s Chief Commercial Officer, Jessica Lukas, for a session covering the current state of the U.S. legal cannabis food and beverage market, interesting market trends, and unique insights, and expectations for 2022.
Key takeaways:
  • U.S. legal cannabis market dynamics and opportunities
  • Drivers of edibles purchasing decisions and projections for category growth
  • A breakdown of top players in the edibles category
  • Top reasons why consumers choose to consume edibles and beverages
11:15 AM - 12:00 PM
What We Talk about When We Talk about Quality
This session will begin with an overview of Ripple dissolvables, quicksticks, and gummies fit into the market for medical and adult-use products in the Colorado and Michigan markets, addressing various product development and industry dynamics:

 

  • Published, peer-reviewed studies substantiating “fast acting” claims
  • Quality = consistency
  • Controlling consistency through raw material inputs like distillate partners, sensory standards, and potency standards for repeatable experiences
  • Manufacturing methods like formulations (ingredients, ratios, mixing), SOPs (accuracy, comprehensiveness, and adherence), intermediate goods testing, filling (“the fill makes the dose”), and quality control
  • Product launch, including sales and marketing (“don’t promise what you can’t deliver”)
12:00 PM - 1:30 PM
Lunch and Networking in Exhibit Hall
1:30 PM - 2:15 PM
Cannabis Baked Goods Industry Growth
As the cannabis industry continues to mature, we are seeing definite patterns emerge when examining consumers’ purchasing habits. Today’s consumers are beginning to look for more functional products in the cannabis space, as well as mainstream purchasing. We have seen diminishing sales of baked goods over the last 7 years and are challenged to create new products to allow the baked goods segment of the cannabis industry to stay relevant. Topics covered in this session will include:

 

  • Turning the tide of diminishing baked good sales to positive growth
  • Feeding the consumer what they want (or what they think they want)
  • The importance of cGMP in cannabis food production
  • What functional baked goods look like
  • Multi-state opportunities and challenges
2:15 PM - 3:00 PM
Legal Insights into the Cannabis Edibles & Beverage Industry
In the absence of unified federal clarity regarding several aspects of legal cannabis food and beverage product development, processing and sale, companies working in this industry—or seeking to enter it—need insight into the legal hurdles and challenges they currently face. Topics of discussion could include:
  • Current federal perspectives on banking
  • Cannabis business taxation protocol and requirements
  • Using CBD in foods and beverages
  • Brand and trademark protection for cannabis foods and beverages
  • Federal pathways toward a medical/recreational cannabis regulatory framework
3:00 PM – 3:30 PM
Networking Break in Exhibit Hall
3:30 PM - 4:15 PM
Packaging Priorities: Building Brands Consumers Love and Trust
We ask a lot of our cannabis food and beverage packaging. This session will be led by Bryant Ison, who has held senior marketing and innovation roles at PepsiCo, J&J, and The Clorox Co., and most recently served as CMO at Columbia Care, where he built its multi-million dollar CBD and cannabis brands across retail, consumer and product development. He’ll illustrate pathways toward targeted cannabis edibles and beverages product development, including:

 

  • How packaging should factor into the process
  • Boutique and high-culinary cannabis market opportunities
  • Child-resistant packaging innovations
  • Addressing sustainability
4:15 PM - 5:15 PM
Panel Discussion: Regulatory, Packaging and Compliance
Join us for this end-of-day panel discussion featuring the day's speakers taking a look at regulatory and related topics.
5:15 PM – 6:30 PM
Networking Reception in Exhibit Hall
 
Friday, April 29, 2022
8:00 AM - 9:00AM
Registration and Breakfast
9:00 AM - 9:45 AM
Keynote:
Applying Traditional R&D Methodologies to Cannabis Product Development
Stephanie Gorecki, Cresco Labs
Consumer demand for a variety of quality cannabis product offerings continues to grow. As cannabis product development processes begin to look more and more like everyday CPG product development, the technical need continues to shift. Teams are becoming more focused and technical in nature, and the equipment and laboratory setting in which cannabis products are developed are being designed to support this work. This session will look at the competitive market and how science and technology is evolving and how new technology and research is being applied to cannabis product development.
  • The product development process—the stages and gates that lead to a fully developed product
  • Winning on innovation—creating product diversity within a limited manufacturing footprint
  • Applying food safety principles and development standards to cannabis infused products
9:45 AM - 10:30 AM
Establishing Consistent Products and Brands in a Diverse and Developing Landscape
This year has been championed as the year that national cannabis brands emerge. While this sounds great in theory, the reality is that individual state markets are in varying stages of development. Companies striving to create true national brands need to identify ways to provide consistency to consumers across inconsistent markets.
In this discussion, we’ll dive into:
  • Challenges and pitfalls Keef has encountered expanding to eight domestic markets and Canada
  • Key brand learnings about the supply-chain developments of captive markets and how to adapt
  • Ways to focus on quality control and brand consistency to bridge markets
10:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Networking Break in Exhibit Hall
11:30 AM - 12:15 PM
Leveraging Compliance as a Selling Point Across Diverse State Marketplaces
Learn how Wana has leveraged its quality standards to increase the level of professionalism in new markets, raising the bar for all the players involved. Allison McKillop, Senior Operations Manager, Wana Brands, will share Wana’s experience working within different states’ regulatory frameworks while maintaining consistent brand standards that place the brand above and beyond the competition.
McKillop will also discuss how Wana is addressing the challenge of consumer education with the rollout of the brand’s innovative product lines including Quick Fast-Acting Gummies and the new Optimals Gummies targeted for specific wellness concerns. As cannabis technology leaps ahead, consumers may be left behind unless brands build budtender education and consumer outreach into expansion efforts. McKillop will share how Wana customizes its approach to fit diverse marketplaces while establishing itself as a leading cannabis brand. McKillop’s presentation will focus on three main areas:
  • Ensuring the right fit with licensing partners when it comes to kitchen setup and staffing
  • Maintaining process control, quality control and quality assurance
  • Customizing GMP processes and presentation (packaging, product design) to meet state requirements and regional market preferences without losing sight of overarching Wana Brand consistency and quality standards which often exceed state requirements
12:15 PM - 1:00 PM
Panel Discussion: Equipment, Operations, and Quality
End the conference with a panel discussion with the day's speakers addressing vital operations topics - and look at what's next for infused food and beverages.

 

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