There’s vape oil, pain-relief cream, patches, sweets (gummy bears, sour snakes, rainbow bites – take your pick), capsules and compounds.
Cannabidiol, or CBD as it’s better known – a naturally occurring extract of the cannabis sativa plant – is now so ubiquitous in the US, you’d be forgiven for thinking there are few places it's not available and few ailments it cannot treat.
Users say they take it for everything from muscle aches and anxiety to arthritis, epilepsy and Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
And let’s not forget Fido. There’s CBD oil for him too – with added bacon flavour.
It's an industry that CBD market research firm the Brightfield Group projects will be worth $5.7bn by next year and $22bn by 2022. The group's research director Bethany Gomez says Charlotte's Web Holdings, the industry's largest player, grew by 172% in 2016-17 and is on track to make $89m in 2018.
This is a controversial sector that is inevitably turning heads in the investment world, not to mention attracting interest from some unlikely corners. Drinks manufacturer Coca Cola has said it’s “closely watching the growth of non-psychoactive CBD as an ingredient in functional wellness beverages around the world”. A request for further comment on this from BBC Capital went unanswered.
Gomez says when the Brightfield Group made its industry predictions earlier this year, “we raised plenty of eyebrows”. But, she says, three days later the media was reporting that Coca Cola was looking into the CBD industry and it suddenly made sense. “If you look at the total sum of CBD products being sold today and then add ‘big box’ retailers into the mix and the big pharmacies who are begging to enter... we expect to see a very rapid change.”
Ahead of the curve
Zsolt Csonka is one of this growing fan base. He is the founder of Adriaen Block, a restaurant in New York's Astoria, the city's first CBD restaurant and bar. Csonka says he wanted to create cocktails with a lower alcohol content, using ingredients (like shrubs, berries, and herbs) that were used in the 16th and 17th Century, but which also included CBD oil – "mixing the new generation and the old generation together," he likes to say.