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Water-Soluble CBD: A Game Changer for Consumer Packaged Goods

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The following content is sponsored by Trait Biosciences.

water soluble CBD products

Water-Soluble CBD: A Game Changer for Consumer Packaged Goods

Cannabidiol (CBD)—a major non-psychoactive compound found in the cannabis plant—is quickly becoming a mainstream product. Due to mounting evidence of its health benefits, it is increasingly used as a key ingredient in consumer packaged goods such as food, beverages, and health and wellness products.

This burgeoning market is estimated to grow from $5 billion in 2019, to $23.7 billion by 2023. However, major challenges with existing products need to be addressed, such as poor bioavailability, or the rate at which CBD is absorbed into the bloodstream.

Today’s infographic from Trait Biosciences explores the importance of a truly water-soluble CBD formulation in addressing this challenge and many more.

The Importance of Water-Soluble CBD

When CBD is extracted from the cannabis plant, it takes an oil-based form. Like any oil, it is hydrophobic, meaning it will not dissolve in water.

As a result, CBD oil resists absorption into the bloodstream—with 96% of it being flushed from the body without ever having an active effect.

Nanoemulsion is the most common method of creating CBD-infused products. The process involves pulverizing cannabinoids into nano-sizes, and combining them with an emulsifier and a carrier oil, in an attempt to create a water-soluble CBD.

However, despite many industry players’ claims, nanoemulsified CBD is not water-soluble. In fact, water-compatible is a more accurate description. Nanoemulsified CBD also has associated risks, including:

  • Risk of DNA damage, cytotoxicity, and immune system response
  • Nanoparticles have been known to accumulate in organs, causing other health concerns
  • Leads to unpredictable experiences

Trait Biosciences’ breakthrough technology, Trait Distilled™, avoids these issues.

An Entirely Natural Process

Through Trait Biosciences’ proprietary glycosylation process, a sugar molecule is attached to the cannabinoid—a process that naturally occurs in the body as it metabolizes different foods.

The benefits of the Trait Distilled™ process will be a game changer for cannabis, hemp, and CPG industries, due to its:

  • Greater bioavailability
  • Perfectly clear solution
  • Faster onset time
  • Indefinite shelf stability
  • Better taste
  • Lack of emulsifiers, surfactants, or nanotechnologies
  • Organic certification potential
  • Odor-free properties

Trait’s Distilled™ technology results in pure, and natural water-soluble terpenes and cannabinoids that are entirely safe for commercial use.

The Impact on Consumer Packaged Goods Industries

The adoption of this new technology will prove extremely lucrative across CBD-infused CPG product categories. Many major companies are already capitalizing on the potential of CBD-infused products, such as Walmart, Whole Foods, and Ulta Beauty.

Food

Among products that new and existing consumers would consider trying, edibles—such as CBD-infused baked goods and chocolate—rank the highest.

CBD as a functional ingredient and a mood enhancer is blurring the lines between pharma and food, with health benefits such as:

  • Plant-based
  • Keto-friendly
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Full of Omega-3
  • Stress and anxiety relief

The global functional food market is projected to grow from $250 billion to $440 billion by 2022, with CBD-infused food products playing a significant role in the growth of this market.

Beverages

The global functional beverages market will be worth an estimated $278 billion by 2020, with CBD-infused beverages becoming a significant sub-segment.

Taste is the #1 consumer driver, and biggest roadblock for CBD-infused beverages. Water-soluble CBD will eliminate the unpleasant aftertaste associated with CBD-infused beverages that are currently on the market.

Health and Wellness

Health and wellness is emerging as a new reason for cannabis consumption. With Unilever now entering the space with CBD-infused ice cream, the floodgates will open for other major companies to follow suit.

Truly water-soluble CBD is a revolutionary technology that will kickstart the growth of CBD products in the CPG sector—and unlock the true potential of the cannabis plant.

Trait Biosciences is leading this biotechnology innovation, by creating purer and safer cannabis products for everyone.

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An Introduction to MSCI ESG Indexes

With an extensive suite of ESG indexes on offer, MSCI aims to support investors as they build a more personalized and resilient portfolio.

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An Introduction to MSCI ESG Indexes

There are various portfolio objectives within the realm of sustainable investing.

For example, some investors may want to build a portfolio that reflects their personal values. Others may see environmental, social, and governance (ESG) criteria as a tool for improving long-term returns, or as a way to create positive impact. A combination of all three of these motivations is also possible.

To support investors as they embark on their sustainable journey, our sponsor, MSCI, offers over 1,500 purpose-built ESG indexes. In this infographic, we’ll take a holistic view at what these indexes are designed to achieve.

An Extensive Suite of ESG & Climate Indexes

Below, we’ll summarize the four overarching objectives that MSCI’s ESG & climate indexes are designed to support.

Objective 1: Integrate a broad set of ESG issues

Investors with this objective believe that incorporating ESG criteria can improve their long-term risk-adjusted returns.

The MSCI ESG Leaders indexes are designed to support these investors by targeting companies that have the highest ESG-rated performance from each sector of the parent index.

For those who do not wish to deviate from the parent index, the MSCI ESG Universal indexes may be better suited. This family of indexes will adjust weights according to ESG performance to maintain the broadest possible universe.

Objective 2: Generate social or environmental benefits

A common challenge that impact investors face is measuring their non-financial results.

Consider an asset owner who wishes to support gender diversity through their portfolios. In order to gauge their success, they would need to regularly filter the entire investment universe for updates regarding corporate diversity and related initiatives.

In this scenario, linking their portfolios to an MSCI Women’s Leadership Index would negate much of this groundwork. Relative to a parent index, these indexes aim to include companies which lead their respective countries in terms of female representation.

Objective 3: Exclude controversial activities

Many institutional investors have mandates that require them to avoid certain sectors or industries. For example, approximately $14.6 trillion in institutional capital is in the process of divesting from fossil fuels.

To support these efforts, MSCI offers indexes that either:

  • Exclude individual sectors such as fossil fuels, tobacco, or weapons;
  • Exclude companies from a combination of these sectors; or
  • Exclude companies that are not compatible with certain religious values.

Objective 4: Identify climate risks and opportunities

Climate change poses a number of wide-reaching risks and opportunities for investors, making it difficult to tailor a portfolio accordingly.

With MSCI’s climate indexes, asset owners gain the tools they need to build a more resilient portfolio. The MSCI Climate Change indexes, for example, reduce exposure to stranded assets, increase exposure to solution providers, and target a minimum 30% reduction in emissions.

An Index for Every Objective

Regardless of your motivation for pursuing sustainable investment, the need for an appropriate benchmark is something that everyone shares.

With an extensive suite of ESG indexes designed specifically for sustainability and climate change, MSCI aims to support asset owners as they build a more unique and personalized portfolio.

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Tracked: The U.S. Utilities ESG Report Card

This graphic acts as an ESG report card that tracks the ESG metrics reported by different utilities in the U.S.—what gets left out?

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NPUC Utilities ESG Report Card Share

Tracked: The U.S. Utilities ESG Report Card

As emissions reductions and sustainable practices become more important for electrical utilities, environmental, social, and governance (ESG) reporting is coming under increased scrutiny.

Once seen as optional by most companies, ESG reports and sustainability plans have become commonplace in the power industry. In addition to reporting what’s needed by regulatory state laws, many utilities utilize reporting frameworks like the Edison Electric Institute’s (EEI) ESG Initiative or the Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) Standards.

But inconsistent regulations, mixed definitions, and perceived importance levels have led some utilities to report significantly more environmental metrics than others.

How do U.S. utilities’ ESG reports stack up? This infographic from the National Public Utilities Council tracks the ESG metrics reported by 50 different U.S. based investor-owned utilities (IOUs).

What’s Consistent Across ESG Reports

To complete the assessment of U.S. utilities, ESG reports, sustainability plans, and company websites were examined. A metric was considered tracked if it had concrete numbers provided, so vague wording or non-detailed projections weren’t included.

Of the 50 IOU parent companies analyzed, 46 have headquarters in the U.S. while four are foreign-owned, but all are regulated by the states in which they operate.

For a few of the most agreed-upon and regulated measures, U.S. utilities tracked them almost across the board. These included direct scope 1 emissions from generated electricity, the utility’s current fuel mix, and water and waste treatment.

Another commonly reported metric was scope 2 emissions, which include electricity emissions purchased by the utility companies for company consumption. However, a majority of the reporting utilities labeled all purchased electricity emissions as scope 2, even though purchased electricity for downstream consumers are traditionally considered scope 3 or value-chain emissions:

  • Scope 1: Direct (owned) emissions.
  • Scope 2: Indirect electricity emissions from internal electricity consumption. Includes purchased power for internal company usage (heat, electrical).
  • Scope 3: Indirect value-chain emissions, including purchased goods/services (including electricity for non-internal use), business travel, and waste.

ESG Inconsistencies, Confusion, and Unimportance

Even putting aside mixed definitions and labeling, there were many inconsistencies and question marks arising from utility ESG reports.

For example, some utilities reported scope 3 emissions as business travel only, without including other value chain emissions. Others included future energy mixes that weren’t separated by fuel and instead grouped into “renewable” and “non-renewable.”

The biggest discrepancies, however, were between what each utility is required to report, as well as what they choose to. That means that metrics like internal energy consumption didn’t need to be reported by the vast majority.

Likewise, some companies didn’t need to report waste generation or emissions because of “minimal hazardous waste generation” that fell under a certain threshold. Other metrics like internal vehicle electrification were only checked if the company decided to make a detailed commitment and unveil its plans.

As pressure for the electricity sector to decarbonize continues to increase at the federal level, however, many of these inconsistencies are roadblocks to clear and direct measurements and reduction strategies.

National Public Utilities Council is the go-to resource for all things decarbonization in the utilities industry. Learn more.

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