By Josh Medore
NILES, Ohio – From his new storefront in the Eastwood Mall, Paul Kaldy presents himself as a walking example of what CBD oil can help with.
“I’ve got two stores that are 400 miles apart,” he said Thursday at the grand opening of Tri-Healthy Co.
“If anyone has anxiety to deal with, it’s me,” he continued with a laugh.
Behind the counter at the CBD and hemp-derived product shop in the mall is a banner with a list of conditions the products – oils, creams, edibles and more – can help mitigate, from acne and anxiety to the effects of stress and strokes.
“We started as a customer. Whenever you’re able to start a business in something you believe in, the business process is easy,” Kaldy said. “For us, our staff all use CBD so we’re able to relate to customers. We have our own experiences.”
In addition to the Eastwood Mall store, Tri-Healthy also has a store in Johnson City, Tenn., that opened in February and a kiosk at the Southern Park Mall, where he plans to open a storefront later this month or in early November.
The Eastwood store sees between 20 and 30 customers a day, Kaldy said, and opened Sept. 12, just over a month after the sale of CBD products was legalized in Ohio. Tri-Healthy isn’t the only one getting in one the booming business. A report by Brightfield Group, a market research group focusing on cannabis, placed the market at $22 billion by 2022, up from just $327 million in 2017. The growth has been spurred largely by the 2018 federal Farm Bill, which legalized the growth of hemp.
Short for cannabidiol, CBD is a natural compound derived from hemp plants. Unlike their cousin marijuana however, hemp plants have far lower levels of THC, marijuana’s psychoactive ingredient, and more CBD, which brings with it the medical benefits of the plant.
Tri-Healthy offers two varieties of CBD products: ones that are THC-free and ones that are known in the industry as “full-spectrum,” which have up to 0.3% THC, far below what is required to create a high.
“Our staple are the tinctures or CBD oils; that’s what you’d use every day. Our next most popular is topicals, from creams to lotions,” Kaldy said. “What’s nice about those is you get instant pain relief. It can take pain from a 6 to a 4 in about 10 minutes. We also have gummies and edibles like brownies and fudge.”
The wide range of products, which also include dog treats, chocolate turtles and vape cartridges, is to offer customers products that will best suit them, said employee Christopher Treff.
“CBD is one-size-fits-all in its applications. What it does for everybody is going to be unique and specific per person. It won’t do everything for everybody, but it can do a lot,” he said. “I have ulcerative colitis, so I’m not good with edibles and breaking them down that way. Oils that are absorbed under the tongue might be more effective for people with issues like that. Topicals can be focused on one area and you know right where it’s going to.”
All products are third-party tested and are labeled with a QR code, Treff said, that takes customers to a webpage showing testing information and ingredients.
The Food and Drug Administration is still researching the full range of effects of CBD. Kaldy and his staff, he said, aren’t giving medical advice, but instead telling customers about their options if they want to use CBD.
“No. 1, you definitely want to talk to your doctor with any kind of health questions. They know you better than anyone else. Talk to a medical professional,” he said. “We’re here to answer questions on the products. If you’re having a rough time sleeping, talk to us and we can direct to the right products.”
Since becoming legal in Ohio in early August, the sale of CBD and infused products has popped everywhere from specialty shops like Tri-Healthy to chains like Family Video and Giant Eagle. What sets the smaller stores apart, both Kaldy and Treff say, is employees’ knowledge of the products.
“It’s what we do. As long as you’re getting products from a reputable distributor and has some education on the product, that’s the big thing. Make sure consumers are educated and that you can answer their questions,” the co-owner said.
Pictured: Tri-Healthy Co.’s Christopher Treff, Paul and Stacie Kaldy, and Billie Holness celebrate the grand opening of Tri-Healthy in the Eastwood Mall on Thursday.
Copyright 2019 The Business Journal, Youngstown, Ohio.
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