An Interview With A Pioneering CBD E-Liquid Company Looking To Bring Harmony To The World’s Vapers
It’s fair to say Harmony are one of – if not the biggest producers of CBD based e-liquids in the world and plan to grow even bigger over the next few years.
When CBD e-liquids first arrived on the vape scene many influencers – reviewers and the mainstream media bemoaned the fact that anything to do with hemp/marijuana was ‘bad’ for vaping and given the industry was under so much scrutiny it was the last thing it needed to be associated with.
However a few years on and whilst many vape famous reviewers are still in the anti-CBD camp – the mainstream has begun grudgingly reporting on the alleged benefits in treating a variety of conditions.
BTW CBD is NOT to be confused with cannabis or hash oil – the two are different despite coming from the same plant!
In a nutshell CBD stands for cannabidiol which has the part of the cannabis plant that gives users the ‘high’ removed – find out more by reading our Guide to CBD and Vaping – Is It For You?
Incidentally we also have a dedicated CBD section in which we review devices and CBD e-liquids so go take a look and DO make sure the CBD oil you plan to buy is VAPE-ABLE!
Back in June this year the FDA approved a CBD based drug to treat epilepsy and whilst CBD e-liquids – creams and other forms have still not been given the scientific seal of approval you only have to look at the raft of so called ‘anecdotal evidence’ to see that it’s only a matter of time before those men and women in white coats give it the green light.
I’ve kept a keen eye on the growth of CBD on the vape scene and have noticed an explosion of both interest from vapers and indeed an upsurge in the number and size of stands at Vaper Expo for instance. Last May’s Vaper Expo was almost a CBD-Fest of sorts with Harmony in particular going from a tabletop stand to a much larger one to say the least.
Given Harmony has just released four new CBD based e-liquid flavours: NYC Diesel – Critical Mala – Exodus Cheese and Kiwi Skunk the timing of the interview couldn’t be better – a review on those soon ;). You can see our previous Harmony CBD Vape Oil/E-Liquid review here.
OK I’ve set the scene now let’s chat with Harmony and I’d like to thank Antonin for taking the time out of his extremely busy schedule to do the interview.
Note: Before reading please check the Harmony disclaimer:
These products are not intended for use by persons under legal smoking age or nonsmokers. These products do not treat, diagnose, or cure any disease, physical ailment, or condition. Cannabidiol or CBD, is a promising phytocannabinoid found in agricultural hemp. CBD is non-psychotoxic (i.e. it does not result in feelings of euphoria) and has a remarkable safety profile.
When and by whom was Harmony created?
Harmony was created by founder & CEO Antonin Cohen with the release of the first CBD vaporizer in 2014.
Antonin started studying cannabinoids in 2008 when he co-created the first non-profit organization dedicated to cannabis science in France. Since then, he has worked with world-renowned cannabis scientists, entrepreneurs, and activists building a strong expertise in design and quality control for cannabinoid products.
After many years of researching—and several successful products launched—he and an ambitious team of 30 from 12 countries is dedicated to bringing revolutionary CBD products to the world through Harmony.
Why did the founder think CBD should be available to the masses? Had he used it and what for?
CBD is a non-psychotropic and non-addictive compound with many different uses—from food to cosmetics. Because of its versatility, CBD makes a perfect ingredient in e-liquids for nicotine and cannabis smokers.
There are 95 million potential customers of this sort in Europe alone and after very successful initial market tests, Harmony knew it could capture the attention of vapers who appreciate carefully crafted flavors with its proprietary terpene profiles.
How have you brought the message of the benefits of CBD to the public?
We pride ourselves in providing educational articles on our online magazine as well as informative flyers with the full breakdown of our e-liquid ingredients and why we use them.
On an industry level we host international meetups across Europe and speak at major vaping and cannabis-related forums. We’re also more than happy to provide free marketing and promotional materials and strategies to our more than 4000 partners across the globe to make getting the message out as easy as humanly possible.
Do you have a specially built lab and factory?
We have an in-house lab at our production facility and partner with independent farmers and labs across Europe for extraction of CBD from hemp and monthly quality testing. We’re very proud to help our partners to unlock the full potential of hemp through Harmony’s Lab services.
How quickly has Harmony grown? For instance how many staff do you employ now compared to the beginning and where are you based?
We hired our first 3 employees in 2015. Since then, we’ve grown into a very talented multinational team of 28, adding about 5 new people a month to keep up with demand.
I know you once had a number of other brand names – what were they and why did you decide to sell CBD under one umbrella brand?
We rebranded under Harmony and launched our cannabis terpene e-liquids. The name aligns much better with the mission of the company—to create more Harmony in the world by opening up access to cannabidiols to everyone!
What is the main usage of CBD?
CBD can be used in many different ways but our CBD e-liquids are made for smokers or vapers only. CBD e-liquids are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.
CBD is non-psychotropic and non-addictive which is why we believe—and consumers all over the world are confirming—that it is good to be used in an e-liquid.
Has the public’s understanding of CBD got better?
When we first started, people were really skeptical about products made from hemp. With so little information out there, it is easy to confuse CBD—which, according to the CDC just this past December, doesn’t get you high and is not generally used recreationally—with its polar opposite on both fronts, THC.
Fortunately, regular positive appearances in the media and many influencers supporting the use of CBD is turning the tide.
Who are your biggest buyers? The elderly? Young people?
We appeal to a surprisingly diverse demographic—from my own 77 year old grandmother to the newly minted 30-year old young professional. Often, our users have been smoking for a long time and are looking for something that will be satisfying without turning to harmful combustion-based products.
What are the plans for the future of Harmony as a company?
Harmony has been growing steadily, giving us the chance to attend more events, meet our customers and partners, and continue to innovate. The future will bring new e-liquid flavours along with a few other (secret, for now) projects we have in the works.
Aside from creating CBD products, we dream about fully realizing the idea of leading a harmonious life through the Harmony Center—a new, self-sustainable HQ that will responsibly control the life-cycle of production from seed to shelves.
Are you planning on launching the brand in say the USA?
Launching Harmony in the US is on the horizon. Currently we sell our products to customers in 26 other countries all over the world directly via our online store.
We’re planning swift, on-the-ground movement into fantastic new markets for 2019.
Why did you feel the need to attain TPD compliance for Harmony CBD even though it wasn’t required?
Our customers trust Harmony because we take great pains to go above and beyond. We want to help people make smart choices now about the products they buy.
We’ve launched a small range of nicotine terpenes e-liquids that is TPD registered. Since there aren’t any regulations around CBD e-liquids to help consumers do this, Harmony turned to the TPD framework that many people are already familiar with. In keeping our promise to ourselves and our customers, we push a step further by testing our CBD with independent labs across Europe to certify the content and ensure they are free from harmful substances.
All this allows us to undergo the kinds of rigorous testing that instill trust and confidence in Harmony customers about the products they spend their hard-earned money on.
I noticed over the last couple of Vaper Expos here in the UK your presence has grown – is the UK a large market base for you? Where else is CBD popular?
The UK is one of our bigger, more vibrant markets. The vaping industry is really maturing and we’re delighted to see how receptive consumers are to CBD.
From there, Harmony has seen nice boosts throughout Germany, Italy, Holland, Spain, and Austria and we’ve ramped up our manufacturing and compliance capabilities to keep up.
What’s the future for CBD worldwide?
The legal European cannabis industry is predicted to become a £multi-billion market within 5 years. An overwhelming proportion of sales will come from hemp and CBD products. With such wide-scale adoption of CBD, we expect more innovation into many different products both inside the vaping industry and out.
Topicals, food, supplements, and applications we might not have even thought of yet could be drastically different from the way we know them today, in such a short time. It’s incredibly exciting.
Anything you’d like to say to anyone considering trying CBD?
I’d say: think about your usage and research first. Then, decide how you want to deliver it. CBD e-liquids are for smokers or vapers only!
Whether you go for an edible, e-liquid, or topical, always check that the supplier can provide documentation that verifies what’s in what you buy, like a certificate of analysis.
Be cautious of companies that make medical claims because it is illegal to sell a product for medical use if it has not been licensed as medical product.
Most importantly, be curious. Some of the best things come into our lives when we least expect.
CBD is taking the world quickly, and by surprise. Maybe that’s a clue for what’s to come.
You can check out what Harmony have to offer here.