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Canadian cannabis producer and pharmaceutical company, Tilray Inc., just purchased Manitoba Harvest – makers of Hemp Hearts – for $419 million in cash and stock.

The two companies merged in order to launch CBD-infused products in the United States, where allowable. With hemp already being sold foods at major chain stores such as Whole Foods, Trader Joe’s and Costco, Tilray anticipates this deal will expedite their debut into the U.S. hemp market.

“Retailers are going to want to go with suppliers that they know and trust. … And so we think that gives us an advantage in pursuing that opportunity in the U.S.,” said Tilray Chief Executive Brendan Kennedy in regard to the recently updated U.S. Farm Bill.

Tilray will likely take control of Manitoba Harvest’s manufacturing facilities in Canada, which currently sell products to around 16,000 stores throughout North America. Mantioba will also benefit from this acquisition since Tilray has the means to help them quickly expand their business.

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According to Chief Executive of Manitoba Harvest, Bill Chiasson, the company plans to launch a slew of CBD-infused products including tinctures, sprays, and soft gel supplements. Until now, they’ve been focused on hemp seed oil products like their hemp hearts and hemp granola.

At the moment, there’s nowhere to go but up in the growing hemp market. According to industry analysts, the U.S. market alone is expected to reach $2.6 billion in the next year – and half of this revenue will be from hemp-derived CBD products. “By mid-2019, some 50 per cent of convenience stores may carry a CBD product and potentially 70 per cent of total retail outlets will sell them by 2020,” mentioned Piper Jaffray & Co analyst Michael Lavery from Brightfield Group.

Check back with us for updates on this deal and others, and make sure to subscribe to our Weekly Newsletter for all the latest news and information about the cannabis industry.

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