A day after raising $17.5 million to fund global expansion, Creso Pharma has announced a joint venture to brew cannabis and hemp-derived beverages — including a range of premium beers.

Creso Pharma (ASX:CPH) is working with Canadian cannabis investor LGC Capital and British brewer Baltic Beer Company to develop “a bespoke portfolio of cannabis and hemp-derived alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages infused with various cannabis and hemp-derived ingredients”.

Baltic Beer is best known as the producer of multi-award-winning Estonian pilsener Viru.

“Through the vast geographic reach of the three parties, which spans a number of continents, future commercial and distribution partners have already been identified and are eagerly anticipating this innovative new range of drinks,” said Creso Pharma’s CEO and Co-Founder, Dr Halperin Wernli.

Research and development has already started in Switzerland, Estonia and the UK on a premium craft beer range infused with “terpenes” which mimic the oils that give cannabis and hemp their distinctive aroma.

Terpenes are organic, fragrant oils found in plants that carry flavour and aroma. The terpenes used in the beer will carry the characteristic odour and aroma of cannabis but they won’t contain THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) — the compound that gets you high — or any other cannabinoids.

The drinks will combine seeds, various plant extracts and unique terpene mixes “mimicking hemp and cannabis plant fragrances and aromas”.

Creso will work with the makers of Estonia’s famous VIRU beer to brew cannabis-infused beer.

That means regulatory restrictions won’t apply — allowing the same distribution as Baltic’s acclaimed Viru Beer.

“The international hemp and cannabis infused beverage market is growing at astonishing rates and we are committed to becoming an active player in this exciting new market,” LGC Capital’s founder and Co-Chairman David Lenigas said.

“Viru is already exporting their award-winning beer to many countries around the world, and with Creso Pharma’s scientific expertise, we look forward to working actively to create something of real value.”

Potential distribution partners have been identified in Europe, Far East Asia, central and Latin America, Canada, and Africa.

Australians will also have the chance to taste cannabis-infused beer, following given changes to hemp-seed foods laws earlier this month.

Joint venture partner LGC Capital says the cannabis-beverage industry, like medicinal cannabis — is expanding rapidly.

‘Emerging and growing industry’

“The cannabis infused beverage industry is an emerging and growing industry and we see a lot of potential value in this market,” said LGC Capital chief executive John McMullen.

“We also note Constellation Brands’ (NYSE:STZ) recent minority stake in Canada-based Canopy Growth Corporation which clearly signals real interest in this sector from much larger, established and more traditional business.”

Today’s announcement follows a heavily over-subscribed $17.5 million capital raising that Creso closed this week.

Creso will use the funds to fast-track construction of its Canadian growing facility and pursue acquisitions.

Cannabis is the hottest category on the ASX at the moment, propelled by a flurry of regulatory changes and news flow.

Stocks such as Creso with exposure to Canada’s booming cannabis market are doing particularly well. Creso shares have doubled in price since October.

Creso also announced yesterday it had partnered with Swiss chocolate-maker Aeschbach Chocolatier (“Aeschbach”), to develop a cannabis-flavoured terpene infused premium chocolate range for global distribution.


This special report is brought to you by Creso Pharma.

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