Creso Pharma has formally launched its new beer venture to capitalise on the fast-growing cannabis and hemp-derived beverage markets.

The joint venture with Baltic Beer Company and LGC Capital will develop and commercialise a range of cannabis and hemp-derived alcoholic and non-alcoholic beverages.

The drinks will contain ingredients, seeds, extracts and terpenes from hemp and cannabis plants, but the first brews will be a premium four-beer range containing cannabis terpene mixes as well as other innovative ingredients.

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.

Expertise and global reach

Creso (ASX:CPH) and LGC will initially invest €150,000 ($228,586) in the venture, CLV Frontier Brands. Baltic Beer Company will provide the equivalent in services.

“CLV combines Creso Pharma’s cannabis expertise with the strong global reach of Baltic Beer and the financial strength and global network of LGC Capital,” said Creso Pharma chief Dr Miri Halperin Wernli.

Creso Pharma is well -placed to take advantage of the booming cannabis market, says co-founder Dr Miri Halperin Wernli.
Creso Pharma is well-placed to take advantage of the booming cannabis market, says CEO and Co-Founder Dr Miri Halperin Wernli.

“We are leaders in cannabis innovation, developing hemp and cannabis derived therapeutic and lifestyle products and are committed to becoming a leading global player in the cannabis space through disruptive efficiency and innovation.

“Our approach is to partner with industry and technology leaders to develop and commercialise innovative products which will capture the consumers’ senses and imagination. Entering the cannabis derived beverages market exemplifies this approach and will build on our scientific and technical expertise as well as on our vast geographical reach for commercialisation.”

Best-in-class brewing

Baltic Beer Company director Alex Klaos said the beer would be brewed at a state-of-the-art test facility in Tallinn, Estonia.

CLV is planning to ship the first test batch of an initial four beer range in April or May, with commercial sales to start in the following quarter.

The partners have identified potential distributors in Europe, far East Asia, Central and Latin America, Canada, Africa, Australia and New Zealand, and plan to expand CLV’s portfolio into other alcoholic and non- alcoholic beverages.

Riding the cannabis wave

The launch of CLV comes at a time when there is growing interest in the cannabis and hemp-derived beverage market.

“LGC recognised the value of this joint venture immediately,” said LGC chief John McMullen.

“We fully expect the beverages we develop will be extremely well received. The worldwide commercialisation will be aggressive and it hopefully will have a significant impact on the revenue stream for all parties involved.”

In October 2017, global beverage conglomerate Constellation Brands paid $US200 million to take a 9.9 per cent stake in cannabis group, Canopy Growth, in order to develop and market cannabis-infused drinks.

Meanwhile, the global craft beer market predicted to grow at a CAGR of 11.04 per cent between 2017 and 2022, with the European, Middle East and African markets expected to reach $US38.4 billion in 2021.

The craft beer market in the APAC region is also growing strongly at a CAGR of 16.14 per cent.

CLV’s board comprises Dr Halperin Wernli, Mr McMullen and Mr Klaos, whose role will be to oversee the day-to-day operations of the new entity to ensure product development, growth targets, and distribution reach is achieved.


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