The “Discovery” of CBD
We’re talking plant medicine here, so, of course the story of Care By Design started with a seed... of an idea. Cannabidiol (CBD) has been a part of the cannabis plant since forever. And it has a long history of being used to treat health problems. (Queen Victoria reportedly used CBD-rich cannabis for menstrual cramps in the 19th century!) But in recent years, many people had forgotten about cannabis’ therapeutic potential. Under pressure from a government that used the plant as fodder in a war against the people, cannabis had retreated to the shadows. Modern folks started to think that cannabis was all about the high.
But some scientists were paying attention, including Dr. Raphael Mechoulum, Dr. Ethan Russo, and others. Some journalists were also paying attention, in particular Martin Lee and Fred Gardner. In fact, they thought that the emerging understanding of CBD’s potential therapeutic benefit was so important that Lee took a break from being a journalist to evangelize its benefits, culminating in the founding of Project CBD.
But here was the problem: In the capital of cannabis—northern California’s Emerald Triangle—CBD had been nearly bred out of existence in favor of high THC cannabis. To be blunt, it was a casualty of the decades-long Drug War, which suppressed medical marijuana while leaving a robust black market fully intact.
So, Project CBD worked with labs to identify high CBD strains, secure clones, and drove around the state trying to persuade farmers to risk federal prosecution and allocate valuable land to grow a plant with no black-market value whatsoever. Lee found one taker, CannaCraft co-founder, Ned Fussell, who embraced the opportunity enthusiastically.
The People’s Remedy
But what to do with all that resin-rich, high CBD cannabis? Ned consulted with Dennis Hunter, who would go on to become CannaCraft’s co-founder. Dennis suggested extracting it. They then set about figuring out how to do just that. After several stops and starts, they settled upon a CO2-based method. But the existing equipment wasn’t quite right. So, they went off and built better equipment.
Once the CBD crew had a bunch of CBD oil, the question was: Now what?
That turned out to be a relatively easy question to answer. These high CBD cannabis strains were grown for patients. It was always about the patients. In part because many people on the team were patients... struggling with epilepsy, stroke, autism, cancer, pain, anxiety, and sleep disturbances.
What did patients need? Smoke-free options, precise and consistent dosing, clean product, and the ability to manage cannabis’ psychoactivity so as to comfortably harness the full therapeutic benefit of both CBD and THC.
Thus, was born the Care By Design ratios, and a growing number of modes of administration. We started with the sprays, of course. Today, we also offer gel caps and infused chocolate for those wanting a long-acting affect, vape cartridges for those needing immediate relief, topicals for those wanting pain relief with no mood-altering effects, and more.
Care By Design is personalized medicine for an optimal experience.
Feel Good Medicine
Here at Care By Design it really bugs us when people represent CBD as the “good” cannabinoid and THC as the “bad” cannabinoid. We don’t think THC should be demonized simply because it can make one high.
The fact of the matter is both CBD and THC have health benefits. So, too, do many of the lesser known cannabinoids, terpenes, and flavonoids found in cannabis. What’s more, these compounds tend to amplify one another’s effects, meaning they’re more powerful in combination than individually... just as mother nature intended.
Whole plant therapeutics also have a wider window of efficacy and are less likely to trigger side effects than isolates. In other words, they’re safer, less likely to cause side effects, and they work better... for a startling array of medical conditions. This is why we’re wholly committed to full spectrum, whole plant medicines.
We also don’t think that a dose of euphoria is a bad thing. Good fun is good medicine. After all stress, anxiety and depression are known to decrease immune function, disrupt sleep, and shorten life expectancy. So, if being high lifts your spirits, there’s nothing wrong with that. Our philosophy is medicine has to work, but “taking your medicine” doesn’t have to be unpleasant.
At the end of the day though, it’s not about what we think. It’s about what you need and want in a medicine. We provide a range of CBD-THC ratios so you can manage the effects based on your own personal preferences. And we offer a wide range of products so you can take that medicine in the manner that’s appropriate for you.
Care By Design is about using the whole plant to treat the whole person.
Happy Plants, Happy People
As we mentioned, we’re not into isolation. We don’t isolate the CBD molecule, and we don’t isolate our people, plants, or patients.
Healthy, happy medicine starts with healthy, happy plants, tended by healthy happy people. Our plants are grown where plants grow best, outdoors in the California sun, California strong. They’re grown in soil that’s carefully nourished using natural and organic nutrients, and they’re given time to come into full bloom naturally.
At its best, cannabis medicine is part of an active, healthy lifestyle. Other things also impact the health of one’s endocannabinoid system, like good nutrition, exercise, acupuncture, vitamin D, meditation, and a fulfilling social life.
We make every effort to show the same kindness to the people working at CannaCraft that we show to our plants. That means making sure that hard work is offset by fun time... Taco Tuesday, Paint & Puff Night, Gateway Comedy. Some of our most creative moments happen during our downtime together when we have time to talk.
We also never forget that we’re part of a bigger community. For us that means supporting regular CannaCraft Volunteer Days. It also means stepping up to provide resources and aid to the broader community when there’s a crisis. Take the 2017 wild fires, for example. We were happy to be able to provide temporary housing and supplies for dozens of displaced families, free medicine for hundreds of patients, and a temporary home for the Red Cross’ North Bay Disaster relief headquarters.
Cannabis is historically a community-based medicine. We’re a community-based company.
On the Horizon
So, what’s next for Care By Design?
An interesting thing happened when California legalized recreational use on January 1, 2018. There’s been a ground swell of interest in medical applications. It turns out that the line between medical and recreational use is not so clear cut after all. People from all different walks of life are dropping into their local dispensary—not to get loaded but to find out if cannabis can help with every day aches, pains and anxiety, as well as with more serious illnesses.
In short, they want to know if cannabis can help them feel better.
We want to know too. That’s why we’ll be staying in close touch with our patients in the coming year so we can learn what works best and improve our product line up accordingly.
We’ll also be working on exploring the applications of some of those lesser known cannabinoids. It’s high time that they too came out of the shadows.
This is our moment to shine.