The 2018 Farm Bill boosted the cannabis industry in allowing hemp to be cultivated more broadly, but there is still a lack of sophistication, transparency, and reliability in the hemp supply chain. After being fed up with the absence of reliable businesses, Open Book Extracts decided to open up their own company and be the catalyst driver for establishing a trustworthy industry.
Top Notch Industry Standards
Founded in 2019, Open Book Extracts is comprised of a dream team including a 20-year PhD Food scientist from Cornell, two PhD formulation and research scientists, three Masters Chemists with pharmaceutical backgrounds, and a QC Manager with a 15-year career at GlaxoSmithKline, as well as leaders from the cannabis and tech sectors along with local aces from Roxboro, North Carolina, home to their world-class cGMP facility. They make sure all of their employees come armed with the resources to develop proprietary methods of production and refinement to exceed industry standards.
“We chose North Carolina for the very rich and expert agricultural heritage in the region, as well as to be able to have access to incredible talents to recruit our team of quality professionals,” Nicole Brown, Chief Innovation Officer of Open Book Extracts, said. “With a 76,000 square foot cGMP certified building, we are a total solutions provider for all things related to cannabis. We produce raw materials and manufacture over 22 raw ingredients alone to support the industry, so we have the service to develop all types of products from tinctures and soft gels to gummies and pet products.”
Custom Formulations and Diverse Form Factors
Open Book Extracts builds formulations designed to provide different health and wellness benefits, combining their portfolio of pure cannabinoids in precise ratios, and adding terpenes, essential oils, adaptogens, vitamins, and nutrients to develop unique formulations. This helps to reliably target either a particular medical ailment or bring about a desired effect. Ranging from different forms as what Nicole mentioned before to cutting edge products such as oral dissolving films, powder drink blends and Easysnaps, this brand offers the most diverse portfolio of finished goods that makes them stand out from other companies.
According to Brown, there are three things that make Open Book Extracts stand out: The first is quality and that attention to quality from every level of the supply chain, going back to cultivation and production of raw materials to the formation of their products. The second is all about efficacy and focusing not only on great quality, but also combining different cannabinoids, dosing them the right way, and combining different ingredients to target different effects, such as for sleep or anxiety relief. The third is innovation — not just in thinking about where the market is today, but really getting the true potential from the way their products behave, to their formulation, taste and experience, and creating the next generation of products.
Helping Customers in Multiple Different Ways
“One of the best parts about working in this industry is the health and wellness ingredients,” Brown said. “Some of those outcomes that are more established and well known, when it comes to CBD in particular, are relieving stress and anxiety. As new products come to the market, such as CBN to help you sleep better, people come back and say that they have tried every product on the market but ours has helped them so much. It is definitely a great anecdote to hear, and we can back that up with data and know why it is happening.”
Open Book Extracts is constantly trying new and innovative formulations with ingredients to help reach more customers and help to aid some of their ailments. The company has even seen positive outcomes with one of the rare cannabinoids they produce, which is known for being quite energizing and stimulating, but women have said this product actually helps them with menopause symptoms. They continue to learn and grow as a brand by receiving client feedback, which ultimately allows them to formulate new creations, put them through different tests and studies to perfect them, and help the industry.
Certifications & Compliance
Open Book Extract’s robust quality control program touches all aspects of their supply chain and serves as the foundation for every international quality assurance standard demanded by both domestic and global clients. From soil-to-oil, their chain of custody provides visibility into their vertically-integrated supply chain. In pursuit of purity, they maintain the highest levels of testing, developing systems, and training suppliers and teams. This is to assure the ultimate quality assurance, allowing them to produce high quality products.
Even though the company seems like they have all of the processes perfected for hemp product creation, it was a very difficult road to get here. Brown says one of the biggest challenges she has come across in helping to run a business is that there is no guidance or playbooks in the industry for how to build a facility or provide any testing protocols.
“We developed and applied standards to ourselves that were the highest standards we could imagine. We looked at all the evidence from different states and countries to establish our own playbook. When you come to a market and try to operate in an industry without that guidance is quite challenging, but in those challenges, it has been an opportunity to see the light and help clients be compliant and develop consistent products that will guarantee success in the market,” Brown said.