Charlotte’s Web announces partnership with MLB

By Hank Schultz

- Last updated on GMT

©Getty Images - Nastco
©Getty Images - Nastco

Related tags CBD and Hemp

Charlotte’s Web has passed a significant milestone by becoming the first CBD brand to enter into a partnership with Major League Baseball. it’s the first such sponsorship agreement for any CBD with a major sports league.

Charlotte’s Web will now be known as the 'Official CBD of Major League Baseball.'  MLB had formally announced the possibility of allowing CBD brands into the sport in June of this year and had opened the door for individual clubs to form their own partnerships.

A key facet of the partnership is the NSF Certified Sport certification that the Charlotte’s Web products enjoy.  The program ensures that certified products are free from a long list of banned substances that helps ensure athletes can maintain their eligibility.

Level of comfort with certification

NSF has worked with MLB for years, so there was already a level of comfort there, said David Trosin, NSF’s Senior Managing Director, Health Sciences Global Certification.

“NSF interacts with MLB and a number of leagues and sporting organizations frequently.  NSF has been partnered with MLB for nearly two decades.  Our Certified for Sport program is the only certification accepted by MLB, and is required for any products entering team clubhouses,” ​he said.

Statements by Charlotte’s Web and MLB itself indicated that access to CBD products would be helpful for athletes to support recovery, manage game stress and the stress induced by frequent travel, and to help athletes sleep better and maintain mental focus.

“We are excited about the possibilities this partnership offers as CBD becomes a more widely adopted part of the health and wellness regimen of our players and fans,”​ said Noah Garden, chief revenue officer of MLB.  The length of the new agreement has not been specified in public statements, though it has been characterized as ‘multi-year.’

First of a line that will include gummies, topicals

NSF Certified for Sport is a product-centric certification.  The product in question is branded as Charlotte’s Web SPORT – Daily Edge, which is a broad-spectrum hemp-derived tincture.  The product, which includes an MLB logo on the package,  launched via Charlotte’s Web ecommerce platform yesterday. The new brand line is planned to eventually include gummies, topicals, and oral sprays.  The company announced a contest with World Series tickets as a prize to help publicized the launch.

While the certification is product centric, Trosin said there is a lot more that goes into it beyond just verifying batch test results, which is one of the reason getting the certification can take a significant amount of time.

Time-consuming process

“There are three steps to a product becoming NSF Certified for Sport.  The first step is that the manufacturing facility must be NSF GMP Certified before any product it manufacturers is eligible to be certified.  The NSF GMP certification requires an annual audit followed by responses to any corrective actions,”​ Trosin said.

“Once the audit is successfully completed the product goes through two levels of certification.  The first level is Certification to NSF ANSI 173 where we test the product annually to verify the product contains what is claimed and does not contain any harmful contaminants including microbiological contaminants and heavy metals.  The final phase of the Certified for Sport program is testing specific production runs for athletic banned substances (ABS),”​ he added.

While the new Charlotte’s Web product was the first to be accepted by any major sports league, it is not the first CBD product to carry the certification.  Trosin said several others have already gone through the process.

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