As part of our second annual CBD Issue, Marijuana Venture presents the 2020 CBD Awards for excellence in branding, packaging and product development.
The Branding & Packaging Awards were determined by a panel of six judges: Ardent Cannabis founder and president Shanel Lindsay, Marijuana Venture art director Chloe Mehring, Hemp Connoisseur CEO David Maddalena, Marijuana Venture sales manager Lisa Smith, MJ Lifestyle magazine founder and chief creative Jennifer Skog, Dope Magazine and Farechild co-founder David Tran and Duayne Zeigler, a former buyer for Costco and former president of Topics Entertainment.
Branding & Packaging Awards were presented to CBD brands in five categories; Lotions, Consumables, Tinctures, Balms and Bath Products.
We also honored five companies with the Publisher’s Choice Awards, selected by Marijuana Venture publisher Greg James, who has more than 25 years of experience creating and selling software and media products to major retail chains, including Costco, Best Buy and Target.
The Publisher’s Choice Award categories are: Best New Product, Best Women’s Line, Best Innovation, Best Pet Line and General Excellence.
First place: Prima
“Elevated and refined.” Judges raved about Prima’s color palette and high-end look, with a well-executed tie-in between the classic front of the package and the more whimsical, colorful side panels. “The packaging resembles high-quality face oil that my wife uses daily,” one judge said.
Runner up: High Falls Hemp
High Falls Hemp scored high marks for not using wasteful exterior packaging: “I don’t have to wonder what’s inside the box,” one judge said.
First place: Mr. Moxey’s Mints
Mr. Moxey’s Mints was the most resounding winner of any category in Marijuana Venture’s CBD awards. Five of the six judges named the brand as the best in breed; the one outlier gave it second place.
The classic, hard-candy tins give the mint-makers the look of a company that’s been around for a while — and will continue to be on store shelves for years to come. The branding also allows the company to change colors with ease for different SKUs. “Creative and recognizable.” “Beautiful and simple.” “Convenient and portable.” “Clean.”
Clean, simple and to the point; the “stick-figure” logo provides a nice touch.
First place: Simpurity
Simpurity, a relative newcomer in the world of CBD brands, took top honors in the tincture category, due to its clean design, easy-to-read packaging and bright, friendly colors. And multiple judges said the brand name says it all: “Simple and Pure.”
Runner-up: Reed’s Remedies
Clear messaging was the strength of the Reed’s brand: “It reads ‘calm’ on the package, which is what I might want it for.”
First Place: Prima
Prima was the lone brand to win first-place awards in two categories, as the company’s balms captured judges’ eyes for many of the same reasons as they liked the lotion. The subtle use of gold foil gives it “a feel of understated luxury,” said one judge.
Runner-Up: Humble Flower
“I am drawn to their clean packaging; it appears upscale and more expensive, which makes me think higher quality.”
Winner: CBD for Life
Judges liked the brand’s clean, professional design and unisex appeal. The look is modern and targets a broad market, and the messaging is easy to read.
While judges liked the simplicity of the design, one knock was that the wording was a bit hard to read with the white lettering against a light green background.
Publisher’s Choice Awards
Best New Product
When I got the Evielab CBD Pearls, I was blown away. The presentation and overall design are a tour de force in the CBD category. The packaging design is very clean, yet elegant, and reminds me of something Steve Jobs would have approved were he in the cannabis space. Definitely the best new product. — Greg James
Best Women’s Line
I loved the copper-colored foil treatment used by Empower on its Luxe Collection. It had a very strong visual impact, which was especially true when used on the big bath salts bag. My guess is that the use of foil will really elevate Empower sales and resonate with consumers. — Greg James
The CBD Floaters by SoNo 1420 CBD are a unique concept, and something that does not follow the “me too” path so many others have gone down. It’s a smart, innovative product — and they’re really tasty. – Greg James
Best Pet Line
Healthy Roots has been consistent from day one in this business, and CEO Liz Merritt has a knack for creating great products that are ahead of the curve. The pet category is a big one, and Healthy Roots has created a great line look for this category. — Greg James
Lazarus Naturals gets the award for consistency and overall excellence. It was one of the first companies in the CBD space, and its product line has consistently been a top seller at retail. This should come as no surprise as Lazarus combines great value with a strong message and clean packaging. — Greg James