We’re excited to introduce you to the always interesting and insightful Kristy Redmon. We hope you’ll enjoy our conversation with Kristy below.
Hi Kristy, thanks for joining us today. Let’s start with what makes profitability in your industry a challenge – what would you say is the biggest challenge?
Hi and thank you for having me. I appreciate the opportunity to visit with you. I believe that the retail marketing and advertising of hemp products is one of the main challenges our industry faces today. Unfortunately, the FDA is still in limbo about how to regulate industrial hemp even though it isn’t psychoactive. Hemp companies are not allowed legally to say what their products are used for while there are numerous scientific studies acknowledging the benefits of cannabinoids for the treatment of pain, inflammation, anxiety, seizures, and numerous other conditions.
Add to that, the online platforms that small businesses regularly utilize such as Amazon, Google, Facebook, and Instagram have very strict guidelines around hemp and many don’t allow the sale or advertising of CBD hemp at all. This severely limits our ability to get in front of consumers and communicate a straightforward message. In turn, we’ve learned to be creative in our marketing approach and also to appreciate the true value in word of mouth advertising.
Kristy, before we move on to more of these sorts of questions, can you take some time to bring our readers up to speed on you and what you do?
I’m a pharmacist and I worked in the community pharmacy setting for over 20 years. After seeing the devastation of the opioid crisis, I began searching for non-addictive alternatives for pain relief. I started compounding cannabis and hemp preparations at the request of friends and family and was immediately amazed at the power of cannabinoids for pain, sleep, and anxiety. In 2015, I decided to step away from pharmacy practice and answer to a new calling.
Windy Hill Hemp is our family owned and operated industrial hemp farm in Franktown, CO. We grow, process, and produce full-spectrum solventless CBD Hemp products. Our true farm to market approach is what I’m most proud of. I love it that I can hold any of our products in my hand and say that we grew this hemp using organic processes, we extracted it without solvents, I formulated it, and we produced it all by ourselves.
Our mission is to provide a premium artisanal product that is consistent, tested, traceable, and trustworthy. We believe it’s our commitment to organic cultivation and our exclusive use of solventless CBD rosin that is the key to our award-winning products.
Let’s talk about resilience next – do you have a story you can share with us?
The Covid-19 pandemic has been tough on all small businesses including the industrial hemp industry in Colorado. Many hemp farms and CBD manufacturers have been forced to close their doors. We’ve been fortunate to have seen this coming in early 2020 and immediately began scaling back in certain areas and managing costs to help weather the storm.
We won 1st Place in the Best Topicals division for our CBD Lip Balms at the first High Times Hemp Cup in 2020. This prestigious award really helped put our name on the map in our industry and assisted us with sales during these difficult times.
As a family owned business, we aren’t beholden to investors, so we’re able to respond to the market and quickly adapt to changing circumstances. We believe this combination of creating great award-winning products and effectively managing operating costs is why we’re still here today.
Any stories or insights that might help us understand how you’ve built such a strong reputation?
I think several things have assisted us in building a good reputation within our market. First, the fact that our company is owned and operated by a pharmacist brings a certain level of professionalism and trust to our brand. Second, our business model is a true farm to market operation which provides accountability along the supply chain and gives customers peace of mind. Third, our belief in growing organically and only using solventless CBD rosin in our products demonstrates our commitment to quality. Last, and most important, our customers are fiercely loyal and particularly loud about it!