If you plan to visit Laguna Beach in Orange County, California, to attend the Food & Wine Pairing Dinner on September 1, 2016, you may not be aware that the area is associated with culinary delights other than vino. Located midway between Los Angeles and San Diego, and stretching for over seven miles, Laguna Beach has lent its name to Laguna Blends, Inc. (CSE: LAG) (OTC: LAGBF) (LB6A.F), a network marketing company with products based on the nutritional health benefits derived from hemp. Just like wine, the consumption of hemp beverages is still an avant-garde pursuit. Nevertheless, its management team aims to make Laguna Blends a household name throughout North America within five years. In a recent conference call (http://nnw.fm/Ohrq0), CEO Stuart Gray and President Ray Grimm Jr. discuss the founding of Laguna Blends and its future prospects.
Gray founded Laguna Blends because, convinced of the health benefits of hemp, he discovered that there was a great deal of confusion and misunderstanding surrounding its properties. There was an obvious business opportunity in offering hemp-based ‘functional beverages’ to health-conscious consumers, but this was not a product you could simply display on grocery shelves. When hemp is mentioned, most people imagine dark seedy backstreet hideaways, similar to opium dens. Gray decided that consumers needed information that not only instructed about the benefits of hemp, but also dispelled the myths about the plant.
Hemp, like marijuana, is a variety of cannabis sativa and, consequently, is labeled with all the negativities associated with marijuana. However, hemp contains much less of the psychoactive ingredient, tetrahydrocannabinol (THC), than does marijuana. Both marijuana and hemp contain not just THC but cannabidiol (CBD), which acts antagonistically toward THC. In marijuana, it’s THC that gets the upper hand; in hemp, it’s CBD that wins. Ingesting hemp won’t get you high but it will get you healthy.
Hempseed typically contains over 30% oil and about 25% protein, with considerable amounts of dietary fiber, vitamins and minerals. Hempseed also has over 80% in polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), and is an exceptionally rich source of the two essential fatty acids (EFAs) linoleic acid and alpha-linolenic acid. These two fatty acids are ‘essential’ since the human body cannot produce them. We can only get them from what we eat. These two essential fatty acids are used to build more complex fats called omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids which, when taken in adequate amounts, lower the risk of cardiovascular diseases.
Fortunately, Gray’s background in network marketing had shown him how effective direct sales can be as an educational tool. He was introduced to network marketing when just 19 and rose to become the second highest producer in the company after just 18 months. He went on to a very successful business career spanning over 20 years, during which time he founded several highly successful media and promotional related companies. In addition, Gray has acted as a consultant to over 120 public and private companies.
Leveraging this expertise, Gray has built Laguna Blends as a multi-level marketing company that currently markets two hemp-based functional beverages. A ‘functional beverage’ is a non-alcoholic drink that caters to a specific need or health requirement. The segment is best known for its energy drinks. Due to the maturity of the carbonated soft drink sector, functional beverages have become the fastest growing segment of the beverage market.
Laguna’s flagship product is Caffe Protein Coffee which ‘is loaded in proteins: both whey and hemp.’ The other is Pro369, which combines HempOmega®, Hemp Protein and Ginseng and comes in four delicious flavors: Vanilla Caramel, Tropical Fruit, Mixed Berry and Chocolate Banana.
For more information, visit the company’s website at www.lagunablends.com
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