|Kolmar Pharma starts its CBD supplying business to deliver the raw ingredients imported through The Greenery and supply it to cosmetic manufacturers. / Korea Times file|
By Jung Hae-myoung
Kolmar Pharma, a contract manufacturing organization (CMO) under Kolmar Korea Holdings, said it will start supplying cannabidiol (CBD), an active ingredient in cannabis, to cosmetics manufacturing companies in Korea, joining hands with The Greenery, the only company that imports cannabis oil. This is the first CBD business to be launched here after the government permitted cannabis use for medical purposes.
The company signed an exclusive contract with The Greenery recently, and will deliver CBD raw materials to the cosmetics manufacturers from February. The Greenery will import CBD materials from Colorado in the U.S., and hand them over to Kolmar Pharma to examine and supply to manufacturers. The products will take about three months to appear on shelves.
Although marijuana is still deemed an illegal drug here, medical use became legal after a revised law regarding medical marijuana for self-treatment passed the National Assembly in Nov. 2018.
Cannabinoids that are extracted from hemp fall under two categories ― cannabidiol, which leads to physical and psychological relaxation and tetrahydrocannabidiol (THC) that induces a "high." Current law in Korea allows importing CBD materials extracted from hemp seeds, stems and roots that do not contain any THC.
The Greenery will extract oil from naturally-dried fully-grown hemp stems that already have low THC content in order to make 100 percent pure CBD oil. Pure CBD helps easing symptoms of various illnesses such as separation anxiety, epilepsy, and dementia.
In other countries, such as the U.S., there is active research and product development on CBD, for effective treatment of psoriasis, atopy, acne, and dermatalgia. According to Korea Trade-Investment Promotion Agency (KOTRA), there are cosmetic products, shampoos, lip balms, lotions, drinks and jellies with CBD content sold in America.
"CBD cosmetic products will be manufactured from this year after receiving approval from the ministry of food and drug safety. It will be very effective for treating psoriasis by shortening the healing period," Lee Jae-yeol, the CEO of The Greenery said.
"In other countries, CBD is distributed as food products, because it is more effective when consumed rather than applied to the skin," Lee said.
In November last year, The Greenery also made a business agreement with "Pet territory," a nutrition supplement company for pets, to provide animal-oriented CBD products.
It is also planning to sell drinks containing coconut and CBD oil in 2021, and possibly expand the business to functional food products by 2022.