Celebratory, informative and with a healthy sense of realism regarding the challenges the CBD industry faces, it was an opportunity to network and learn what was happening on the global scene.
Held in 2019, the World CBD Awards (WCA) set the tone for what we thought would be an even bigger event in 2020.
Alas, the Covid-19 pandemic took hold and sadly, the event has had to be postponed twice since then due to the ongoing global lockdowns and travel restrictions.
But…. with the vaccination programme now in full swing, the organisers at WCA Towers have been busy making plans to return to Barcelona, the City of Gaudi, for a 4-day event from 12-15th July 2022!
Next year’s event will also see the introduction of a 1-day Expo featuring 110 stands where CBD brands from across the globe will have the opportunity to make contacts, showcase their products and do business. Tickets to the Expo are free and you can sign up here.
More than just a chance to network
Whilst the World CBD Awards provides a brilliant opportunity for industry insiders to meet and network, that’s only part of the story.
By the time July 2022 comes around, it will be three years since the last event but the Awards theme will remain ‘We can do better’ – a reminder that whilst CBD is now more mainstream than ever, there’s still much to be done to overcome some of the negative perceptions that still surround the category.
So the main objective is to shine a light on those brands, wherever in the world they may be, who are setting the standards in the global CBD industry.
We’re talking about the companies that are going the extra mile to be ethical, transparent and compliant and in doing so, are helping to show that CBD companies are working hard to build trust – both with regulatory bodies and the end consumer.
Awards Categories and Judging Process
In total, there are 30 Awards categories, which is a significant increase on the 13 from the inaugural Awards ceremony in 2019.
A sign of how much the CBD industry has grown, 2022 sees established categories such as Best CBD Innovation and Best CBD Flower joined by new ones including Best CBD Cosmetic, Best CBD Beverage and Best CBD Magazine. You can see the full list of categories here
If you’re going to be judging brands on ethics and transparency, it makes sense that you apply the same standards to the judging process and that’s what the WCA strive to do.
They’ve taken a lot of time to ensure the judging process is transparent which means that all products are tested by a 3rd party panel of independent judges made up of scientists, physicians and experts from the CBD/Hemp industry.
All products submitted for consideration must be sent in as non-branded samples and are given an ID code so that the judges have no way of knowing whose product they’re actually testing.
The scoring breakdown is then structured to correctly balance the pointing system so that the judgements are fair, honest and accurate.
Venue & Tickets
The 2022 Awards return to the beautiful city of Barcelona and will be held at the renowned Fira Centre, which is in the city centre and well-connected for public transport. Even better, the 4-star Catalonia Barcelona Plaza Hotel is next to the Centre so no need to worry about having to make your way to the event each day.
There are three ways you can enjoy the World CBD Awards, from the one-day Expo right the way through to a pass for the full event which includes the Expo, pre-dinner drinks reception, the live Awards ceremony and after-party.
World CBD Awards ticket options:
One aspect of the 2019 Awards we were particularly impressed with was the calibre of speakers and whilst the full speaker rota has yet to be confirmed, so far they include:
- Hannah Deacon – Executive Director of Maple Tree Consultancy – whose son, Alfie Dingley was the first patient in the UK to be prescribed medical cannabis.
- Dr Isaac Balbin – CEO of Parsl Pty Ltd – a platform that combines blockchain, Near Field Communication (NFC), and IoT to create track and trace technology that efficiently and accurately automates the compliance process whilst offering a range of business benefits at each stage of the supply chain.
- Ralf Kaiser – CEO of ICS – the industry leader in cannabis banking compliance software, innovative and cost-effective merchant payment solutions.
- Robert Jappie – Partner in the London office of law firm, Ince – a specialist in Life Sciences and Cannabis Regulation for the UK and Europe.
- Nate Erskine – Head Market Analyst, CBD-Intel – a one-stop shop that provides premium market and regulatory analysis, legal tracking, and quantitative data for the cannabidiol (CBD) sector worldwide.
In 2019, we were just a little sceptical when we booked our one-day pass to the Awards. At the end of the day, we regretted only having attended for the day, so if you get the chance, we highly recommend you book tickets for the full four-day 2022 Awards.
You’ll meet new people, get to stay in one of the World’s best cities, learn a lot about what’s happening in the global CBD market and of course, get to see the winners hold those awards aloft!