Playing Ball with CBD: MLB Opens Door to First Cannabis Sponsor

via Charlotte’s Web

Charlotte Figi who died at age 13 in 2020, probably wasn't much of a baseball fan. She suffered from an epileptic syndrome that was relieved by cannabis. The company that named a low-THC strain after her, Charlotte's Web (CW), now has a CBD deal with Major League Baseball (MLB), the league announced on October 12. 

"It's a game-changer for us," Charlotte's Web CEO Jacques Tortoroli told Yahoo. "It's a microphone and it's going to be really used for education - telling athletes, consumers and trainers what CBD is and what it isn't. It's not marijuana. It's hemp. That's an important part of what they want to get across and what we want to get across. It's huge for the industry and huge for Charlotte's Web."

The first product - Charlotte's Web SPORT Daily Edge - features the MLB logo on the bottle.

Charlotte’s Web’s new CBD tincture, Charlotte’s Web SPORT Daily Edge

Tortoroli further explained: "MLB and CW are changing the future of wellness for athletes and fans together. MLB's decision reflects what players and fans really want today by bringing botanical options to support the everyday lives of athletes and fans, particularly around mental wellness - like staying calm under pressure, recovering after exercise, maintaining the focus when it counts and sleeping like a champ. These are players that are on the road 162 games in a season, seven months a year. We and they really believe that having the balance between the mental health and the physical health is super important. That's why they chose to open up the category and do it with Charlotte's Web, which is the industry founder of CBD, and the leading company in CBD. We are uniquely qualified to do this."

Jared Stanley: "If these players do want to try CBD, this is the right stuff."

MLB is now a shareholder in Charlotte's Web as a result of the strategic partnership, which will connect CW to 180 million fans and MLB's social-media platforms. "It's not what I'd call a traditional sponsorship deal, but it truly is a partnership," Tortoroli noted.

CW was founded by seven Stanley Brothers in Colorado in 2014 ("all are still shareholders, all still engaged in the company in one direction or another," said Tortoroli). They received national attention when Dr. Sanjay Gupta visted the Figi family and the brothers for his first Weed special on CNN in 2013.

via MLB

Jared Stanley said about the high-profile partnership: "It'll take time to get the products into players' hands and create a true, authentic brand ambassador. Athletes aren't waiting, athletes want to access these products, which is why we commend MLB for recognizing that and trying to find a safe product that they can recommend. If these players do want to try CBD, this is the right stuff."

Tortoroli congratulated MLB  "for being at the forefront and the first mover," adding: "I think all the leagues will ultimately get there."

MLB is the first major sports league to embrace cannabis (in the form of CBD or hemp). "As a leader in the CBD category, with products that provide health and wellness benefits, Charlotte's Web is a welcome addition to the MLB family, representing a landmark partnership in baseball and sports," MLB chief revenue officer Noah Garden said in a statement.

CBD is generally used as a tincture, lotion or edible like a gummy. It can also be smoked like a joint. CBD strains generally contain small amounts of THC, but for MLB purposes THC content cannot exceed 0.3%. 


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Steve Bloom

Steve Bloom

Publisher of, former editor of High Times and Freedom Leaf and co-author of Pot Culture and Reefer Movie Madness.