In the latter half of 2019, public opinion began to shift on the safety of vaporizers for both tobacco and cannabis products. A rapid rise in cases of respiratory injuries linked to illegitimate vaporizer cartridges and a growing body of evidence on the effects of long-term vape use caused the vaporizer market to retract sharply, leaving many companies in the lurch and trying to figure out how to recover. Even companies producing “safe” e-liquids began developing alternative products in order to increase their offerings and reduce risks.
As first movers in the cannabis industry, HALO Labs Inc. made the decision to acquire an alternative to vaping, nasal inhalers. In a deal finalized in April of 2020, Halo acquired CBD nasal inhaler producer Nasalbinoid Natural Devices Corp. for CAD $5.1 million in Halo common shares.
The public turn away from the vaporizer market is primarily due to a rash of illnesses in 2019 linked to poorly regulated or illegally made THC vaporizer cartridges. The CDC estimates as of February 2020 have stated that there were just over 2,800 hospitalizations due to e-cigarette or vaping product use associated with lung injury (EVALI). The CDC’s website attributes these injuries to vitamin E acetate, an additive found in some e-cigarette or vaping products. Cases of EVALI peaked in September of 2019 and have been declining since. It’s assumed that the gradual decline in cases is due to various factors including a reduction in vape usage, increased law enforcement actions against illegal vape producers and the removal of vitamin E acetate from vape products.
Nasalbinoid offers Halo yet another pathway into the CBD and THC consumer market. Halo is adding personal nasal inhalers to its already impressive catalog of quality products, which includes DabTabs, shatter, wax, vape cartridges, and distillate for edibles. Why nasal inhalers, you might ask? We believe that novel delivery methods are the key to success in this market. Each CBD or THC consumption method has its benefits and ideal situations, so offering the broadest possible variety of consumption methods allows us to ensure that we have something for everyone. Edibles, for example, take longer than other consumption methods to metabolize. Still, because the digestive system processes them, the effects persist for hours longer than vaporizers or oil taken directly. Vaporizers have been popular because of their ease of use and portability. When vaped or smoked, CBD or THC take effect within minutes, and a vaporizers’ small size allows them to be used almost anywhere.
Nasal inhalers fill a similar niche to vaporizers, but with one crucial distinction. Vaporizers, smoking, and dabbing can all be taxing on the throat and lungs due to the inhalation of heated material. Personal nasal inhalers circumvent this issue, making them a promising option for today’s world. Intranasal consumption of THC and CBD is comparable to vaping or smoking, as the absorption rates in nasal cavity mucous membranes and the lungs are nearly the same. Measurements of cannabinoid levels in the bloodstream have shown that nasal inhalation is an effective delivery method, and bypassing the lungs avoids any danger of lung damage. With COVID-19 presenting such a threat to respiratory systems, concerned consumers will likely alter their traditional smoking and vaping habits. Halo hopes to promote personal nasal inhalers as an alternative to smoking and vaping, especially for those who experience discomfort or are looking for a vape substitute.
Nasalbinoid Natural Devices are currently sold in three discrete varieties: Tropical, Berry, and Cinnamint. While Nasalbinoid products are only available in CBD formulations at the moment, Halo plans to utilize its expertise in THC to expand Nasalbinoid products to include THC and combination CBD/THC inhalers. Future plans also include more scent options to increase the aromatherapy potential. Halo Labs CEO and co-founder Kiran Sidhu had this to say on the future of Nasalbinoid and Halo:
“I am pleased to announce the proposed acquisition of NND as another flagship product that will strengthen Halo’s overall product portfolio. Following the vaporizer crisis in late 2019 that decimated much of the vaporizer industry, Halo is continuing its path to enhance user experience through innovative products such as the Nasalbinoid Natural Devices.”
The purchase of Nasalbinoid comes after several other recent moves by Halo, including the acquisitions of delivery service Cannalift, multiple KushBar branded dispensaries, and the decision to reopen a bulk distillate manufacturing operation in Cathedral City, California. Halo intends to increase distillate production using a modern process that remediates distillate, live resin, fats, waxes, and terpenes. This proprietary remediation has proven successful at reducing pesticide presence in cannabis products to levels that allow for sale in the state of California. Halo currently has operations in Oregon, California, Nevada, and Lesotho with plans to expand vertically into Europe and Canada.
The acquisition of Nasalbinoid Natural Devices is just one step of Halo’s search for new and exciting products in the THC and CBD space. Nasalbinoid nasal inhalers join a lineup that includes other specialty products like DabTabs and the Accu-Dab. Keep an eye out for more revolutionary products from Halo!