Anyone looking to incorporate CBD into their wellness routine, but who may also not like the taste of Hemp, should consider honey-infused CBD!
In this episode, Renee Kirwan and Colleen McArthey of Florida Honey Pot Farms join to discuss their CBD-infused honey products. Renee and Colleen explore the wellness benefits of incorporating CBD into honey and the importance of engaging in natural solutions for beekeeping. Listen in to hear their vision for the company, as well as some insights into protecting honey bees.
Insights From The Episode
- How CBD’s pain relief properties helped Renee after a horseback fall, and how this encouraged the creation of their company.
- Florida Honey Pot Farms seven main formulations utilizing terpenes, including products with and without CBD.
- How Florida Honey Pot Farms cares for their honey bees, and the value of partnering with ethical honey producers and companies.
- The drive to initiate regenerative agriculture by properly maintaining the hives and striving for 100% USA honey.
- Why Florida Honey Pot Farms strives to source for the best quality broad-spectrum CBD to use in their honey products.
- How they reach consumers with their 100% raw honey, as well as some of the misconceptions about CBD from consumers.
- What the future holds for Florida Honey Pot Farms, including the very popular single-serve packets and the soon-to-be-launched “bee immune” and “bee fluid” packets.
Resources & Links From The Episode
- Sustainable Beekeeping, Skills and Knowledge List – UNH Cooperative Extension.
- What are Terpenes? – Florida Honey Pot Farms.
- What is a Certificate of Analysis? – Charlotte’s Web.
- Why Regenerative Agriculture? – Regeneration Agriculture.
Connect With The Guests
- Florida Honey Pot Farms (website)
- Florida Honey Pot Farms on Facebook
- Florida Honey Pot Farms on Instagram
- Florida Honey Pot Farms on LinkedIn
About Florida Honey Pot Farms
“Taste the difference empowered and passionate women make when an ancient superfood meets cutting edge plant science! Using only raw 100% USA honey, Florida Honey Pot Farms infuses botanical terpenes resulting in a healthy and flavorful profile. Terpenes are the wonderful aromatic compounds found in many plants that promote health and well-being. Whether you are looking to relieve issues associated with normal daily exercise, emotional support balance, or fortify your body’s natural defensive line, there is a formula created just for you, including CBD infused options!”
Scott: Hey, what’s up everyone? Scott here and welcome to another great episode of ”The CBD Guide” podcast. I’m super excited about this one because we’re gonna be talking about something that is pretty delicious, honey. And we’re gonna be talking about honey that has been infused with CBD, and featured on the show today is two women from a company called Florida Honey Pot Farms, which produces and sells CBD infused honey, as well as honey with terpenes. I have Renee Kirwan, who is the founder of Honey Pot Farms, as well as Colleen McCarthy, who is the general manager on the show. And we’re so lucky to have them both. Colleen, Renee, welcome to the show.
Renee: Oh, it’s great to be here, Scott. Thank you for having Colleen and myself on today.
Colleen: Thank you. We’re so happy to be here.
Scott: Absolutely. And thank you guys for joining us. I’m really excited to talk about what you guys do and your products, but I always like to kick it off with just this big question, because, you know, CBD hasn’t been around that long in the grand scheme of things in terms of, you know, as a major industry. So I’m curious, how did you first discover CBD and realize it could offer so many potential benefits for folks?
Renee: Well, that’s actually a really interesting question. It’s basically how did it all begin? And it actually, my backstory began about six years ago. I love horses. I ride, I train horses, I’ve done it most of my life. And six years ago, I was on a beautiful trail ride with friends, and unfortunately, a really large truck kind of came in close, spook the horses. They took off down this hard asphalt road. And I knew that I pretty much had to emergency dismount. In other words, I had to get off and going at that rate of speed, yeah, unforgiving to my right hip. And so really was after a year, still in pretty significant pain. And, you know, my background is Chinese medicine, alternative health. I love studying about, you know, plant medicines of all sorts, and yet I was finding no relief. I wasn’t getting any sleep. And my world was getting really, really small. It was difficult to get out of a chair.
And this is after being physically active, you know, personal trainer for years. And it was really a dear friend who suggested CBD, and it really kind of stopped me in my tracks because I thought, why hadn’t I thought about CBD? So I ran out, I grabbed myself a tincture and I tell you, Scott, that night I had blissful sleep. And for all of us, who’ve experienced chronic pain, it’s so debilitating. And at nighttime, when we should be getting good rest to help heal our bodies, I would just be tossing and turning all night.
So here I am now with this new amazing plant that just is pretty much changed my life overnight. Felt like I needed to scream from the mountain tops over all the amazing benefits, not just, you know, that it allowed me to sleep and it took care of all that breakthrough pain, but I noticed all these other benefits as well. So that was really the impetus to why we’re here today, because I really wanted to share the information. I’m a bit of an entrepreneur. So I tell you a great night’s sleep fled to Florida Honey Pot Farms and, you know, I became a believer at that point.
Scott: I love it. And what a powerful story and one that a lot of folks I’m sure out there who have tried CBD can relate to in terms of the benefits there. So, okay, so you discover CBD, it helps you through this and you mentioned, you know, you’ve got this entrepreneurial gene, you know, you’ve got that going. What’s the story then behind Florida Honey Pot Farms, what’s the inspiration for saying, okay. CBD is awesome. Now let’s infuse some honey with it?
Renee: Absolutely. So yeah, I have to admit Florida Honey Pot Farms has absolutely been my biggest labor of love. As a farmer and someone who really believes in all of the many different alternative healthcare options available today, I immediately wanted to jump on the CBD bandwagon. I really thought that, you know, CBD was something I wanted to personally get behind. Hemp is really an incredible multitasking plant. We all know it’s quickly becoming a household staple. Why? Well, because it works and CBD benefits are making headlines. We see more and different types of CBD offered in grocery stores. I see it online. It might be in your favorite restaurant or even a wellness market. There’s so many types of CBD being used in so many different products. That’s a good thing and a bad thing. I think it’s almost becoming overwhelming to try and choose the right type of CBD for you.
You know, we have capsules, we have topical sprays, transdermal patches, oils, tinctures and of course, you know, we have the infamous gummies. Well, there’s plenty of choices, you know, when you’re using quality CBD, that makes me happy. But with so much to choose from a lot of times in talking to people, I noticed they would talk about how they didn’t like that hemp tastes that you would find in tinctures, or maybe they felt it too, and just difficult, hard on a day-to-day.
So for all of those benefits of CBD, but then, you know, for those people who didn’t necessarily like the taste that went along with it, I wanted to create a delicious new honey option. So really, that’s where it all began. We opened our doors in September of 2019, and really haven’t looked back because CBD honey, it’s a naturally sweet way to consume CBD.
You know, we’ve been touted as the delicious tasting new kid on the block, if you will, because it’s really easy to consume, it has additional wellness benefits of honey and itself is considered, you know, honey is the original, super food. We know it has antibacterial, antioxidant and even has immune-boosting benefits. So when you combine it with the CBD, you’re taking two really powerful, natural ingredients that can both help the mind and the body. And I think our consumers agree. I mean, it tastes delicious and it’s very, very easy to incorporate in a daily lifestyle. And that’s really what we believe Florida Honey Pot Farms is. First and foremost, we’re a lifestyle company trying to use simple ingredients that come from the ground, from the bees and you can’t get any better than that.
Scott: I love it. And yeah, you make a really great point about how there’s a lot of people that don’t really like that hempy taste of things. And then when you talk about honey, which, you know, who doesn’t love a little bit of honey, right? You talk about all the benefits of that and then you kind of combine these two then you have yourself a really, an incredible business and product there and really lifestyle brand, as you said. So, okay, you have a few different products and I wanna go into these because I was poking around and they all seemed very interesting. So you have Bee Fit Honey, Bee Immune Honey, Bee Chill Honey, and Bee Fluid Honey. What are maybe some of the key differences or benefits for these kinds of products and what tends to be maybe your most popular that your customers keep coming back for?
Colleen: That’s a great question. We’ve taken considerable time and resources and capital to create specific proprietary formulas that address certain needs. And in order to do this, we’ve had to really do some deep research on different terpenes, what are their benefits? Where can we source them? How consistently can we source them? What happens when you start combining different terpenes together? What is that flavor profile create?
So in doing all of this in our production facility, we’ve been able to proudly develop seven proprietary formulas using our terpene. Bee Chill is kind of our main star, if you will, not only because of its amazing flavor profile, but it really helps maintain physical and mental well-being through normal, emotional balance support and a sense of relaxation. So you’re not only getting that from the CBD, but the terpenes that we’ve chosen to infuse in that blend as well.
Bee Immune is probably our most timely product. This is to fortify your body’s natural defensive line and support your all-day wellness. So again, not only the immunity properties that are already naturally found within honey, finding terpenes that also address immunity and infusing those into the honey as well. We’ve also developed Bee Fluid. This is going to help relieve any issues that are associated with normal daily exercise and activity.
We’ve got Bee Fit that helps promote increased energy and endurance associated with, again, normal daily exercise. Another one that we focused on is one that’s for mental vitality and energizing the mind. So Bee Focused was developed for more mental support. And then we have another formula Bee Relieved. This supports physical activity throughout the day. As, you know, you’re kind of getting into your later afternoon, maybe another teaspoon full of the Bee Relieved is something that’s gonna help support you in throughout that afternoon.
And then our newest formula that we have is just a terpene-only infused honey. A lot of people associate the CBD with more calming and meditative properties where the terpenes that we’ve used in Bee Energized promote endurance and increased energy, but we don’t infuse with any caffeine or stimulants or artificial ingredients. So this was kind of designed to maybe help support our athletes who are out for a bike ride, wanna start the morning with something like a Bee Energized. And then when they come back from their bike ride, follow up with one of the formulas that have CBD in it.
Scott: Wow. So a lot of different products and uses and formulations that really can fit into, again, that lifestyle as Renee was pointing out and help people in a lot of different ways. You were talking at the end there about how you have some honey that is non-CBD, it’s just terpenes. What’s the story behind, I guess, terpenes themselves and why they’re, you know, why you include that in your honey and in fact exclusively? Like why terpenes?
Colleen: Yes. So one of our key differences is that we are using those specific terpenes to target certain needs. And science is just beginning to explore the numerous health and wellness benefits associated with terpene. And throughout our creating of the proprietary formulas, it just made sense to us to incorporate these plants and their benefits into our honey.
So specifically, what are terpenes? Well, by definition, they’re aromatic compounds found in many plants and even some animals. Terpenes are found in high concentrations within the cannabis plant. So terpenes the other that you might be familiar with, might be if you’re walking through the forest and you smell pine, that pinene is a terpene. When you’re smelling a piece of fruit, a lemon, that lemon smell, that citrus, that’s terpene.
Another popular terpene that a lot of people think of is lavender. So the lavender plant, you can probably smell it already, that relaxing scent that we’re all familiar with. It comes in everything from fabric softener to candles. What you’re actually smelling is the terpene linalool. And we’ve taken linalool, for example, as one of the terpenes that we’ve infused into Bee Chill. So when you taste Bee Chill and let it kind of roll off your tongue and as you’re swallowing it, you can get that lavender finish at the very end and can actually taste that.
Scott: That’s incredible. So leveraging the benefits already in these terpenes, you know, depending on the product you bring CBD into the equation, into the formula, and you’re really kind of stacking the benefits at that point. So I think that’s so powerful. We’ve talked about the products, but you have an entire farm with bees producing your honey. I’m curious I think bees we’ve learned more and more just how critical they are to our world and I find bees are just fascinating creatures. How many colonies or hives do you have, roughly? What’s the high-level view of how you care for your bees and ensure that they produce the best quality, honey?
Renee: That’s a really, really good question and something I’m really, really passionate about, Scott. So first off I have to say, I’m really proud of Florida Honey Pot Farms for their deep desire to give back to the honey bee because as most everyone knows bees are in need of our help and we’re over spraying with our pesticides and we have now a lack of land for them to forage. So the bees are losing their natural habitat and their immunity. And I knew going into it that I wanted to be actively involved in finding solutions, but solutions naturally. And because like our own overly prescribed use of antibiotics, we see that bees are also getting over-medicated. And, you know, this is basically just slapping a Band-Aid on the host of diseases and pests that unfortunately are currently afflicting them.
So Florida Honey Pot Farms is partnering with pollinator, not for profits and they’re incorporating university guidance on ways to help fortify the honeybee immunity. We’re using our own 10 hives here at the farm and the production facility to just really visually examine them and their health. And we’re seeing that CBD might actually help. So we’re really, really excited about this. We’re just in the beginning stages, we’ve grown through great lengths to partner with only the very most ethical of commercial beekeepers and honey producers who believe as we do and doing things the right way. And in the case of the bees, our way is the gentle way.
So never, ever, ever are we spraying here and we are initiating regenerative agriculture, which is really exciting because now we can focus on the native plants, which will help all the pollinators, not just our honeybee, but the native bees and birds, bats, and butterflies. You see them everywhere here. And I think what a wonderful place to work. And I hope that maybe we can be an example to other companies that can do simple things and can really make their outfit as sustainable as possible.
So, you know, we really work with experienced beekeepers that diligently work hard to properly maintain the hives. And in turn, we get the very best artisanal honey. It’s always 100% USA honey, and we’re proud. We’re proud that we can put USA beekeepers back to work because it’s really, really hard for them to compete with countries who, often, they adulterate their honey, they blend it, they add fillers. They might even add corn syrup. And this is to keep costs down. Most consumers don’t know this. Some are, I mean, you might’ve seen a Netflix show or two kind of highlighting where we’re at with our bee problem and it’s a serious problem. So we’re very much about standing up for the bees and their keepers. And we demand that we protect and ensure our honey is made by healthy, happy bees.
Scott: I mean, it’s so powerful Renee and the bees give it back to you, right? If you take care of them, they give it back to you with just wonderful honey, right?
Renee: Oh yeah. They’re incredible. You know, I say they’re probably our most misunderstood insect because more often than that, they’re just like us. They’re very curious. And I could go on and on all day, but you know, suffice it to say we absolutely believe and taking care of our bees first and foremost.
Scott: I really appreciate you breaking all of that down. And the other piece of this of course, is the CBD itself, you know, quality at the source, the hemp plant, the extraction, all of this is crucial for the best CBD results. How do you go about sourcing the best CBD to infuse your honey that has been sourced so well?
Renee: Yeah. So we are always sourcing. We’re always sourcing for the very best in quality, broad-spectrum CBD distillate, which is what we use in our honey. We’ve found that that works the best for our proprietary formulas. We were in R&D for really a long time because we wanted the product to deliver the benefits that we intended it to and we also wanted the flavor profiles to be the absolute best that they can be, and they are truly delicious, each and every one of them. But really what we did, we tried the really large, tried and true CBD wholesalers and we’ve even sourced from small organic farms. But what I feel and my team feels is most important is that we see that COA, the certificate of analysis from the CBD batch itself because of third-party testing, and I know you know this very, very well is it’s key because we are still in an unregulated industry and we need to take those extra steps to ensure that what we say we’re getting is actually correct. So we work with these samples to make sure the CBD broad-spectrum is conducive to our flavor profiles and proprietary formulas.
But in the end, I believe the COA really will tell you all. We love our broad-spectrum because it contains really the full range of cannabinoids and terpenes that will allow that terrific entourage effect to take place and we always test the CBD when it comes in. We also test our honey when we’re finished producing it so that we can really stand behind our CBD-infused honey. We post our COAs on the website so that our consumers can feel confident knowing that what they’re getting is what they need and want.
Scott: I mean, it’s incredible, Renee. And yet another example of a CBD-based business that is leading with that transparency, that is leading with that quality, and why that’s so crucial. And I probably sound like a broken record, but folks listening, you know, whatever CBD-related products you’re looking at, really look at whatever company you’re buying them from and see what kind of transparency they have. See, you know, are they doing things like Florida Honey Pot Farms and posting those COAs and really trying to lead with that because I think that’s a big distinction, right?
Renee: Well, it is. And I appreciate you’re highlighting it again, because at the end of the day, as long as the consumer is taking a quality CBD product, I’m thrilled. I mean, I’d love for everyone to give Florida Honey Pot Farms a chance because I think it offers those additional qualities from the honey and the terpenes, but there’s nothing more heartbreaking than after I discovered how great a product CBD is and all the different things that can do for the body, is when someone tries, let’s say a tincture for the first time, they got a great one and it delivered incredible results. But at the end of that tincture, they went and they picked something else up. And maybe they picked it up at a gastro…who knows where they got it, was a different tincture, didn’t have that consistent quality and they didn’t get the expected benefits. And what do they do? They toss the whole thing out. They give up on CBD. And that breaks my heart because this is, again, it’s an incredible plant that offers a multitude of benefits naturally. So, I can’t say enough about CBD and, you know, we just want everyone to know more about it. So thank you for doing what you do.
Scott: Well, thank you. I’m doing my best here. And it helps to have great guests like yourselves to really kind of highlight it. I think this is actually a good kind of a segue here because you’re talking about, you know, there’s lots of different companies and businesses and products out there. It’s an industry that is seeing so much growth and subsequently more and more competition for all manner of CBD products. What have been some of your keys to really breaking through the noise and reaching people with your honey and kind of, I guess, planting your flag and saying, “Hey, we’re and our products are really helpful?”
Renee: Yes. So, well, I would say, first and foremost, I think people really love our winning formula. I’d say it’s the winning trifecta if you will because you’re taking raw 100% honey, you’re then infusing it with quality broad-spectrum CBD, and then you add those additional botanical terpenes. So the honey has nutritional and therapeutic benefits while the CBD and the terpenes enhance that honey with additional therapeutic benefits, particularly when you’re, you know, wanting help with anxiety, pain, and inflammation. So, again, we are and we believe we are a very true lifestyle product. Honey is incredibly delicious and it’s a superfood. Together with the CBD and terpenes, you’re enjoying a delicious, all-natural wellness product that tastes great and it’s always easy to enjoy and enjoy on a daily basis.
So, Hippocrates himself…this was like the big thing for me. Hippocrates, father of Western medicine, he loved honey. Do you know, he used it on his patients all the time? Now, this is the man who said, “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” So Florida Honey Pot Farms is with Hippocrates and we believe our customers enjoy their honey, whether they’re using it in a smoothie, you can, you know, top off a charcuterie tray, take it right out of the bottle. It doesn’t matter as long as you’re using it consistently because it’s in the consistency that you’re gonna get your best results. I always laugh, literally, I have a bottle at my bathroom sink and I always take it last thing, you know, before I go to bed at night and first thing in the morning. I feel incredible and at 55 years old and working the demands of this thriving new company, I have the endurance and the focus energy to give the company what it needs and what it expects. So I have to say I’m just grateful every day for that friend who originally recommended the CBD.
Scott: Absolutely. And I think it’s a really good point. I’ve talked to many business owners and entrepreneurs over the years across a wide variety of industries. And, you know, if you’re starting with a quality product and something that fits a need, that’s how you can find that growth and that success because, you know, consumers are very discerning, if there’s a product and it’s not working for them, they won’t buy it again. So, I think that’s really, really key. I’m curious, what do you think as we talk about CBD here are some of the, I guess, maybe one of the rather biggest misconceptions about CBD still out there and how can those like yourselves who are passionate about CBD clear up these misconceptions?
Colleen: Scott, Renee, and I have had many conversations about this as I’m sure you have had in your career with this as well. I think one of the biggest conceptions about CBD is that its marijuana and it’ll get you high. There isn’t really an understanding of the difference between hemp, and CBD marijuana, cannabis, hemp seeds. How are these words interchangeable? How are they different? So, it’s so refreshing to know that passionate people such as our founder, Renee Kirwan, and you yourself with your site, The CBD Guide, are providing valuable resources to consumers to be able to understand what is the difference between THC and CBD? How do they work separately? How do they work together? Even what are the other parts of plants other than just the CBD and THC? What else is in that cannabis plant that may be of benefit to you?
Your platform of offering the written blogs and the audio podcasts, it’s just one of the awesome ways people can get educated. We also post two blogs a month on our website. So we’ve got a wonderful library of information that we’re building to help consumers, learning about the difference between a full spectrum and a broad spectrum and what might be best suited towards you. Those who take the time to learn about a plant that’s been used as food and medicine for hundreds of thousands of years will see the value in its true healing power. But I always go back to one of my favorite things, which is knowledge isn’t power, it’s applied knowledge that’s power. So, as you’re reading and listening to different blogs about CBD and its many benefits, take that one step further and don’t just read about it, actually try it and apply what it is that you’re learning.
Scott: Wow. I think that says it all right there, Colleen. I appreciate you complimenting the show and kind of what we’re doing because I think that is the mission is if you are in the world of CBD, let’s lead with transparency and let’s also educate, and let’s clear up these misconceptions and draw the distinction between what it is and is not. And that’s how, especially, you know, folks who are maybe skeptical or unsure can kind of step off the sidelines and, you know, get in themselves and see some of these benefits here. As we kind of wind down because we’re running out of time here, I always like to sort of turn our attention to the future because I think it’s great to talk about them now but what’s next is always exciting. So what do you see in the future for Florida Honey Pot Farms? Are there any exciting projects going on that you can share that our listeners might find to be of interest?
Renee: Well, I would love for Colleen to talk a little bit about our single-serve packets which we just recently launched and people are going crazy about them because they’re just super portable. I mean, you can throw some in your purse or backpack and head out. So, Colleen, do you wanna talk about the single serves?
Colleen: Absolutely. Especially for people who are interested in starting a CBD by style, the packets are an easy way to do it. It’s a pre-measured dose, you can take it with you. You’ve always got one available if you need it in your gym bag or your briefcase, and it’s an easy way to take it. You can incorporate it into your smoothie after your workout, or your afternoon tea, or morning coffee. We just were able to launch our Bee Chill CBD Honey Packets and we’re proud to announce that we will be launching the Bee Immune and the Bee Fluid packet very soon. So, we’re looking forward to being able to add those to our website.
Scott: Fantastic. Fantastic. Well, Renee, Colleen, I wanted to thank you, guys, both so, so much for joining me on the show today, really covering a lot of ground, not only about CBD, but about the great honey that you guys are making and, of course, a little bit about the wonderful bees that are helping in making that possible. Really incredible stuff. And I wish you guys all the best. And if folks are listening and they’re interested now, they wanna get some honey, where can they go? How can they do that? How can they find you, guys?
Renee: Yes. I would say please check out our website at www.floridahoneypotfarms.com. And we have a tremendous amount in the way of education and information to help get you started. So, we invite you all. And if you’re ever in Central Florida, you know, please feel free to look us up because we really love our community. We really appreciate folks like you, Scott, who are getting our mission out there because the more people that can try this beautiful product, the more people will benefit and to benefit naturally is the way to go. So, thank you for having us today and we really enjoyed it. Thank you so much.
Scott: Thank you, guys, again.