ECS Botanics Holdings Ltd (ASX:ECS) announced on Monday it will be distributing its hemp seed oil into Coles supermarkets across Australia.
ECS Botanics’ 250ml Extra Virgin Tasmanian Hemp Seed Oil is expected to be on shelves by October this year.
The oil is already available at competitor Woolworths after a deal back in 2019, which was followed by a couple of ECS soups containing hemp also being stocked on Woolies’ shelves.
Missing from this deal with Coles is the involvement of Just Food Australia (JFA), which ECS used previously for the distribution of its products. That association appears to have ended. ECS says this will allow the company to achieve significantly higher margins on its products.
“As the largest retail supplier of oil in the country, we are witnessing demand for hemp seed oil steadily increase and to now have the product stocked with two of Australia’s largest supermarket retailers, we are well positioned to capitalise on market demand,” said ECS Botanics Managing Director Alex Keach.
Now ECS Botanics has direct relationships with Coles and Woolworths, it intends extending the number of products ranged with these retailers.
Total revenue from the arrangement with Coles is uncertain at this point in time as there are no minimum volumes guaranteed, and the number of Coles supermarkets that will sell the oil is yet to be confirmed.
Hemp seed oil is sometimes confused with hemp oil – and they are very different products. Hemp seed oil is most often extracted by cold pressing hemp seeds and is used for food and personal care products. It has near zero of the intoxicating cannabinoid tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and very little cannabidiol (CBD). Hemp oil on the other hand is an extract of the flowering head, contains higher levels of one or both those cannabinoids and is used for medicinal products.
Among the many benefits of hemp seed oil, it is rich in essential fatty acids important for good cardiac health.
As well as hemp food and personal care products, ECS Botanics is also involved with medicinal cannabis. On a related note, last month the company announced a five-year agreement with Polish company Alivio Spolka to supply $0.9m worth of GMP manufactured medicinal cannabis products per annum.