Global maker of natural sweeteners plans $60 million CBD investment

A Chinese sweetener company is moving into the hemp-derived CBD sector with plans to invest $60 million in a hemp processing facility in the Midwest.

Layn Corp., based in the Guangxi province of China and best known for its stevia and monk fruit ingredients, plans to extract CBD from hemp, according to Food Navigator-USA.

Layn says it will build a hemp extraction facility somewhere in the Midwest by late 2020.

The company plans to contract with hemp farmers in 2019, then work with universities to develop new hemp varieties rich in cannabinoids beyond CBD, Layn USA president Elaine Yu told Food Navigator-USA.

Yu said hemp-derived products are reminiscent of the stevia craze that started 10 years ago.

“Now it’s all about CBD, but more than 100 cannabinoids have been identified,” Yu said.

She cautioned that some in the current hemp-derived CBD industry are raising federal alarms.

“A lot of manufacturers in this market do not have a background in producing dietary ingredients and have no idea what they are doing,” Yu told Food Navigator-USA this week at the Institute of Food Technologists show in New Orleans.