Mashantucket — If Digger could speak, she’d likely sing the praises of CBD oil, the natural remedy said to cure people’s — and pups’ — aches and pains.
But really, her gait says it all.
A 2-year-old beagle, Digger limped around for months after injuring a hind leg, according to her owner, Jodi Harvey. Nothing Harvey tried seemed to help.
Then Harvey decided to give CBD oil a shot.
“I put some in her food every day for five days,” Harvey said. “On the sixth day, she stopped limping and hasn’t limped since.”
The 41-year-old Harvey tells Digger’s story when asked about the impetus for Remedy Tree, the business Harvey launched in June in the Tanger Outlets at Foxwoods Resort Casino. Operating Friday, Saturday and Sunday from a kiosk near the Eddie Bauer outlet on the mall’s second floor, Harvey initially committed to six months there. She recently reupped for another six.
Now, she’s working on finding a second location, perhaps in a downtown storefront somewhere. But for a start-up, the Tanger at Foxwoods site has been ideal — close to Harvey’s North Stonington home and a nexus of retail foot traffic.
CBD sales are on the rise, with products containing the chemical widely available online. Some research indicates CBD can be effective in treating arthritis, inflammation, pain and anxiety. Harvey’s mother, for example, unwilling to rely on prescription medications and their potential side effects, has turned to CBD to ease the pain of arthritis in her knees, back and fingers.
Harvey said Remedy Tree sales got a bump when Rob “Gronk” Gronkowski, the former New England Patriots tight end, announced he was helping launch a line of CBD products, saying he’d used CBD since retiring and was free of pain for the first time in more than a decade.
“Still, a lot of people don’t have any idea what CBD is,” said Harvey, who sees education as a main thrust of Remedy Tree’s mission.
According to the state Department of Consumer Protection, CBD, short for cannabidiol, is extracted from the hemp plant and chemically similar to tetrahydrocannabinol, or THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana. CBD, however, produces no “high.” In Connecticut, CBD products sold outside medical marijuana dispensaries may only be manufactured from hemp with THC concentrations below 0.3%.
Remedy Tree’s CBD products contain zero THC, Harvey noted.
“The No. 1 thing is that everything is lab tested,” she said. “You can pick up CBD at a gas station, but if it’s not lab tested you can’t be sure what’s in it. All my products (obtained from a U.S. manufacturer) have a bar code that you can scan to get the lab-testing details.”
Remedy Tree products include gummies, capsules, and sublinguals placed under the tongue. Topical applications come in the form of creams and salves. Prices include $36 for dog treats, $45 for a bag of 30 gummies and bottles of CBD oil tinctures ranging from $38 to $135.
Harvey, who previously worked in the health club business, has signed on with the Hartford Marathon Foundation as a contributing sponsor, an affiliation that exposed her to another nonprofit, Middletown-based Running for Rescues, which raises money for animal shelters and animal-rescue organizations.
Jodi Dougherty of Running for Rescues said Harvey offered to donate a portion of the proceeds from Remedy Tree sales of CBD products for animals. In turn, Running for Rescues recommends Remedy Tree products to shelters.
Harvey said her repeat business is strong and that her customers range in age from “18 to 80.” She launched a website, remedy-tree.com, in October and offers to personally deliver orders to those in need.