Half Day Founders
Historically speaking, smoking pure CBD flowers are not to my taste. But when Dave DiCosola reached out to me with some new information on his line of (very cannabis-like) CBD flowers, I thought I should at least hear him out. Because hemp is legal in all fifty states, I can now receive CBD legally at my home. So I got the opportunity to taste through his line.
I was very pleasantly surprised!
When I was diagnosed with advanced glaucoma, I learned what kinds of cannabis are most effective for glaucoma. A cannabis DNA test showed that high CBD/low THC strains were the preferred method of treating my eye pressure. Utilizing 100% CBD strains did no more than give me a dull headache, but that’s just me, everyone’s different, their biochemistry. To others, smoking pure CBD flower is just what the doctor ordered. However, it makes perfect sense to mix the fine hemp flowers from Half Day CBD with my NJ Medical MJ/THC heavy strains.
What I discovered in this highly unscientific experiment was that my headaches, behind my eyes just melted away! I’m not a doctor, nor is it my week to offer any untested health recommendations nor advice. But it just goes to show the massive healing properties of CBD, the pressure in my eyes dropped away. Again, I’m not making any health statements, nor am I saying that CBD heals anything at all. Most of the stuff on the market is no more than Snake Oil.
I do believe that Half Day CBD is worth your view. It made my headache melt away.
Easy enough to try. It’s not like you are going to get stoned. Nope. That will never happen with hemp, no matter what your “just say no” parents say. Smiles!
Jada Cash @jadac Alma Prieto @mitta_prieto
Warren Bobrow=WB: Why Cannabis? What was your path to the plant? Who were you with when you first got high? Do you remember what you were listening to?
Dave DiCosola=Dave: Cannabis has always been appealing to me because the medicinal benefits are undeniable and the applications of hemp blow my mind. I’ve always wanted to do something that was disruptive in healthcare and, in my lifetime, I do not think I’ll ever see an opportunity to pioneer an industry that can truly offer an alternative to pharmaceuticals.
My first experience getting high was with my high school buddies at the prom-night after party. I was a big believer in abstaining from getting high, but that night I figured I should experiment before college. The song that comes to mind was Guster’s “Fa Fa”, which was fitting because after that day things will “never be the same again”.
Kam Norwood=Kam: Why Cannabis? I hate pharmaceuticals or pills of any nature and I have always loved cannabis as an alternative. From a headache to a cold, I have always looked to cannabis as the only option for me.
What was your path to the plant?: I haven’t always been a Cannabis fan, I was actually anti-cannabis and used to shun my mom, and friends and girlfriend at the time now wife for using it. I actually broke up with my wife (when we were dating) when I found out she smoked weed.
Who were you with when you first got high? I was drunk and was dragged into a 4runner back seat with some friends at a party when I was seventeen at a high school graduation party. I hit a pipe and coughed for twenty minutes. I think all my friends were waiting for me to do it because they knew I’d love it more than them. The next morning I woke up and remembered I had smoked weed and remember feeling disappointed. About 2 hours later I called my two best friends and girlfriend and we went for a first ride. We smoked in the neighborhood and drove around in my best friend’s truck. I’d say that was my first “real” time getting high and I loved it.
Do you remember what you were listening to? Thugz Mansion by Tupac. The only place where Thugz get in free and you gotta be a G.
The interesting thing about both Dave and me is the fact that we were so anti-cannabis for so long because of the stigma around it. But once we realized the power of the plant, we’ve never looked back.
WB: Please tell me about your company? What do you do which is different, therefore better than your competition? What is your 6 & 12 month goals?
Half Day CBD
Jada Cash @jadac Alma Prieto @mitta_prieto
Dave/Kam: Half Day is an independent CBD manufacturing and distribution company based in Chicago. We make all our own products because we want to remain as close to the plant as possible. Unlike most CBD companies, we insist on having a farmer-direct relationship where we cherry pick the finest and cleanest crops to maintain high quality and effectiveness. Our hemp selection process is unique, all of our products are handcrafted (unlike many competitors who white label, particularly with gummies/edibles), and we strive to provide a level of customer service that sets the bar for the industry.
Over the next 6 months we plan to streamline all aspects of our operation to ensure we have the best customer service level possible. For example, we decided to take all order fulfillment in-house. Our previous vendor was a major disappointment because they refused to handle smokable CBD flower and we’re overwhelmed with COVID across all of their clients. We decided to bring all of this in-house because we’re just as inpatient as our customers. Since building our warehouse operation we have cut delivery times by 50% and now offer a wider range of products that our competitors can’t offer. If you haven’t tried smokable hemp flower, we highly recommend it. Specifically mixing our CBD with your THC flower for a DIY 1:1 cannabis product. A great blend of CBD and THC flower can maximize the therapeutic benefits of the plant. More on that here.
Over the next 12 months we hope to expand our smokable flower options and provide a necessary outlet to farmers for this year’s harvest. We have also developed a warehouse system designed around hemp flower, our fulfillment center just might be the answer for hundreds of farmers that need e-commerce to market their crops.
WB: Do you have a mentor? What about stigmas? What is the market that you want to penetrate the most, why?
Dave: My mentor is my father-in-law. He used to be the CEO of a health system and is genius when it comes to simplifying the complex. When I first started, I worried about the stigmas. All the second guessing went away as soon as I started receiving customer testimonials around how beneficial our products are. Knowing that you can help patients when conventional methods have failed, makes you realize that anyone who carries a stigma hasn’t taken the time to get educated. The dream market for us is in behavioral healthcare facilities that can use our product for addiction treatments. For that to work, you need all government agencies and insurance companies on board.
Kam: My mentor is my best friend. He has issues that have propelled him to overcompensate into having one of the best processes for setting your mind to something and getting it done I have ever seen. His drive, passion, and focus for what he has his mind set on are something that I hope to keep learning from and competitively working to keep up with for the rest of my life.
When it comes to stigmas, I think we will be fighting them for a long time. We play an important role in helping to change the stigma around cannabis and specifically with CBD. I think we are responsible for helping the masses understand CBD, stay educated on what to look for and what to trust whether they buy our products or not. Making safe, locally sourced CBD is very important. We also battle a lot of critics who dealt with bad actors and are now skeptical or have a negative perception. This will be an uphill battle until regulation and more research; until then customers should be conscious and cautious.
WB: Do you cook? Who taught you? Do you have a food memory you’d like to share? Favorite (pre-covid19) restaurant, where?
Dave: My cooking skills haven’t progressed since I was 15 years old. I can make pasta, hamburgers, and cereal. I’m grateful to be surrounded by incredible cooks like my wife, and I just make sure I’m around to do the dishes. In fact, my wife and sister-in-law are the originators of our CBD gummy recipe, which we perfected and scaled with help from our executive chef, Kim Temmer (a professional pastry chef). I don’t really have a favorite restaurant, but if it were up to me, I would eat every single meal at a Lettuce Entertain You restaurant. They never disappoint and have always been my most memorable dining experiences.
Kam: I love to grill. I taught myself in college when I established a love for the outdoors. My favorite food memory was in college when my friends and I used to religiously watch the Epic Meal Time channel on YouTube and recreate smaller versions of their masterpieces. One of my favorite things they inspired me to make was candy bacon. In college I would make 4 trays of slowly cooked brown sugar entrusted bacon that would take 2-3 hours to make properly but would turn out so perfectly candied. Definitely one of my favorite food memories. My favorite Pre-Covid restaurant was Small Cheval in Chicago. I love burgers, I love quick service, but I hate sacrificing good food to quick service; Small Cheval is the best of both worlds. But since Covid, I have not been back. 🙁
WB: What is your passion?
Dave: My passion lies in solving problems. I wake up every morning eager to tackle challenges. Right now, my heart is not only in solving my business problems, but trying to find ways to give back in the process. Recently, for example, we’ve been called to action to find ways as a business to support causes related to racial injustice. We want to do our part by having a diverse team and create opportunities in communities for those that have been negatively impacted by misguided policing tactics—something that those in the cannabis industry are all too familiar with.
Kam: I love building things and making things more efficient. Half Day has enabled me to do both. I find that I am very optimistic and I want to positively impact a situation or tackle an issue with any expertise I have to help close that ticket and move forward. It brings me joy to help someone or improve a process.
Mission Statement: Great CBD products start with a meticulous growing, harvesting, processing and formulation process. At Half Day, we take this process seriously, and make it our mission to be as transparent as possible with our process for making CBD oil.