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Jeffrey D Dunn of Farmer & Chemist: 5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started Leading a CBD Business

An Interview With Candice Georgiadis

Teaching consumers about what CBD is and how to pick quality products is a huge part of being in the industry. Few markets require such an education lift prior to a sale.

As part of my series about “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started Leading a Cannabis Business” I had the pleasure of interviewing Jeffrey D. Dunn.

Farmer & Chemist produces Premium CBD Health & Wellness Products and was founded and owned by pharmacists Jeffrey D. Dunn and Doug Burgoyne.

Jeff Dunn has literally grown up in a pharmacy as he worked through college in his family’s retail pharmacy while earning his Doctor of Pharmacy degree from the University of Utah College of Pharmacy and his Master of Business Administration degree from the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah. After pharmacy school, Jeff has served in a variety of positions within the pharma world before founding Farmer & Chemist.

Together Jeff and Doug are committed to advancing the appropriate use and study of CBD benefits. Consumers are offered consultations on how to best dosage the products. Farmer & Chemist does not offer any THC products and only focuses on CBD.

Thank you so much for doing this with us! Can you share with us the story about what brought you to this specific career path?

My co-founder, Doug and I are both pharmacists and we got involved in the industry when Utah was legalizing medical cannabis in 2017. We saw that there were opportunities to create great safe alternatives to prescription medication with high potency and high quality CBD products, but there was a lack of those products in the marketplace.

So in 2019 we opened our Farmer & Chemist store in Salt Lake City. We treat our store very much like a pharmacy even though CBD products do not require prescriptions. All our employees are pharmacists or pharmacy technicians who are capable of providing guidance for our customers and answer any questions they might have about using CBD and dosage.

Can you share the most interesting story that happened to you since you began leading your company? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

We think seeing how quickly the industry is changing, especially companies coming and going so rapidly, has been eye-opening. It’s so fun to see customers come into the store or when we are doing a booth at an athletic event and have them remark how quickly our CBD anti-inflammatory CBD-infused salve “Problem Salved” heals their aches and pains …without ibuprofen (or Vitamin I, as runners like to call it). It’s amazing how effective quality CBD is as a topical!

My 75 year old mother has arthritis and she was skeptical about CBD products. But when she was helping us with packing products and experienced so much pain that she could barely stretch her fingers. She tried our “Problem Salved” and within 10 minutes she felt so much better — ever since she has been using CBD!

Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

Learning to use a labeling machine was one of our early, funny stories. We could not get a label to line up on the bottles … so we used a screwdriver to secure the piece on the machine and then only one of our staff had the soft touch to make it work — he sat for hours running the labels through. In the beginning we had to do everything by ourselves, but as we have grown we have now learned to partner with the right people who can help us to solve these kinds of problems.

Are you working on any exciting projects now? How do you think that will help people?

We are always working on new products and we focus on specific products that have high-potency/strength and excellent practicality. We are working on a nano-tincture that will deliver the equivalent effectiveness of 25 mg of broad spectrum CBD.

Also, we have a large customer base in the US but we are ready to expand our business to other markets such as Europe.

In addition, we are always working on finding ways to educate consumers about CBD. Being pharmacists we love to work with doctors and medical staff in general on the benefits of CBD to their patients and how it can replace or interact with other more traditional drugs. It is so important to be educated about all the benefits of CBD.

None of us are able to achieve success without some help along the way. Is there a particular person who you are grateful towards who helped get you to where you are? Can you share a story?

We have a great team of folks who have pressed hard all along the way. We have been really specific when putting together our team of pharmacists and physicians making sure they have an interest and understanding of CBD.

We brought in a few partners to help build the company. One of them is Danell Murdock who is responsible for all our marketing and branding. She has put heart and soul into the brand. She’s a stand out!

This industry is young, dynamic and creative. Do you use any clever and innovative marketing strategies that you think large legacy companies should consider adopting?

With Farmer & Chemist we wanted to stand out by not feeling modern, young, and new. We built our brand from the name up to feel trustworthy, sentimental, and established, as well as fresh, different, transparent, informative, engaging, and inviting. We present a consistent and unified brand strategy to our consumers incorporating this thinking from the moment you walk in our store, pull up our website, see our marketing campaigns, listen to our podcast You me, and CBD, and most importantly use our premium products.

Our messaging, packaging, and marketing is clever and quirky by design and visually focuses on feeling good as well as a time when life was much simpler and seemed innocently happier. We have given our products unique and engaging names such as Lickey Split, All is Gel, Gem Gems, Steady Going, Ruff Dayz, and Problem Salved to make the consumer feel happy, or at least crack a smile, even before using them.

Walking the walk of our talk and being consistent is the strategy that moves Farmer & Chemist towards long term sustainability within the marketplace.

Can you share 3 things that most excite you about the Cannabis industry? Can you share 3 things that most concern you?Please share a story or example for each.

The 3 things that most excite us are:

1: Exciting to see wider acceptance and then reliance on the good CBD products

2: Exciting to see crappy products go away

3: Happy to see states adopting more cannabis regulations

As exciting as they are, these are also the same 3 things that concern us because there are still ways to go. We would love to see better regulation that would make sure that all products being sold as CBD are actually quality CBD. We hope that the FDA will join the CBD conversation at some point as well.

Can you share your “5 Things I Wish Someone Told Me Before I Started Leading a CBD Business”?

What advice would you give to other CEOs or founders to help their employees to thrive?

1: This is a totally different business from anything else

2: Difficult business environment due to lack of regulation and consistency. It is the wild wild west!

3: Pick the right partners, do your due diligence and figure out who to trust

4: Teaching consumers about what CBD is and how to pick quality products is a huge part of being in the industry. Few markets require such an education lift prior to a sale.

5: It is a growing industry so you have to be patient and adaptable to changes.

You are a person of great influence. If you could inspire a movement that would bring the most amount of good to the most amount of people, what would that be? You never know what your idea can trigger. :-)

We would love to bring transparency to healthcare — including the CBD industry. There are so many stakeholders in healthcare and that puts a negative impact on transparency making it hard for patients to see what they are actually paying for and what they are getting for their money. We would love to help make healthcare affordable and accessible for all.

What is the best way our readers can follow you on social media?

https://farmerandchemist.com/

https://www.facebook.com/farmerandchemist/

https://www.instagram.com/farmer_and_chemist/

Thank you for these fantastic insights. We wish you only continued success in your great work!

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Candice Georgiadis

Candice Georgiadis

825 Followers

Candice Georgiadis is an active mother of three as well as a designer, founder, social media expert, and philanthropist.