A Perfect Fit: Organic Synthesis and Sustainability
Updated: May 10
What is “Sustainability?”
The term “Sustainability” refers to the global initiative to save our planet and its populations from self-destruction. The concept has its roots in the Industrial Revolution, when developing societies started to discover that their economic and industrial activities had a significant impact on the environment.(1) The concept of sustainability achieved official status and a sense of urgency a century later, when the 1987 U.N.-sponsored Brundtland Report defined “Sustainability” as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs…”(2). What followed has been a worldwide commitment to achieving an equitable and harmonious balance between the world’s social, economic and environmental needs – considered the “Three Pillars of Sustainability.”(3)
Green manufacturing is an integral part of the sustainability initiative. Its core principle is to utilize, advocate for and help develop manufacturing processes that conserve energy and natural resources, minimize or eliminate negative environmental impacts, and are safe for employees, communities and consumers.(4)
Exploding CBD demand requires sustainable and scalable production
The global market for CBD sales is projected to reach $20 billion by 2025.(5)
A range of industries, from health and wellness, to beauty and skin care, food and beverage, and pet food, are driving the voracious demand for cannabidiol (CBD). Medical researchers and pharmaceutical companies are also anxious to go farther in their study of CBD’s therapeutic promise, but they have been hindered by the inconsistency, organic variability and potential contamination risks inherent in plant-extracted CBD.(6,7)
This phenomenon has major implications in terms of sustainability because, at present, almost all CBD is produced from the hemp plant.
Organic synthesis is the clear choice for CBD production
Given the magnitude of current and projected demand for purer and more consistent CBD, hemp-extraction is neither practical nor sustainable. The amount of acreage, water, fertilizers, pesticides and electricity required for large-scale cultivation is in direct conflict with sustainability goals, while the issues of batch-to-batch consistency and risk of potential contamination cannot be avoided. Then there are the whims of Mother Nature. As a research report from investment and financial advisors Raymond James points out, “The variability inherent in hemp-derived CBD, driven by unpredictable and constantly changing harvesting time schedules, weather, soil and farming conditions, has eliminated its utility as a means of large-scale CBD production…”(8)
Organic synthesis, defined as “the art and science of replicating the molecules of living nature and creating others like them in the laboratory,” is a scalable and eco-friendly process that fits perfectly with global sustainability initiatives.(9) A special branch of chemical synthesis that replicates natural chemicals in the laboratory, organic synthesis is all upside and no downside. Why? Because it enables the cost-efficient mass production of nature-derived chemicals without the negative environmental impacts and inescapable inconsistencies, contamination risks, and barriers to scalability inherent in plant-based extraction.
Only organic CBD synthesis is compatible with sustainability goals
Nalu Bio is creating a new category of cannabinoids through a proprietary and sustainable organic synthesis methodology
History has shown us that the discovery of plant-based chemicals with medical or commercial value inevitably triggers efforts to synthesize those chemicals, among them Aspirin, penicillin, anesthetics, pain medications, antibiotics, and chemotherapy drugs.(12) Nalu Bio’s proprietary organic synthesis methodology will soon add CBD to the list.
Nalu Bio is creating a new category of pure, consistent CBD through a proprietary organic synthesis methodology that also offers the combined benefits of scalability and sustainability. Our straightforward, lab-based approach uses known chemistries and existing materials to produce high-quality, low-cost, and therapeutically predictable cannabinoids each time, and every time. Manufacturing chemical products in the lab may not be new, but it’s new for cannabinoids, and will drive Nalu Bio’s development of a reliable and cost-effective synthetic source of CBD – a breakthrough that will unleash the full therapeutic potential of CBD.
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5. BDS Analytics and Arcview Market Research 2019