The Southern University Agricultural Research and Extension Center in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, has announced a partnership with Ilera Holistic Healthcare, as it releases a hemp-derived CBD product line called ALAFIA. This makes Southern University the first HBCU to launch a hemp product line.

Due to the recent legalization across the country, research has been springing up about the benefits and uses of marijuana and its chemicals. Cannabidiol, more commonly referred to as CBD, is one of the two main chemical components along with THC, or Tetrahydrocannabinol, in marijuana. It has supposed effects ranging from a pain and anxiety reliever to a remedy for sleep medication. 

Representatives from Southern University and Ilera Holistic Healthcare held a press conference which included a ribbon-cutting ceremony at H&W Drug Store Dispensary in New Orleans. At the event, people were able to purchase ALAFIA. Dr. Ray L. Belton, President-Chancellor of the Southern University System, said “This is an exciting time for healthcare and business here in the state of Louisiana, and Southern University is honored to be a part of it all. Southern has been a leader in agriculture and the sciences for 140 years while staying true to its mission of access. This CBD venture with Ilera encompasses all of that. We look forward to advancing this vision and serving as a model for other universities.”

ALAFIA, meaning ‘inner peace’ in the Yoruba language, is scientifically formulated, lab tested, and pesticide-free. The CBD products will be available at dispensaries in Louisiana as well as other retail locations. ALAFIA will also be made available nationwide for sale and distribution.

Ilera Holistic Healthcare CEO, Chanda Macias, commended Southern University for being innovative and being the first historically black college to have their own CBD line, “Our goals with this line is to support all communities by creating access to wellness products at affordable price points,” she said. “No one should endure the stress of trying to balance a healthy lifestyle at high costs; that within itself is unhealthy.”

Currently the university has two formulated PURE CBD tinctures on the market: Isolate CBD with 500mg ($40) and 1000mg ($80) and Full Spectrum CBD with 500mg ($40) and 1000mg ($80).  ALAFIA is only available at select locations throughout Louisiana but will be sold over the counter across the U.S in the future with more CBD products being made available in the future, according to the Southern University Agricultural Center.

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