According to comments made earlier this week by Major League Baseball Chief Revenue Officer Noah Garden, the MLB is poised to enter the small, but growing selection of professional sports leagues that accept CBD sponsorships.
The league seems most interested in jersey patch sponsorship deals with CBD brands at the moment, though televised advertisements (during MLB games) are also on the table.
In order to qualify for a sponsorship deal with the MLB, CBD companies must fulfill two requirements at a minimum:
- NSF (National Sanitation Foundation) certification
- THC content must be under psychoactive levels
The National Sanitation Foundation is a Michigan-based product testing, inspecting, and certifying organization that, in addition to CBD, tests many products across other industries.
Though it is not yet explicitly clear exactly what testing data the MLB wants to see (other than the THC content limit), the NSF has ISO-accredited labs capable of providing the same caliber of testing (for microbes, heavy metals, residual solvents, etc.) that most third-party CBD labs do.
Aside from testing, another important, more subjective element that CBD companies will need to bring to a potential sponsorship deal with the MLB is a pre-existing emphasis on sports.
“It has to have a brand that represents sports,” said MLB Chief Revenue Officer Noah Garden when explaining the league’s intent for moving forward with CBD sponsorships.
The MLB is part of the early wave of professional sport organizations warming up to CBD sponsorships, but they weren’t the first; the NBA has already done so, and the NHL is also preparing for CBD partnerships in the near future.
Especially considering the contentious history of THC and CBD products—many of which have already been openly embraced by pro athletes—in pro sports leagues, we are very pleased to see the MLB elevating the legitimacy of CBD products in a safe and sensible manner.
As always, we will continue to update you as more CBD developments surface.