Where the Food and Beverage Industry Meets Cannabis
Cannabis, the fast growing industry expected to reach $41B globally by 2024*, is turning heads and attracting food and beverage investors and entrepreneurs.
At Cannabis Forum, BevNET and NOSH bring together industry veterans and newcomers alike to discuss the current state of cannabis, learn how it could impact their business, and explore opportunities and new partnerships. The one day event is hosted on June 12th, the Friday after NOSH Live and BevNET Live in New York City. Attendees of either conference receive special rates to the Cannabis Forum. Standard admission tickets are also available.
Industry Trailblazers Have Spoken at the Cannabis Forum
President, CEO, Director, Charlotte’s Web
Hesaam Moallem is a consumer-packaged goods industry executive and attorney with a diverse background that includes leadership and C-level positions in sales, marketing, supply chain, manufacturing, business development, international expansion/operations and legal/regulatory roles. Prior to practicing law, Mr. Moallem spent time as a chemist in the pharmaceutical industry. Immediately prior to joining Charlotte’s Web, Mr. Moallem served as General Counsel and Chief Compliance Officer for a fast-growing dietary supplement, fitness and apparel company, where he was responsible for the company’s legal and regulatory functions as well as supply chain, quality, manufacturing and product development operations. Mr. Moallem has been the President and Chief Executive Officer of Charlotte’s Web since January 2018 and a Director of Charlotte’s Web since August 2018. Mr. Moallem holds an undergraduate degree from the University of Texas at Austin in Chemistry and a Juris Doctor degree from California Western School of Law.
Kristi Knoblich Palmer
Co-founder & COO, Kiva Confections
Kristi Knoblich Palmer is cofounder of Kiva Confections, one of the most recognized cannabis companies in California. Kristi is the driving force behind Kiva’s customer service philosophy and has created and applied best practices in sales, distribution and marketing to cannabis operations. Kiva serves the states of CA, AZ, NV, IL, MI and HI with its high-quality edibles, as well as provides category leaders in other verticals through its distribution company, Kiva Sales and Service. Kristi is passionate about creating a healthy regulatory environment for the cannabis industry. She serves as the Board President for CCIA and is a founding Board member of CCMA, two reputable California cannabis trade organizations.
Head of Beverage, Caliva
Chris Cuvelier is Head of Beverage at Caliva. Chris started his career focused on beverages, working in the juice and smoothie industry before taking a life-changing trip to Brazil in 2001 where he fell in love with Açaí and was inspired to start Zola. A few years later, he expanded Zola to include Coconut Water, his favorite hydration drink after a good surf session. In 2016 Zola was sold to growth investors KarpReilly and Chris stayed on as CEO doubling down on his passion for delicious plant-based drinks. In late 2018, Caliva’s CEO, Dennis O’Malley and Chris were speaking about disruption at a beverage conference in 2018. Chris had long seen Cannabis as the ultimate plant-based ingredient and began consulting for Caliva soon after meeting Dennis. Recognizing the opportunity to be a leader in cannabis beverages, Caliva acquired Zola in May 2019 to quickly accelerate Caliva into the cannabis infused beverage category.
Co-founder & President, Think BIG
Willie Mack is a brand marketing executive, creative director, and photographer with over 20 years of experience in creative and executive leadership in New York City and Los Angeles. He has led teams to execute award-winning marketing campaigns for clients that include Absolut Vodka, Estée Lauder, GQ, Microsoft, Montblanc, Persol, Ray-Ban, TED, the Obama Administration, Vanity Fair, and Wired Magazine. He is also a co-founder of Think BIG, where he serves as the company’s president and leads its executive management and strategic vision. He became involved with the company when CJ Wallace, founder of Think BIG, was his client at Flint Studio. Willie was drawn to the company because he shares CJ’s vision of removing the stigma associated with cannabis use, both for healing and to stimulate creativity. Willie has used cannabis to inspire his creativity for most of his adult life. He credits it with driving his photography and his work on creative campaigns for global brands. Before starting Think BIG, Willie most recently served as Chief Marketing Officer for Starling Brands, Inc. and Jayden’s Juice, a CBD-rich cannabis strain thousands of people worldwide have used to treat symptoms associated with severe epilepsy, anxiety, autism, pain, and cancer in addition to using it for general health and wellness. In 2015, prior to his work with Starling Brands, Willie founded Flint Studio, an LA-based cannabis branding studio. In 2011, he founded Bleecker SP, a boutique creative studio based in LA and NYC. He also served as Head of Marketing for Bionic Yarn, an eco-textile innovation company that spearheads global ocean plastic pollution campaigns.
President, American Trade Association for Cannabis and Hemp
Starting in 2010, Mr. Knutson began working with a number of licensed medical marijuana organizations to establish compliant operating procedures. Since that time he has helped shape industry standards surrounding super-critical CO2 extraction techniques and oral liquid medical marijuana delivery systems. Since August 2014, Mr. Knutson has served as the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of CanCore Concepts, Inc. In 2013, Mr. Knutson also co-founded Denver Packaging Company (“DPAC”), a licensed Colorado Medical and Adult-Retail Cannabis Manufacturing company. Additionally, he is a co-founder, Board Member and President of the American Trade Association for Cannabis and Hemp (“ATACH”). In 2012, Kelly and Erik Knutson (brothers) founded Isolate Extraction Systems, Inc. (IES). Since then IES has sold over 50 commercial extraction machines into the regulated Cannabis space. Many of these machines went to start-up businesses in burgeoning medical marijuana states. Together, IES and CCC have assisted dozens of companies in Canada, Puerto Rico, California, Arizona, Nevada, Washington, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Colorado and New York with processing/ extraction operations. Mr. Knutson received his Bachelor’s Degree in Business Management from the University of Colorado in 2009.
Founder & CEO, Ojai Energetics
Will Kleidon founded Ojai Energetics in 2014. His goal was to provide the purest, healthiest, and most ethically produced cannabidiol (CBD) product on the market… giving people a viable supplement for living the most effective and healthiest life possible. Four years later, the small business is a leader in cutting-edge, science-driven organic nutraceutical and medical food products for achieving optimal physical and spiritual health. Will has collected one of the most interesting executive boards in the world, including famous athletes, doctors, and well-connected members of the entertainment industry. Prior to founding Ojai Energetics, Will coordinated a sustainability summit with 25 organizations and 500 attendees. He went on to study permaculture in Australia, where he apprenticed with one of the world's leading experts, Professor Robyn Francis, at Permaculture College Australia.
Co-founder, Evo Hemp
Ari Sherman and Jourdan Samel are Sales & Marketing executives in the natural products industry. Ari and Jourdan Co-Founded Hemp Health, and natural foods brand Evo Hemp, to facilitate the evolution of the United States family farm. By establishing a supply chain of U.S. grown hemp, they’re working to revive the country’s agricultural system. The Evo Hemp brand was created to bring innovative hemp based consumer products to the U.S. market. Evo’s product line consists of organic energy bars, hemp protein powder, hemp hearts, hempseed oil, and hemp extracts. Their products can now be found in over 3,000 retail stores nationwide. In 2017, Ari and Jourdan were recognized by Forbes magazine as a 30 under 30 member in the Food and Drink category. Their mission is focused on reviving rural communities out of poverty through industrial farming. Recently, they announced their partnership with Alex White Plume, a U.S. army veteran of the Lakota Tribe. This partnership will highlight how hemp can be used as a tool for economic growth and prosperity in rural areas.
SVP of Commercial Development, BDS Analytics
Jessica leads the Sales and Consumer Insights Divisions at BDS Analytics, the premiere market research firm serving the global cannabinoid market. Together with her team, she works with brands, retailers, and investors to deliver unmatched insights and analytics. Prior to joining BDS Analytics and the wild world of cannabis data, Jessica Lukas spent over 10 years working with and for top global CPG and beverage alcohol companies.
Navigate a Dynamic and Highly Regulated Marketplace
The cannabis-infused food and beverage industry is rapidly evolving. At Cannabis Forum experts on the frontlines break down what is relevant to your business. Hear where the market is headed and what consumers are looking for. Learn from the success stories and pitfalls of industry trailblazers. Meet professionals who can answer your questions about funding, sourcing, and regulation, and take away actionable advice.