CBD drive-thru opens in Brattleboro, medical marijuana soon available

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BRATTLEBORO — An old bank on Putney Road in Brattleboro is now the first drive-through location in New England for CBD products.

Ceres Natural Remedies officially opened the drive-thru in early November, giving customers a new level of convenience when purchasing CBD-only products to address a variety of health issues.

"We are constantly looking for ways to make the buying experience more convenient while still maintaining the same quality of service to our customers, many of whom have debilitating health issues that make getting around harder," said Ceres Natural Remedies and Southern Vermont Wellness CEO Shayne Lynn. "We think this will set a new standard for delivery in our industry here in Vermont and throughout New England in the future."

Making CBD-only products available is the first stage of this new venture, said Chris McCloud, Ceres spokesman.

"The drive-thru will provide an unparalleled level of access to people in the CBD market and later, medical-grade THC products will be offered through our sister company, Southern Vermont Wellness, to registered patients," McCloud said.

Bridget Conry, director of product development and sales for Ceres Natural Remedies, said the target date for medical marijuana is Dec. 15.

While anyone who is 18 and older can purchase CBD-only products, only registered Southern Vermont Wellness patients and caregivers presenting a valid Vermont Marijuana Registry card will be permitted to purchase THC products using the drive-thru.

"Many of our patients have mobility issues," Conry said. "If they don't have to get out of the car, that's good."

Patients who have a card to purchase medical marijuana will be able to use an online system to place and pick up orders the same day, Conry said.

At this time, Ceres, which markets itself as a purveyor of herbal remedies, has no intention of venturing into the adult-use recreational cannabis market, Conry said. But that could change, depending on what regulatory scheme the Legislature develops.

McCloud said all of the Ceres CBD products available at the Brattleboro drive-thru are hemp based, using hemp from Mettawee Valley Hemp Company, which Ceres processes it at the facility in Burlington. Ceres grows its own medical marijuana.

But Ceres doesn't carry just its own products, he said.

"There are many different brands available through the drive thru, including from Vermont and national producers."

Medical marijuana patients in Vermont have debilitating medical conditions such as cancer, multiple sclerosis, HIV/AIDS, Crohn's disease, Parkinson's, glaucoma, PTSD or other conditions that cause chronic pain, nausea, seizures or wasting syndrome.

While the drive-thru concept is standard in many other retail industries, it has never been tested in the New England CBD market. The products available at the drive-thru include capsules, oils, vapes, edibles and CBD products for pets.

"The concept here is trying to normalize the retail experience for folks and give people the convenience and access that people are looking for in retail," Conry said.

Ceres Natural Remedies is Vermont's first dedicated CBD store with locations in Burlington and Middlebury and the drive-thru in Brattleboro. Southern Vermont Wellness is partnered with Champlain Valley Dispensary. Together, they received their first license in 2013. The two have grown to be, together, the largest dispensary operator in Vermont.

To learn more about Vermont's Medical Marijuana program, visit medicalmarijuana.vermont.gov or cvdvt.org.

Bob Audette can be contacted at 802-254-2311, ext. 151, or raudette@reformer.com.


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