Roughly 40% of U.S. adults age 21 and over indicated a willingness to explore CBD under the right conditions, according to a new study by High Yield Insights, Chicago.

This report is said to be the first to quantify domestic consumer interest in products containing CBD, and breaks ground in understanding the behaviors, product and format preferences and demographics of both current and potential CBD users.

The majority (64%) of respondents are 35 years or older, female (56%) with college experience (79%). For these potential users, key motivations for trying CBD include easier access to products (42%), availability of unbiased research (44%) and a physician's recommendation (34%). Among products potential users might consider, accessible forms such as chocolates and baked goods rank high along with types resembling familiar over-the-counter products such as pills and capsules.

"We are seeing many consumers looking to incorporate CBD into their wellness regimen," says Mike Luce, co-founder. "Consumers previously unfamiliar with CBD are rapidly showing interest. Now that the federal government is finally taking steps to clear up the hazy legal picture, people see CBD as an entry point to the therapeutic benefits of cannabis."

Among current CBD users, approximately half are under the age of 34 and most (54%) have used CBD for less than one year. Some (30%) current users report using products containing CBD only while others prefer medicating with products containing a mixture of CBD and THC.

"CBD does seem to be benefiting from greater acceptance of cannabis," says Luce. "Seven in 10 current CBD users have also used cannabis containing THC in some form in the past three months. This indicates that for some users, CBD-only products are serving a complementary function."

"Unfortunately, we are still seeing some confusion among consumers. When the federal government enacted the recent Farm Bill, most interpreted the language as legalizing CBD. However, the FDA needs to take further action to clarify its stance. Some states are demanding stores pull CBD products off the shelf claiming that it is an unregulated food additive," Luce says. "With potential users identifying easier access as a chief motivator, such actions go against what the public is seeking."  

The report provides proprietary intelligence based on exclusive feedback from current, former and potential CBD users. High Yield Insights conducted an online survey of U.S. adults aged 21 and over Jan. 14-23, among 2,000 consumers, 1,500 of whom reported currently using CBD products in the past 3 months, and 500 who reported not using CBD products.