Harmony Craft Beverages, a portfolio company of Sands Lane Ventures that serves as beverage brand incubator and accelerator for low- and no-alcohol and functional infused drinks, has launched the first field and trade marketing program for cannabis infused beverages. 

The program will be led by a team of experts in both the traditional beverage and cannabis industries, offering a strategic approach designed to drive product awareness, increase category education, and drive sales both in retail and direct to consumer channels.

Building on its success in helping develop and launch cannabis beverages such as Herbacée botanical wines, Klaus ready-to-drink craft cocktails and Malus infused ciders, HCB's new portfolio program offers cannabis beverage brands support services that include at-retail and co-marketing opportunities, such as beverage specialized activations and pop-ups. The program leverages trade and consumer marketing models used in the wine and spirits industry while fine-tuning and adapting the approach specifically for cannabis beverages.

"The cannabis beverage category is one of the fastest growing, yet distributors and retailers are still struggling to serve this segment for various reasons," said Evan Eneman, co-founder and interim CEO of HCB. "We believe that by creating beverage-first programming, activations and strategies, we can help brands move the needle at retail and engage with both the trade and consumers in entirely new ways. We built the Harmony Craft Beverages Field and Trade Marketing Program to offer cost effective and value added targeted services and support that cannabis beverage brands need to help engage consumers and grow their business."

HCB has been leading beverage activations at cannabis industry events for the last two years and recently hosted pop-ups at local farmers' markets where attendees were able to taste non-infused samples and make DTC orders on-site; a New York City Summer Speakeasy event; an art gallery opening and more, with future opportunities to come.

HCB's team of advisors and experts include Debbie Novograd, an advisor to non-alcoholic beverage brands, former Starbucks international marketing executive, and most recently the former CEO of low- and no-alcohol innovator BevZero, who will advise on brand and marketing strategy. Other industry experts include Austin Stevenson, former head of innovation at Vertosa, and brewer and formulator Chris Anderson.

"It has been a delight and honor to work with Evan over the past several years-both as a client and colleague-as Harmony Craft Beverages has grown and expanded to offer the array of services it does today," Novograd said. "The entire HCB team are some of the most creative, dedicated, passionate and overall talented group of individuals I have worked with throughout my 30-plus years in food and beverages. From market research and development to sales, distribution and overall marketing, HCB has the expertise and experience to help low- and no-alcohol and infused functional beverage brands of all sizes achieve their goals."