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How to Find High-Value CBD with Effective Price Per Milligram

Effective Price Per Milligram Bang

As CBD made it's way into the general consumer market, it did so without any regulation and high demand. This created a situation where from retailer to retailer you could find low priced products, high priced products, and everything in between.

As more companies come online, consumers become more educated, and the overall industry matures, prices are beginning to stabilize. That said, it's still not uncommon to find overpriced products to this day.

Calculating a product's price per milligram is an essential tool you can use to find the value of a product. This calculation helps consumers like you to shop smart by comparing how much you'll pay per milligram of CBD for a given product. This simple concept is widely known, but what is little discussed are industry developments around product effectiveness.

This has created a situation where there are now some important fundamental issues with the standard 'price per gram/ milligram' comparison model. In this article, we explain why and take things a step further with an improvement to the traditional model - introducing you to 'effective price per milligram'.

The Traditional Price Per Milligram Equation

First, let's talk about the price per milligram equation. This simple equation takes into account two factors for a product:

  1. The price of a product
  2. The CBD content in that product

You then simply need to be conscious of the product spectrums, considering the cannabinoid and terpene content of a given extract. This equation is straightforward - take the price and divide it by the total CBD content of a given product:

Product Price / CBD Content in MG = Price Per Milligram of CBD Content 

As an example, let's use our 30 count bottle of 10mg softgels which contains 300mg of CBD being sold for $39.95. Using that equation we do the following calculation:

$39.95 / 300 mg = $0.13 price per mg of CBD content

Easy right? All you need to do is use this simple equation as you shop, comparing the price per milligram of CBD for the products you're considering. That said, there is a big missing piece here that this equation misses: bioavailability.

Bioavailability & CBD Effectiveness

In the early days, almost all the CBD products shared a similar oil-based makeup. This meant most products contained a full spectrum hemp extract or CBD isolate suspended in an oil carrier like MCT oil. These carrier oils aren't just for show, they play a key role: to help increase the bioavailability of a given product.

Bioavailability is the percent of a product that when consumed has an active effect. Here's the bad news: traditional oil-based capsules have an average bioavailability of less than 10%. That means 90% or more of the product you consume is simply flushed from your body.

The issue is this - when CBD oil capsules are swallowed the product enters the gut and then must go through what is called 'first-pass metabolism'. During this process, only a small amount of the product actually makes it into the bloodstream and becomes active, the rest is passed out of the body as waste.

CBD tinctures help combat this issue. When placed under the tongue, the hemp extract is absorbed through the mucous membranes in the mouth before being swallowed. This helps bypass first-pass metabolism to some extent and increases bioavailability relative to capsules. The issue is the carrier oils and sublingual administration only do so much to help absorption in the body - leaving more to be desired.

Water Soluble CBD Oil: The Effectiveness Gamechanger

The low effectiveness issues - especially with capsules - have been hard for many to swallow. Flushing over 90% of a high-cost substance down the toilet is obviously less than ideal. In response, forward-thinking manufacturers have created some new options that significantly improve bioavailability over traditional oil-based products.

These products, often labeled as 'water-soluble' undergo new processes that help improve absorption in the body by up to 5x. There are a couple of different types on the market today, but we will focus on the most effective: nanoemulsions.

A nanoemulsified product has undergone a process that breaks the oil particles into extremely tiny pieces - an average of 25 nanometers. While not water-soluble in a true sense, these particles are fine enough that they can disperse throughout liquids instead of sitting on top like oil. This process greatly increases the surface area of these oils and allows the body to more readily accept the valuable cannabinoids and terpenes.

Graphic comparing oil, liposomal microemulsion and nano-sized microemulsions

These technologies are game-changers in the industry and have a direct impact on pricing. For example, with a 5x increase in bioavailability, you need only 1/5th the dose of a nanoemulsified product vs an oil-based product. This means your cost per dose is reduced by up to 80%.

If I gave you an 80% discount code on a purchase of any product you buy, would you use it? You bet!

Considering Effectiveness in Price Per Milligram Calculations

The traditional price per gram calculation is built on one assumption: that all products offer similar bioavailability levels. This simply doesn't hold up with the introduction of water-soluble CBD. To improve the calculation, we need to take into account this important technology in our calculations

Here is how to calculate what we are calling the 'effective price per milligram' of a product. This equation takes into account bioavailability, better representing the overall value of a given product:

  1. The price of a product
  2. The CBD content in that product
  3. The bioavailability factor of the product

Using our graphic above, we can define the bioavailability factor of a given product. This number represents the factor of increase that a given product has. Traditional MCT carried oil-based products are our baseline at '1'.

  • Oil-based products are our baseline at a 1x absorption rate.
  • Liposomal products offer approximately a 2x absorption rate.
  • Nanoemulsified products offer approximately a 5x absorption rate.

The new effective price per milligram equation looks like this:

( Product Price / CBD Content in MG ) / Bioavailability Factor = Effective Price Per Milligram of CBD Content 

Let's run our original example through this new equation. Using our softgels again, the lowest cost option is a 30 count 10mg bottle (300mg CBD content) for $39.95, and they are nanoemulsified for a bioavailability factor of 5. Using that equation, we do the following calculation:

( $39.95 / 300 mg ) / 5 = $0.03 effective price per mg of CBD content

As you can see, this new equation has a significant impact on the end result - revealing the true value of the product with a $0.03 effective price per milligram.

Comparing Effective Price Per Milligram of Popular Brands

Putting this new pricing calculation to the test, here are some numbers for leading brands in the industry. Below you'll find a chart comparing capsules and tinctures from some of the most well-known companies on the market.

Fine print: Prices are sourced from each brand's corresponding product containing or closest to 1000mg (1g) of CBD. Prices are full retail, no slash outs, coupons, or sales considered. Last updated Dec 9th, 2019

Popular Capsules

You may scroll this table left and right to view the entire thing

Brand Type Spectrum CBD Content Price ePPMg
Big Sky Botanicals Nanoemulsified Broad Spectrum 900 mg $89.95 $0.02
Joy Organics Nanoemulsified Broad Spectrum 750 mg $74.95 $0.02
Lazarus Naturals Oil Full Spectrum 1000 mg $50.00 $0.05
Lazarus Naturals Oil Isolate 1000 mg $50.00 $0.05
CBDistillery Oil Full Spectrum 900 mg $70.00 $0.08
CBDistillery Oil Isolate 900 mg $70.00 $0.08
Endoca Oil Full Spectrum 1500 mg $129.00 $0.09
Elixinol Oil Full Spectrum 900 mg $79.99 $0.09
Bluebird Botanicals Oil Full Spectrum 600 mg $54.95 $0.09
Green Roads World Oil Isolate 750 mg $70.50 $0.09
CW Hemp Oil Full Spectrum 900 mg $99.99 $0.11
CBD American Shaman Oil Full Spectrum 900 mg $109.99 $0.12

Popular Tinctures

You may scroll this table left and right to view the entire thing

Brand Type Spectrum CBD Content Price ePPMg
Big Sky Botanicals Nanoemulsified Broad Spectrum 250 mg $34.95 $0.03
CBD American Shaman Nanoemulsified Full Spectrum 300 mg $59.99 $0.04
Lazarus Naturals Oil Full Spectrum 900 mg $38.00 $0.04
Lazarus Naturals Oil Isolate 900 mg $40.00 $0.04
Elixinol Liposomal Full Spectrum 1000 mg $129.00 $0.06
CBDistillery Oil Isolate 1000 mg $65.00 $0.07
CBDistillery Oil Full Spectrum 1000 mg $70.00 $0.07
Big Sky Botanicals Oil Broad Spectrum 1500 mg $99.95 $0.07
Joy Organics Oil Broad Spectrum 1000 mg $77.95 $0.08
Bluebird Botanicals Oil Full Spectrum 1000 mg $79.95 $0.08
Endoca Oil Full Spectrum 1500 mg $129.00 $0.09
Elixinol Oil Full Spectrum 300 mg $29.99 $0.10
CW Hemp Oil Full Spectrum 1500 mg $149.99 $0.10
Green Roads World Oil Isolate 1000 mg $123.50 $0.12
As you can see by the pricing tables, we are proud to say at Big Sky Botanicals we offer some of the highest value products on the market today. What's more is we take things a step further, offering up to a 20% discount off our products through our Charter Buyer Club - we challenge you to find a better value anywhere!

We hope you'll give our products a try, and experience the difference for yourself! You'll find both capsules and tinctures utilizing the highest quality nanoemulsion technology in broad-spectrum form as well as traditional oil-based tinctures and balms. You can view our entire product line here.



3 comments on “How to Find High-Value CBD with Effective Price Per Milligram

  • Big Sky Botanicals says:

    Hey Chris - you're correct they do claim to use nano, but only on some products. You'll notice we added their water-soluble tincture to the list. As you'll note on their site, their capsules are oil-based which is reflected in the price chart.

  • Chris L says:

    How do you compare to CBD American Shaman?

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