(This story has been updated.)
In an announcement on August 9, a company called Tree of Knowledge announced that they would be launching a line of hemp-derived CBD products for Dr. Sanjay Gupta, which they would call “Dr. Gupta’s” under the Gupta Products umbrella. They announced the line will include products like CBD capsules, CBD tinctures and CBD salve.
However, the Dr. Sanjay Gupta in question is not the famous CNN chief medical correspondent, who brought CBD to the mainstream with his documentary series “Weed.” Instead, the Dr. Sanjay Gupta endorsing the CBD products is the president of the American Pain Association and the director of a show called “Health Time TV.”
“We are extremely excited that Dr. Gupta has selected TOK to work with to create a new product line under his name. We see this as an extraordinary partnership where we can combine our expertise in creating premium quality products with Dr. Gupta’s worldwide name recognition,” said Tree of Knowledge CEO Jean-Paul Gaillard in the announcement.
Unfortunately, the “worldwide name recognition” behind the name “Dr. Sanjay Gupta” is not exclusive to the renowned pain doctor. But in comments to Hemp Industry Daily, Tree of Knowledge chair Michael Caridi “scoffed” at the idea the Dr. Gupta’s product line was intentionally ambiguous about which Dr. Gupta was endorsing the product.
“The way (consumers) are going to tell them apart is, they’re going to go to doctors in the pain association and hear about it there,” Caridi told the outlet. In the initial press release on the Dr. Gupta’s product line, the Tree of Knowledge did not draw a clear distinction between the two doctors or outright state that their Dr. Gupta was not the famous CNN reporter.
Guys, you know this isn’t true. I haven’t partnered with anyone and have never endorsed any products. Perhaps you are doing good work, but you are absolutely misrepresenting my involvement. First I ever heard of this was from this tweet. Please correct.
— Dr. Sanjay Gupta (@drsanjaygupta) August 14, 2018
In a tweet on August 13, CNN’s Dr. Sanjay Gupta responded to the initial news stories that broke about the “Dr. Gupta’s” product line, which — including on Cannabis Now — reported that the chief medical correspondent had endorsed the hemp-derived CBD products. In his tweet, Dr. Gupta wrote, “I haven’t partnered with anyone and have never endorsed any products.”
It’s unclear if the forthcoming “Dr. Gupta’s” products will make it clear on their labeling which Dr. Gupta is endorsing the products.
In July of this year, Tree of Knowledge became a publically traded company on the Canadian Securities Exchange.
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