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Franny Tacy, CEO at Franny’s Farmacy- Interview Series

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“For an experienced or aspiring entrepreneur wanting to emerge into the fastest growing industry we’ve seen since dot com, franchising in cannabis is the way to go for anyone!”

Franny Tacy

Franchising is a new-ish concept in the emerging CBD industry, but one that provides new businesses the opportunity to leverage on the experience and reputation of established brands, such as Franny’s Farmacy.

From pharmacy to farm-acy, everything about Franny Tacy is an intriguing rhyme. She grew up on a farm, found her way into the pharmaceutical world where she stuck it out for a solid 12 years before winding up as a farmer again. This time, a hemp farmer! She now runs a seed-to-shelf multi-state hemp business that offers franchising opportunities and provides a “soft-landing spot” for new entrants into the CBD space.

Having been in the industry since 2017, Franny’s has made a name for being a noteworthy CBD brand. The business franchise model has been a huge success, allowing Franny’s to serve clientele across state lines. Given the complexities of the nascent and evolving hemp and CBD industry, what Franny’s has achieved so far is no mean feat. Franny allowed us to pick her mind, just a little, and what she had to share was very insightful.

As an intro, how did your career path lead you to the hemp and CBD industry?

Everyone asks how did you get here and it just happened without any aspirations to ever be in the cannabis industry. I wanted to be a farmer. I grew up in Nashville, headed west for college to study Forestry, went on lots of wild adventures, got a master’s in education and taught for 6 years then went into the pharmaceutical industry for over 12 years before getting my farm 10 years ago. After 3 years on the farm, feeding 20 sheep, 60 chickens, cows, and so many animals every day, I left the “unhealthcare” system. I was teaching farming classes when I saw a man sitting at a little card table that said “Let Farmers Grow Hemp”. It happened and I was the first female in NC. I made history without knowing and that is pretty cool. I’m pretty certain it’s still true. My short story is “Pharma to Farm,” I quit my corporate career to build a new endeavor – a business that brought together my passions to care for the land and to help others lead healthy lives.

Franny’s Farmacy is a successful multi-state CBD brand. What are some of the factors that you can attribute this success to?

This success has been built on establishing our brand and staying true to our values and mission of bringing “Seed to Shelf, Hemp & Health” products. As the first female in NC to plant hemp, I’ve built my business with strong roots and a foundation before expanding into other states. The cannabis industry is regulated by states and each one has its own, very unique set of guidelines. Our success is absolutely attributed to our products and brand that is established as high-end, trusted and tested. Our outreach, education, collaboration with researchers & law-makers is why Franny’s has been published and featured by every major media.

Are women well represented in the hemp industry, especially in leadership positions?

To this day, Women have to fight to be seen for our worth and value in every industry. Being a woman-owned health & wellness brand, I am constantly inspired by the women leaders in the cannabis industry. The percentages of Women in leadership roles are “high” for the cannabis industry yet still under-represented and have dramatically fallen from approximately 30% in 2019 to 22% in 2022. The national average of women who hold executive positions in the industry throughout the country is 29.8 percent, but over the past two years, women in those positions in the cannabis industry has fallen to 22.1 percent.

You are passionate about hemp research. What fuels this passion?

I am absolutely passionate about hemp research and am as curious as can be. I have been involved in research since the times I lived on a farm in college participating in crop trials. When the 2018 Farm bill was put into place, I put my first plant in the ground and assisted in the 3 year trial with NC State. We cultivated relationships with Western North Carolina farmers that shared values to grow hemp to guarantee the source of every product is known and trusted. This, combined with testing all products through a third-party, DEA-certified lab, ensures Franny’s Farmacy upholds the highest standard for safety and quality in an unregulated market.

For a new CBD franchise, what does it take to provide a consistent customer experience?

Offering our customers a trusted, quality product with trained Budtenders to assist with questions is the center of why and how we stay in business. Our stores are custom, classy designs that are welcoming to all and feature sustainable Hempwood architecture with an array of products for the whole family, even the pets. Our woman-owned, health and wellness brand attracts a wide range of conscientious consumers that appreciate our welcoming, friendly atmosphere. Our CannaCafe is featured at many of our locations and offers baked goods, custom tea blends, Delta8 and CBD drinks with comfortable places to sit, snack, go solo or socialize. Every bit of this is outshined by our team that serves the people. They are consistent because they are accountable! Our company is forthright with information and sharing, weekly team meetings and communication. Although out of the “start-up” phase, we are a small and mighty force that have been building our future together.

In a nutshell, what does it take to succeed as a CBD franchise?

For an experienced or aspiring entrepreneur wanting to emerge into the fastest growing industry we’ve seen since dot com, franchising in cannabis is the way to go for anyone! People join a team and system that guide them to success with training, education and assistance every step of the way- from finding real estate, contracting the build-out, POS systems, banking, insurance, hiring and training, reporting, marketing and more. For legal reasons alone, people need the regulatory guidance on how to navigate when CBD is unregulated and THC is over-regulated.

Franny’s Franchising offers a path into a new era of health, wellness and conscientious consumers. And the one and only magic to success is to follow the business plan and remember it’s a journey and know your WHY? Your why will guide you through the best choices to make during the tough times because that is inevitable.

Could you furnish us with some insights on recent consumer spending patterns in the CBD industry

Within the CBD industry we are currently seeing patterns of anywhere from 30 to 70 percent of consumers buying Delta 8 THC products. The market is expanding. We continue to see a demand rise for Minor cannabinoids such as THCO, THCV, HHC-O and with that demand we will be introducing 40 new products and 4 new categories, Heal, Unwind, Boost, Restore, involving minor cannabinoids and terpenes.
The hemp and CBD space is evolving at an unprecedented rate. What are some of your personal predictions for the industry in 2022?

2022 will be a year of big change for the cannabis industry! Major Brands will continue to sit on the sidelines waiting for regulation. Expect no FDA regulations to roll out! At least this year if not longer. Expect expansion of minor cannabinoids in the market such as D8, THC-V, THCo- HHC-O Brands, like Franny’s will expand in new emerging markets. More states are passing laws to allow medicinal and recreational marijuana but it will take 2 years to get into the market as states figure out how to manage the program and issue licenses. More consumers will spend conscientiously.

Thank you for the great interview and for all of the work that you have done to help move this industry forward, readers who wish to explore CBD franchising can check out Franny’s Farmacy.

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Lydia K. (Bsc. RN) is a cannabis writer, which, considering where you’re reading this, makes perfect sense. Currently, she is a regular writer for Mace Media. In the past, she has written for MyBud, RX Leaf & Dine Magazine (Canada), CBDShopy (UK) and Cannavalate & Pharmadiol (Australia). She is best known for writing epic news articles and medical pieces. Occasionally, she deviates from news and science and creates humorous articles. And boy doesn't she love that! She equally enjoys ice cream, as should all right-thinking people.

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