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Turning skeptics into believers

Sunmed/Your CBD Store opens in downtown Fort Dodge

-Messenger photo by Kelby Wingert
Sunmed store manager Lincoln Battcher explains the benefits of CBD products to members of the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance.

Six weeks after opening on Central Avenue, Sunmed/Your CBD Store was already seeing good business and curious customers, according to co-owner Keenan Schuur.

Schuur and his business partner, Jack Hanson, announced in January 2023 their plans to open a store to sell hemp-based products and supplements.

Sunmed is a national CBD franchise, but the Fort Dodge store at 1026 Central Ave. is locally owned by Schuur and Hanson. The store sells USDA-certified organic CBD hemp products, including tinctures, water solubles, gummies, capsules, beauty products and bath products.

“I got into CBD a couple of years ago when I started looking into more of my mental health and taking care of that,” Schuur said. “And CBD has shown a lot of promise with a lot of that stuff … It connects into your endocannabinoid system and creates just an overall balance in your body.”

March 30 was the business’ grand opening and ribbon cutting with the Greater Fort Dodge Growth Alliance.

“The store’s been very well received,” Schuur said. “It’s been an overwhelmingly positive support.”

Schuur said a common question he gets from first-time customers is, “Is this going to get me high?”

“CBD is non-psychoactive, so it doesn’t do that,” Schuur said.

CBD, scientifically known as cannabidiol, is a naturally-occurring compound that is found in high concentrations in hemp. Although it comes from the same plant as marijuana, it does not carry the same psychoactive properties and has less than 0.3% THC, the psychoactive and illegal compound found in marijuana.

“When people walk in, the first question we ask is, ‘What brings you in today?'” Schuur said. “They’re usually coming in for a specific reason, whether it’s something with their joints, something with anxiety or whatever the case is, and we talk them through it and pinpoint exactly what products are going to be most beneficial. We have a very educational approach to everything and make sure people are getting the right service.”

The products range in price from around $30 up to $180, depending on the type of product and quantity of CBD in the product.

The Sunmed CBD products are high-quality and meticulously tested, Schuur said.

“There’s an in-house chemist that comes up with all the formulations and all of our products have a QR code that you can scan to pull up a lab report so you know exactly what’s in it,” he said.

Another question Schuur said he gets sometimes is, “How is this legal?”

“It’s all hemp-derived products and it was made legal through the 2018 Farm Bill federally and then the Iowa Hemp Act at the state level,” he said. “All of our products are registered with the state and we had to get a hemp license to be able to be open for business.”

While the Sunmed store does have some recreational products that contain THC (at a level less than the legal limit of 0.3%), the store’s focus is on health and wellness, Schuur said.

“It’s one of those things that people come into it as skeptics and they leave as repeat customers because as soon as you try it you realize it works,” he said.

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