The Chicago Cubs have joined hands with wellness and recovery brand Mynd Drinks to introduce CBD drinks during home games at Wrigley Field in the upcoming 2023 Major League Baseball season. With this agreement, fellow Chicago-based company Mynd Drinks will become the first official CBD partner of the Cubs and the first CBD brand to partner with an MLB team.
The deal allows Mynd Drinks to promote its CBD-infused beverages at Wrigley Field, with several signages and branding elements, including on-field baseline signages and various other features of the ballpark. Moreover, the agreement includes international marketing rights for the 2023 regular season in the United Kingdom, marking a first for the Cubs.
Alex Seyferth, the VP of Corporate Partnerships at the Chicago Cubs, said in a statement that the new partnership came to fruition because of the recent CBD category opening for MLB clubs, which allowed the Cubs to explore new partnership opportunities and offerings. He added that while the Cubs are proud to be the first club to partner with a CBD company, it was more important for them to ensure that the brand was the right fit for them. He noted that Mynd Drinks is a Chicago-based company that promotes overall wellness and helps ease the stress of everyday life, just like watching a game at Wrigley Field.
Mynd Drinks offers three flavors of plant-based, hemp-infused wellness and recovery drinks that aid relaxation, refreshment, and recovery. As part of the partnership, the company will offer online content to help fans of the team relax and unwind, including a guided meditation on YouTube narrated by Cubs radio play-by-play announcer Pat Hughes and a “Sounds of Wrigley Field” Spotify playlist.
The partnership between the Chicago Cubs and Mynd Drinks is just one example of how professional sports leagues are changing their stance on cannabis. The MLB changed its policy in June 2022 to allow sponsorship deals with hemp-based CBD companies for teams and the league, and later that year, it signed a deal with Colorado-based Charlotte’s Web, making the company the “Official CBD of Major League Baseball.”
Charlotte’s Web CEO Jacques Tortoroli noted that the deal would increase public awareness of the health and wellness benefits of CBD. Similarly, on April 1, 2023, the National Basketball Association (NBA) and the players union reached a deal on a new collective bargaining agreement that reportedly ends the NBA’s prohibition on cannabis for players. The National Hockey League (NHL) also ended cannabis prohibition for its athletes, no longer listing the plant as a banned substance. NFL’s collective bargaining agreement for the 2020-21 season relaxed the league’s cannabis policy, allowing players to use the plant during the off-season while maintaining prohibition throughout the season of play.
As the health benefits of hemp and cannabis become more widely known and accepted among the general public, it only makes sense for professional sports to evolve alongside legalization. Official partnerships between professional sports clubs and CBD and THC brands mark significant changes in policies and signal the evolving times.