Who doesn’t love candy? Sure, they’re little pieces of sweet temptation you feel guilty eating afterwards, but they’re still fun, edible delights. Marco Hurtado and wife Ashlee Silva aren’t promoting candy as part of a healthful diet; as the owners of Cured Bomb Desserts, they’re more akin to Mary Poppins than Willy Wonka in their bias that a little sugar helps the medicine go down.
While the benefits of CBD oil are abundant, its natural flavor can often be considered an “acquired taste.” One of the easiest ways to mask the earthy bitterness is by blending it with something sweet, and that’s the recipe that Cured Bomb Desserts has followed since launching their CBD candy lines with hemp versions of classic candy favorites including Peach Rings, Cherry Coke Bottles, Sugar Bears, Sour Worms, Duo Colored Lollipops, Rainbow Belts and Lego Man Nerd Gummies, and tasty hemp snacks like Trail Mix, Rainbow Fish, Rice Crispies, Chocolate Pretzels and Caramel Popcorn.
“We’re not culinary experts,” Hurtado admits, “but with the help of our friends who are chefs, we’ve been able to come up with some really great products.”
Founded in 2014, Cured Bomb Desserts was one of the first independent companies producing CBD gummies, and at the time much of their business came from white-labeling the product for other major brands. The only marketing that Hurtado had needed was word of mouth as those other brands had heard how delicious (and effective) his products were, and came knocking on his door.
“We knew we had a popular product, but didn’t know much about marketing or advertising, so at that time, we just focussed on making everyone else big,” Hurtado says.
The drawback of privately labeling was that the original brand got left behind and Hurtado felt control of his products slipping away. He redirected his efforts with a new website and began turning down the private label requests.
Hurtado, a graduate of Oaksterdam University, recognized as “America’s first cannabis college,” where they teach everything from history, law, science, cultivation, cooking and extraction of the cannabis plant, how to successfully and responsibly establish and operate a canna-business, had the foresight that CBD edibles could be a big part of the coming CBD market. His business started not in a garage, as many start-up ventures do, but in his girl’s mom’s kitchen, testing out recipes and cooking up some sweet product ideas. It wasn’t long before Hurtado moved the operation into a commercial kitchen to keep everything on the up and up and to meet growing demand.
Hurtado admits that in the very beginning, it was about the money. And why not? But after digging deeper into CBD, and hearing stories about its positive effects on sufferers of many different types of ailment, his direction did a 180. It became even more personal for Hurtado when his 72-year-old father was diagnosed with stage 4 colon cancer. Nothing seemed to help with his pain and side effects of chemotherapy until he tried CBD,
“It was a horrible situation, but my dad got better, so now I want to help others (those with medical condition as well as their families) by giving them a product that is effective and that they can trust,” Hurtado says. “Everything we do is for the benefit of our customers.”
Cured Bomb Desserts are produced in a state-of-the-art GMP facility with strict operating procedures that go way above industry standards. They also pay strict adherence to product safety and packaging regulations; the state of Florida, for example, requires CBD products to be labeled with a bar-code or QR code linked to information on the lab testing, batch number, milligrams of CBD extract and THC, and expiration date.
“We’ve had all those things in place from the start,” Hurtado says, “so we’re ahead of other companies that don’t because they’re not legally allowed to sell in Florida. We’re also ready to meet any new federal regulations.”
The name Cured Bomb Desserts isn’t meant to insinuate that it offers a cure. It’s actually a reverse acronym for CBD, and is also derived from the curing process that helps maintain the hemp’s cannabinoid and terpene profile, which is responsible for the unique smell, flavor, and effects. It’s not all about desserts, but their products are definitely da bomb. They recently introduced two styles of CBD hemp prerolls and a line of CBD herbal tea that contains 60mg of CBD per gram, and is packaged in a glass jar containing 10 grams (small), or 20 grams (large).
Along with being a reputable and responsible manufacturer, Cured Bomb Desserts is a Christian-based company. Printed on the packaging is one specific Bible verse that is a testimony to their faith in God and their products: First Corinthians 10:31 which states “So whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do it all for the glory of God.”
“If we were doing something wrong, taking short cuts or leading people astray with what we say about the product, then I believe that God would strike us down and not let our business succeed,” Hurtado says.
“One time at the university, a student asked the teacher if when Jesus was on the Earth, he would have given people cannabis oil, and the teacher replied that hash oil has been discovered other medicines from the time when Jesus was alive,” he adds. “Jesus was a healer, and back then, cannabis wasn’t something to get you high, it was just a plant from which they made a medicinal oil.”
“Do you know how Webster’s Dictionary defines the word Love?” asks Hurtado. “It’s an intensive care for somebody. That’s the base of everything that we do.”
“I really love the Lord and I love helping people,” Hurtado states.
“I can’t begin to tell you the number of thank you notes we’ve received,” he says. “It warms my heart to hear from people about how they and their families have benefited from taking our products.”