The medical cannabis company that EGOT winner Whoopi Goldberg co-founded in 2016 is shutting down.
Goldberg launched Whoopi & Maya with Maya Elisabeth, an award-winning edibles maker and the founder of Om Edibles, with a specific focus on providing medical cannabis for people who suffered from menstrual pain. However, after four years, the company released the following statement on its website:
To our wonderful customers and those it may concern,
We’re deeply saddened to tell you that Whoopi & Maya will no longer continue operation.
In 2016, we launched with an urgent mission: to offer safe, natural relief for period pain through the miracle of medical cannabis. We proved there’s a market for this medicine and it’s been our joy to offer this miraculous relief to our treasured customers. It has been our privilege to serve the community.
Though we’ve all come a long way, there’s far more to be achieved. This is simply the end of a single chapter in a larger story, one that we invite you to continue.
The Whoopi & Maya board and its investors plan on meeting separately this week to discuss the future for the company’s products. Goldberg resigned from the board on Friday after tension with her business partner.
“It became clear to everybody that Whoopi and Maya wanted a divorce,” Whoopi & Maya board member Rick Cusick told CNN Business. “How do you do that? Because both of them were very integral to what we were doing.”
In a separate interview with Green Entrepreneur, Cusick elaborated further on the breakup. “The industry itself had changed so much in the last 7 years. It’s changed even in the last 4 years, it’s been really something to witness. In 2016 we were a medical cannabis company so we were under the medical law. In California, they changed it to over 21, which changed the regulatory systems. It changed the thing we had to do, the packaging, the messaging on the bottle. As we jumped through that, the regulations kept changing, there was never a good place to land,” he said.
“We were on a solid upward path, then the mishegoss in the industry slowed that ascent,” says Cusick. “That started 2 to 3 years ago and ultimately there were tensions that grew from that. Originally, it was not a friendly space for cannabis. I mean by that, the regulations and the government.”
Whoopi & Maya was one of the first celebrity-backed cannabis companies when it started. Based in California, it included a signature line of herbal medical cannabis products to help provide relief for women experiencing menstrual cramps and discomfort.