As the popularity of cannabis derivative CBD began to soar, Halee and Tyler Kalevitch and their friends Andrea and Marcus Kelley—both parents to boys under five—started wondering where families fit in. While CBD products of all types and strengths flooded the market, many containing trace amounts of THC (marijuana’s psychoactive component), the two couples saw a niche to fill.
"We knew we weren’t the only ones who had a need for some healthy alternatives," Halee says.
So, they put their heads and business backgrounds together to launch Bear Necessities Co., an online retailer of THC-free creams and tinctures designed to manage pain, rejuvenate aging skin, calm eczema in kids, even ease anxious pets.
Though the Jungle Book–inspired name is a nod to the moms’ affinity for Disney, Halee says, "We also wanted it to be the bare necessities—we don’t want extra crap in our products." All of their products are also organic, vegan, and paraben- and cruelty-free.
Andrea and Halee run the company from home in Bay Ho and sell through their website, bearnecessitiesco.com. Their goal is to eventually have their five product lines available in stores.
Bear Necessities Co. sources its CBD from California-grown plants that do not contain THC, because they want to make sure that people for whom that distinction is most important—teachers, nurses, parents, kids—can rest easy.
Still, since they know many people will have questions, they’ve had their products tested by a third-party lab and dove deep into CBD research to educate potential customers.
"As moms, we want to be there for them," says Halee. "If people have weird questions, we have weird answers."