As an adventurous child, Meghan Ward loved exploring the outdoors. Growing up on Long Island, the threat of deer ticks is high and commonly found in the wooded and grassy areas where Meghan frequented. Around the age of 7, Meghan was bitten by a tick and developed a high fever.
As time went on, Meghan began experiencing constant pains in her arms and legs. “My mom and grandma would rub me down with menthol pain-relieving cream every night,” Meghan says. The pain was so excruciating that Meghan would often wake up crying and want to be taken to the hospital.
After living in constant agony for years, Meghan went to a doctor during her freshman year of college and was diagnosed with Lyme disease. Meghan was given pharmaceuticals for her pain, but their side effects did more harm than good and she decided to stop taking them.
In 2016, Meghan went on a trip to California to visit her best friend from college. “She always knew when I was in pain because she could smell my menthol cream from down the dorm hallway,” Meghan says.
There, Meghan was introduced to cannabidiol, commonly referred to as CBD. Desperate to alleviate her pain, Meghan decided to try it and within twenty minutes, her muscle and joint pain subsided and she finally felt relief.
In addition to alleviating the symptoms of Lyme disease, Meghan explains that CBD can be used to help anxiety, PTSD, depression, headaches, nausea, and helps strengthen the immune system overall. CBD can also be helpful for those who struggle with insomnia by increasing serotonin, which has anti-anxiety effects.
After trying a variety of CBD products, Meghan found that some companies were falsely advertising and sold products that contained little to no CBD in them. In order to manage her Lyme disease, Meghan knew that she needed a high quality product from a trustworthy company. Eventually, Meghan decided to create her own CBD company called Ergo Hemp Co, located in Cortlandt Manor.
Meghan hopes to educate and help consumers understand that CBD cannot get you high. “Ergo Hemp Co. products are broad spectrum products meaning they have 0.0% THC,” Meghan says. “For those who are interested in the benefits of CBD but are hesitant about ingesting THC, our products are a way for them to feel comfortable.”
“My goal is to grow Ergo Hemp Co. authentically by sharing my story,” Meghan says. “Word of mouth is my most used marketing tool and I feel it is the most trusted method. “I have partnered with Lyme disease foundations to share my experience with Lyme disease and how CBD has helped in hopes of helping others.”
Meghan stresses her appreciation for the societal holistic movement where people gravitate more towards natural sources to heal, rather than pharmaceuticals. In addition, she wants to continue to work with doctors, massage therapists, and health coaches while sharing her story with the community.
When it comes to competition, “The CBD industry is a competitive but friendly industry,” Meghan remarks. “Most companies are happy to see CBD making headlines and be readily available.” Charlotte’s Web is an example of a large CBD company with a great mission and quality products. Hudson Valley CBD is a local company that offers quality products as well.
“Our high quality CBD products are sourced from US grown hemp, manufactured in an FDA registered facility and backed by lab results,” Meghan says. Ergo Hemp Co. believes in creating a better environment and their packaging is made from 100% recyclable materials. In addition, Ergo Hemp Co. is a women owned business that supports other small businesses to not only provide quality products but to educate the consumers about CBD.
When asked how Meghan sees her company evolving, she states, “My goal for Ergo Hemp Co. is to be found in more local shops and used widely by the community, especially those experiencing Lyme disease.” Meghan wishes to grow a team to help build Ergo Hemp and share their mission so others can achieve better health and wellness.
“While starting and growing my own company is not easy, I am not afraid to take risks,” Meghan emphasizes. “Sharing my story with the community is so rewarding and I want to continue educating consumers about hemp, its benefits and stop the stigma associated with cannabis products.”
Rebeccah Worth is a freelance writer based in Northern Westchester.