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Foy: By Athletes, for Everyone

Jun 20 2024

An exclusive interview with the brothers who brought you Foy, an edible and CBD brand found on the Gotham shelves.

With so many cannabis and CBD brands available in the burgeoning legal market in New York State, it can be hard to weed through thousands of products to find the perfect one. However, remaining authentic comes naturally for Yon and Moose Haile, brothers and founders of Foy. The brand launched in 2020 and has made waves in the cannabis industry ever since. A favorite amongst athletes and sports lovers alike, the brand is family-owned and operated. You don’t have to be a quarterback to enjoy their gummies or oils.

Creating a brand that centers around wellness came quickly to the brothers, who grew up very close and became even closer when they founded Foy together. Formerly managing NFL athletes, they knew that everyone could benefit from natural products that would help improve quality of life, from better sleep to more stable mental health. The Haile brothers' guiding light has always been discovering a clean, holistic route to everything they produce. And they do everything with a sense of humor. By overcoming life’s difficulties, they feel it’s their purpose to create clean, organic wellness products.

Gotham had the honor of sitting down with the Haile brothers to ask them questions about everything from art, to their favorite products to what wellness trends they can’t get enough of.

Talk to us briefly about how you got started, but tell us the story you don’t always tell…

Yon: Most people who have heard our story understand it from the perspective of our history managing NFL athletes and our approach to sourcing a more holistic approach to helping them manage pain. One aspect we haven’t covered as much has been how we grew to understand the impact that CBD and other cannabinoids have on mental health and how impactful that was on our decision to create Foy. Officially rolling out the brand in March 2020, during an adamant time for people when our mental health was tested, served as an essential reminder of why we came into this space to educate, serve, and learn from the community.

Moose: Foy stems from many difficult childhood experiences where wellness played a significant role. My brother and I have seen family and friends deal with mental health issues, injuries, health complications, and more. Our guiding light has always been discovering a clean, holistic route. By overcoming life’s difficulties, we feel it’s our purpose to create clean, organic wellness products that respect their original intentions.

What’s it like working with family?

Y: Overall, it’s been great. We’ve worked together for the last decade in sports management and established a solid trust amongst ourselves that can sometimes be hard to find in other business relationships. We know each other’s strengths & weaknesses, and honest conversations come more naturally. Also, he can’t hide from me if he tries anything slick.

M: We don’t believe in the typical cliché “never do business with family.” We think the most important thing is to be aware of who you empower. Purpose comes with a responsibility that takes discipline and sacrifice, and through that, the reward is your impact. Also, our mom always told us the day we worked together was the day we would be successful.

In a world that feels like it’s surrounded by CBD and THC products, how important is it to stand out?

Y: We believe it’s vital to stand out – especially in a market that continues to grow and become saturated. When we started Foy in 2019, we created our foundation with two main building blocks – high-quality ingredients & community outreach (or our social responsibility). That became our purpose. Foy’s mantra is “Find Your Purpose Through Wellness.”

We needed to amplify our message and let consumers know that they have a viable option in the CBD/THC space for a brand that puts their health first and that their purchase helps provide funding for communities/people in need. We’re a small company, and we’re not backed by private equity or VC money. We took our time and never forgot the building blocks in place in 2019. Those principles guided us here and helped our brand stand out. We don’t plan on redefining Foy’s intentions for short-term gains.

M: We think it’s essential. This played a significant role in our Foy rollout. With the space becoming more saturated, we felt the best approach was creating an organic product that offers multiple adaptogens and cannabinoids to create products that work. For example, we didn’t want just to put THC in our Daytime chews and label it for sleep. We use CO2-extracted THC, CBD, CBG, USDA Certified Organic Lion’s Mane mushroom, USDA Organic Cordyceps mushroom, and USDA Organic Ginseng all in one chew to honestly give our customers a functional product that helps keep them active throughout the day. The same goes for our Nighttime chews, which help with quality sleep and rest. Our chews are vegan, gluten-free, and soy-free, with no artificial flavors, coloring, or corn syrup. We’ve priced them to be advantageous for the customer so they get a clean product with more bang for their buck.

Additionally, we find grassroots ways to give back to the community. Since our inception, with the help of customer purchases, we have helped bail out individuals with minor cannabis-related charges every month. This not only aligns with our values but also supports those who have been disproportionately affected by cannabis laws.

What has it been like working with Gotham?

Y: It’s been amazing. Gotham will always hold a special place within us because they were one of our first retail partners. Our first in-store training was with Gotham, and we appreciated how knowledgeable and respectful the whole staff was. Since we contacted Gotham, the team has been incredibly supportive, responsive, kind, and helpful. Gotham is always looking for ways to amplify small, local, and minority-owned brands, and we have a lot of respect for the standards they’re setting in this market. The cannabis space should continue to promote community diversity and uplift others. Gotham embodies those principles.

M: We love Gotham. They have an incredible team and are very thoughtful with their brand and customer experience. The budtenders are well-educated and provide customers with a detailed understanding, which helps make their decisions a lot easier.

Can you briefly discuss art's role in your life and the brand?

Y: Art plays a significant role in our brand, and it has helped us separate ourselves in a market that can sometimes feel overwhelming to consumers. We’ve spent a lot of time and resources with our design team to build a brand that isn’t categorized as just a “CBD or THC” brand – but a wellness brand that sells CBD and THC products. We’ve been conscious and meticulous with even the more minor details, like the Pantone colors that make up Foy’s look. The colors were designed to elicit a more calming and relaxing feel that aligns with the comfort people want when their eyes catch a Foy product online or in stores. I will also point out that branding and design are essential to us. Still, we’ll never allow it to overshadow the quality and clean ingredients we formulate into our products.

M: Art and design played a significant role when we first started. The name Foy is an acronym for “fountain of youth.” We intentionally present Foy, as we want it all to lead back to our mantra: “Find your purpose through wellness.” We did a lot of research on color because we want the colors to elicit a calm, relaxing, trusting feel across our brand.

Who are some people you’d love to see rep your brand?

Y: We’ve been blessed to have professional athletes, actors/actresses, and influencers promote Foy throughout the years without us spending a dime on marketing fees. We respect that they’ve done it out of love for the brand and the impact/effectiveness that the Foy products have had on their lives. Foy was never designed to market or target any niche demographic. Foy has always welcomed folks from every walk of life to the family.

The most profound impact for us is when we get emails from customers sharing their testimonials on how Foy has positively impacted their lives or a member of their family/friend’s life. We love the occasional DM on socials or tags from customers showing love and fueling our ‘why.’

M: The everyday testimonies from customers blow us away. From people dealing with years of insomnia and finally being able to sleep again to someone’s mom who had their seizures calmed down by our Foy chews—those stories are enormous for us. Hearing that a small brand like ours significantly impacts people’s lives is the best reputation we can have!

What’s your favorite trendy wellness craze and one you wish would disappear?

Y: I remember reading that there was an increase in people purchasing laxatives as a budget-friendly option for a prevalent weight-loss drug. I’d caution people to be safe and research as much before jumping on any new wave. I continue wishing everyone the best on their wellness goals.

M: I may be late to the game, but lettuce-wrapped burgers are not for me.

What spots are you loving right now?

Y: Despite all this talk about wellness, it would be disingenuous if we didn’t mention that we like to splurge on calories now and then. We live in NYC, and the excellent food joints here are endless. Scarr’s Pizza, Trinidad Golden Place, Nenes Deli Taqueria, and Massawa are some of my favorites.

M: Besides the Honey Butter Pancakes with berry compote from Golden Diner, a legit afternoon activity is to eat a Foy THC Chew and rent an Electric Citi Bike to ride the six-mile perimeter inside Central Park. Just make sure the Citi Bike is electric, and you smoothly get to appreciate the park and all it has to offer.

What’s your favorite Foy product and one that you’re excited about in the future?

Y: The Nightime Chews. Sleep is so essential because of its impact on our physical and mental health. The organic adaptogens present in the vegan Nighttime Chews, like reishi mushroom, valerian root, and chamomile, work great with the three different cannabinoids also present. Maintaining quality levels of sleep and waking up feeling energized and non-groggy make this Foy chews ideal for me.

M: I love our Foy Daytime Chews because they provide focus and energy. I call it an HD high because everything feels so clear.

Since your brand is all about family, do you have any recipes or stories passed down that you can share with us?

M: As kids, we shared a room until the day we moved out. Every night, we would listen to ESPN Radio on our tiny alarm clock radio, debating late into the night about sports topics. Fast-forward to today, and our small business, Foy, has organically been endorsed by some of the best athletes in sports with no marketing dollars spent. It’s pretty cool how things come full circle for a good intention.