Green Qweens & Troubled Jungle Boys
Plus: Last call for Thursday's DIY PR sesh.
The Broccoli Report
Monday, May 23, 2022
Time to read: 4 minutes, 36 seconds. Contains 922 words.
This is the last call for Thursday’s PR Q&A! I’m so looking forward to hearing Monica Khemsurov (Tetra + Sight Unseen) get into the nitty-gritty of doing your own PR and plenty of you are, too. Since day one of the Broccoli Report, readers have asked questions about PR—how to get more press, whether hiring an agency is worth it, ways to get the word out about a new product or campaign.
Running a cannabis-related company is expensive, plant-touching or not. While not everyone has time to do their own PR, hiring a skilled, connected agency can be a costly experiment. And in my experience, working with PR people unfamiliar with the cannabis space is not worth it. The good news: There is so much you can do, even if you are a time-crunched founder or solo operator.
This ask-me-anything sesh will be an opportunity to hear from an expert who's done this herself for years and get your specific questions answered, with one-on-one back and forth with Monica for details on the specifics. We may not have time to answer every question, but we’ll get to as many as possible, so be sure to tune in at 11:00 am PST / 2:00 pm EST to get in the queue.
Paid subscribers and those who have already registered—see you there. If you still need to RSVP, you can do that right here.
One-Hitters: Cannabis News at a Glance
Turns out that Governor Newsom’s move to cut California’s dreaded cultivation tax (that extra $161/lb tax adding to operators’ burden) isn’t exactly the lifeline cultivators need. The proposed plan would make up for those lost funds within three years by hiking the 15% excise tax up to 19%—a move that won’t inspire unlicensed operators to go legit anytime soon.
The Thai government is sending out one million free cannabis plants to households across the nation—no, really. This move celebrates a new rule allowing home grows for certified medical patients starting June 9th. It’s a major development in destigmatizing cannabis as a medicine in southeast Asia.
Via Weedweek: Two former employees have sued companies affiliated with cult-favorite California cultivator Jungle Boys, alleging wrongful termination, unlawful retaliation, and numerous other eye-popping claims including discrimination toward the female plaintiffs and threats of termination if they got pregnant. This news follows after the brand received an unexpected visit in March from law enforcement over $66,000 in unpaid taxes. Their journey may set an interesting precedent for what happens when old-school ways of doing cannabis business meet modern workplace standards.
Since Colorado legalized cannabis in 2012, insurance companies have been keeping an eye on increases in workplace accidents. Ten years later, an analysis of workers’ comp claims from the state’s largest insurer found claims have largely remained consistent—no excessive claims resulting from injuries suffered by “stoned forklift drivers or high cultivators.” With this data in hand, perhaps we can pick up the conversation around skilled laborers like truck drivers and electricians deserving the right to consume cannabis after hours, just as they do with alcohol.
Adweek covered an unexpected venue for celebrity cannabis ads: Cameo. Multistate operator Columbia Care hired Cee-lo Green and Carson Kressley, among others, and supposedly drove nearly $2 million in revenue and 40,000 dispensary visits via a customized program with the shout-out video platform.
Surreal ceramic pipe maker Miwak Junior moved from LA to St. Augustine, Florida. While they settle in, they’re inviting shoppers to grab the West Coast pieces before they’re sunsetted, and “Southern-flavored, East Coast-toasted, Florida sunshine-roasted” pieces start rolling out. I love that Miwak Junior embraces a sense of place, and there is something inspiring about going beyond the copy-and-paste approach of bringing products to another state. It could be meaningful for more brands to highlight their work with local cultivators in a way that makes these products special and made for that state, rather than a Xeroxed copy.
Puffco will donate 100% of the net proceeds from their May Indiglow Hot Knife sales to the Lupus Foundation of America. This is the fourth year that Puffco has fundraised for lupus awareness in honor of their first employee’s mother, Eve, who battled the disease.
Green Qween, a new dispensary co-founded by queer nightlife producer Andrés Rigal focused on supporting QTBIPOC brands, just opened in downtown Los Angeles. If you’re in the neighborhood, check out their vibrant mural commissioned by Patrick Church.
There are two things the average headshop carries that the many virtual destinations for modern smokeware do not: a ton of bowls in multiple sizes and skinny metal pokers. I am proud to report that it’s been a few years since I broke a whole bong, but I break a bowl once a year, and I always have to swing by my local Mellow Mood for a replacement. While I’m there, I typically pick up one of the $5 metal pokers with a random plastic or glass decoration—an underrated merch opportunity, in my opinion. I got excited to try a spare flower bowl from Hemper, but even this sprawling e-shop lacks a simple, sturdy poker that isn’t attached to a funky lighter case.
I am looking forward to bringing my dad to The Woods—a new dispensary and lounge in West Hollywood, California, co-founded by Woody Harrelson and Bill Maher—although he's got a higher THC tolerance than me these days.
Off to find the strongest edible in Portland before Father's Day,