The Broccoli Report
Monday, April 26, 2021
Time to read: 5 minutes, 41 seconds. 1139 words.
What’s Up In Weed? Fresh news, reforms and inventive launches.
Hope everyone could take a breath after the holiday, and a special shout out to everyone who made space in their celebrations to do something to better the industry for someone else. I got to start my day with a live wake-and-bake with my Broccoli Talk co-host Mennlay (hello to anyone who caught it!). Then I saw my latest piece for Thrillist go up—it’s all about the cannabis industry’s plastic problem and the brands working to mitigate it (a concise continuation of what we touched on in a past Report).
Before we get to the news, here’s a tease for this Friday’s illuminating dispatch sharing the results of our industry survey. We asked Broccoli Report subscribers to talk to us about how they got here and how it’s going, and their answers reveal surprising common factors in our individual challenges, goals, and hopes for the future. The survey results shed light on the solutions we’re prioritizing as a community, as well as the pain points that may be more pressing than we realize.
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One-Hitters: Cannabis News at a Glance
Tipping my hat to MJ Biz Daily, which just published an extraordinary deep dive into how the IRS plans to enforce Section 280E of the federal tax code with regards to cannabis businesses. After submitting a Freedom of Information Act request, MJ Biz Daily gained access to a boatload of training documents the IRS has been using for at least eight years. All of those documents—including seven PowerPoint presentations—can be downloaded here.
Project CBD—the highly respected cannabis science hub—dropped an overview of Delta-8 versus Delta-9. It effectively pulls together the different angles of consumer interest, scientific breakdown, various state regulations, and a thorough explanation of the confusing federal loophole from a lawyer representing the Hemp Industries Association.
Calls to roll back mandatory minimums for nonviolent drug crimes are getting louder. As Attorney General Grewal of New Jersey put it in this recent op-ed:
“Most problematic are the provisions that automatically render certain offenders ineligible for parole for long portions of their prison sentences, effectively forcing the state to keep even nonviolent inmates locked up long after it’s clear they no longer pose a threat to the community.”
AG Grewal points out how costly it is for the state to imprison nonviolent drug offenders for excessively long sentences, arguing those dollars could be better used for crime prevention, addiction treatment, and re-entry support, not to mention social programs to ameliorate the “devastating social costs, especially in our African-American communities, which have borne the brunt of New Jersey’s mandatory drug sentences.”
In Oregon, the same issues are being debated as a bill to end the state’s mandatory minimum sentences for most crimes circulates this session.
In the latest cannabis reporting from Politico: the rise of legalization border boomtowns like Ontario, Oregon, just a 50-minute drive from Boise, and how the hundreds of thousands of dollars in sales tax revenue is speeding up the de-stigmatization of weed in these typically conservative communities.
Black Cannabis Magazine launched last week. This new media venture, founded by writer-producer-personality Hazey Taughtme, covers the culture and contributions of Black, Indigenous, and people of color across the industry. Whoopi Goldberg is on the inaugural cover.
In other media news, High Herstory—a web series created by Jenny Joslin, Kendall Watkins, and Annette Mia Flores that tells lesser-known stories of significant women—premiered on Social Club TV last week and can now be watched via Apple TV, Amazon Fire, and Roku. Production on Season 2 kicks off next month.
Sydney Gore wrote a piece about the wave of artisanal edibles for Vogue, highlighting opportune venues for luxury cannabis experiences.
A new coalition called the Plant Medicine Healing Alliance (PMHA) launched last week; their goal is the decriminalization of all plant and fungi medicines for home growing, group healing, and spiritual purposes. The board of the Portland, Oregon-based Alliance includes health equity leader Dr. Rachel Knox and Dr. Pilar Hernandez-Wolfe, a doctor in counseling psychology.
Owners of online head shop and psychedelic home goods store, The Bakery, penned a Medium piece about their payment processor drama.
If Jaleel White is reclaiming his cultural currency with a cannabis brand that will sell the popular Purple Urkel flower strain, could Malia or Sasha end up starting a weed brand that features Obama Kush?
Leafly published a helpful spon-con article with a lending company that gives cold, hard, real numerical estimates for starting a cannabis business, including security installation, employee costs, real estate prices, and utility costs per square foot. These numbers are incredibly difficult to find in one place online. Props to Leafly’s ad department on this one.
To celebrate a fresh brand campaign (with very trippy, cool visuals) and their first TV spot, CBD brandLord Jones is producing a virtual sound bath streaming experience with a live audio and visual musical set by Flying Lotus. Lord Jones invites viewers to pop a CBD gumdrop and draw a CBD bath before tuning into the stream this Sunday, May 2. Apparently, Flying Lotus will be DJing from a bath, too?
Rose Delights dropped a springlike new flavor—Oro Blanco grapefruit, kiwi, and fresh celery—with soulful packaging. It’s the result of a collaboration between chef Natasha Pickowicz and Gossamer, and it’s available in two varieties of infusion: Red Dragon flower rosin or Banana Breath flower rosin. Each box features sketches by Natasha’s mother, Li Huai, taken from a journal she kept during travels across Asia in the 1990s.
Did you catch Another Room’s fun Willy Wonka-inspired launch of their limited edition chocolate brown Jointlocker? Three lucky winners will find a Golden Ticket and win a year’s supply of candy. Two Golden Tickets are stashed in Jointlockers, and the third can be won through a no-purchase-necessary method on the site. One dollar from every Jointlocker is donated to Cannabis Amnesty.
Edie Parker dropped a bunch of new tees for 4/20, all following the adorable fried egg “This is your boobs on drugs” format.
Very inspired by Theodore Musa. The new accessory brand’s design-focused accouterments are the brainchildren of Freddie Suarez, a Brooklyn-born Dominican artist raised in Miami, Florida, and artist and designer Emily Braswell. The debut line includes a light-refracting ashtray, a huge grinder that doubles as a phone charger, apothecary-style glass bud jars, and a clear acrylic rolling tray with a visible motherboard. That lineup may sound disconnected, but the functionality of the items, the well-designed reusable packaging, and the overall, high-contrast design motifs have a clear, unique vibe that we are looking forward to watching develop.
Off to “charge my phone,”