The Human Nose Vs. THC
Plus: Jazzy joints & new weed laws.
The Broccoli Report
Monday, November 14, 2022
Time to read: 5 minutes, 3 seconds. Contains 1013 words.
Whew, nothing like the week after an election. Maryland and Missouri went green 🍃—but in very different ways, which we’ll get to in a second. I’m sad for South Dakota voters—they passed a vote to legalize last year, but Republican Governor Kristi Noem found a way to shut it down, and there weren’t enough votes to overcome it. Still, two more states legalizing cannabis isn’t nothing. Vox spelled it out in a way that stuck with me: “Four-fifths of U.S. states have legalized some form of cannabis.” It’s seeming more and more likely that states will make cannabis de facto legal nationwide without the federal government making it official.
Looking ahead: This Friday, I’ll share an interview that answers one question every brand must consider: What is consumer education?
In the industry, we talk about how important education is to ensure positive cannabis journeys and further destigmatize this misjudged plant constantly. But I can’t say that I can describe what exactly consumer education looks like in practice beyond the odd infographic on social. Then, I caught up with Mason Walker, co-founder of East Fork Cultivars. The Oregon hemp brand is one of the few hemp farms with an official USDA organic certification, but knowing what I do of the state of CBD, I assumed that wasn’t enough to escape the tough times impacting hemp businesses. Turns out, though, times haven’t been all that tough on East Fork, and consumer education is most likely why.
Subscribe to catch this thorough Q&A outlining one brand’s investment in consumer education, how it was implemented, and why it’s paying off.
One-Hitters: Cannabis News at a Glance
When it comes to cannabis, scent matters. It reveals terpenes (and thus potential effects) and can clue you into how fresh the product is (and whether it may be aging out of efficacy). Based on anecdotal conversations with cannabis experts, I’ve learned if it smells good to you, it’ll likely agree with you. In Oregon, we can smell bud before we buy it, something not permitted by all states, though maybe it ought to become a standard if only to help customers navigate the vast sea of strains. And when we smell weed, we might be intuiting more than we think. A team of researchers explored that concept in a white paper titled “The Nose Knows: Aroma, but Not THC Mediates the Subjective Effects of Smoked and Vaporized Cannabis Flower.” They analyzed data from the anonymous, double-blind votes collected at cannabis cup competitions. The results suggest that samples with strong scores for aroma correlated with strong scores for that sample’s high—more so than the THC numbers and positive scores for that smoking experience.
About those newly legal states: Maryland’s legalization bill was accompanied by a novel equity-oriented companion bill. It includes resentencing and expungement provisions for those with marijuana-possession convictions, requires the state to study the social disparities and public health impact to help prospective women- and minority-owned businesses enter the new industry, and requires at least 30% of revenue from adult-use cannabis to be reinvested in the communities most affected by cannabis prosecutions. Missouri took a different approach, though. It’s legalization bill is not particularly accommodating to new businesses—only existing medical businesses are eligible for adult-use licenses for the first year-and-a-half of the program. Concerns over equitable regulation of Missouri’s market meant that the state’s chapter of the NAACP, Pro-Choice Missouri, and the Missouri Legislative Black Caucus all opposed the bill.
Equity Week kicks off in Oakland, California, today. Select dispensaries will offer special deals on products from Oakland equity brands—it’s like a restaurant week promotion for equity-owned cannabis businesses. If it goes half as well as Portland, Oregon’s long-running Burger Week, it’ll be a great model for other cities to riff on.
Sean “Diddy” Combs has agreed to acquire the licensed cannabis operations located in New York, Massachusetts, and Illinois from big dogs Cresco Labs Inc. and Columbia Care Inc. in a deal worth up to $185 million. The acquisition would create the largest Black-owned cannabis company in the world. I’m hoping that identity will positively impact diverse representation and recruiting efforts at all levels of these operations.
Green Market Report published a thorough update on the state of the High Times Magazine business entity—now HighTimes Holding Corp.—breaking down the incredibly messy lawsuits between current owners and what’s left of the connections to the original, revolutionary founding players.
In a deep dive for The Intercept, writer Jesse Rosenfeld explains how military rule and compartmentalized jurisdictions splitting up the West Bank have created “dual legal systems for cannabis” for Israeli and Palestinian communities. The former typically receive nothing more than a modest fine for cannabis possession, while the latter often suffer much more punitive consequences.
Is our pot breath costing us in dental care? In a survey of 500+ dentists, more than half say patients are often high during checkups, and 56% admitted that they don’t offer those patients the same level of care as sober patients. I don’t blame anyone for taking anti-anxiety precautions, but yikes.
If you haven’t come across Flower Mill yet, it’s only a matter of time before you see one of their toothless grinders gently breaking up buds at a smoking circle near you. Dangle Supply just dropped a branded line of Flower Mills on their site. They’ve been working on a titanium version to match the rest of their outdoors-ready accessories, but it’s taking too much time and money (per their newsletter) so they are offering this one for now: “Until we finally make one, we recommend this mill as the best in the game.”
I love living in a casually-dressed town, but I’m too much of a romantic not to yearn for a little old-world glamor now and again. These totally extra dugouts and joint cases by accessory brand Pretty High are answering that call—adorned in antique metal mesh and chain links, they’re dazzling enough for Queen Ella Fitzgerald herself.
First Lady of Bong,