How clean is my dispensary?

Is my dispensary taking precautions against Coronavirus?

Right now you are probably staying at home, practicing social distancing and washing your hands often. If you are like many cannabis users, you are ordering online and picking up curbside. 

But what is actually going on at your dispensary?  What sorts of precautions are being taken there?

Many dispensaries report that they insist their bud tenders wash their hands between every transaction and that surfaces are being wiped down regularly. 

After visiting the websites of many dispensaries in Chicago, I was surprised to discover that none of them had added content pertaining to the measures they were taking during the outbreak to keep facilities sanitary. 

 

Cleanliness and the cannabis industry

How long does Coronavirus live?

We know that COVID19 lives on copper for up to four hours, on cardboard for up to 24 hours, and on plastic and steel for up to 72 hours. 

It’s unclear how long the virus can live on food. The general advice is to wash produce and cook every thing thoroughly.

Can it live on your pot? Well, the good news is that viruses degrade over time, so if you are immune compromised or terrfied, wait 72 hours before imbibing. 

 

What can I do to take precautions?

  • Don’t share your stash
  • Don’t share your joints, vapes, pipes, blunts, or bongs either
  • Keep your piece clean 
  • Wash your hands frequently
  • Stay at home if you can
  • If you have seasonal allergies, rethink smoking or vaping so that you won’t irritate your nasal and bronchial passages
  • Cover your mouth when you sneeze and dispose of your tissues 

Should I dose myself with CBD or THC preventatively?

CBD was thought to be an immuno-suppressant until recently, hence its efficacy in modulating auto-immune disorders. Currently, it is thought to be an immuno-regulator. That is, it delivers what you need to your immune system. Please see our previous article for detailed information. However, please don’t undertake any regime before consulting a physician who is familiar with medical cannabis. 

 

How clean is my growing facility?

Cannabis sold in the state must be grown in the state. Marijuana growing facilities are scattered throughout Illinois.

The Chicago Tribune reports that sanitation standards are high:

“Grow facility workers are often required to wear scrubs or other protective gear. They must cover their shoes, hair and beards. Some facilities require everyone to walk through an anti-bacterial solution before entering the facility.

The goal is to make sure outside contaminants or pests don’t make it to the plants, and to avoid pesticides.’

 

How clean are my edibles?

Shockingly, Food Safety News reported in 2018 that there are no regulatory standards for edibles. The article goes on to say:

“Because there’s no oversight or regulations, some of the edibles being sold in the U.S. aren’t manufactured from food-grade ingredients. A document from the Denver Department of Public Health and Environment recently noted that some cannabis products being sold in the U.S. are coming from unregulated, unsafe and unsanitary manufacturing facilities. Further, some of these edibles contain unapproved ingredients, have been produced in unsafe conditions, and had unsubstantiated health claims on their labels.

Other articles report that plants in Denver had no facilities for employees to wash their hands.  

Please research your edibles, buy from reputable companies and sources, or consider making your own while you are confined at home. 

An introduction to making edibles

Keep your equipment clean

 A recent study found that the average public toilet seat is cleaner than the average bong. Compare this fact, the average gas station toilet seat was about 900 bacteria per square inch, whereas the average bong was 3,000 bacteria per square inch. The same study found that the average cannabis pipe has as much surface bacteria as 2  1/2 dirty gas station toilet seats or 25 dog food bowls. Regardless of Coronavirus, you might want to keep good hygiene practices going after the pandemic is over. 

Below is the way to clean without alcohol.

How to clean a bong if you don't have alcohol

How to clean your pipe

Summary

  • Practice social distancing
  • Don’t share your equipment
  • Clean your equipment
  • Practice good hygiene
  • Consume edibles from reputable manufacturers

Stay safe everyone!

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Can CBD boost my immune system?

What should I do to lessen my chances of contracting Coronavirus?

If you, like many people in the world, are worried about Corona virus, you may want to optimize your health and wellness regime as much as possible. Chances are you are already socially isolating, working from home, not taking public transportation and so on.

There is much advice and misinformation on the Internet today, so you  may want to do some research before succumbing to magical thinking.  The truth is there is no one thing that can shield you from contracting the virus.

However, you can practice good habits to boost your immune system. 

CBD and the immune system

Can CBD oil boost my immune system?

The short answer is that CBD oil is an immuno- suppressant. That is it works very well on inflammation and reducing the side effects of diseases of the immune system, that is auto-immune disorders.  Those are diseases where the immune system is overactive and attacks processes in the body.

So the question is, should you be taking it to boost your immune system? There have not been enough studies conducted on full spectrum CBD oil and how it affects the human body. Some studies on HIV patients indicate that CBD and THC can actually increase the production of white blood cells. So what’s going on? 

How does my immune system work?

Our bodies are constantly being invaded by bacteria and viruses. Our white blood cells or leukocytes,  seek out and destroy these organisms. Leukocytes can be divided into two groups: 1) lymphocytes (B cells and T cells) that destroy antigens and help the body to remember previous attackers; and 2) phagocytes that absorb and neutralize these intruders. Optimal functioning of our immune system relies on communication between our white blood cells and our other tissues and organs.

The endocannaboid system is a part of that network, and works to modulate those messages. Ingesting cannabis will have an effect on the endocannaboid system since cannabis can bind to those receptors, affecting feelings of well being, euphoria, relaxation and lessening pain and inflammation. It can also have negative effects in some people. 

Early studies showed that cannabis worked as an immunosuppressant. More recent studies show that cannabis may be an immuno-modulator. That is when suppression of an out of control immune system is called for, cannabis suppress the immune system. When bolstering is called for, cannabis works to enhance immune system function. 

 

So should I dose myself with CBD or THC preventatively?

Before embarking on any regime, you should consult a physician. In this case, someone who has a thorough knowledge of how cannabis affects the human body. 

You might also ask yourself what you can do additionally to boost your immune system. 

Stress

Stress hormones can potentiate a wide array of diseases, such as:

  • depression
  • insomnia
  • weakened immune system
  • heart problems
  • diabetes
  • high blood pressure
  • muscle pain
  • lowered sex drive
  • hormonal disorders ranging from infertility to hypothyroidism

What can I do to mitigate stress?

  • Exercise in moderation. Concentrate on slow non-stressful exercise like yoga, walking, biking and swimming.  Over exercising or strenuous regimes will lower your immunity
  • Meditation. If you don’t know how to meditate or can’t still yourself long enough to begin, try guided meditation. There are many free guided meditation videos on YouTube for you to choose from
  • Get out into nature if you can. A nice stroll outdoors in fresh air and sunshine will make you feel great
  • Sleep 
  • Breathing exercises, again consult YouTube
  • Stop focusing on bad news, if it is stressing you. Read the news in the morning and then set aside social media and news the rest of the day
  • If you can, do little things that make you happy 
  • Think outside the box. Freelancers and small business people, you are going to have to change the way you do business and present your offerings. However, worry won’t help you think

“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food.” ― Hippocrates

What else can I do to boost my immune system?

 

Food matters. The kind of food you choose to fuel your body with will affect its optimal functioning. Whole foods, such as fruits, meats, poultry, vegetables and even grains contribute vital nutrients that will help you remain in optimal condition. What should you be eating?

  • Citrus fruits, Vitamin C increases white blood cell production
  • Red Bell Peppers contain more Vitamin C than citrus fruits
  • Garlic. Its sulfuric compounds boost immunity
  • Broccoli, filled with vitamins 
  • Poultry, high in Viamit B6
  • Shellfish, high in Zinc
  • Green tea
  • Turmeric
  • Ginger

Supplements:

  • Mushroom complex
  • Vitamin B6
  • Vitamin C
  • Zinc
  • Vitamin A
  • Vitamin D
  • Prebiotics and Probiotics-gut microbiota that resides in the gastrointestinal tract provides essential health benefits, particularly by regulating immune homeostasis. Prebiotics are a form of fiber that will prep the gut for probiotics to take effect.

Summary

  • CBD has been found to suppress inflammation caused by an overactive immune system. A few recent studies suggest that CBD can act as an immuno-regulator.   
  • Consult a knowledgeable physician who works with cannabinoids before embarking on a regime. 
  • To keep healthy during the COVID19 outbreak you should follow the standard protocol of social distancing and clothes and  hand washing
  • To boost your immunity you should practice stress management techniques such as meditation
  • Get good sleep
  • Get some moderate exercise
  • Eat nutritionally laden foods
  • Take supplements that are known to boost immunity

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How Will Coronavirus Affect the Cannabis Industry?

Trade Show Cancellations

The global outbreak of Coronavirus is set, not only to impact health, but financial markets and businesses. How will this affect the cannabis industry? 

Illinois governor, JB Pritzker has banned public gatherings of more than a thousand people for the time being. 

That will significantly impact the upcoming trade shows in Illinois. The first, NECANN, scheduled for April 3-4 at the Chicago Hilton has been indefinitely postponed. 

The second large trade show The 2nd Annual Chicago Cannabis Industrial Marketplace Summit & Expo is scheduled for May 21-22. The third, the Cannacon Expo, is scheduled for July 17-18.

Some medical experts are hoping that Coronavirus will respond to the general seasonal pattern for the flu. That is, it would be mitigated by warmer weather. Others warn that COVID-19 is a new strain and that it might not act seasonally. We will have to wait for reports from tropical countries and see how the epidemic unfolds.

Trade shows are critical to networking and particularly to exhibiting  derivatives such as edibles, smoking accessories, infused beverages, and topicals.

How can Cannapreneurs network online? 

What can cannapreneurs do in lieu of meeting in person while we wait for the situation to unfold? We have started a LinkedIn group, Cannapreneurs Unite, where we can meet, greet, get to know one another, and talk about our products and businesses.

Please follow the link to join the group.

Supply Chain Production

Many components in hardware, particularly those that make up vapes, come from China. If factories are not running at full capacity, there could be interruptions in the flow of supplies. This would affect companies adversely, in terms of profits, growth, and ability to fulfill demand. We are certainly looking at extended time frames for delivery and lowered output, if nothing else.

Disaster Assistance Loans

How long will this last, and with tight capital, how long can companies hold out? One temporary solution may be found in the SBA, which will provide disaster assistance loans for small businesses impacted by Coronavirus. To visit the SBA website, please click on the button. 

Stockmarket Downturns

Will the recent downturn scare off investors? Cannabis companies are momentarily having problems finding investors in a tight funding environment. On the other hand, for those who are risk takers and have money to spare, stocks can be acquired cheaply. 

While uncertainty abounds, emotions rule. It may be wise to remember that we are not facing the same sort of bubble as in 2008, which was exacerbated by pumping money into the housing market after the dot com bubble crashed.  Like tulipmania, growth was initially fueled on the basis of magical thinking. That’s certainly is not the case now.   If the virus is contained quickly, business will continue as usual. If there is a prolonged period of contagion that disrupts global markets and supplies, the strong, well funded, and well organized will probably survive. Sadly, that’s bad news for very small businesses and start-ups. 

Will my supply of marijuana be affected?

We ran out of pot in January in Illinois due to high demand. You might want to stock up on your supply, particularly if it is medical. Leafly suggests a one month supply should be adequate. 

Marijuana is grown locally. By law, the marijuana sold in the state, must be grown in the state. Illinois has 21 grow facilities that are expanding. 

What about sanitation?

The Chicago Tribune states, “Grow facility workers are often required to wear scrubs or other protective gear. They must cover their shoes, hair and beards. Some facilities require everyone to walk through an anti-bacterial solution before entering the facility.”

To read about the entire growth process and contamination, please click on the button. 

How will Coronavirus impact legalization?

Cannabis consumption is fully legal in ten states and the District of Columbia and the industry provides almost a quarter of a million jobs. 

Expansion would fuel the economy, but would be dependent on legalization across all fifty states. The Coronavirus may inhibit legal gatherings, fact finding missions by legislators, rallies, and conferences. This would set back hoped for wins in 2020.

What can I do to stay safe?

You can minimize your risk by:

  • Not sharing joints. Oral transmission is one of the easiest ways to contract any virus
  • Not smoking when you have a cough or sore throat. Inhaling anything into your lungs will irritate them, particularly when you are ill
  • Understanding that cannabis and CBD are not miracle cures for viruses

Read more from Leafly:

Summary

We have no idea how long the Coronavirus will last or how it will impact the global economy across the board by the time it is finished running its course. We can try to remain healthy by practicing good hygiene, avoiding crowds and close interactions with others. 

Hopefully willing investors will keep taking risks and cannapreneurs will find avenues for networking online. 

Additionally, manufacturers may want to reconsider the so – called benefits of globalization and bring back plants to our own shores. In the meantime, we hope that everyone stays safe and healthy.

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Can Cannabis help my sex life?

Cannabis and Sex

Cannabis and sexual performance

Can Cannabis products actually help to improve my sex life?

There haven’t been enough formal studies to indicate that cannabis will improve your sex life.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that it can do the following: 

  • Cannabis can heighten your senses
  • Cannabis can lower your inhibitions
  • Being high can stimulate your creativity
  • CBD and cannabis can relieve pain
  • Cannabis can heighten sensitivity
  • Cannabis can affect your endorphins and make you feel great
  • Cannabis is said to improve orgasms

However, cannabis affects men and women differently. Additionally, various strains and methods of consumption will produce very different outcomes. Read on to find out more.

How Does Cannabis work in the body?

The human body has two endocannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2.  CB1 receptors are located in the brain and are responsible for mood, memory, and coordination. Cb2 receptors are attached to the body’s immune system and are thus responsible for pain and inflammation responses.

THC is psychoactive, meaning it gets you high. It binds to CB1 receptors in the body.  CBD can help pain and inflammation. CBD can be full spectrum, meaning that an oil or product contains all the cannabinoids that are found in the cannabis plant in nature. Or it can be an isolate. Both bind to CB2 receptors in the body. 

Various products will have different applications.

How can Cannabis help male sexual performance?

Unfortunately, most of the studies conducted to date have produced contradictory results. Some studies show that marijuana enhances libido while others indicate it lowers sperm production and contributes to erectile dysfunction.

Others claim that it increases sexual stamina and delays ejaculation.  However, anecdotal reports seem to indicate that low dosage increases performance while regular, heavy use decreases potency. 

It may be wise to remember that different strains of pot have different functions. Indica is a relaxant, while Sativa is a stimulant. Regardless, every human body is different and while one person may experience ecstasy, another may become paranoid or fall asleep. 

In any case, most studies to date  have relied on self reported evidence since there is no way of accurately measuring what is really going on in terms of perceived sexual pleasure. 

Male sexual performance and cannabis

 

 

How does cannabis affect female sexual arousal?

Studies seem to indicate that cannabis has a beneficial effect on female arousal and the quality and intensity of orgasm.

Two reasons may be contributing to those outcomes:

  • Pot helps women get outside of their heads. Women have been so inundated by advertising that centers around digitally enhanced images of tall, thin or surgically enhanced bodies. Women, particularly younger women, can often feel that they are not thin or attractive enough to their partners. Pot can lower those inhibitions and make women more receptive to pleasure. 
  • CBD products and cannabis stimulate blood flow to the genital area, which increases sensation and improves lubrication.  

Does Cannabis help seniors with their sex life?

Seniors, if you missed Woodstock, you now have a chance to make up for it legally. Here’s the good news:

  • The possibility exists that improved blood flow to the penis will improve your erection.
  • For women cannabis may improve the symptoms of menopause.

From Leefly:

‘Research also shows that women’s bodies have an unusually high concentration of cannabinoid receptors in the uterus and reproductive center. Cannabinoids such as CBD can help to increase the number of CB1 receptors and anandamide*, thus spurring interest in the medical community to investigate its potential as a therapeutic modality.’

*Anandamide (N-arachidonylethanolamine) is a brain lipid that binds to cannabinoid receptors with high affinity and mimics the psychoactive effects of  cannabis. It is sometimes called the ‘Bliss Molecule‘.

The important thing to remember is that cannabis can have a negative interaction with some prescription drugs, so please check before you imbibe. 

Sex and cannabis after 50

 

How can CBD and Cannabis products help my sex life?

  • They can relax you / relax muscles
  • Improve blood flow to reproductive organs
  • Ease stress and anxiety, particularly performance anxiety
  • Reduce pain during intercourse
  • Delay ejaculation, making male performance last longer
  • Lower inhibition
  • Increase desire and set the mood
  • Improve natural lubrication
  • Increase sensitivity and sensation

Which brands are safe?

You will definitely want to do some research beforehand. You should also be mindful of possible allergic reactions, particularly if you suffer from hay fever.

 

Where should I start?

Unless you are an experienced user, you should probably practice alone and see how various products affect you. Keep a notebook and see how each acts on your body. 

  • Edibles – you will have to sample beforehand to gain some knowledge about dosage and how it affects your body. It can take some time to take hold. 
  • Vapes – you can control the dose with vaping pens.
  • CBD oils – used in massages and foreplay, oils can relax the muscles and diminish pain. 
  • Joints – they come pre-rolled, so thatyou don’t haveto do it yourself.
  • Lubricants – used topically they can help blood flow to the genitals, and decrease pain and dryness. They are said to improve sensation and intensify orgasm. However, they are not always compatible with latex condoms.
  • Suppositories, anal and vaginal – they are said to be a safer way to relax those areas than chemical suppositories. Men and women can use them to treat hemorrhoids, anal fissures, post-operative pain, symptoms of Crohn’s Disease among other applications. Vaginal suppositories have been used to ease menstrual cramps, abdominal pain, endometriosis, pelvic discomfort, post-coital pain or inflammation, vaginal dryness and pain with intercourse
  • Sprays – administered sublingually, they bypass the odors associated with smoking. 

Read more about vaporizers vs joints:

Vaping vs Smoking

 

Listen as a cannabis sex educator speaks to the subject of improving your sex life with cannabis (warning: body parts are named in the vernacular)

Summary

Cannabis products may improve your sex life by making you more relaxed, easing pain, stimulating desire and increasing sensation and lubrication. If you are a newbie, try various products on your own to see how you will react to them.  Most of all, be careful, particularly if you have allergies to ragweed, chamomile, stevia, and echinacea. Cannabis is in the same family and you may have a negative reaction, rather than an enhanced sexual experience. 

 

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Cannabis floral arrangements

Flower arrangements with - Cannabis?

Ever wonder how flowers and floral arrangements became a part of our lives?

We give flowers to show love, express sympathy, decorate our homes, and our graves. We send them as get well gestures to ailing friends and loved ones. We decorate our weddings and our special parties with them. Sometimes we buy them for ourselves because they make us happy due to their beauty and scent.

Where did flower arranging begin and how did it evolve through the ages? Read on for a short history of flower arranging and to find out where we are today with cannabis inspired arrangements. 

Egypt

The history of floral arrangements begins in Egypt with highly stylized, simple, symmetrical styles that were applied in making garlands and decorating banquets. Flowers were also used in funeral processions and in burials.

Greece and Rome

Flowers were used profusely by Greeks and Romans to decorate hair, homes, banquets, and festivities. Lovers also exchanged gifts of flowers. Displays were lavish, particularly in Rome.

China and Japan

Simplicity, shape, and symbolism played  a part in creating soothing, spiritually oriented designs that impart a mood of tranquility and peacefulness upon the viewer. 

European Middle Ages

Flowers and herbs were revered for their medicinal and healing properties, while decorative flowers were placed in vases.  All in all, there was a spiritual component to design along with an attitude of utility towards flowers.

Renaissance and Baroque

We only need to look at the paintings of the two eras to see how the attitude from the Medieval period had shifted. Arrangements during these periods were lavish and lush and fruits and leaves were incorporated into arrangements.

Dutch/ Flemish Style

Still imitated and incredibly beautiful, Dutch arrangements featured tulips, fruits, insects and strewn petals. Often flowers were arranged in blue and white tulipieres. 

Victorian

Lush, messy, naturalistic, overdone and overblown,  Victorian excess  paved the way for more formality and standardized rules in flower arranging. 

20th Century to the Present

Creativity is key, as is use of empty space. Asymmetry abounds, materials are not restricted and tension between elements creates a significant impact.

Cannabis inspired arrangements

Do they look good? To my eye, they look amazing in profuse, naturalistic bouquets and asymmetrical arrangements that incorporate blowzy flowers and natural pods and berries. Do they smell good? Well, probably not unless you like weed, but the high point is that you can smoke the cannabis after the rest of the bouquet dies off.

SHOULD YOU SAY IT WITH A CANNABIS BOUQUET?

Folks, believe it or not, cannabis floral arrangements have become all the rage in Colorado and California.

The leaf has an interesting shape which lends itself to the sort of free form, naturalistic arrangements that have become popular in recent years. 

And of course, afterward, you can put the stems in a dry environment and smoke it after a couple of weeks. 

Take a look at the Flower Daddy’s Portfolio for some truly inspired designs.

The Flower Daddy 

Cannabis Wedding Expos

If you can imagine anything that is wedding related and decorated with cannabis from hair ornaments to bouquets, you will get a picture of what is on offer at these venues.

Weed weddings have become a big business. Everything is on the menu, from gifting guests with CBD infused products to carrying pot bouquets to hiring a bud tender.

Brides today want something totally different and the marriage of weed and weddings is looking promising – to the tune of billions of dollars in revenue.

Check out this gorgeous styled  shoot at OffBeat Bride for inspiration. 

Marijuana Wedding

Where else might you see cannabis bouquets?

Florist Bec Koop, based in Denver, took her floral business to new highs by incorporating weed. Other than weddings, she creates arrangements for bridal showers, yoga parties, and wine and food tasting events.

Koop’s struggles with banking and transportation have led her to think outside the box like many ganjapreneurs.

Read more here

Canna florist

So should you give your sweetie a pot bouquet?

Well, does he or she like to smoke weed? Would you like them to try it? If so feel free to spend a few extra bucks and get something special.

Don’t be put off by the notion that cannabis is something trashy. You can get gorgeous, ‘classy’ floral arrangements with white or pale flowers and other exotic greens or grey green elements in them.

Pot is legal in a number of states now, it has tons of health benefits and it will become more and more mainstream as time goes by.

 

Who buys pot bouquets?

Women are the fastest growing segment of the market. While men buy for their significant others, women tend to buy flowers for their friends, mothers, and sisters. They also order flowers for private dinners and special events. 

Cannabis can elevate a floral gift, particularly if the recipient is suffering from an illness and takes cannabis medicinally. 

Can we expect to see cannabis get well  arrangements soon? Well, why not? Cannabis can help with pain, nausea, seizures and a host of other conditions. Why not include it when giving flowers to our ailing loved ones?

Women and pot bouquets

Where will you get your weed arrangement? 

There are florists in California and Colorado who specialize in cannabis floral design. But where will you get it in Illinois? You might need to ask your local florist if they will make it for you,  although you will probably have to purchase the weed yourself and gift it to them to get around dispensary laws. 

We will update this post as soon as we discover any information on the subject.

Watch florist Maurice Harris make a beautiful and smoke-able weed crown

What should I do if I am a florist?

You should branch out and see if the canna flor business can add to your revenue stream. The great thing is that you don’t have to reinvent the wheel.

Precedents have been made in California and Colorado that you can follow. 

Read more at Leafly:

Cannabis Florists

Colorado Florists’ Opinions

The truth about Cannafloral Businesses

Are you starting a cannabiz? Do You need a website? We want to work with you! Contact us and tell us a bit about your business

Click on the images to see our dispensary designs and our cannabis store designs, ranging from cosmetics to clothing to edibles.

Can I build a house out of hemp?

You can build a house from hemp!

We have a new obsession. We’ve fallen in love with the YouTube channel, Living Big in a Tiny House. The episodes are presented by Bryce Langston, a New Zealand native, who is passionate about sustainable, downsized, eco-friendly living.

Bryce and his partner, Rasa, who does all the gorgeous camera work, travel the world in search of tiny houses and present them, along with their owners, weekly.

The houses range from a $9 hut in the woods to compact houses in the low hundred thousands. Most fall into the mid-range of $40,000 – 60,000 since many people use shared land and do their own labor.

The unique and wonderful element of the entire channel is how the amazing people who live in tiny houses have simplified their lives, focusing on relationships, their passions, and freedom from the rat race. 

Last night, I discovered this episode that focuses on a completely sustainable eco-friendly hemp house, built by an architect and his wife for their family. 

Please watch for a brilliant introduction to hemp as a viable, healthy, sustainable building material. 

And if you liked this video, please subscribe to Bryce and Rasa’s channel to see more amazing, tiny houses. 

What is hempcrete?

Hempcrete is a sustainable building material composed of hemp, water and lime. It has been used for millennia globally as a building material. 

Hemp is an incredibly eco-friendly material at every stage of the growth, production and build cycle. 

As a plant, it has the ability to pull CO2 from the air. Even when it is cut and used in buildings that property continues, making it super healthy for construction workers to be around and people to live in.

Moreover, as the lime and hemp calcify the material becomes almost as hard as stone, making it last hundreds of years. 

The first hemp house in the USA

Is Hempcrete breathable?

Yes!  

Hempcrete is breathable. From Return to Now:

‘It’s breathable not in the sense that air gets through — it’s airtight — but it’s breathable for water.

“In a typical wall you have a cavity that you seal tightly and fill with insulation. No matter how hard you try to keep it out, water will get inside that cavity, because that’s what water does.

“So we want to create a wall that welcomes water, but doesn’t rot when it lets the water in. And that’s exactly what hempcrete does.

When it becomes humid out, it absorbs the extra humidity and holds it until the humidity drops and then it will let it back out, regulating and balancing the humidity inside the home, he explains.

In the meantime, because the high pH lime is wrapped around the cellulose, it won’t rot.’

Read the full article

How to work with hempcrete

 Anthony from Art du Chanvre, who  has built over 45 houses using hempcrete as a natural and sustainable insulation material, shows you how to do it.

Follow Anthony on Instagram

FAQ

Does my house have to look like a hippie hut? 

No, your house can be sleek and modern, traditional, or any style you can imagine, including a hippie hut!

Is it expensive to build a hemp house?

It’s getting cheaper and cheaper as hemp becomes homegrown and not imported. Plus, you’ll save on energy costs in the long run.

Am I going to get high breathing in my house? 

No! Hemp isn’t psychoactive.

Can I use hempcrete in cold climates?

Yes, hemp is adaptable to any climate.

Hemp house in Canada

Can hempcrete be used as a foundation?

No, it will biodegrade if used as a foundation. 

Can I use Hempcrete as a structural material? 

No, it is a non-structural material. You will have to use some other form of framing. 

Structural questions pertaining to hemp

What about fire? Is hempcrete fire resistant? 

Yes, it is. It is also resistant to rot and insects.

Why should I use hemp to build my house?

 

Our consumption and lifestyles are ravaging nature, other species, and our planet. If we care at all about anything or anyone that comes after us, we will want to build a sustainable future. That means leaving a smaller footprint and living in harmony with nature. 

A slow, meaningful life full of adventure, free time, human connections, and family sounds a lot more appealing than working for the man in order to pay a mortgage on a huge house that we have no time to enjoy. 

Having time to grow our own healthy food, can, preserve, and savor  it with loved ones is so much more enjoyable than eating in noisy, expensive restaurants. 

Living in small communities where we know our neighbors, instead of crowded impersonal cities, replete with congestion and pollution is the way forward. 

We need to know that less is more and that as housing in major cities gets more unaffordable, we can create alternative lifestyles.

Hemp, whether it is used in housing, the production of clothing or foodstuffs can add value to a slower more sustainable lifestyle. 

 

If hemp is so great why has it been illegal all this time? 

Hemp was legal prior to 1937 and won a reprieve during WWII, since it was needed to create  industrial materials necessary to the war effort. However, the problems began when it was lumped in with the psychoactive strains of cannabis due to the efforts of newspaper tycoon William Randolph Hearst.  Hearst found hemp was a competitor for his interests in lumber and paper mills. He was aided by Harry Anlinger, who following the failure of Prohibition, wanted to build up his new department, the DEA. 

Together, they stirred up mass hysteria resulting in such nonsense as Reefer Madness and classifying marijuana as a schedule 1 drug, which lead to the criminalization of the substance.

To read  more:

Black History Month 2020 – Cannabis

 

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Do CBD oil beauty products work?

CBD BEAUTY

CBD OIL AND BEAUTY PRODUCTS

Does CBD oil work?

There haven’t been enough formal studies to indicate that CBD oil in cosmetic products actually does anything for the skin.

Anecdotal evidence suggests that CBD oil can act as a pain relieving analgesic and as an anti-inflammatory agent.

That’s good news for those who are suffering from acne, rosacea, contact dermatitis, psoriasis and eczema.

How Does CBD oil work?

The human body has two endocannabinoid receptors, CB1 and CB2.  CB1 receptors are located in the brain and are responsible for mood, memory, and coordination. Cb2 receptors are attached to the body’s immune system and are thus responsible for pain and inflammation responses.

While THC, the psychoactive ingredient in marijuana creates the feeling of being high, the properties in CBD work differently.

CBD doesn’t attach to a CB2 receptor. Instead it stimulates the body to make more of its own natural cannabinoids.  This is what reduces pain and inflammation. 

Is CBD oil legal?

CBD oil is federally legal unless it contains more than 0.3 % THC. If your CBD oil is derived from hemp, it is probably federally legal. 

Check your state laws

However, things can get a bit confusing sometimes due to the nature of the plant and state and  federal laws. Now that the DEA is no longer in charge of anything but illegal drug operations, the FDA has been mandated with setting guidelines for safety. However, CBD products are already inundating US markets. 

One major thing to remember is, though you can buy CBD products, it is illegal to sell your homemade products unless you have the correct state license. 

An in- depth look into CBD

What causes acne?

Acne occurs when pores are blocked by oil, dead skin  and bacteria.

What triggers acne:

  • stress
  • inflammation
  • hormones
  • diet

Which foods can cause flare -ups:

  • dairy and whey protein
  • foods you are allergic or sensitive to
  • refined grains 
  • sugar
  • chocolate

Read more about acne causing foods

How can CBD oil help acne?

From Medical News Today:

‘A 2014 study explored the effects of CBD on human sebocytes, which are the cells that create sebum. The researchers found that the CBD prevented these cells from creating too much of the oily sebum.

They also revealed that the CBD oil triggered an anti-inflammatory reaction in the cells and prevented inflammatory cytokines from activating. Cytokines may trigger acne, so reducing them may help prevent further breakouts.

A 2016 review of the cannabis plant highlighted its antibacterial and antifungal effects. These effects may help reduce infections from dirt and other pollutants on the skin.’

Read full article

 

What is full spectrum CBD?

Full spectrum means that you will be getting all the cannabidoids, terpines and other natural oils found in the plant rather than just the CBD. That does not mean that full spectrum is psychoactive. 

Terpines are what gives plants like  cannabis, lavender and pine their distinctive scents. Those plants have properties that can be used in aromatherapy and to help with problems such as insomnia.

Though full spectrum CBD may help with pain and conditions such as arthritis, is it more effective as an anti-oxidant to prevent wrinkle formation or to help acne sufferers? The research isn’t in yet. Its proponents claim it has an entourage effect that makes it more effective than CBD isolate. You may want to test products yourself and find what works best for you. 

Read more about full spectrum CBD

 

What about CBD oil facials?

CBD facials are the latest craze and are popping up in spas and medspas all over the country. Although they can leave your skin glowing and infused with anti-oxidants, there is one critical factor to be aware of: 

Allergies

There are such things as allergies to cannabis. If you have hay fever or a negative reaction to chamomile, echinacea, ragweed, or stevia, you might not fare so well with CBD oils, particularly full spectrum CBD oils.

From PremiumJane:

Skin irritations: Particularly when using topical CBD, some users may notice a rash or hives. This may well be a result of CBD. However, this could also be caused by one of the many other products in creams and balms, so be sure to look into it to find out what caused the reaction.

Dry, itchy, or red eyes: Weed is infamous for causing red eyes as a result of dryness. THC is the culprit here, not CBD. A minority of users may experience this after using CBD, though. If you experience excessive watering or bloodshot eyes, it might be an allergic reaction rather than a side effect.

Migraines: While some CBD users experience a slight headache for the first few uses, migraines are a sign of something more serious.

Respiratory problems: If you can’t breathe, seek medical attention immediately. With CBD products, breathing issues are likely to be the result of poor-quality products that contain contaminants from the hemp plant, such as pollen or mold.’

Please read more and test your skin before embarking on a facial.

Allergies and CBD

 

Where do I buy CBD beauty products?

You can find CBD beauty products online, upscale department stores, and at specialty beauty stores such as Ulta and Sephora. 

Which brands are safe?

You will definitely want to do some research beforehand. You should also be mindful of possible allergic reactions -see above. In the meantime, here are some recommendations from Forbes and Allure.

Forbes – Cannabeauty

Allure CBD skin care

 

Can I make CBD oil products for myself?

Yes, you can make CBD products at home. Just remember that in order to sell your products, you will need licenses, so don’t get into trouble. 

Licensing requirements vary from state to state. This is an excellent and comprehensive how to article from ShipBob.

How to sell CBD online

And one from TRUIC covering all the basics from incorporation to web presence.

Starting a cannabis beauty business

Below is an excellent video to get you started on your own venture.

 

 

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Black History Month 2020 – Cannabis

Black History and Cannabis

Where did cannabis come from?

Asia

The archaeological records indicate that cannabis was used as far back as 12,000 years ago in Asia. Many fascinating clues come from Kurgan burials in Siberia, circa 3,000 BCE.  Peoples like the Scythians and Sarmations used hemp seeds for ritualistic purposes, to induce visions, and in purification ceremonies. They had many habits in common with Native Americans such as the use of the sweat lodge, scalp taking, and shamanism.

The Chinese began using cannabis for medicinal purposes around five thousand years ago. 

Scythians, Vikings, Arab traders, and various human migrations were responsible for the spread of cannabis globally.

Africa

Swahili and Arab traders contributed to the spread of cannabis throughout the African continent.

The New World

Spanish and Portuguese conquistadors and planters founded hemp farms in the western hemisphere from which a number of necessary items, such as rope, were made.

However, African slaves were already familiar with the psychoactive properties of cannabis and the municipal council in Rio de Janeiro banned the use of cannabis in an attempt to assert control and dominance over slaves as early as 1830.

This year we’re going to talk a bit about cannabis and its influence on black musicians. 

Hendrix was one of the idols of my generation, the Baby Boomers. A great innovator on the guitar, he is perhaps best remembered for his use of psychoactive drugs such as LSD. However, he wrote a tribute to one of the more popular strains of the day, Purple Haze. Later, Hendrix claimed the lyrics had nothing to do with weed. Click to read about Jimi Hendrix and his composition, Purple Haze, and decide for yourself whether the official story is true or not. 

Purple Haze

Reefer Madness

Cannabis was legal in the United States until the 1930’s, though it never really caught on with white populations until the Beatniks of the 1950’s. 

So what happened? 

The answer seems to lie in racism and greed. Before the 1950’s Mexicans and black people were primary users of marijuana. Two men lead the assault on banning cannabis, despite the fact that many scientists considered the drug harmless. 

One was Harry Anslinger, head of the Federal Bureau of Narcotics. In an attempt to grow his department after Prohibition failed, he launched an all out war on cannabis. From the Encyclopedia Britannica:

 ‘Anslinger claimed that the majority of pot smokers were minorities, including African Americans, and that marijuana had a negative effect on these “degenerate races,” such as inducing violence or causing insanity. Furthermore, he noted, “Reefer makes darkies think they’re as good as white men.” Perhaps even more worrisome to Anslinger was pot’s supposed threat to white women’s virtue. He believed that smoking pot would result in their having sex with black men.’

Hearst

Anslinger was aided by the yellow journalism tactics of William Randolph Hearst who published scare mongering stories about pot. Hearst’s primary motivation seemed to stem from the fact that his paper producing industries were being replaced by hemp. Additionally, Dupont’s nylon producing endeavours were also being threatened by hemp. Although hemp won a reprieve during WWII, it was soon lumped in with psychoactive marijuana strains and banned. 

Marijuana then became, through various propaganda channels, the ‘destroyer of youth’ and a ‘gateway drug.’

War on Drugs

Nixon

In 1971, Nixon launched the war on drugs. What was the real reason for Nixon’s sudden concern? John Ehrlichman gave a interview in Harper’s magazine in 1994, in which he stated:

‘The Nixon campaign in 1968, and the Nixon White House after that, had two enemies: the antiwar left and black people. You understand what I’m saying? We knew we couldn’t make it illegal to be either against the war or black, but by getting the public to associate the hippies with marijuana and blacks with heroin, and then criminalizing both heavily, we could disrupt those communities. We could arrest their leaders, raid their homes, break up their meetings, and vilify them night after night on the evening news. Did we know we were lying about the drugs? Of course we did.’

Reagan

Reagan’s terms in office saw an expansion in prosecuting offenders. Policy became harsh on cannabis possession, terms of incarceration were toughened up, and asset forfeiture became legal. 

Did incarceration of minority men coincide with the rise of globalism and the offshoring manufacturing jobs? Did a generation of minority men need to be taken off the streets instead of being retrained for jobs? Who knows. Sometimes conspiracy theories stand as facts when you follow the money. 

Storyville

Today’s focus is on the question, how did cannabis use contribute to the creation of the greatest musical style of the 29th century -Jazz. 

Storyville, the red light district in New Orleans, was populated by black musicians who worked as entertainers. There under the relaxing influence of marijuana, they began to experiment with rhythm, syncopation, and improvisation. From Merry Jane:

‘Jazz music is known for its free-form improvisational style and loose comradery among the players who encourage one another to stretch and experiment. Marijuana contributed psychologically by its effect of shifting the perception of time and also by the warm, social, conviviality it encourages compared to the harshness so often brought out by alcohol.’

Satchmo

Louis Armstrong was born in Storyville at the turn of the century and was a lifelong pot smoker. Armstrong famously said: “It makes you feel good, man. It relaxes you, makes you forget all the bad things that happen to a Negro. It makes you feel wanted, and when you are with another tea smoker it makes you feel a special sense of kinship.’

Read more about Louis Armstrong

Blowing gage and so much more

Of course, Harry Anslinger made it his mission to harass and destroy brilliant black artists. Read more about his persecution of Billie Holiday:

 The Hunting of Lady Day

 

Rasta, Mon

Ganja is a Sanskrit word for cannabis. Jamaican musicians like Bob Marley practiced the Rastafarian religion. True practitioners use ganja for its meditative and mystical properties. 

After the abolition of slavery on the international market in 1807, British colonialists imported laborers from India who brought ganja to the West Indies with them. White authorities banned its use. However, the use of a prohibited substance became a symbol of resistance to  white authority among Jamaicans. 

Marley did not use cannabis recreationally. He saw it as fundamentally a part of his religious practice.

Jamaican artists have been at the forefront of the movement to legalize marijuana. 

Jamaica has understood the economic potential of the weed industry and has legalized medical use while decriminalizing recreational use. 

White people

So how did marijuana become the drug of choice for white folks? The answer lies with the Beat poets and writers. Though Beat implied someone who was beaten down, Jack Kerouac and Alan Ginsburg gave the word a spiritual dimension -beatitude. 

Beatniks were all about bebop, pot, bongos, eastern spirituality, black turtle necks, and hitch hiking. 

They were anti-materialistic and laid the groundwork for the hippies. In terms of fashion, they copied the look of Dizzy Gillespie and his unique brand of cool, beret included. They also appropriated black slang, such as: cool, cat, square and dig. 

Dizzy and Reefer

Howl by Allen Ginsburg

 

 

The 60’s

The Beats launched the counterculture which ushered in a social revolution in lifestyles that affected everything from education to gay and women’s rights, to clothing and music. Cannabis and free love became  symbols of that counterculture on the West Coast and, having great  appeal to young people, spread globally. 

Vietnam

During the divisive Vietnam war, cannabis use became prevalent among American soldiers, since it grew wild incountry. Many soldiers said it helped them mellow out and detach from the horrors of war. 

Fun fact: the term shotgun originated during the war as the herb was packed into a bowl the shotgun chamber and servicemen took turns toking on the barrel. 

Cannabis use in Vietnam was only topped by the other drug of choice, alcohol.

Summer of Love

During the summer of 1967, hippies descended on San Francisco.’s Haight – Ashbury neighborhood. It was then that Timothy Leary coined his famous mantra – tune in, turn on, and drop out.

Psychedelics such as LSD and psilocybin (mushrooms) along with marijuana were the drugs of choice. The counterculture continued into the 1970’s and pot use, though illegal never went away. 

 

 

 

Listen to Monk, another great fan of weed

Targeting the Black Community

White people have been smoking weed since the 1960’s, so why have black people been targeted disproportionately by law enforcement? The ACLU states:

‘Between 2001 and 2010, there were over 8 million pot arrests in the U.S. That’s one bust every 37 seconds and hundreds of thousands ensnared in the criminal justice system.

Enforcing marijuana laws costs us about $3.6 billion a year, yet the War on Marijuana has failed to diminish the use or availability of marijuana.

 Marijuana use is roughly equal among Blacks and whites, yet Blacks are 3.73 times as likely to be arrested for marijuana possession.’

Why? 

We can only conclude that it is a form of racial control similar to Jim Crow laws. Black and Latino people have been unfairly targeted, discriminated against, incarcerated, and saddled with criminal records. 

What Now?

Illinois is working on the expungement  of criminal records but it won’t be automatic unless you were arrested (but not convicted) of carrying less than 30 grams of cannabis. For others, the process is more involved. 

Expungement in Illinois

Conclusions

Cannabis has been used to stimulate creativity, expand spirituality, promote relaxation and healing for thousands of years. Black and Latino communities have been unfairly targeted for cannabis use for a number of social and political reasons. However, how the new cannabis laws affect the black and Latino community remains to be seen. The industry is young and open to entrepreneurs, but only to those who can raise the capital for licensing and related business ventures. Reparations and financial assistance will be given to minority communities to fund cannabis ventures but will it be enough? To date, cannabizes are primarily in the hands of whites.  

 

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Cannabis for Valentine’s Day?

Valentine's Day and Cannabis

 

I don’t love you as if you were a rose of salt, topaz,   
or arrow of carnations that propagate fire:   
I love you as one loves certain obscure things,   
secretly, between the shadow and the soul.
 
I love you as the plant that doesn’t bloom but carries   
the light of those flowers, hidden, within itself,   
and thanks to your love the tight aroma that arose   
from the earth lives dimly in my body.
 
I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where,   
I love you directly without problems or pride:
I love you like this because I don’t know any other way to love,
except in this form in which I am not nor are you,   
so close that your hand upon my chest is mine,   
so close that your eyes close with my dreams.
 
-Pablo Neruda, “One Hundred Love Sonnets: XVII” 
 

 

Planning 

How will you celebrate your love this Valentine’s Day? Whether you are a young lover or have been with your love for a long time, chances are you need to spice things up with a novel experience. If that sounds like you, read on. 

What are my options?

Alcoholic infused drinks

It’s a thing. Whether you are drinking store bought or home made there are a few things you should know. Cannabis infused alcohol can hit you much harder and faster than smoking or edibles. Check out our previous blog post for information and recipes:

Everything you need to know about cannabis infused alcoholic drinks

 

Smoking

If you are alive on earth, you’ve probably taken at least one toke off a joint. You can still share a doobie with your sweetie but there are more exciting options. 

Edibles

If you love sweets this is where it gets really exciting. Eating a gummy or a lozenge isn’t that erotic but chocolate is still the ultimate sensual treat. And even more so when it’s infused with THC.  Be sure to pace yourself so that your hot date doesn’t turn into a snooze fest. 

Forbes guide to the best cannabis chocolates

Massage

It’s a sexy, intimate, and sensual form of bonding. So is there any benefit to using CBD oil rather than any old massage oil? The answer may be yes. CBD oils have naturally occurring anti-inflammatory properties that soothe aches and pains in muscles and joints. CBD oil is also great for soothing acne or a number of skin conditions arising from inflammation.  Of course, you will want to buy a CBD oil infused massage oil or cream made specifically for that purpose. Take a look at the following list for some suggestions:

CBD massage oils

Gifts

The sky is the limit. Chocolates, pre-rolls, buds in a heart shaped box… HelloMD offers some great suggestions. We think the honey bath salts with CBD oil sounds pretty incredible.

Gift suggestions

Cannabis Edibles

How do they taste?

Weed tastes bad and infused butter can have that earthy flavor which many find unpleasant. However, inroads are being made to take the marijuana flavor out of edibles. You will have to do your own research and figure out what tastes good to you.  In the meantime, here are some recommendations from Forbes you can start with:

Chocolate edibles

What about cannabis infused alcohol?

It’s pretty much all over the place in terms of taste and your levels of tolerance. For an in depth look into cannabis infused alcohol, follow the link to our previous post, where you will get recipes, links, and recommendations.

Everything you need to know about cannabis infused alcoholic drinks

Mocktails?

You might want to start slow with a mocktail, an alcohol free drink that’s infused. Here is some advice from Papaandbarkley:

CBD Oil Recipes

CBD oil is one way to add CBD to your beverages. but is best used in specific ways. Unlike alcohol-based tinctures, CBD oil is difficult to integrate into another liquid. Oil floats on top of a drink or can sit in a healthy layer of foam on top of a drink. The benefit to either method is that the oil offers a cannabis aroma specific to that particular strain or product, adding complexity to the flavors of the drink. However, CBD oil is also prone to sinking to the bottom of the glass.

One way to integrate CBD oil into your beverages is to make an infused simple syrup. Mixing equal parts water and sweetener (i.e., honey, agave or sugar), add CBD oil to create the dosage per serving that you are looking for. Typically, a 25-mg dose of CBD is a good starting point. Because CBD oil is typically aromatic and grassy in flavor, your resulting simple syrup will retain these flavor characteristics. You can also infuse the syrup with ginger or herbs like rosemary and thyme for more complex flavor profiles.

CBD Tinctures

Because CBD tinctures are alcohol-based, they mix more readily into beverages. This means you will get to enjoy every last drop—and the effects thereof. CBD tinctures are often likened to bitters in a cocktail; offering a slightly astringent characteristic, they are used to balance and highlight other flavors in a drink.

Another fun way to add CBD tincture to your mocktails is to make your own canna-sugar. Simply mix drops of CBD tincture into sugar in the ratio you desire, and bake on low heat in the oven until the sugar is dry and a light golden color. Add to hot beverages, or use the sugar to line the rim of a glass for an upscale mocktail.

Mocktail recipes

Ignite Your Passion

Is cannabis an aphrodisiac?

The research is inconclusive. Anecdotal evidence suggests that marijuana can boost libido. However, actual research indicates that THC reduces testosterone over time.

On the other hand, marijuana probably lowers inhibition and increases sensation- adding to desire.

Everyone is different. Some people can become anxious or nauseous from pot. Others get mellow, and some experience joy and a sense of fun. 

You will have to experiment and see what happens. And if you refuse to inhale, then remember there are all sorts of tinctures and edibles you could try that won’t affect your lungs. 

Alone this year?

No reason to not give yourself the best

Self Care

Best bath salts

Skin care

 Chocolate

Whether you love white or dark, plain or loaded with nuts follow these suggestions for a Valentine’s treat:

Edibles

Best Stoner movie:

The Big Lebowski

 

For those who relax by baking

How do I make cannabis infused chocolate?

Which cannabis products should I try if I’m a novice?

  • Are you afraid of getting too high?
  • Do you understand the difference between Indica and Sativa strains?
  • Should you try edibles or a tincture first?
  • Do you know how to use a vape pen?

You need to consult your local bud tender for recommendations and probably test out the stuff before the big day. in the meantime Leafy offers a basic guide for beginners:

First time recommendations

 

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How do I brand my cannabis business?

Why do I have to brand my cannabis business?

You have already spent a ton of money on licensing and its associated costs and your resources are depleted. 

You think, it’s going to be enough to have a great product or service and a website. Unfortunately, your are in an industry that is going to get more and more competitive as time goes on.

That means you will have to brand your business to make it stand out from the field.

It will no longer be enough to stick a marijuana leaf on your packaging and have a basic green website. Everyone does that and has been doing that. 

Instead, you are going to have to come up with a whole look that speaks to who you are and what your value proposition is. 

Your Cannabis Business

If you are in this business you will probabaly fall into the following categories:

  • DISPENSARIES
  • CULTIVATION
  • EDIBLES
  • APPAREL
  • ACCESSORIES
  • CONCENTRATES
  • BEVERAGES

What should I be considering when branding my cannabis business?

You will be developing a consistent voice and look that will characterize you and your cannabis business from this point on.  You have to sit down and think  about the factors which distinguish you from everyone in your field. Then you have to take your target audience into consideration and figure out how to appeal to them.

For example, inner city millennial men and Generation X suburban women are completely different demographics. You will have to use specific images and language to appeal to your targets. 

You must also decide which image do you want to portray. Clean and sophisticated, latter day hippie, sporty, holistic, and organic are all possibilities depending on your product and audience. 

Package design

will depend on your product and target audience. And as more states legalize products, you’ll need to stand out. 

Read on:

7 best packaging practices for cannabis marketers

 

Images

The images you use to represent your brand are important. This is particularly relevant since due to state laws you are going to be limited in what you can portray and where you can show it.

For example, Facebook and Instagram will prevent you from making direct sales pitches or showing people imbibing.

Therefore, think of the way that soft drink or alcohol companies showcase their products. It’s always about lifestyle and benefits. 

Happy, smiling people are in groups, having fun, experiencing the possibility of romance and so on.

Big pharma has it down pat. Exuberant romps through fields of flowers are ubiquitous, and as long as you don’t read the contraindications included in the fine print all is well!

Which elements go into branding? 

All of the following elements go into branding your business / product:

  • Logo or logos
  • Colors
  • Fonts and typography
  • Images
  • Taglines
  • Voice

The advertising industry has been around for a long time and has spend billions of dollars researching and testing consumer behavior. You can apply these principles and use them to your advantage when branding.

Colors, for example, carry certain negative and positive associations. Green indicates health and an organic product, IBM Blue indicates trustworthiness. 

Fonts can be elegant, casual, feminine, hip ( hippie and hip-hop too!) 

Visualize an edible wrapped in a brown paper bag wrapper with a green leaf vs a elegant red package with gold foil. Totally different markets and consumers -one says, love and romance, the other an outdoorsy lifestyle.

You get the idea.

COLORS AND WHAT THEY MEAN TO THE DESIGN OF YOUR WEBSITE

What does voice mean? 

Your goal is to create an emotional connection with your potential customer. You are telling them you are a good match for them.

The goal is to be authentic and to appeal to your chosen tribe. 

However, due to the nature of lotteries, zoning and other requirements, sometimes you will have to tweak that voice to your demographic or the people who will be shopping in your area. 

It’s about you and the product, but mostly, it’s about the client and what you can give to them. In other words, your value proposition. 

What is your story about? 

This is where you can really shine and connect emotionally. Tell us the truth about you and your business.

  • What inspires you?
  • Which obstacles did you have to overcome?
  • Why is pot your passion?
  • Do you want to help people with pain, to relax, to experience bliss or get outside their ego based states? All that is important.
  • Are you minority owned?
  • Do you hire people whose lives have been blighted by the legal system? 

Tip: Don’t be afraid to get in front of your business and be its spokesperson. We are our own worst critics. However, you are probably younger looking, thinner, and more attractive than you think you are. If not, good lighting and lenses are key. 

Your Website

We live in a digital world. You need to have a terrific website that will bring value and showcase your investment in your business. 

Your Cannabiz Website

Your website is your virtual address but more than that, it’s your store and your window to the world.

Whenever a search is initiated you’ll want to show up with your product or location.  Here are the must have’s for your website to succeed:

  • Fast loading 
  • Responsive 
  • Scalable 
  • SEO optimized – especially for local and voice searches if you have a storefront
  • A great design that tells your story and showcases your products and that is inline with your overall branding

To read more:

Best recreational dispensary website design

Marketing

Marketing is everything. And everyone in business needs to be marketing. All the time. What does that mean?

  • Professionalism is key
  • The way you talk about your business
  • Networking
  • Your website
  • Branding
  • Your social media
  • Your newsletter
  • Your Google and Yelp reviews -especially important as we move towards voice and local search since the number of high reviews equates to best where search engines are concerned.
  • SEO. This is not some technical thing  that happens on the developer end. It’s all about the content on the pages.
  • Great content is all about how you communicate with the user and answer their questions. 

Social Media

The purpose of social media is to drive people to your website or local storefront where conversion will be made. 

You will have to gear your posts towards the regulations of that particular platform.

You will have to keep up with trends on your chosen platforms. For example, currently on Instagram, the curated look is out and naturalism is in. 

You must identify the demographics on each platform before you create your campaigns. 

Don’t just stick to Facebook and Instagram. Remember, you are raising awareness not just directly selling products. Create some recipes and feature them on YouTube, get on to Pinterest with images of your products, and think outside the limiting box.

FaceBook Rules

Instagram Rules

Getting the Product to the People

As always, remember social media is fickle. Changes in algorithms and closed accounts for perceived infractions can cause you to despair over your wasted efforts and the loss of your customer base.

What should you do?

Like any business, you need to grow your email list. 

  • When you exhibit, feature a sign up sheet
  • Feature a newsletter on your website that customers can sign up for
  • Feature something valuable in exchange for their contact information, such as an invitation to a tasting.
  • Club memberships.

Once you have their emails you can begin text message or email marketing directly without any interference from Mr. Zuckerberg and company. 

Summary

Cannabizes are just in their infancy. We are fortunate enough to be at the forefront of an industry were we can make money but, even more importantly,  set precedents in marketing, product design, web design, and branding.

It is our job not to just preach to the choir but to bring in new business and expand to heretofore untapped markets.

That’s where branding comes in. You can have the greatest product in the world but unless you market it properly, you will lose the game.

In order to win, a winning strategy is necessary.  That strategy begins with branding and creating your most valuable marketing asset, your website.

Our Work

Screenshot_2020-01-30 Gentleman's Club Cannabis - Alt MediaScreenshot_2020-01-30 Gentleman's Club Cannabis - Alt Media
Screenshot_2020-01-30 Marvelous Marijuana - Alt MediaScreenshot_2020-01-30 Marvelous Marijuana - Alt Media
Screenshot_2020-01-30 Spliff City - Alt MediaScreenshot_2020-01-30 Spliff City - Alt Media
Screenshot_2020-01-30 Whole Cannabis - Alt MediaScreenshot_2020-01-30 Whole Cannabis - Alt Media
Screenshot_2019-12-12 BohoGanja - Alt MediaScreenshot_2019-12-12 BohoGanja - Alt Media
Screenshot_2019-12-12 Country Weed - Alt MediaScreenshot_2019-12-12 Country Weed - Alt Media

Our Story

Cannabis legalization

We have always favored the legalization of cannabis. We find it distressing that cannabis users have been targeted and imprisoned in the past. 

Health and well being

We also have seen the beneficial effect cannabis has had on our friends and loved ones, helping them cope with stress, pain, and mood regulation. 

Branding and a well designed WEBSITE brings VALUE to your business 

We are extremely excited by the value our industry can bring to yours. We are also highly motivated by the web design possibilities inherent within a brand new industry where few precedents have been set. 

We would sincerely like to partner with you in being at the forefront of that industry.

If you need the following, we can help

  • A cannabiz web design
  • Branding
  • Photography
  • SEO
  • Content
  • Newsletter

Let's work together