The Emerald Cup Harvest Ball Becomes Epic Event in 2022

For nearly two decades, the Emerald Cup (EC) has honored the very best of Californian sungrown cannabis. The festival underpins the heritage of small-batch craft cultivators in Northern California, infusing it with the best of music, art and cannabis. The community-focused celebration has evolved from the first event in 2004, held at Area 101 in Laytonville, into a prestigious cannabis awards show and product exposition in Sonoma and, most recently, Los Angeles.

Founder Tim Blake, a self-described “old-school outlaw,” has come to be recognized as a custodian of cannabis culture. His support of small farmers in their time of need is unwavering; his recognition of the need to integrate with the biggest current cannabis players such as Cookies is visionary. And the fact that he’s doing all this while encouraging and engaging in progressive conversation with government departments is a testament to his passion for the plant and his relentless drive for education and innovation. 

In the lead-up to this year’s event, Blake spoke to Cannabis Now about the cup’s evolution, lessons learned from previous years and what we can expect from the action-packed 2022 Emerald Cup Harvest Ball.

Celebrating at the Montalbán Theater for the 2022 Emerald Cup Awards. PHOTO Beard Brothers Pharms

The Emerald Cup Awards

One of the core pillars of the Emerald Cup is the recognition of advocates who have campaigned tirelessly for the plant. Previous winners from the community include SweetLeaf Joe, Eric McCauley and Pebbles Trippet. One of Blake’s fondest memories of the cup was in 2013 when Dennis Peron, the father of medical cannabis and legendary activist, agreed to accept his Lifetime Achievement Award on one condition—that he could also be married on the stage. Sadly, Peron died a few years later and Blake remembers it as “the most incredible moment.”

“They called up and said, ‘We’re gonna take your award, but we’d like to do a marriage ceremony on the stage’. I thought, ‘we’re gonna do a gay marriage ceremony on the stage at the Emerald Cup because if Dennis asked, we’re doing it.’ And then we went ahead and did it. What an incredible part of history to say we were part of.”

Blake recalls when he first heard “prominent people such as Cheech” were coming into the industry. When Willie Nelson was nominated, he wanted the award’s title changed to the Willie Nelson Award, which, Blake recalls, “made it much easier to get higher-profile people.” The 2022 recipient, Woody Harrelson, is well-known for his Hollywood hits and cannabis and hemp advocacy.

For this year’s award ceremony, Blake and his team brought the spirit of the Emerald Triangle down to Los Angeles on May 14. The event coincided with the opening of Harrelson’s new West Hollywood-based dispensary, The Woods and they appeared together on the front page of LA Weekly. Blake’s voice reveals all the love and admiration he has for Harrelson as he tells me about the energy and support the actor has shown sungrown farmers.

“The invitation to the dispensary read ‘Woody Harrelson, Tim Blake and the Emerald Cup invite you to the opening of The Woods’and I was like, ‘Oh, my God, what an incredible thing for him to do’,” Blake says. “He started by telling us that we could only bring 100 people and we were thinking, “Who can we invite?” We had all of our contestants and all of our sponsors. And then it pushed out from 100 people to 200 people. On opening night, we overran the place. Woody had to pull back to the lounge with all the stars. He left our party early and I thought we’d done something wrong, but it turned out Paul McCartney had called him up and wanted to party with him.”

The following day, Blake says, the NorCal farmers met on the corner of legendary Los Angeles intersection Hollywood and Vine for a press photo-op before “walking en masse to the Montalbán Theater and took a picture with Pebbles Trippet in the middle of them. That was a wonderful moment and our small farmers realized that they, too, belonged in LA.” 

Following that, at the awards ceremony, Harrelson was up on the stage to receive the award, and, according to Blake, “he looked over at us and said, ‘You had more friends than I did at the opening last night!’ He was up on that stage doing stand-up for 20 minutes; he made joke, after joke, after joke. It was just amazing. He said, “You know, these are my people. this is my community.” Because he felt it. He’s protested before, he’s humble, he knows the scene. It was really touching. I love Woody forever for that. I can’t thank him enough for doing what he did.”

More love for Woody was in order

“I’m really proud that Woody looked into who we are and realized the Emerald Cup is an integrity-based, community-oriented show for the people, for small farmers, for sungrown cannabis—everything we are fits with him,” Blake says. “He’s evangelizing for sungrown for small farmers; he’s putting his name on the line. He’s the real deal.”

Swami and Tim Blake. PHOTO Kim Sallaway

Small Farms Initiative

At its core, the Emerald Cup celebrates the best sungrown, heritage, small-batch craft flower and its farmers. Sadly, since 2016, a brutal combination of taxation, licensing and market conditions has led Northern California’s cannabis community to an existential crisis. To show their support for the farmer’s plight, Blake, along with Michael Katz of the Mendocino Cannabis Alliance; Genine Coleman of Origins Council; Chris Anderson of Redwood Roots Distribution; Nicholas Smilgys of Mendocino Cannabis Distribution; Traci Pellar of the Mendocino Producers Guild and Brandy Moulton of Sovereign 707, created the Small Farms Initiative, which debuted at last year’s event.

“Last year, we ran a lottery system and gave away 23 booths and told people they could share them,” Blake says. “Next thing you know, we had 50 farmers in there, all for free. It was a tremendous success and really highlighted the plight of the small farmers.” 

The Harvest Ball is ramping up its support initiatives this year with sponsorship support from Harborside and Urbn Leaf. 200 farmers have been invited to the Harvest Ball to get their products directly in front of buyers in a direct sales “speed selling” environment. Eight booths have also been given to social equity brands from the Bay Area along with the small farmers. A “speed meeting” industry opportunity has also been arranged for small, craft and heirloom farmers to present their very best products to buyers and merchandisers, Blake explains. The Emerald Cup Buyers Club Meet & Greet scheduled on December 9 at the flagship Mercy Wellness’ new consumption lounge space.

The inability to offer direct-to-customers sales significantly impacts local farmers’ income options. Blake compares it to the early days of alcohol prohibition and how it took more than half-a-century before breweries and vineyards could sell direct to consumers at their cellar doors. It’s about giving farmers a chance to survive, he says. 

“It’s a big topic of conversation at this year’s Harvest Ball; we have panels on what we need to do to save these small farmers,” he says. “One of the main issues is direct sales.”

Blake acknowledges the historical animosity of the Emerald Triangle farmers who were devastated by the big groups that advocated for taking that cap off the small acreage as outlined in Prop 64, the 2016 initiative that legalized adult-use cannabis in California.

“The bill was specifically written to prohibit anyone from growing more than one acre of cannabis for five years,” he says. “This was done with the knowledge that if large-scale farming was immediately allowed, the small legacy farmers wouldn’t have time to get established or deal with the rapid price decreases that were inevitable. Two months into legalization, Governor Gavin Newsom went back on his promise and allowed large-scale farming, with support and advocacy from larger stakeholders. It created an extinction event for those legacy farmers in the Emerald Triangle and throughout the rest of the state. There’s a lot of anger and bitterness and resentment, which we have to deal with.”

However, he knows there has to be unity and that by coming together, they can make it work.

“We’re doing everything we can to give back to the farmers,” Blake says. “That’s what we’ve always been about.”

Tim Blake Discusses the Future of the Emerald Cup
PHOTO Gracie O’Malley for Cannabis Now

Working With the DCC

The Department of Cannabis Control caught some heat for its “heavy-handed” actions toward attendees and exhibitors at last year’s Harvest Ball. In true Blake style, instead of “calling them out” as he was encouraged, he chose the path of restoration and unity. Over the last six months, Blake, his team and the DCC have formulated a plan to allow vendor sampling in the Craft Cannabis Marketplace.

“We sat down with them and said, ‘Look, if you want to end events and you don’t want anybody to do events, then continue like this because nobody’s going to feel comfortable coming to the events’.”

This year, the DCC will have a discreet booth at the show so they can “interact with farmers and talk to people and brands.” A panel titled “A conversation with the DCC: How we can work together to make positive change” is also scheduled for Sunday, December 11, from 12-12.45 pm as part of the EC session in the garden annex.

Blake understands that “we need to work with the governor, we need to work with the DCC, we need to work with corporations. Everybody must come together, get around the table, and work it out.”

And it’s not just for the Emerald Cup, but for every event moving forward, Blake says. “Whether it’s a farmer’s market or somebody else’s event, we’re doing the work so that these can go about reasonably so everybody can have a good time.”

If you’re attending this year’s Harvest Ball, be sure to download the new app to learn more about the DCC’s panel. The app also allows you to create your own schedules for the two-day event, so you won’t miss any discussion panels or your favorite artists performing live on stage. The app will also let you curate your favorites list as you navigate your way booth-by-booth through the Craft Cannabis Marketplace—an absolute must to secure the world’s most highly sought-after seeds and clones, as well as the newest cannabis products.

Tim Blake inspects a jar of cannabis for the Emerald Cup Awards. PHOTO Rich Pedroncelli

The New Cannabis Classification System

One factor that makes the Emerald Cup so crucial to California’s cannabis market is its continued strive for excellence and education. For the 2022 awards, Blake and his team modified the judging process to reflect the advances of cultivars and chemovars. According to Blake, Alec Dixon, one of the co-founders of SC Labs, was the driving force behind the creation of the Emerald Cup Cannabis Classification System powered by SC Labs and PhytoFacts.

“Over the years, Alec started telling me, ‘Tim, we got to break up the way the judging gets done because it can’t be done this way’. Mark Lewis had been working on this system for quite some time and so it’s kind of a merger of us coming together. Together we’re trying to reframe the industry.”

One of the bonuses, Blake says, is that it allows for “all these different terpene profiles a chance to be recognized.” The new cannabis classification system separates and judges entries based on terpenes, flavor and effects. For Blake, it’s an excellent opportunity to educate the public about the nuances between different cultivars, encouraging them to learn about terpenes profiles instead of just going to the strain with the highest THC level. Because, says Blake, that factor alone has never won the cup. “That’s not what we’re looking for; it’s got to be something unique. It’s a wonderful learning and educational experience. It’s a wonderful process to recognize all the different varieties and cultivars and let them win. And it’s just been such a wonderful process to teach people about.”

Woody Harrelson accepts the Willie Nelson Award at the 2022 Emerald Cup Awards

The Emerald Cup Today

The Emerald Cup has undergone quite a transformation and is barely recognizable from the inaugural 2004 event that was “completely illegal,” according to its founder. Back then, it was purely a flower contest, with a handful of Emerald Triangle friends and farmers coming down from the mountains to show off their choices picks from that year’s harvest, with many hiding their identities to avoid prosecution.

Without Blake’s knowledge, hash debuted in the cup the following year, in 2005. Back then, hash could land you in jail for up to five years; this was still the Wild West of weed and extracts hadn’t yet entered the fray. In the following years, the cup opened up to seed sales, tinctures and other categories as the market and product offerings continued to increase.

Blake recalls the introduction of concentrates that “come from nowhere; there wasn’t even the word concentrate” that changed the cannabis landscape. He fondly recalls when Frenchy Cannoli, the revered hashish evangelist judged the awards one year and said, “‘That isn’t hashish.” And we said, ‘No Frenchy, it’s concentrates.’ That was a whole learning curve for him, for me, for everybody.”

The cup had no vendors or sponsors in those early days. The first to get onboard was SC Labs, one of the industry’s original testing labs. “People wondered what the heck they were doing there,” Blake says. “The first year the cup tested concentrates, there was a 75% fail. Within two years, we had that down below 5% because people realized they couldn’t get away with that anymore. It was really good that the testing cleaned it all up.”

Today, the cup has more than 40 categories, almost 50 with the inclusion of the awards—a fact that Blake calls “mind-boggling.”

“There have been so many industry changes over the last 20 years, so many different issues that have been dealt with as we’ve gone along the path, it’s really been something to see,” Blake says. “To watch that evolution has been an incredible thing.”

Blake’s daughter Taylor started helping her dad at the Emerald Cup in 2006 and about eight years ago, she started doing it full-time. “Everybody loves her so much and that she’s side by side with me,” Blake beams as he talks about his youngest child. The proud father says that Taylor plans to continue the family business.

“She can handle any part of the show,” he says. “I’m so proud that she stands with me and we do the cup together. And as I get older and retire, she’ll take the reins—the show’s in good hands.”

Taylor and Tim Blake at the 2017 Emerald Cup. PHOTO courtesy of Leafly

The Future of Cannabis

Blake believes that the federal legalization of cannabis will take place over the next couple of years and when it happens, the plant has a bright future—not just in California but worldwide. 

“Cannabis was a key aspect in just about every society in the world until it was demonized in the 1900s,” Blake says. “Most countries will soon legalize cannabis as well and we’ll see it in their people’s daily lives in one form or another, creating healthier, more vibrant cultures.” 

And even though the farmers are having a very rough time, Blake focuses on the positive angle in a way only he can.

“Watching cannabis go legal across the country so quickly, and across the world and then following that, the plant medicines and all the psychedelic medicines, it’s like, OK, we don’t have people going to jail. We have mainstream media or people embracing this; we got plant medicine coming in. And so the good that it’s done has to outweigh people’s personal needs. Because, at the end of the day, it’s about society and what we need to do for our world to heal it. And with cannabis and plant medicines, we’re healing the world.”

And that’s the world we all should be living in.

2022 Emerald Cup Harvest Ball, Sonoma County Fairground, Santa Rosa, California, on Saturday, December 10 & Sunday, December 11. Learn more about the event.

The post The Emerald Cup Harvest Ball Becomes Epic Event in 2022 appeared first on Cannabis Now.

The Best THC-Free Gifts for Everyone You Know

Mariah Carey’s “All I Want For Christmas Is You” plays in every store you enter. At the North Pole, Santa and his elves are going through the naughty or nice list. (Which one are you? Be honest!) This can only mean one thing: The holidaze are fast approaching. But don’t panic. You still have plenty of time to shop for the perfect present. We’ve curated 10 THC-free gifts for the cannabis lover in your life. And yes, that includes you. From designer accessories to stylish loungewear and delicious new products, here are a few picks we hope to find in our stockings on Christmas morning. It’s been a long year—treat yo’self!

Delta Munchies / From $19.99

The team at Delta Munchies is dedicated to providing their customers with some of the strongest and tastiest Delta-8 gummies on the market. Choose from mouth-watering flavors such as Peach Gelato, Tropical Punch and Grape Gushers—plus, fun favorites like Sour Worms and Gummy Bears. Delta Munchies products are made from American-grown hemp and are rigorously lab-tested to ensure they contain the purest and most potent ingredients without sacrificing taste or quality. Nationwide shipping is also available. Use code CANNABISNOW to receive 25% off all products excluding bundles

Flora Hemp Spirits / From $23.99

Flora Hemp Spirits

The phrase “drink to good health” takes on a new meaning with Flora Hemp Sprits, the world’s first line of all-natural, alcohol-free, cannabinoid-based spirits. This innovative new range provides a delicious alternative to booze while letting you unwind with a mild buzz. Perfect for the “sober curious,” Flora Spirits are available in three options: Essence (CBD), Delta-8, and pre-mixed Passion Fruit “Margarita,” which contains 5MG of Delta-8 THC and 10MG of CBD in each can. Simply swap out gin or vodka with Flora’s Essence or Delta-8 spirits to create delicious mocktails. Made with all-natural ingredients while containing zero sugar and zero calories, you can eat, drink and be merry this festive season without having to bother with alcohol. Use code CANNABISNOW to receive 10% off + free shipping sitewide.

Ongrok Infuser Machine / $149.99

Ongrok Cannabis Infuser

If the aspiring cannabis chef in your life is big on ambition, but small on space, then the Small Botanical Infuser Machine and Kit from Ongrok is a must-have. Featuring five pre-set temperature options, DIY customizations and made with professional, premium quality, food-grade 304 stainless steel, this small but mighty device can create two-and-a-half cups of butter, oils and tinctures in less than an hour. The kit has everything needed to start, including a butter mold, silicone gloves, mesh strainer and recipe book. Use code NOW15 to receive 15% off sitewide

Prism Water Pipes / From $99

Prism Water Bong

Why have a boring bong when you can choose a bespoke bong? Prism modular bongs are held together using threaded Halo connectors allowing you to mix and match glass pieces to fit your mood and preference. But it doesn’t stop there. With their online 3D modeling program, you can design your own custom bong that suits your smoking style by swapping out bangers, bowls, bases and more. Have fun playing around with all the different options, and see exactly what it looks like before you buy. Additionally, this innovative approach to the classic consumption method makes cleaning dirty bongs a breeze. Easily take it apart, clean the separate pieces and then rebuild it in time for the next sesh. Use code Cannabisnow20 to receive 20% off.

Klip Grinder by HØJ / $150.00

THC-Free Gifts

Craftsmanship, nature, simplicity and respect are the four pillars of HØJ, the Danish company that’s redefining the standards of cannabis accessories. Holding these four pillars in mind, HØJ, meaning “high” in Danish, creates unique products that deliver higher standards, higher quality products and higher experiences. Using magnetic magic, the Klip grinder finely slices flower instead of crushing it, protecting the trichomes and delivering a better experience. These magnets make this an excellent grinder option for those with limited dexterity. Build your own experience with HØJ’s patent-pending accessory system that easily snaps together. Use code CANNABISNOW to receive 10% off sitewide.

Mother Vaporizer by Pucker / $289

Mother Pucker Vaporizer

If you’re buying for someone that loves multi-disciplinary vaping, the Mother Pucker has you covered. Weighing in at just under 9oz., this electronic dab rig is one of the newest devices on the market and has quickly become a fan favorite. It features a ceramic pot for flower mode and a titanium quartz pot for extracts mode. It also has four temperature settings, each one with a different colored light that’s both a practical and cool design feature: 437°F is a blue light; 455°F gives off a groovy green light; 473°F is a red light; and the hottest setting, 509°F, gives off a white light. The powerful 2200mAh battery will keep the clouds strong after several sessions. Use code NOW50 to receive 50% off. Discount code will automatically apply at checkout.

Puffco Proxy / $ 299.99

Puffco Proxy

The most awarded vape-tech company, Puffco, brings together the disciplines of design, technology and engineering to create the coolest—and most covetable—vaping devices. The Proxy continues the company’s commitment by introducing a traditional-meets-contemporary consumption method. The Proxy is powered by an innovative new 3D chamber that heats the extracts on the sides of the ceramic chamber instead of the bottom, preserving the quality of the oil and amplifying the user experience. The Proxy has four precision heated temperature settings to deliver the most flavorful experience and vapor production from your extracts. You can also customize the experience with accessories and artist collabs. Free shipping for orders +$150. Interest-free payment plans are also offered through Sezzle.

Farmers Defense Gear / From $27

If you’re shopping for your green-thumbed friend, you can’t go past the range of products from Farmer’s Defense. Designed for farmers by farmers to help keep skin protected from the elements, the range includes everything from UV-protective clothing to waterproof aprons. We especially love the unisex Fungi Forager straw hat that features a handy internal headband to keep sweat off your face when tending the greenhouse, garden or simply enjoying some sunshine. Save 20% now in their sitewide holiday sale.

Saber by Hitoki / $359.99

This festive season, give your tech-loving friend the new Hitoki Saber, the latest innovative product from the team that brought you the original Trident. The handheld iteration uses the same laser technology to produce a clean, tasty vaping experience in a compact, portable device—perfect for busy, on-the-go people who love smoking weed with lasers. The Saber’s contemporary design offers three power levels that are indicated by color: Low (red) is for dry blends, medium (green) for denser blends and high (blue) blends for infused oils. The Saber’s modular design makes it easy to attach to the Hitoki Bubbler or upgrade your favorite 14mm or 18mm glass waterpipe with lasers to elevate your experience. Use code cannow 40 to receive 40% off the Hitoki Trident (excludes existing sale price).

Drugstore Collection by Pure Beauty / From $26

If you’re shopping for a friend who puts session style above all else, the new Drugstore Collection apparel range from Pure Beauty will undoubtedly earn you some brownie points. Taking its cues from the intersection of fashion, cinema, music and art, this cozy line includes sweat sets, tees, accessories and so much more. It’s all made in the USA, too. The creative minds at Pure Beauty are all about shifting cultural perspectives; creating powerful connections with customers; and providing a fun, creative and safe place for expression in cannabis culture. Use code CANNABISNOW20 to receive 20% off Pure Beauty merchandise (excludes special collaboration pieces).

Le Canna Royale by Reef Drinks / $150

Perfect for kicking back and relaxing during the hectic holidays, Le Canna Royale offers a complex sensory experience of sweet and savory licorice. Utilizing the cleanest micronizing technology, Le Canna Royale delivers euphoric effects without the hangover. With a potent 1:1 ratio of 750mg of hemp-extracted Delta-8, you can enjoy this delicious drink as a shot, neat, on the rocks, or mixed with your favorite sparkling mixers to create delicious mocktails.

The post The Best THC-Free Gifts for Everyone You Know appeared first on Cannabis Now.

Where is Cannabis Legal in Europe?

Europe is a huge continent with over 40 countries included. Therefore, it is often hard to generalize when it comes to their view on cannabis laws. Each nation has its own opinion and this can differ drastically from one country to another. We’re going to be delving into every European country and displaying their summarized laws on weed. Let’s go. 

Albania 

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Due to the Law of Narcotic and Psychotropic Substances that was made in 1994, cannabis is firmly included on the list of illegal substances. Therefore, cultivation, possession, production and essentially anything involving weed is illegal. This includes even the medical use of the substance. In July of this year, Albania drafted their first cannabis law to attempt to legalize it for medicinal purposes but it faced opposition. 

Andora

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Cannabis both medically and recreationally is strictly illegal in Andorra. You can face up to two years in prison for the trafficking of the substance, and individual use can also leave you with a large fine of up to 600 euros and an arrest. The only hope is that it borders Spain, where there are far more liberal views on cannabis. 

Austria

Medical: No

Recreational: Decriminalised

In Austria, it is illegal to consume, buy, sell or grow the plant. They also still do not have a medical cannabis market. However, in 2016, the personal use of it was essentially decriminalized. 30-40% of the nation’s young people, aged 15-24, enjoy hash and cannabis.  

Belarus 

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Belarus is very strict when it comes to cannabis laws. It is illegal in every way you look at it, even the industrial use of hemp.  

Belgium

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalised 

Belgium is definitely in the higher end of Europe when it comes to acceptance of cannabis. Medical cannabis exists, although it’s limited to only Sativex products. Plus, whilst recreational weed is illegal in Belgium, possession of under 3 grams by a person of age is decriminalized. 

Bosnia and Herzegovina 

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Similar to Belarus, Bosnia and Herzegovina have banned cannabis both medically and recreationally and do not look to be changing that any time soon. 

Bulgaria

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Medical and recreational cannabis is illegal in Bulgaria. However, farmers can grow industrial hemp with a permit, so at least that’s something. Plus, in 2019, Bulgaria was the first EU country to legalize the selling of CBD products. As one of the EU’s poorest members, many believe that legalizing THC could benefit their economy. 

Croatia

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalised 

In 2015, Croatia legalised the use of medical cannabis. Plus, the personal use of the substance is also only considered a misdemeanour and not a crime, meaning at worst you’ll face a fine. They are not quite at the stage of having a recreational cannabis market yet, but perhaps this could change. 

Cyprus

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

As of 2019, Cyprus legalized the use and cultivation of cannabis for medical purposes. However, the use of the substance for recreational purposes is dealt with heavily by authorities. 

Czech Republic

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

As of 2010, the Czech Republic decriminalized the use of the possession and cultivation of cannabis for personal use. You do need a license to grow it. Medical usage was also legalized in 2013 for certain conditions. 

Denmark

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

Denmark is considered one of the most liberal nations in the world, but how do they fair when it comes to cannabis? Denmark legalized medical cannabis in 2018, but the access to it remains limited and only certain products like Sativex are available. The substance remains illegal but they are lenient with small amounts for personal use. 

Estonia

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

Estonia is another example of a nation that legalized medical cannabis a while ago, but have yet to really do anything about it. You can expect leniency if you’re found with a small amount of weed but, overall, it’s illegal.

Finland

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

Since 1972 it has been illegal to use cannabis recreationally and that has not changed since. However, as is the case with many nations in Europe, a small amount will probably be given only a small fine. Medical cannabis is also legal, but the industry is far from booming, with only around 250 people actually having access to it. 

France

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

It is illegal to produce, import and sell recreational cannabis in France. In January 2022 the government dismissed a drafted law that tried to legalize it. In fact, it is believed that France has some of the harshest drug laws in Europe. As you can predict, even the medical weed is limited and hard to access. 

Germany

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Almost

Germany has recently laid out plans to legalize cannabis for recreational use. This would make it one of the first and largest countries in Europe to do so. As of yet, there is no exact date that this could happen. Medical cannabis has also been accessible since 2017.

Greece

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

Greece has legalized medical cannabis but the industry has not yet gotten off the ground. In regards to recreational use, it is completely and firmly illegal. A small amount won’t amount to a criminal record. 

Hungary

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Hungary supposedly treats cannabis use with the same amount of seriousness as heroin. The use of the substance is illegal both medically and recreationally. 

Iceland

Medical: No

Recreational: No

The best cannabis product you’re going to get in Iceland is maybe some CBD and prescribed Sativex. Other than that, it is completely illegal. 

Ireland

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

Medical cannabis and CBD in Ireland has been legal since 2019, however it requires approval by the Minister for Health. Recreational weed is completely illegal.

Italy

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

Recreational cannabis is illegal in Italy, however some cannabis-lite products are available for purchase in smart shops with very small amounts of THC. Medical cannabis is, yet again, legal but strictly regulated.

Kosovo

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Kosovo is another strict nation, no use of cannabis is legal here. However, yet again, people are suggesting it be a good idea for their economy to create a legal weed market. 

Latvia

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Latvia has banned all use of cannabis except hemp production, but if you’re found with a gram or so then you can expect only a fine. 

Liechtenstein

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Liechtenstein does not even have Sativex available for medical use, the nation has made weed illegal in all ways. 

Lithuania

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

Since 2018, medical cannabis has been legal in Lithuania, but the industry is limited and hardly accessible. You can expect a small fine if found with limited cannabis in this country but larger amounts will be an issue.

Luxembourg 

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Yes

In 2021, Luxembourg shocked the world by becoming the first country in Europe to legalize growing and using a limited amount of cannabis for personal use. However, it’s now being revealed that – without a cannabis market being created – it feels more like decriminalization than actual legalization. Nonetheless, it has paved the way for the rest of the continent. 

Malta

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Yes

Malta is the most progressive nation in Europe when it comes to cannabis. Both medical and recreational use is legal and has been since 2021. However, as of yet, there has been limited news on how this change of law has been actioned. 

Moldova

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalised

Medical cannabis in Moldova is legal but limited. Recreational weed is illegal but decriminalized – in essence, simple drug use is not a crime. 

Monaco

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Tax avoidance may be legal in Monaco, but cannabis most certainly is not. 

Montenegro

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Montenegro is far from legalizing cannabis in any way. In 2014 a political party attempted to present a bill but it was instantly rejected.

The Netherlands

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

The Netherlands have the most successful recreational cannabis market in Europe, with hundreds of thousands of tourists coming to Amsterdam to enjoy their coffeeshops. However, the actual use of cannabis is still technically not legal, it is just completely decriminalized. 

North Macedonia

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

Medical cannabis is legal but limited in North Macedonia, and products containing 0.2% THC or less are also available. There is no likelihood that their stance on recreational weed changes any time soon. 

Norway

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

Norway only allows for the medical use of the cannabis plant and nothing else. However, they are lenient to small amounts for personal use, probably only resulting in a fine. 

Poland

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

As of yet, hemp cultivation and a 2017 medical cannabis program is all that Poland currently has. Yet again, small amounts will be dealt with leniently. 

Portugal

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

In Portugal it is possible to access medical cannabis if other methods have proven to fail for your specific condition. The use of small amounts of cannabis will not give you jail time but may result in a fine. 

Romania

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

In 2019, Romania stated that they are looking to make their medical cannabis more accessible. Whilst recreational cannabis is illegal, they do not deal with the substance strictly due to it not being a high-risk drug. 

Russia

Medical: No

Recreational: Decriminalised

Russia has made possession of up to 6 grams a smaller crime, and therefore will result only in a fine. However, there is still a long way to go for the country, without even a medical cannabis market. 

San Marino

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

In 2019, San Marino came close to legalizing recreational cannabis after a citizen’s initiative but backtracked at the last minute, stating they would rather wait for Italy to do it first. Limited medical cannabis is also available. 

Serbia

Medical: No

Recreational: No

Serbia is another strict nation when it comes to cannabis.

Slovakia

Medical: No

Recreational: No

The best you will find in Slovakia is prescribed Sativex and some CBD products, the rest is completely illegal. 

Slovenia

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

Medical cannabis and CBD products are legal in Slovenia, but not always easy to access. There is also quite a lenient approach to small amounts of the illegal use of the substance. In fact, there’s even a secret cannabis bar in the capital Ljubljana. 

Spain

Medical: Decriminalized 

Recreational: Decriminalized 

Spain has their own underground coffeeshop market, with cannabis cafes that require membership to smoke in them. You are also able to indirectly purchase cannabis here. However, their medical weed market is basically non-existent and the drug is completely illegal when used in public.

Sweden

Medical: Yes

Recreational: No

You would expect more from Sweden, but their medical cannabis industry is highly limited and seems to have no future for recreational weed legalization.

Switzerland

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

If you’re found with less than 10 grams of cannabis then you can expect a lenient fine in Switzerland. They are also currently in the process of improving their medical cannabis industry. 

Ukraine

Medical: No

Recreational: Decriminalised

Whilst both medical and recreational cannabis use is illegal in Ukraine, technically possession of small amounts is only a petite offence. The president is also a fan of legalizing medical cannabis, so perhaps when the war is over this could be his next move. 

United Kingdom

Medical: Yes

Recreational: Decriminalized

The United Kingdom is working on improving their medical cannabis industry, which began in 2018. In fact, the UK is the biggest exporter of medical cannabis in the world, and yet a limited amount of their population actually have any access to it. Small amounts of weed are often ignored in the nation but it is unlikely that the UK will legalize recreational cannabis until other major players in Europe do it first.

Conclusion

Europe has definitely been slower in accepting cannabis than other places, especially North America. However, it is the smaller nations that have been the heroes of the story, with Luxembourg and Malta paving the way. But now with Germany looking imminent to legalizing cannabis, this could completely change the way the rest of Europe sees the substance. 

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Still Chasing the Sun

There are chefs who cook with cannabis, then there are James Beard-nominated chefs who cook with cannabis. Toronto-based culinary master Jordan Wagman is in the latter category. For the uninitiated, receiving a James Beard nomination is very much akin to an Oscar nomination for acting. It’s a big deal (as all you Top Chef fans know). But this chef was on a mission.

“It all comes back to my health,” Wagman says when asked about his journey to becoming one of the planet’s most renowned cannabis food masters who famously whips up world-class fare that’s wellness-focused and sugar-free.

“I was 12 years old when I was diagnosed with psoriasis, and from then on, every decision I made in my life revolved around my skin,” Wagman says, referring to the skin disease that causes painful red, scaly patches and is widely treated with UV sunlight exposure. “I completed every high school exam in the hospital.”

“I lived in a tent in Israel for a year and a half getting sun for 14 to 15 hours a day near the Dead Sea. Every vacation, I went to the islands. I moved to California. I moved to Florida. So, clearly, I was always chasing the sun.”

And while he found the sun wherever he went, Wagman also found kitchens, turning a longtime passion for cooking over campfires into a career in some of the country’s best spots. After working at several renowned restaurants in Florida and California, Wagman found his way to the historic Cliff House, a hotel in Colorado Springs, where he received that rare James Beard Award nomination for his work steering the kitchen.

But as the long hours and exhaustion of working began taking its toll on his mental and physical health, Wagman realized that cannabis had been in the background helping him all along. “Since I was very young, I was always playing with cannabis, cooking with it, smoking it; but at the same time, I was subject to the stigma,” he says. “As a father, I was trying to ‘set an example,’ but then I also realized that for decades, I’d been using cannabis for health and wellness. It wasn’t always just for enjoyment. From there, I became more comfortable, and I’ve spent the past seven years professionally using cannabis to help people change their lives for the better.”

Chef Jordan Wagman

As he began directing his career toward culinary cannabis, the chef sought other ways to improve his chronic psoriasis. Wagman says he found relief after removing both refined sugar and gluten from his diet. Consequently, he removed it from his cooking, too.

“Most of the time, we’re feeding people cannabis foodstuff that’s completely filled with refined sugar,” Wagman says, referring to the mainstream edibles marketplace overflowing with infused gummies and chocolates. “And what does sugar inevitably do to the body? It raises inflammation. And the intent with cannabinoids is to lower our inflammation. And are you really going to have all 10mg of those cannabinoids bioavailable? No. Your body wants to absorb the sugar way before it absorbs the cannabis. If you remove the refined sugar, you remove the barrier to absorption.” 

During his private wellness-focused fine dining experiences, guests enjoy up to 15 courses and 20mg of cannabinoids over a three-hour period, which Wagman says leaves guests feeling great and not too high due to his whole-plant focus and the benefit of the entourage effect. “I employ cannabis and hemp in every part of my being, and everything I create for my clients is how I eat and drink myself, so I use cannabis in every form,” he says, citing dishes such as a terpene-infused strawberry puree and a toasted hemp seed mixture as examples of a whole-plant experience. 

Wagman’s commitment to celebrating the benefits of the whole plant extends to his open dialogue about cannabis and mental health, a topic he explores on his podcast “In The Weeds,” which highlights “some of the greatest thinkers in cannabis and food, and demonstrates people’s success, yes, but also their challenges,” says Wagman. Featuring guests ranging from celebrity chef Janet Zuccarini to cannabis influencers/podcasters Mike Glazer and Mary Jane Gibson of Weed + Grub, “In The Weeds” brings out every side of the celebrated cannabis chef. “I cry a lot; I laugh a lot; I talk a lot,” Wagman says, laughing. “I’m not afraid to cry. I’m not afraid to tell someone’s story. I’m not afraid to apologize. It’s just me.”

Jordan Wagman Tempura Avocado
Tempura Avocado With Infused Tomato Sauce

Tempura Avocado With Infused Tomato Sauce

Ingredients

(makes two appetizers)

Infused Tomato Sauce

  • ½ cup tomato sauce
  • ¼ cup soy sauce
  • 1 Tbsp tamarind syrup
  • 1 Tbsp toasted sesame seeds
  • 1 Tbsp pickled ginger
  • ½ tsp toasted sesame oil
  • ¼ tsp cannabis distillate*
  • 1 nori sheet

In a blender, combine all ingredients and puree until smooth. Transfer to an airtight container and store in the refrigerator for up to one week.*

Potency in distillate varies. Add the amount that best suits your needs. I use distillate that is 20mg/ml, meaning this recipe has a total of 20mg THC.

Tempura Batter

  • 1 ½ cup potato starch, divided
  • ½ tsp baking powder
  • ¼ tsp sea salt
  • 300 ml carbonated water

In a mixing bowl, combine baking powder, sea salt and 1¼ cup potato starch, reserving the remaining ¼ cup. Whisk well to combine. Add carbonated water and whisk until smooth. The batter will be thin. Set aside to rest for ten minutes.

Tempura Avocado

  • ¼ cup potato starch
  • 3 cups avocado oil
  • 1 ripe avocado1/3 tsp sea salt

Preheat avocado oil to 325F. Slice avocado into wedges and place into potato starch to thoroughly coat. Dip coated wedges into the tempura batter and, one at a time, place into the warm oil. Fry avocado until golden brown, about one or two minutes. Remove from heat and place on a lined baking sheet. Season with salt. Serve immediately alongside tomato sauce

Distillate 101

When making cannabis-infused foods, there are several ways you can work with the plant. You can make your infusions from whole flower, or you can use a cannabis concentrate. Distillate is a popular choice for infusions because of its neutral flavor profile and pure potency of THC.

There are a variety of techniques manufacturers use to produce distillate through a series of solvent-based reactions that separate cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids from plant materials. The resulting crude oil is then distilled into pure THC, stripping all other compounds, including any remnants of the solvents used in the extraction process. Because of how it’s made, most distillate is already decarboxylated, making it simple to add to an infusion base.

This story was originally published in the print edition of Cannabis Now.

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Jon’s Stone Cold Cop List #31: MJBizCon finds… only kidding. They didn’t even have weed there.

Well I missed November, but it’s been a crazy month so bear with me. This one’s stacked with all the gems I found during Biz Con… only kidding. The best part about that event was our afterparty with Meth & Red at Brooklyn Bowl, and that wasn’t even official. Y’all know we know how to get down, even at a suit conference. Worth noting that our event and Jimi’s Heat Quest were the only two events I enjoyed period, so we’ll see if I’ll even do the Vegas marathon again next year. I do hope all your time in Vegas was all you hoped it’d be, but it seems apparent the industry is less and less hyped for this one every year. 

But this train doesn’t stop! I’m writing this on a plane to Taipei, en route to my final destination of Bankok, Thailand. Rolling out to check the newly legalized scene with my buds Jimi Devine and the High Rise gang, so you know there’s going to be a ton of transmissions from the road. Hopefully we don’t end up in an South East Asian prison. Only time will tell! 

If you can’t wait until the next edition to hear how it went, follow along with our antics on IG or Twitter. And as always, feel free to ping me and bitch about what I missed, or what should be on the next one!

Green Dawg’s Maracuya

Courtesy of Green Dawg

I’m constantly hunting for ‘out of the ordinary’ flavors, and boy did Green Dawg hit me right in the strike pocket with this one. To start, this sweet yet musky cut is like, repulsively attractive. You know what they say about cologne needing some funk? This one’s allll over that vibe. And while a lot of brands have figured out tips and tricks to inflate the smell of their goods to potential consumers, you know they’re doing it the right way when you can actually taste the flavor on your tongue. Plus, it’s a Green Dawg strain – which means it’s not even trying to play the hype game, they’re just focused on producing really, really good weed that they themselves want to smoke. The ultimate QC process!

Portal Gummies

cop list
Courtesy of Portal Gummies

If you follow me on Instagram you’ve probably already seen these on my story a few weeks ago, but now that I’ve had some time to do my research I’m pleased to inform you all that they’re so much more than MDMA gummies. While those were dope, and I certainly enjoyed myself, this is only the tip of the iceberg for this team. Also producing both micro and macro LSD gummies, a combination Mushroom & Molly chocolate bars, and DMT both in vape and it’s natural forms, I have no idea how these guys are getting away with this but the drugs are legit so tap in with the gang to get way out there!

Doja Pak’s Giraffe Puzzy

cop list
Courtesy of Doja Pak

I talk about how Doja’s crushing quite a bit, and I get it annoys some people looking for new names, but the truth is, once you see this next cut you won’t care about the other guys. The Giraffe Puzzy (a project the team has been working for years) is truly the one. With a flavor reminiscent of Chem, this bright green bud feels like a lost classic reinvigorated with todays tech. Not only that, but it will get you the perfect level of insanely high, and yet not slow you down. Y’all know I like the daytime steeze. Also worth mentioning their General Purpose pre-rolls. I grabbed one for the first time before Thanksgiving and I’ve gotta say – this is how pre-rolls should be. Three grams of all flower, and it smokes perfectly. They’re also blends of the gang’s favorite mixes – mine was Purp Dino x Stardawg 41 x Giraffe Puzzy, and it was the ultimate experience.

Talking Terps’ Terp Crawford Cases

Courtesy of Talking Terps

Y’all know the Terps are my people, and while I do my best not to include every drop they do, there is so much heat coming out of that camp that it’s hard to go too many lists without including the gang. Now, we know the Terps like high end, and that not every product they release will be in every fan’s budget, and this is likely one of those – but man, just look at how dope they are! Made in Silver, Bronze and Brass, these iconic lighter cases feature TC’s likeness carved into the metals (as well as the classic TT logo emblazoned on the back). And while they might be pricey, it seems like a small price to pay to ensure your lighter always finds its way back to you! They’ve got a gang of other shit out rn too if you’re holiday shopping and don’t want to break the bank, tap in with the boys!

Snowtill’s Piescream

cop list
Grown by Snowtill, shot by Ginja Club

I’ve included Snowtill here before as more of a brand profile, but this time I’ve gotta call out a specific cut he’s been working on. To put it simply: ST’s Piescream is one of the most interesting cultivars I’ve tried recently. It’s got this like gassy and sweet nose, but what blew my mind is the bud has this like grease to it that’s incredible. Normal buds just make your fingers sticky – this provides almost a liquid residue on your fingers that eventually dry out to the stick we all know and love, but it’s clear this plant was finished properly, so I’m looking at this as an advancement in his capabilities. I’ve never seen anything like this before, and the almost lime flavoring on the inhale sort of numbs the mouth. Joe’s onto something special.

Cali-X’s Dole Whip

cop list
Courtesy of Cali-X

You likely already know I’m a big Dole Whip fan, but what Cali-X has managed to do with the cultivar has really taken it to the next level. Definitely the first time I’ve seen it in rosin form, but the flavor will smack you as soon as you crack the jar. While maintaining the pineapple sweetness, Cali’s version of it presents with a far stronger gas aroma than I’ve seen in the past. Not to mention it’s got an excellent cerebral effect that’s perfect for going down a deep rabbit hole, or melting into your couch with a good book.

Mike Glazer’s After Party at the Comedy Store

Courtesy of Mike Glazer

There are very few people I love as much in this industry and our adjacent communities than Mike Glazer. The host of ‘Glazed’, the pre-pandemic variety show at the Hollywood Improv Lab, was my favorite show in L.A. before all that COVID madness fucked our lives up. That said, ya boy is back with another instant classic that I had so much fun at I need you all to know too. Including insanely talented comedians like Neal Brennan, Ali Mac & Frank Castillo, Glazer’s show always has bells and whistles you can’t possibly expect, so you never know exactly what you’re in for, but let me promise you this: you won’t be disappointed you went. I believe the word on the street is there’s another coming before the end of year so keep an eye on his Instagram – you’re definitely not going to want to miss these!

Lemonskrill

Courtesy of Lemonskrill

While this is presumably a new name for many of us, you’re going to recognize the flavor of Skrillmo’s most recent project, Lemonskrill. Akin to Lemon Up, with that same almost sour lemon pungency, Skrillmo has dialed this one in in a classic, yet refreshingly new way. We’ve been chatting online awhile and I’ve got to say, the first taste he provided was certainly a head-turner. Plus, I’d be remiss if I didn’t mention his marketing is creative, attractive, and you can fit way more than an eighth in the mylar if you feel like taking it on the road!

The Liz

Courtesy of Squints x Foreign Genetics x Westside Gunn

This next one’s a collaboration between Squints, Foreign Genetics and Westside Gunn, and it smaaaacks! I know anytime we hear a celebrity’s name at this stage in the game it’s almost an instant tune out for most of us, but this feels more like a real play than an influencer grift. Squints ain’t no buster. In fact, I’ve been saying for a minute that what Foreign Genetics is doing is impressive, and this certainly continues the legacy. The dark buds have a perfumated nose, with an almost cheesy undertone, but it’s the attractive die cut mylar shaped like a woman’s bust with a third eye that makes it the complete package. And so as not to go too over the top on the celebrity angle, the only mention of Gunn comes from the scorpion pattern utilized in the bottom gusset. Honestly, it’s hard to knock.

GT Rolling

Courtesy of GT Rolling

I’ve talked a lot about professional rollers lately, but something about what GT is doing is taking the experience to the next level. As I always mention, the flower is the most important part of the pre-roll, and every roll I’ve seen from GT smokes like it was just finished curing. Even better, they’ve got some of the most creative ways of promoting their products on Instagram. Hailing from the Mitten, ALL the flavor and terps you’d expect from any strain these guys are working with will be as vibrant as you’d expect had you rolled it yourself. Even better – while I prefer flower cannons over hash holes, his other brand, FlintStoned, can satisfy those needs for you as well! If you’re in Michigan tap in with the boys!

Bonus: These Crazy Skittles

Courtesy of Trap Mart

So y’all know I like exotics, especially of the soda and candy variety, and boy have I got a killer for you this time. I’ll be honest, I’m not entirely sure what they’re called because it’s written in another language, but I am happy to describe them to you. Have you had the Skittles Cloudz yet? They’re like a cross between a marshmallow and a gummy, and frankly they’re excellent on their own. However, whatever these new guys are take things up a notch. While the Cloudz are more marshmallow than gummy, these new jawns flip the script and honestly, it’s a way better format. Cards on the table I bought them because they had a lil sticker in the corner that had a cherry on it with some writing I couldn’t understand. I still don’t know what it means bc I didn’t taste any cherry flavors, but would 1000% buy again.

The post Jon’s Stone Cold Cop List #31: MJBizCon finds… only kidding. They didn’t even have weed there. appeared first on High Times.

New Trend of Vape Sensors in Hotels

At MJBizCon this year, we got to see what the biggest trends were, from growing equipment, to rolling papers, to vapes, to branding. But one big trend wasn’t actually showcased at the convention, (though some going to it were subjected to it). The new trend of smoke and vape sensors in hotels, which require a sign off by the guest. Here’s what you need to know.

Ew, I can smell your smoke!

Smoke detectors in hotels are hardly new, and nor are the charges that guests must pay when those detectors pick up unwanted smoke. If you’re in a non-smoking room, you can pretty much expect that if the hotel has its stuff together, that you’re going to pay out for breaking the rules. Sure, some probably use the detectors as a way to dissuade people from smoking, while not performing the upkeep to make them actually useful, but many will use their ability to collect fines for illegal smoking.


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The main reason given, is that it disrupts other guests, and this does hold some value. It’s not fun to pay out for a hotel room and not be able to get away from the cigarette smoke from the room next door. If a hotel is offering guests a smoke-free stay, then the quality of air matters if they want to be reviewed well. Smoke gets everywhere. It doesn’t like to stay in the room where it originates, and so all of this really does make sense.

Plus, for a hotel, it’s an easy and valid way to make some extra cash. All they have to do is lay out the rules, and all you have to do is break them for the hotel to collect. While it sounds like it shouldn’t be an issue, since smokers can simply take smoking rooms, this isn’t always how it works out. Sometimes available smoking rooms are full in a hotel, or priced outside of a budget. Sometimes a person doesn’t intend to smoke, but changes their mind, or has a guest over who lights up. There are tons of scenarios by which a person likely to smoke, ends up in a non-smoking room.

Smoke and vape sensors

And realistically, the extra charges make sense. Not only is someone else’s cigarette smoke a nuisance, but it’s also a health concern. Beyond the general dangers of secondhand smoke, which many non-smokers would prefer not to be subjected to, there are tons of issues, from asthma to bronchitis to cancer that require no smoke be around. People often complain about baseless things, but in my opinion, dealing with the detriments of someone else’ bad habit, in a paid-for place like a hotel, shouldn’t have to happen, and these rules are on the up and up.

Hey, I can smell your vapor too?

But vaping? While I’ve heard complaints over being bothered by smoke, and even had them myself, I’ve yet to hear someone complaining about the vapor from the room next door. In fact, that’s one of the benefits of vaping, it doesn’t produce a smoke. Sure, it doesn’t mean someone not vaping wants to smell the often sickly sweet chemically smell of a vape, but I have yet to hear of it being bothersome enough in a place like a hotel, for anyone to complain.

It also, whether mildly irritating when blown directly in the face, or not, doesn’t come with the same health detractions. I’m not saying that the chemicals making up that sickly sweet smell are good for anyone – they’re probably not, but they also haven’t been fingered with provoking the same damage as smoke, in either the vaper, or the secondhand vaper. Mildly irritating or not, it doesn’t come with that death toll, making it not as much of an actual medical issue.

It also doesn’t get into furniture, or make your hands and hair smell. And it doesn’t burn holes in anything or require fire. I get why hotels don’t want smoking in non-smoking rooms. Beyond it bothering paying customers, it can cause damage to property as well, and make for hard-to-get-rid-of smoke odors. None of this applies to vaping, and a hotel would be hard-pressed to know if a vaper just left a room.

For a place like a hotel, vaping is a clearly better option than smoking. It means less issues with unapproving guests, and less damage to property. Yet in a new play to charge even more fines, hotels are now using special vape sensors that pick up not just cigarette smoke, but according to the hotels, vape vaper as well. And they’re making guests sign off on having these smoke and vape sensors in the rooms.

My experience

I’ve stayed in plenty of non-smoking rooms with smoke detectors in my life. Not until my most recent trip to Vegas did I stay in a place with vape senors as well, and which made me sign off on having these sensors in the room. The sensors that the hotel I stayed at are from the company Noise Aware, and according to the statement by the hotel via my email confirmation:

Hotel policy
Hotel policy

“Smoking tobacco, pipes, vapes, e-cigarets is strictly prohibited in nonsmoking rooms. State law prohibits use of marijuana on property.” And that, “NoiseAware is a smart device that allows hotel management to respond to smoking events without disrupting your stay. You hereby agree and consent to the use of such sensor in your room and acknowledge and agree that it is 100% privacy compliant and required by the hotel.”

So automatically, the hotel is lumping in vaping with smoking, but more questionably, its using state law as a backing, when in reality, Nevada is a weed legal state. The hotel doesn’t have to ban it by law. So long as the cannabis is not smoked in public, it shouldn’t legally be an issue in a non-governmental building, which the hotel certainly is. All that logic aside, what I had to sign, said that “By acknowledging the foregoing, you agree to waive any future claims related to the presence of the sensor in a room you may book. Tampering with the sensor is strictly prohibited.”

Not only did this show up in my email, but I signed a sheet upon check-in with a $250 fine attached, and had a card in my room to remind me of this the entire time. I cannot speak to how useful the vape senors are for their stated purpose. I was lucky enough to have a Cannabolish spray from the convention, which I used when vaping in my room, and I was never charged a fee.

While I cannot say whether this is because the product worked well, or the vape sensors are not as awesome as described, I can say that I wasn’t charged anything extra by the hotel. I should also mention that one night I had guests in the room, where blunts were smoked, with just the Cannabolish spray for cover. Perhaps this is really just a ringing endorsement of the Cannabolish product.

What are these sensors?

So, what are these newfangled smoke and vape sensors? And are they really that great that they can pick up vape smoke? A look at NoiseAware’s site, and smoking isn’t a part of it at all. It’s quite possible that the same company did provide the hotel some kind of smoking/vaping sensor, but if so, it doesn’t have information for this product or service on its site. The product seems generally geared toward making sure there isn’t overcrowding or partying in rooms.

However, a wider look on the internet at large shows there is absolutely a market for products making the claim of picking up vape vaper. One company, Halo, says it “provides both a real-time Air Quality and Health Index that sends alerts when either index falls into danger zones.” In fact, it claims to pick up “Marijuana (THC) • Vape • Masking.” It claims to do so by “monitoring Carbon Dioxide (CO2), Particulate concentrations, Humidity, Volatile Organic Compounds (VOC), and Nitrogen Dioxide (NO2) in the air.”

Vape in hotel room
Vape in hotel room

Another company, Forensic Detectors, claims to have the best vape-detection technology, and that a “PM2.5 detector is an excellent low cost detector in an indoor environment to confirm if vapers or e-cigarettes were used.” It continue that “A sensitive PM2.5 detector can be considered a vaping, vaper, or e-cigarette detector. PM2.5 detectors can be used by hotel staff, landlords, or even for property inspections to confirm vaping or e-cigarette use.”

Under its pros, the company lists, “1) Vape and e-cigarette vapor detectors (PM2.5) are relatively low cost, 2) Many detectors that are able to detect the use of e-cigarettes or vaping can also detect the presence of cannabis and weed smoke, and 3) PM2.5 detectors can help landlords and hotel owners solve problems associated with vaping and e-cigarette use.” However in cons, it goes onto say that “Limited product options exists to detect vaping and e-cigarette vapor”, which is odd considering how many options there are online. Unless it means to say that most (or all) don’t actually do this.

Conclusion

The jury is out on whether these new age smoke and vape detectors in hotels can actually pick up vape vapor with their sensors. But it is a growing trend to use them, and for anyone who isn’t sure of their accuracy, and doesn’t want to pay a fine… best to get the smoking room. Or just go outside if you’re unsure. As nearly all info out on these technologies comes directly from the companies, it’s hard to know the quality of what they’re peddling. My guess? They probably don’t work that well, though I expect this technology will improve with time.

Hello and welcome to the site!! Thanks for joining us at Cannadelics.com; a news site dedicated to bringing you the best in cannabis and psychedelics reporting. Stop by regularly to stay in-the-know on everything going on, and subscribe for the Cannadelics Weekly Newsletter, so you’re always up on what’s going down.

The post New Trend of Vape Sensors in Hotels appeared first on Cannadelics.

A Thousand Words

Los Angeles-based fashion photographer Dorit Thies has made a career of pushing boundaries. So has cannabis journalist and marketer Eric Hiss.

By producing imagery that meshes art with nature, Thies has earned partnerships with the likes of Maye Musk, Kate Mara and Kristin Cavallari, among other familiar Hollywood names during a decades-long career in Tinsel Town. Hiss has written stories around the world for more than 50 major publications.

The duo’s latest passion project has taken them further north in California: “The Farm & The Feminine” chronicles the legacy, creativity and determination of women cannabis farmers in California’s iconic Emerald Triangle. Its four subjects—Tina Gordon of Moon Made Farms, Rose Willis of Huckleberry Hill Farms, Katie Jeane of Emerald Spirit Botanicals and Taylor Stein from Briceland Forest Farm—capture the rich gender and ethnic diversity of America’s most fertile region for outdoor cannabis growing.

Kate Jean, Emerald Spirit Botanicals

Hiss came up with the idea for the project out of a passion for the Emerald Triangle, where the pioneers of the cannabis industry have been perfecting genetics and farming top-shelf marijuana for generations. As multi-state operators move into the regulated market and produce at scale, “The Farm & The Feminine” aims to remind consumers how we got here by putting names to the female faces behind the industry’s early success.

“These women are the true pillars of our industry,” Hiss said. “None of this would exist without the craft folks in the Emerald Triangle. I realized we didn’t have any iconic imagery of these people, and felt we needed hero shots. This is a new narrative to portray these cannabis heroes as they should be.”

Rose Moberly, Huckleberry Hill Farms

To create such images required a special photographer, Hiss said, so he called longtime friend and colleague Dorit Thies. Before spending full days on the farms of the four women featured in the project, Thies admitted she had no previous experience with cannabis. It didn’t take long to bond with the farmers, though, thanks to a shared interest for sustainability.

“They’re biologists, they’re scientists and they’re involved with universal energy,” Thies says. “The way they harvest, it’s all about sustainability and doing it the natural way under the sun. I’ve always believed in these principles so it was very easy to connect with them.”

Tina Gordon, Mood Made Farms

Thies, who grew up in rural northern Germany, and Hiss, a fifth-generation Californian, spent a full day on each woman’s farm during peak harvest season late last summer. And unlike for most of her photo shoots, Thies brought only her camera for day-long tours—no tools, no lights and no props. To accentuate the farmers’ natural beauty, Thies kept her photos free of any touch ups.

The duo spent the early September days walking together with the farmers and using only items from their farms as props in the owners’ portraits. Thies adorned Katie Jeane of Emerald Spirit Botanicals with antlers and a colorful wreath to symbolize a type of nemes, the headcloth worn by pharaohs in ancient Egypt to signify high stature. She also took inspiration from legendary photographer Edward S. Curtis, whose work focused on the American West and the Native American people.

“I always used to draw from Greek mythology, too, and the imagery of powerful women,” Thies says. “I wanted to create metaphors in my images of women that represented the Greek goddesses.”

Taylor Stein, Briceland Forest Farms

Hiss said he and Thies considered 20 to 30 more women farmers in the region for portraits in “The Farm & The Feminine,” but time and budget constraints reduced the first season of the project to just four women. The duo said their project is ongoing and could add more subjects in the future.

“I couldn’t wait another harvest cycle for the first few,” Hiss said. “It was a now-or-never situation because these women are doing work that should be elevated and celebrated. I hope that we’re smart enough to realize we can have our (big corporations) and also protect space for our small operators. Just like craft beer folks bring us top-shelf beer and cult wine guys and craft distilleries bringing craft batches of mezcal, gin and tequila, we shouldn’t cut off our roots, man.”

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The Best THC-O Carts You Can Buy Right Now

In this week’s episode of ‘keeping up with the cannabinoids,’ we’re here to talk about THC-O. If you’ve seen any headlines featuring this new member of the THC family, then you might be wondering if the hype is true. Is THC-O really three times more potent than regular THC? If so, why? All that and more below. Plus, we’ll guide you straight to the best THC-O carts money can buy so you can cut through the noise and order online today. 

THC-O Overview

THC-O often falls under scrutiny because, unlike other alternative cannabinoids (like Delta-8 or Delta-10), it’s not natural. You could extract marijuana and hemp plants all you want and never find any pure THC-O. Instead, manufacturers produce THC-O in a lab through a series of extractions. 

The first step is extracting CBD from hemp and converting it into Delta-8 THC. Then, a substance called acetic anhydride is combined with Delta-8, promoting a reaction synthesizing Delta-8 into THC-O. It’s a highly volatile (and flammable!) process. The end result is an incredibly potent cannabinoid that’s often infused into gummies and THC-O carts. 

Is THC-O Legal?

Yes, THC-O is legal because the starting material is hemp. If the starting material were marijuana, it would be allowed for sale through licensed dispensaries in states with legal cannabis. However, manufacturers are well aware of those implications, so THC-O is made with hemp. The only caveat is that the final product cannot contain more than 0.3% Delta-9 THC by volume. 

Is THC-O Safe?

THC-O is a relatively new cannabinoid, so long-term research is needed to determine its efficacy. Generally, THC-O is considered safe for use. Still, you should be sure to do your research before buying from just anyone. Many brands are looking to capitalize on the current THC-O vape cart trend, and they might not be producing with high integrity. 

Always check test results or reach out to the brand to see if they will provide them. Any trustworthy brand will happily provide this for you, along with any and all ingredients used to make their products.

THC-O Effects

THC-O is said to be three times stronger than THC. Consumers agree and claim that THC-O is borderline psychedelic in larger doses. Just how much is too much? If you normally find your perfect high after three or four hits from a regular THC vape pen, start with just one or two from a THC-O cart and see how you feel. 

The effects themselves are largely the same—euphoria, bliss, relaxation and relief from stress and anxiety. That is, unless you go overboard. Then you might encounter those not-so-fun side effects of THC such as paranoia, anxiety, dry mouth, red eye and loss of coordination. 

THC-O is especially beneficial for anyone with a high tolerance or who needs hefty doses of THC for medicinal purposes. It allows you to consume less and achieve the same results. Plus, it saves on your cannabis bill, and who doesn’t love that?

Buy The Best THC-O Carts and Disposables

Okay, let’s cut to the part you’ve all been waiting for. Who makes the best THC-O carts? Hands down, the answer is Dimo Hemp. Dimo launched into the hemp-derived cannabinoid market with their wildly successful line of Delta-8 pre-rolls, and they’ve been knocking out killer cannabinoid products ever since. Their line of THC-O carts and disposables is the best way to dip your toes into THC-O. Here’s what they offer. 

THC-O Cartridges

The THC-O cartridges contain one gram of oil with THC-O alongside other custom blends of cannabinoids. Dimo doesn’t offer pure THC-O and, instead, thoughtfully curates perfect cannabinoid combinations to deliver an outstanding high. 

Their entire collection of THC-O cartridges includes strains and combinations, including:

Price: $24.99-$29.99

Size: 1 gram live resin

Where to buy: Shop online

THC-O Disposables

THC-O disposables offer greater convenience and more oil than THC-O carts. They come with a built-in battery, fully charged and ready to vape as soon as it arrives. Once you’re done with the oil, simply dispose of the used battery. 

You can try the THC-O disposable vapes in the same great strain and cannabinoid combinations as the carts. Twice the oil for a great price means you’ll be returning for more. 

Price: $34.99-$.39.99

Size: 2 gram live resin

Where to buy: Shop online

Dive In With Dimo THC-O Carts

THC-O is one of the newest cannabinoids to join the THC family, and it truly packs a punch! The fine folks at Dimo Hemp have harnessed the power of THC-O by expertly blending it with other alternative cannabinoids so you can experience a symphony of fantastic benefits all in one convenient vape. If you’re ready to try a new hemp brand, Dimo is a great place to start. 

The post The Best THC-O Carts You Can Buy Right Now appeared first on Cannabis Now.

How to Vape Cannabis Concentrates

The world of cannabis is constantly changing, with more and more people finding new and extraordinary ways to consume it. Weed buds are not the only option anymore, there are now liquid cartridges that can be used in electronic vaporizer devices. But not only that, even scientists have had their input, creating cannabis concentrates. These golden, potent substances can be placed in joints or, even better, put in a vape too. But how does it work? What are the crucial steps in vaping concentrates? In addition, why bother at all? Today we will be looking at how to vape these potent substances, as well as the benefits of doing so. Let’s go. 

What are Cannabis Concentrates?

Have you ever looked at a cannabis bud, and wondered what it would be like if you could take away all of the excess materials and only be left with the most potent part? Only cannabinoids and terpenes, all in a beautiful filtered down substance. Well, this is exactly what cannabis concentrates are. Terpenes are responsible for the flavours and aromas in cannabis. There are supposedly over 150 types. If you’ve ever bought a gram of ‘blueberry kush’ from some dodgy guy, then chances are the blueberry smell comes from its terpenes. If not, he’s just given a random name to it, which is also possible. Cannabinoids, on the other hand, are the compounds in the plant that are responsible for the effects they have. There are over 100 of them. However, CBD and THC are the most prominent and well known. THC is a psychoactive substance, which means that it has mind-altering effects, whereas CBD is not. Nonetheless, they both bind to the endocannabinoid system in the body, which consequently changes the processes in the body that are responsible for: appetite, mood, senses and pain. This is why people can feel a variety of effects when consuming cannabis. But, not only that, this is why it is used in medical practices. When cannabis concentrates are made, it’s these compounds – terpenes and cannabinoids – that are filtered into a special substance. 

Different Types of Concentrates

There are many types of cannabis concentrates. Some of them are so similar that having two separate names seems pointless, but the connoisseurs out there swear there’s a difference. This difference comes in its texture and form. Whilst the majority of concentrates are golden, honey-like substances, they all can have slightly alternative forms. 

  • Shatter
  • Budder
  • Crumble
  • Wax

There are more than just these too. Anything that is a concentrated version of cannabis counts as a concentrate. This means that any type of weed oil is also part of the concentrate family. Also included is hash, which is commonly made from being pressed into small blocks. When discussing cannabis concentrates, people are referring to the more potent types – the ones listed above. This is because their potency is especially high. Here is the amount of expected THC in a usual batch of substances:

Flower buds – 15% THC

Hash – 30% THC

Concentrates – 60-90% THC

How Concentrates are made

Cannabis concentrates are made in a variety of ways, and some are far more expensive than others. Remember, this process can require a great deal of expensive equipment. As Jesse in Breaking Bad would say: “It’s science b****”! Here are the most common methods of extraction: 

Solvent-based

Solvents are added to the cannabis in order to dissolve the potent part of the plant: the resin. When the solvent is then removed, vape oil, wax or shatter is left. The types of solvents that are used include:

  • Hydrocarbons 
  • CO2
  • Alcohol 

This kind of process requires expensive equipment and people who definitely know what they are doing. We would not advise you to try this at home. 

Non-solvent-based 

Sifting

Using a mesh, the small pieces of kief can be slowly shaken out of the plant. This separates the potent parts from the rest of the cannabis.  

Ice Water

This is a common way of making hash. The cannabis is put in a jar with water and ice. As it is agitated, the parts separate. This is one of the cleanest ways of making concentrate. 

Heat & Pressure

This is probably the most common way of making cannabis concentrates. With this method you can make all types – including wax, shatter and budder. It’s simple, you place the bud in between two hot metal plates and press. This then extracts the good stuff. You can buy a rosin press, or you can even use straighteners. 

How to Vape Cannabis Concentrates

Vaping cannabis concentrates can be the greatest thing you’ve ever done. The potency may be something you’re not used to, so you must ensure you take it easy the first time. Remember, this substance can be far more strong than your usual flower buds. Here are the crucial steps to help you along your way.

Step 1 – Choose Your Vaporizer

First things first, ensure your vaporizer can actually take concentrates. There are two types of cannabis vapes, dry herb and cart. For these types of concentrates, you’re going to need a device that allows for raw material to go inside. Cartridge vapes allow you to consume cannabis oil, but we’re focusing on vaping the raw materials. There are specific dabbing vapes that exist, although it’s probably better to purchase a vape that allows for more than one kind of substance. This means a dry herb vape is the one for you. However, you must also ensure that it fits a concentrate pad in too. Without this, your concentrate will be melting into the crevices of the device and breaking it. The pad will stop this from happening. Dry herb vaporizers can cost anywhere from below $100 to over $400. It really depends on how much you want to spend and how much you think you will be using it. You want a device that is also easy to clean, otherwise you may only be using it once to vape these substances. Once you’ve chosen a vaporizer, turn it on and get ready. 

Step 2 – Concentrate Pad

Now you must input the concentrate pad. This usually looks like a small, metallic accessory. It shouldn’t be hard to place it in your device, as long as it fits your specific vaporizer. Ensure that this is the case. Once it is in, you can slowly place a small amount of concentrate (budder, wax, shatter or even hash) onto the pad. Don’t overpack the vape, space allows for the heat around the substance to do its work. Remember, you can have several goes at this so there’s no need to overdo it the first time. 

Step 3 – Perfect Temperature

Finding the perfect temperature can be tricky but essential. Vapes usually heat anywhere from around 180 degrees to 240 degrees. The hotter it is, the more potent it will be but the less flavoursome. The lower the heat is, the less potent but the more aromas will come through. You’ll have to find the perfect balance yourself. 

200 degrees – low levels of potency, with great flavour

220 degrees – Reasonably potent, okay flavours

240 degrees – I’m super high, less flavour

These are some tips but, ultimately, you must decide what works for you.

Step 4 – Enjoy 

The last step, as it should be, is to enjoy yourself. Vaping concentrates can completely open your cannabis world. You don’t need to only smoke joints anymore, there’s now far more interesting ways to consume your substances. With the potency of concentrates, make sure you’re set and setting is ideal for you to enjoy the high. Ensure that your location is perfect, the people you are with are kind, and your mindset is ready. With this in place, and the vape turned on, you’ll be prepared to have a great time. 

Benefits of Vaping Concentrates

Potency

You can reap the rewards of the purest form of cannabis. With up to 90% THC, you will be sure to feel the full force of the plant. This also means you won’t need to constantly top up, and can sit back and enjoy the high. 

Flavour

The flavour you experience from vaping concentrates is something you may not be used to. When you smoke weed, a lot of the terpenes are burnt out. However, with concentrates and the lower heat of vaping, you are sure to taste flavours you didn’t even know were there. 

Smooth

A vape hit is far less harsh than a hit from a joint due to its lower temperature levels. You can enjoy the avoidance of throat pain. 

Discreet

Unlike a joint, vapes don’t smell anywhere near as much on your body or clothes. This is because there is no cloud of smoke. Vapour is far less obvious too. It’s less dense and does not linger anywhere near as much as a joint would. You can vape in peace, without the fear of being realised. 

Conclusion

Vaping cannabis concentrates will change the way you think about cannabis. Not only does it allow you to experience the plant in its purest form – with its potency and flavours – but it also proves the immense power and benefits of vaporizers. They are discrete and far healthier than smoking. With these key steps and vital information, you will be able to vape cannabis concentrates easily. Enjoy.

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