Runtz Brings Its Iconic Strain to the Masses

Since 2017, the global phenomenon that is the Runtz strain has not abated. The brand has remained strong, but this year, newly independent, Runtz is relaunching as a top-tier luxury weed lifestyle brand, with all new Runtz genetics plus the classic strains available in multiple states. More people can finally say that they have smoked real Runtz.

The Runtz phenomenon started at Emerald Cup 2017 in Northern California. Ray Bama and Yung LB got hold of Runtz and started to market it online using social media. Grower Nick Corwin eventually met Ray Bama in the Bay Area through Friends. LB, Ray’s roommate, was an up-and-coming rapper and an informal weed ambassador for Cookies—aka one of the Cookie Boys. Nick discovered Runtz when he combined Zkittlez with Gelato 33, creating a dark purple flower with a distinct candy terp profile. They knew they had something, and they went with the Runtz name to capture that candy terp. 

“When Runtz first came out it was the darkest thing and then when you opened the bag everyone would say candy,” Ray remembers. “At that point there wasn’t really a terp like that besides Zkittlez. But with Zkittlez, the exhale wasn’t quite as candy, as creamy,” Ray says. Nick says that the Gelato 33 upped the Zkittlez potency and added even more of a candy profile. 

The three showed up at Emerald Cup with a little over 300 jars, along with 2,500 Runtz t-shirts to hand out and a group of models rocking the Runtz logo. They camped out in front of the Cookies booth (it was the year Cookies debuted London Pound Cake) where a line formed around them. They sold out in minutes, getting so much attention that Cookies asked them to leave. But Berner took notice, and Cookies would eventually become Runtz’s exclusive distributor. 

“We made a whole appearance in letting people know who we are and we’re here. And that impacted the fuck out the culture,” LB remembers. 

The same excitement and hype of that day kept its momentum over the next year. However, how the strain and brand (what LB calls a “strand”) became the phenomenon that it did, spreading all across the U.S. to hotspots like New York, Atlanta, and Miami, was not merely organic. Ray and LB worked out a sophisticated multi-pronged approach to branding the strain as a lifestyle. They went on tour, doing pop-ups city by city, everywhere drawing a crowd around this new thing from California called Exotics. 

In particular, LB became the face of the brand, and he wove his identity as a weed mogul into his hip-hop singles and his social media. Meanwhile, Nick and Ray reached out to artists, creatives, people in fashion, and musicians, and built a network of culture-makers and content producers. Within a year, they saw Runtz take off. Everyone was talking about it. Everyone wanted it. Everyone claimed to have it. 

“We weren’t trying to follow the trend. We weren’t too much caring about the politics behind weed,” LB said. He was trapping weed at the time and saw that the industry was expanding. 

“It’s enough for everybody to eat off this plate. You’d be a fool not to capitalize,” LB said. 

LB went hard at marketing and promoting Runtz as he toured with his music. As he went around the country, he put on events to raise the brand’s profile, despite the risks. 

“These other weed brands, they weren’t doing the sessions and pop-ups that we were doing,” LB said. “We were taking a big risk doing that,” he said, considering most states still considered weed to be illegal. 

“We brought that gorilla marketing to the corporate cannabis world,” LB said. “It had never been done before besides Berner. But Berner had a strategic classic high-end way to do it. We just kept this shit so urban, so close to the culture, it’s like one of them was doing it,” LB said. 

Runtz became the phenomena that it is because, LB and Ray say, of the work they put into promoting and marketing the strain. 

“We just love working. We ain’t better than nobody but we gonna hustle. I guarantee I’ll hustle a lot of these other people,” LB said. “We started getting that recognition.”

Are You Smoking Real Runtz?

Even as the hype built, Runtz was kept exclusive and relatively small-batch. The demand for Runtz in the country far outweighed its supply, and plenty of bootleggers stepped in to fill the lack with fake bags of fake Runtz. Meanwhile, growers that did get hold of Runtz genetics (which wasn’t hard—the guys made a point to spread the genetics far and wide) all too often renamed it and built their own following off of it. 

Ray says getting bootlegged, copied, and ripped off was just part of the game. 

“To this day if you go buy ten eighths from any dispensary or ten eighths from the street, nine of them are going to be Runtz. Runtz is the most renamed strain, the most bootlegged,” he said.

But to an extent, it was on purpose. 

“We’ve constantly hunted and serviced the top one percent of the market and we’ve pigeonholed ourselves there because we never really expanded as far as we could,” Ray said. “We kept our releases very small.”

Ray, LB, and Nick were powerless to stop the brand from getting bootlegged. They saw ugly imitations of their iconic mylar bags for sale in smoke shops all over the U.S. and Europe. To handle their growth, they contracted with a much larger corporation in California to take on marketing and distribution, but found that they were even more hamstrung by not having full ownership of the brand. 

“Just being on the road built Runtz so huge, that I didn’t know how big it was until I got to Atlanta in 2018-2019. Everywhere I went everybody said they had Runtz. But they didn’t get it from us,” LB said. 

“I used to get mad and upset, but for what? It helped the brand out,” LB said. 

The fact is, the guys couldn’t supply the demand for the strain. They developed other phenos to help make more product available, and partnered with regional growers to help suppy the rest of the country outside of California. 

“The demand was so high it wasn’t enough,” he said. 

For a time, everybody supposedly had Runtz and almost nobody smoked real Runtz. The guys had created a movement that they no longer were in control of. Still, they never stopped promoting Runtz, which had sprung a corresponding clothing and lifestyle brand. They continued to release Runtz phenos and crosses, each one cleverly marketed with stylish mylar bags plus whatever media LB cooked up. 

Ray says that they tolerated people copying them. They understood that they were trendsetters. 

“We never hated on anybody. People stole our sauce, they steal our sauce to this day, blatantly. And we’ll be like, as long as you’re feeding your family we don’t start shit with people,” Ray said.

“We actually do it for the culture,” he said.

Being copied just inspired them to be more innovative. 

“The way we combated that bootlegging is by constantly releasing new products, new product identity, new IP, just always releasing new stuff and they can’t keep up with us,” Ray said. 

In 2020, rumors of a strain called Obama Runtz circulated, and a video by a Atlanta trapper talking about it went viral. The team jumped on the viral moment and launched an Obama Runtz strain with a corresponding song and music video referencing the viral video. They later had another viral hit when they released Coochie Runtz in a die-cut mylar bag in the shape of a cropped photo of the midsection a big-bootied woman in a thong, one image of her front and one image of her back on either side of the bag. The photo was unrefined and unabashed and definitely attention-grabbing. Runtz marketing is often this mix of media savvy and a focus on the culture around weed instead of just the weed itself. 

Courtesy of Ray Bama

The Relaunch

They’ve spent years planning, growing, breeding, and making deals for the next phase of Runtz. 

“We’ve been the disruptors of the industry,” Nick says. “We’ve done it multiple times and we’re going to continue to do it.”

They disrupt and they start trends. Even before Runtz, Ray invented the GlowTray, a rolling tray with a built-in light that was a phenomenon for years. He and Nick manufactured, marketed, and distributed the GlowTray themselves. Runtz kicked off the trend of using mylar bags instead of jars, which at the time everyone had preferred. Potato Runtz, a collab with designer Imran Potato, together they were the first to create a special shape die-cut mylar pouch (bags that are cut into a shape rather than square), which are now very trendy. They claim they were the first to do things like pop-ups and tours to promote their strain, which by now has become a common tactic in the industry for indie brands. 

Their next disruption will take place in smoke shops across America with the launch of Runtz brand tobacco leaf blunt wraps. They noticed that everyone around them were rolling their high-end Runtz weed into crappy Backwoods leaves, half of which from each package had to be tossed for being unusable. 

“We want to push the culture forward. We don’t want our people to go buy Backwoods and throw away half,” Ray said. “The weed is so good and expensive and you put it in the Backwoods and it rips or has two stems.”

They talked to some friends in the tobacco industry and ended up traveling to the Dominican Republic to survey tobacco farms. They sampled twenty varieties before going with the Broadleaf. They hand-selected the bales, which each undergo a 5-step sorting process for quality control. Each leaf is washed, trimmed, and pressed so that it’s perfect for rolling a blunt. They’ll launch next month in 4,500 shops across the country. 

At the recent Hall of Flowers convention Runtz debuted its first new strains since last year’s Coochie Runts: Bootleg Runtz, Day Day Runtz, iRuntz, Super Runtz, a collab with indie brand Don Merfos Exotics, and FTP Runtz, a collab with the clothing brand. Early next year, they’ll introduce a Classics line, with their most popular strains made widely available at an affordable price, including strains that haven’t been available in a while like Divine Runtz, Pink Runtz, White Runtz, Real Runtz, Obama Runtz, and Runtz OG. 

They’ve also been working hard to build a network of growers and dispensaries in states outside of California to grow and distribute actual Runtz flower. The plan is to be able to launch new drops simultaneously in California as well as states like Florida and Michigan. In California, they’re continuing to pheno hunt their own genetics by collaborating with top brands like Wizard Trees, Doja Pak, and Seed Junky Genetics. They’ll also be selling Runtz seeds in smoke shops.

For Nick, Ray, and LB, the Runtz relaunch is about solidifying their place as a high-fashion, high-art, luxury brand. They’re relaunching their streetwear clothing line with Pharrell’s Billionaire Boys Club, they’re looking into doing a Runtz restaurant, and they’re planning a Runtz festival for 2024. 

“LB always told us, Nick, Ray, we’re the Louis Vuitton of cannabis,” Ray said. “They’re wearing Louis Vuitton and Gucci and they’re smoking Runtz.”

For LB, the fact that the brand has made such waves while still being relatively new to the scene is something he doesn’t take for granted. 

“For us to have a seat at the table with a lot of these top-tier names is an honor,” LB said. 

He’s learned that the art of selling weed in today’s market comes down to marketing a lifestyle. It’s what the Runtz brand does better than anyone. 

“It’s not even about selling the flower. Just even knowing how to brand a product to a level where people want it so much to where it’s like we’ll buy the brand overall,” LB said. 

“That’s crazy to me to be honest. And it’s amazing. Just to be one of the brands that’s top-tier as far as even being around the top, top people is just an honor. Runtz is new, we’ve been on the scene probably 4-5 years, so we’re literally new,” LB said.

The post Runtz Brings Its Iconic Strain to the Masses appeared first on High Times.

Top 5 Vaping Tips: How to Improve your Cannabis Vape Experience

The cannabis vaporizer is the perfect device, if you know how to utilise it. Have you finally purchased your own device? Are you wondering how to improve your experience with it? Are you considering smoking a joint instead? Well, stop right there. Weed vapes are products of the future and they have the potential to open up a whole new world of cannabis consumption. However, this doesn’t stop them – at points – being slightly confusing.

Like with any device, you need to know how to get the most out of it, especially when you’re trying to use it as an alternative to smoking. These electronic devices have the potential to unlock more flavor and potency from your substances than ever before, but let’s find out how. Here are our top 5 cannabis vaping tips. 

The Cannabis Vaporizer

The vaping market is booming. What once began as an innovative idea, is now a market worth around $6 billion, and this is estimated to triple in the next 10 years. The vaporizer is an easy way for people to smoke the substances they enjoy, without as much health risk. But before we delve into how to utilise these devices to the best of their ability, let’s first understand what they are. Today we’re going to be discussing the cannabis vaporizer, not the e-cigarettes that allow users to consume nicotine. Weed is a delicate substance, and there are many key methods in improving your experience with vaping it. The cannabis vaporizer comes in many shapes and sizes, but ultimately you can split them into two different versions. These two types are: the dry herb vaporizer and the cartridge vaporizer. Essentially, they both work the same. The devices heat cannabis – be it dry or liquid – and turn it into an inhalable vapour. The user then uses the mouthpiece to enjoy. However, there are of course certain differences. 

Dry Herb Vape

The dry herb vaporizer allows for the insertion of dry cannabis buds. There are three main elements of this device: the mouthpiece, the chamber and the battery. The battery, as you can imagine, powers the vape. The mouthpiece, equally as obvious, allows for you to inhale the substances. But the main distinction comes in the form of the chamber. This is a small, mini-oven, where you can place the cannabis buds. These then get heated at a specific temperature and turned in vapour. You can also place cannabis concentrates in the chamber if you have a concentrate pad. To find out more about concentrates, click here

Cartridge Vape 

The other type is the cartridge vaporizer. This takes liquid or oil carts, rather than dry buds. This device has a battery element, which then attaches to the cartridge and the mouthpiece – these two usually come as one. The liquid will contain whichever cannabinoids people want to vape, but these are much easier to purchase in countries with lenient cannabis laws. For example, in the US, liquid THC is available in specific state dispensaries. However, it would be hard and expensive to pick these up in the UK. As you can imagine, using a cartridge vape is far less messy but – as i’ve said – sometimes it is easier to purchase dry herb. There are positives and negatives for both. 

Benefits of Cannabis Vapes

There is an evident move towards the use of cannabis vaporizers instead of smoking. Whilst e-cigs have more popularity, the numbers show a huge growth in popularity. Transparency Market Research writes:

“In terms of revenue, the global cannabis vaporizers market is expected to reach the value of US$ 26.52 Bn by 2031, expanding at a CAGR of 14.1% during the forecast period”

But why is this? Well, there are many major benefits of using a cannabis vape.  These include:

Health 

Vaporizers avoid the use of fire or smoke. In other words, the process of combustion never occurs, which stops any dangerous toxins or cancerous carcinogens from being released. Put it this way, vapes heat the product, whereas joints burn them. It’s this great difference in temperature that drastically changes the health risks. 

Ease

With a weed vape there is no need to roll or purchase any of those other accessories – roaches, papers or tobacco. You simply place the bud in the chamber, or the cartridge in the device, turn it on, and enjoy. No need to spend time rolling up a joint. 

Flavour & Potency 

By reducing the temperature, vapes unlock a level of potency and flavour from the cannabinoids and terpenes that joints do not. Burning cannabis actually takes a lot of these crucial elements away. 

5 Top Vaping Tips 

Using a cannabis vaporizer can be a confusing experience, but we’re going to be taking you through 5 key tips for how to enhance your time vaping. These devices are powerful, especially when you know how to harness them. 

Tip 1 – The Device

The first and perhaps most important tip is to ensure that you choose the right device for you. As we’ve mentioned, there are two main types of vaporizers and the one you choose will drastically affect your experience. If you’re living in a country where THC carts are hard and expensive to find, then maybe avoid purchasing this kind of device and go for a dry herb vape. But, alternatively, if you’re in Amsterdam or California, maybe consider going for a cartridge-taking vaporizer. But the choice doesn’t end here. Once you’ve decided which kind of device you want, you’ll then need to be even more specific. There are large powerful vapes and there are more discreet ones – which fits your lifestyle more? Do you feel comfortable pumping out big clouds of smoke? The Mighty suits this style. Or would you rather keep your vaping on the down low? If so, then the Pax 3 might fit the bill. Remember, cannabis vapes are not always cheap, so it’s important you do the right research and consideration before purchase. 

Tip 2 – The Temperature 

The benefit of a cannabis vaporizer is full temperature control, but this can make things a little more confusing. Each terpene and each cannabinoid has a specific boiling point, so knowing how hot to hear your substance is crucial in increasing the flavour and potency. These are tips, so let’s keep them simple and understandable. The hotter the temperature, the higher the potency, but the less flavour. The lower the temperature, the lower the potency, but the higher the flavour. You need to play around to see what works for you. 

Temperature: 180 degrees

Flavour – Delightful

Potency – Low

Temperature: 210 degrees

Flavour – Nice 

Potency – Decent

Temperature: 240 degrees

Flavour – Mediocre

Potency – Powerful 

Some vapes allow for more specific heat control, whilst others are less advanced. Nonetheless, don’t be afraid to experiment to see what you enjoy. Don’t get stuck in a temperature that you don’t really appreciate. 

Tip 3 – The Cleanliness 

This tip only really assists with the dry herb vaporizer. If you’re using this kind of device then make sure to clean it regularly. The oven can easily get sticky and full of old cannabis residue, which can completely ruin the flavour and experience. Using some isopropyl alcohol and cleaning equipment once every couple of weeks will completely renew the device and keep it fresh. Remember, it isn’t a joint. You don’t throw it away straight after. These contraptions are made to last, and they will, if you clean them. 

Tip 4 – The Substance

The next major tip is to do with the substances that you use. There really are endless possibilities, and it all depends on the device that you have. With a cartridge vape specifically you can purchase a great range of cannabis liquids, these include differing cannabinoids: THC, CBD, THCV, CBN and many other variations. A higher potency is definitely available in these sorts of products because they originate from nations that have legalised the substance and are exploring the plant’s potential. However, for some people, this will be too much. With a dry herb vape, you may well be limited to whatever your dealer has on offer. But this shouldn’t stop you from experimenting and figuring out what suits you. You may well be surprised how potency and flavoursome the substances become when you start using your new vape, so enjoy exploring various products. Don’t settle for a strain of cannabis that doesn’t make you feel the way you want to. It’s also important – if you’re using a dry herb vape – to ensure that you grind the bud to the perfect amount. Too little and it won’t heat evenly, but too much and powdery and it may slip into the cracks. Keep the bud dry, evenly ground, and it should be perfect. 

Tip 5 – The Inhalation

The final tip helps with inhalation. Again, it might sound obvious, but many people struggle with the mouthpiece when using cannabis vapes. More often than not, a vape user will inhale for a short amount of time but with a lot of power. This is not advised. People will find this really frustrating and not understand why a little amount of vapour is coming out of the device. But here’s the tip. Try vaping with less power, but for a longer period. This will allow the time for the air around the cannabis bud or liquid to heat up, and give you a more full and flavoursome inhalation experience. In other words: don’t rip it, sip it. 

Final Thoughts

Purchasing a cannabis vaporizer is like buying a new Xbox. There’s a world of fun to be had, but you may not have figured out what the best games to play are. Don’t be afraid to try new things and see if it improves your vaping experience. Why not have a go at these 5 top tips today? They may be simple, but they are definitely effective. Good luck. 

The post Top 5 Vaping Tips: How to Improve your Cannabis Vape Experience appeared first on Cannadelics.

My Story of Drugs in India: Goan Hash

This year I have been lucky enough to travel through Asia – including India and Nepal – writing about my experiences and searching for information around new substances. The views on drugs can drastically change from country to country, with laws, culture and availability affecting this. One nation may allow for cannabis legalization and psilocybin research, whilst another would deal with these substances extremely strictly.

The world is full of diverse opinions, and I came here to find out for myself. Research is one thing, but on-the-ground knowledge is another. In this article I will tell my story of landing in the south Indian district of Goa and experiencing some of the best hash in the world. 

The Journey 

Travelling has always been an important part of my life. Since a young age I have tried to see and do as much as I possibly can, with emphasis on going abroad. There is so much that a person can learn about themselves and other people from experiencing new cultures and new places. There’s food, there’s music, there’s the people, there’s the substances, there’s endless possibilities. It increases empathy and love for the rest of the world, as well as opening your mind to different ways of living. NYU writes:

“We are communal creatures that are all of the same species, yet our location determines societal actions based off cultured and governmental laws. We are so similar, yet our little worlds are so entirely different.”

That is why when a window of opportunity arose to travel through Nepal and India, I wasn’t going to turn it down. Myself and my partner had the money and the time to take our work with us and go away. The Journey started in Nepal in the old hippie trail location of Kathmandu – the capital. After days of sightseeing in an overwhelmingly bustling city, we headed to the small village of Bandipur. When I say small, I mean literally the size of one cowboy-looking street. It was absolutely beautiful. Then came Pokhara, a city stretching around a lake, where true bohemia has found itself. Here we took part in a meditation and yoga retreat, finding the high in transcendence instead of psychedelics. We were basically following in the footsteps of the Beatles before they wrote the White Album. Afterwards we went to the national park of Chitwan, a jungle where a plethora of wild animals run free in their natural habitat. This was where a guide – with only a stick in his hand to fend off tigers and elephants – took us around the huge park. Before we entered and boated across the crocodile-infested river, he offered us a joint. In a paranoid state already, I respectfully declined. I wanted to be completely alert. Fortunately but completely expectedly we survived, and I am still alive now to tell the tale. After this we went back to Kathmandu to have a few days rest, go to the Lord of Drinks (voted 52nd best club in the world by some unknown magazine), before heading on a flight to Delhi and Goa. It was here that the long awaited hash experience finally came to us. Here’s how it happened. 

Day 1

We’ve just landed in Delhi after a 2 hour flight from Kathmandu. It is safe to say that I still do despite flying as a mode of transport. Everytime I get on an aeroplane I have this ignorant hope that, somehow, it will be enjoyable… but it never is. After several pharmacies declined, eventually we were able to pick up some valium without a prescription in Kathmandu. This was extremely fortunate because it took the edge of anxiety off me for the duration of the flight. I don’t usually take any pills before flying, but with two flights in one day I just didn’t think I’d be able to handle it without some sort of substance. The truth is, valium takes away a lot of the anxious thoughts I have when I am on an aeroplane, but not many people advise taking them. Harbourside writes: 

“Diazepam is a sedative, which means it makes you sleepy and slows reaction times. If there is an emergency during the flight it may affect your ability to concentrate, follow instructions and react to the situation”

However, I am unsure how much anyone can actually do if a plane is going down. Surely it would be better to be sedated rather than to deal with that emotional rollercoaster. But who knows? According to a study by the European Transport Safety Council, plane crashes have a 90% survival rate. So perhaps being alert and quick in your reactions is important. 

Day 2

We landed in Goa late last night and went to sleep pretty early. We’re staying in North Goa – Anjuna – supposedly the last remaining evidence of the hippie paradise of the 60s and 70s. But our first experience of the place was far from liberal and free. In fact, we attempted to go swimming and within minutes a bunch of old, dodgy-looking Indian men decided to try and record my partner swimming. We’d heard about this potentially happening in the Lonely Planet guide but, to be honest, it was shocking to experience. I very much doubt this sort of thing was happening in Goa’s glory years. Plus, Anjuna beach is now full of commercial clubs and bars, banging out chart music that makes your ears want to die. We spoke to a local who said that the famous clubs of the North – including Curly’s and Hill Top – had closed down due to drug controversy. These were, according to him, the last remaining authentic places in North Goa. Having come all this way, to be told this was nothing short of depressing. Is there nothing left of the old Goa that my dad relentlessly bangs on about?

Day 4 

Today was interesting. We rented mopeds and went half an hour up the road to Mandrem beach. This spot, further north, is supposedly more liberal and full of potential substances. Essentially, it’s been 4 days in Goa now and we still haven’t had the chance to buy any hash. It’s unacceptable. Before visiting India you hear about how much bhang lassis and hash there is lying around, but somehow Goa has yet to prove that to us. When I visited Rajasthan 3 years ago It was very accessible, but maybe there’s something about Goa that makes it harder to find. But today we found a lead. We went to the long-stretched, stunning beach of Mandrem where the smell of cannabis was certainly in the air. We followed the scent and found a tourist smoking a joint and asked if we could purchase some. She declined, letting us have a toke each, and then said that Arambol was the spot to get it and she gave us the number of a dealer. However, she warned us that Goa isn’t what it used to be. Police are now far more strict on drug use, and will fine you harshly. The chief of police in Goa recently said:

“We are conducting raids on those parties where we suspect there is sale and consumption of drugs. Goa will not tolerate drugs,” 

We texted the dealer and after a long awaited reply, he responded, asking us to meet him at Arambol beach the next day. The wait for the hash goes on.

Day 5

I am writing this with a cheeky grin and sensation of warmth, this is because we finally found our Goan hash. In the evening we headed to Arambol beach, the dealer felt it would be less obvious in the dark. The stretch of water was lit up by hundreds of candle lit tables glowing up the beach. It was a very romantic image. Nonetheless, we couldn’t stop and have a coupley meal, we had a goal to achieve. We had to get the hash. We waited for maybe an hour, twiddling our thumbs, standing in the dark. We probably looked like dealers ourselves. Then, finally, a dude with a bucket hat and a tank top walked up to us. He shook my hand and passed me a block of hash – 5 grams. It cost 3000 rupees, which is around $30. Whenever someone passes you a drug with a handshake you can’t help but feel like you’re in a gangster movie. But nonetheless, I kept my cool. The dealer was actually called Adi and he was a very nice guy. We spoke for an hour or so about the culture of Goa and how it has changed. He told us that drug dealers are so afraid of getting caught that they are now seriously limiting their dealings, as well as seriously raising their prices. The days of cheap Goan drugs have gone. You could expect to pay 1500 rupees for an ecstasy pill and around 5000 rupees for a gram of meth – they don’t sell cocaine. Either way, we were happy to finally get our hands on some hash. 

The one last thing he mentioned as we got on our moped to go and enjoy our drugs in peace, was to be careful of police on the roads. He said that they are constantly stopping tourists, checking them for drugs, and then giving them a fine if they find anything. I didn’t think this would be relevant until, on our way back, we were faced with this exact situation. I was driving the bike and – out of nowhere – I saw a man in a police uniform up ahead. He waved at us to stop. At this moment I had to make a split decision. There was no legal requirement for me to stop. I did not need to stop. Who was this guy? I had my helmet on and my lights were working. What reason did he have to stop me? So, without thinking, I revved faster and drove straight past the police officer. He shouted but, other than that, nothing else happened. However, if I had stopped, I would have been seriously fined by the corrupt Goan authorities

When we arrived back at our hostel in Anjuna, we rolled up a few joints and headed to Anjuna beach. The hash crumbled deliciously in my hands and gave the most beautifully mellow high. A complete body relaxation, without any head anxiety. Finally, we had found our block of hash and luckily we had 5 grams of it too, which meant that we wouldn’t be running out any time soon. 

All I can say – today was a good day. But it doesn’t end here.

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Does CBD Modulate THC? No, Says Study

Does CBD modulate the effects of THC? No, says a new study. For years, both experience and research have indicated that CBD has a mitigating effect when consumed with THC. For example, budtenders suggest a THC-strain balanced with CBD for new consumers to avoid overwhelming them. When an experienced stoner has eaten an edible or taken some oil and feels too high – they use CBD to take the edge off. But a recent study suggests this is all placebo. […]

The post Does CBD Modulate THC? No, Says Study appeared first on Cannabis | Weed | Marijuana | News.

What Happens if you take these Drugs at the Qatar World Cup?

The world cup has begun, and instead of all the focus being on the incredible football and the tournament itself, it is still tarnished by the strict law differences in Qatar. Thousands of fans from all over the globe have headed to the Gulf country to support their teams, knowing full well that this may be unlike any tournament experienced before. Essentially all recreational substances are banned in Qatar, with very strict punishment for those who ignore the rules.

Even alcohol has harsh restrictions. With human rights violations and bans on same sex marriage a massive problem in Qatar, a limitation on drug use seems like a walk in the park. But, let’s see what would actually happen if you were caught taking specific substances within the world cup host nation. 

Qatar Host Nation

Qatar is a small gulf country – with a population lower than 3 million – that sits on the Arab peninsula. Made up of beaches and deserts, this middle eastern nation once just contained fishing villages for traders going between India and China to visit. After the first world war Britain ruled over Qatar, until they gained independence in 1971. Nowadays, the country is hugely wealthy due to their access to vital resources – these include oil and natural gas. In fact, Qatar has the third largest natural gas collection in the world. This is after Iran and Russia. To put this into perspective, 14% of the people living in Qatar are millionaires. Due to such a small population, the nation is considered one of the wealthiest in the world per person. It is believed that Qatar owns more property in the capital of England – London – than even the royal family. 

Nonetheless, with a lack of football culture, when the decision was made to allow Qatar to host the 2022 world cup, many were left confused. It seemed evident that the usually corrupt Fifa had yet again been swayed by the powerful money of a rich nation. The Guardian writes:

“In the years since, 16 of 22 voting exco members present in that hall have been implicated in or investigated over some form of alleged corruption or bad practice… In 2019 there were allegations Fifa had benefited from a $400m rights deal with Al Jazeera, Qatar’s state TV station, offered just 21 days before the bid decision, with an extra $100m top-up should Qatar succeed.”

Problems

But ultimately it would be the people, as usual, who would suffer. Qatar is a tiny nation and they were left with the task of spending 220 billion dollars to create the world cup infrastructure that was needed in a very short amount of time. How did they find the workforce to do this? Migrant workers coming from nations like India and Nepal were paid abominably low amounts of money in order to help build up this flawed tournament. It is believed that 6600 of these workers have already died due to unsafe conditions and overworking. But these aren’t the only problems that have arisen. Qatar’s laws on women’s rights and same sex marriage are something from the stone ages, with women being under guardianship law and any same sex sexual activity being deemed illegal. Human Dignity Trust writes:

“Human Rights Watch reported that security forces have been arbitrarily arresting LGBT people and subjecting them to ill-treatment in detention in the country… Preventive Security Department officers detained them in an underground prison in Al Dafneh, Doha, where they were verbally harassed and subjected to physical abuse, ranging from slapping, to kicking and punching until they bled.”

Needless to say, it seems that this world cup is surrounded by tarnishing controversy. In essence, it probably should not have happened this way and Fifa’s name will – hopefully – be deeply damaged. But alongside all this are other issues that are, perhaps less extreme, but have also caused disruption. Qatar’s strict substance laws are causing problems for those who are used to far more leniency. 


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Drug Laws in Qatar

According to the government website, Qatar has 0 tolerance for drug-related offences. This doesn’t seem to matter if you are a tourist or not. If you’re discovered using, trafficking, smuggling or possessing any substances from a long list, you are likely to face severe punishment. But how severe? We’re going to go through some of the most common recreational substances that people may want to take during the world cup, and see how risky it really is. Let’s go. 

Hard Recreational Drugs

When it comes to hard recreational drugs, Qatar seems to have a blanket decision on all of them. Whether it’s heroin, MDMA, ketamine, cocaine or whatever – the laws are extremely strict. If found in possession of any of these substances, fines could go up to $50,000. But if anyone is found trafficking hard drugs then the death penalty is also possible. Therefore, if there are any drug dealers out there who are considering Qatar an open market ready to be filled, we would advise to certainly reconsider.

There are no exceptions made for foreign nationals and the embassies of these nations have very little power to interject, especially when it comes to drug laws. If there’s one place you want to avoid taking harder substances, it is Qatar. There is evidence that the country is moving away from their 0-tolerance approach however, but nothing has yet officially changed. The Ministry of Development Planning and Statistics has said:

​​“Qatar has moved away from treating drug addiction merely as a criminal matter and is recognising it as a health and social challenge and a human rights issue. The right to health includes the right to obtain health services without fear of punishment. ”

The issue is, with a population made up of the wealthy, it is hard for those below to make the case for a change in drug laws. The culture is not yet there like it is with Europe, the US and other areas of the world. 

Prescription Medicine 

If you’re hoping that prescription medicine may be easier to get through border control than you are wrong. You will need a very exact letter from your doctor for any substances. This needs to include the exact amount that you are allowed, the reason why and any other information. The most they will allow you to bring in is for a 30 day period. Qatar has also banned the use of tranquillisers, antidepressants and certain sleeping pills. If you are hoping to carry these substances in your hand luggage, it is probably a good idea to speak to your embassy in Qatar just to ensure the specific rules.

Otherwise, you may face anything from confiscation, a fine, or even deportation. Over the last few weeks, Qatar customs officers have stopped around 2000 opiate pills from coming into the country. These passengers are awaiting their court cases. With prescription medicine, ensure you have all the backup documents you need. Don’t go bringing some random valium or Xanax without a note. 

Cannabis

Cannabis is treated as harshly as any other drug in Qatar. Despite hashish being known to be world-class in that section of the world, the cultivation, sale and possession of weed is completely illegal. In fact, there was a British tourist who was found with a cannabis grinder in his luggage in 2019 who faced years in a Qatari prison. He was able to leave the country but they attempted to extradite him back when he was visiting Greece. Fortunately, he won his case. This is an example of the kinds of harsh realities that can be faced if found with even just cannabis accessories. 

Alcohol

In Qatar, the legal age of alcohol consumption is 21. Of course for Muslims, who make up a large amount of the Qatari population, it is illegal. The ban on alcohol in Qatar is what has been getting all of the headlines. Many people are contemptuous of avoiding hard drugs throughout the world cup, but not drinking for them is not an option. You only have to watch a video on Youtube of hundreds of fans cheering and throwing their beers when their side scores a goal to realise how integral drinking culture is when it comes to major tournaments. That said, any alcohol-related violence or serious disturbance should not be permitted anywhere in the world.

At the world cup, alcohol is not easy to access. It is banned in stadiums and is completely illegal to drink in public areas. There are designated hotels and spots where alcohol is allowed, but the prices are extortionate. Half a litre of beer costs 50 Qatari riyals, which is equal to around 12 dollars. The whole affair has made alcohol quite appealing to a lot of supporters. However, it has also meant that many fans have attempted to smuggle alcohol into stadiums – with one individual turning a pair of binoculars into a discreet booze bottle. For anyone found drinking in a public place, they could face a 6 month prison sentence or a fine of up to $700.

Vapes & Cigarettes

Oddly enough, vapes are another banned substance or device in Qatar. If you’re someone who enjoys an e-cig then make sure you don’t bring it to the world cup. Cigarettes are very much legal to buy in the country, with 25% of Qatari men smoking, but there is a strict vape ban. This has been the case since 2014. If you’re found with a vape you can face fines of up to $2,700 or a prison sentence up to 3 months. Only around 0.6% of women smoke in Qatar, which is likely to do with their guardianship laws. These essentially do not allow women to marry, study abroad or find a job without permission from their male guardian. 

Conclusion 

As you can see, the Qatar world cup is surrounded with controversy. The human rights violations alone are enough of a reason to avoid visiting. Many female footballers have boycotted the tournament altogether in response to the horrific women’s rights there. Even the ‘OneLove’ armband – supporting LGBT rights – has been banned by Fifa. Many players have resisted wearing it in fear of sanctions. Ultimately, the Qatar world cup should probably not have gone ahead. Nonetheless, if you still want to enjoy the tournament and support your team, then definitely be careful when it comes to substance use. Qatar have some of the strictest drug laws in the world.

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Fifa World Cup 2022: Anti-doping Laws Explained

The next World Cup is soon upon us. The international football tournament that just keeps giving. There will be speed, drama and unbelievable skill. The greatest footballers on the planet will be all competing for the top prize. However, there has been a great deal of controversy surrounding this world cup, primarily due to the host nation – Qatar – and its backward views on human rights.

With strict laws, fans travelling to cheer on their teams will need to be extremely careful – even a drop of alcohol in an unprohibited place could end with them behind bars. But the Qatar government is not the only one with rigid rules on substance use, Fifa and its anti-doping laws are also ruthless. Any player found with specific drugs in their body could face permanent exclusion from the sport. But how does it all work? We’re going to take a look. Let’s go. 

Qatar World Cup 2022

The world cup is supposed to be the most awaited and longed for football event on offer, but this year’s seems tarnished by controversy and malpractice. It would be great if a football tournament could happen and the focus be solely on the sport itself, but yet again Fifa have proved that they’re objectives sit firmly in the money. Qatar, a small Gulf country with a population of around 2 million, has been heavily criticized for how they have dealt with world cup preparations.

6500 migrants have reportedly died in the speedy creation of stadiums, hotels and training facilities. Not only that, but their overall view on human rights – including LGBTQ+ people and women – is backward to say the least. It isn’t that other nations don’t have the same views, because of course they do, but it’s that these countries should then not be chosen to host a world cup. It’s as simple as that. Amnesty highlights the problematic laws in Qatar:

“Under the guardianship system, women remained tied to their male guardian, usually their father, brother, grandfather or uncle, or for married women, to their husband. Women continued to need their guardian’s permission for key life decisions… (AND) “Sodomy” or same-sex sexual conduct between men remained an offence under the Penal Code, punishable by up to seven years’ imprisonment.”

Nonetheless, the world cup is happening and – according to Fifa – we’re all supposed to ‘focus on football’. A very easy thing for a business monopoly with no feelings or threats to advise. But with Qatar having their own strict laws on illegal substances, we thought it would be interesting to see the kinds of rules that Fifa have themselves. Let’s take a look at their anti-doping strategy. 

What is Doping?

Football, like any sport, is a highly competitive one. It is believed that 1% of kids that play football at school will join or be scouted by a professional team and – of those select few – around 1% again will actually make it professionally. In essence, it is near to impossible to become a football player. Plus, even those that make it are constantly under threat of losing their place in the team. It’s one thing to become a professional footballer, and it’s another thing to maintain yourself as one. Being a sportsman takes incredible passion, work ethic and natural ability. You have to be at the highest level possible. That is why, historically, many professionals have turned to doping for assistance. Science writes:

“Its origins can be traced as far back as the ancient Olympics, where competitors would drink ‘magic’ potions or eat special foods to gain an edge over their rivals. The desire to win, motivated by economic incentives… or social pressures… ensures there is a constant market for drugs that will improve performance.”

Doping is defined as using banned substances in order to boost your performance as an athlete. Performance enhancing drugs can give sports people that extra edge on their competitors. Here are a few examples of the kinds of banned substances that athletes have taken in the past: 


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Stimulants

Stimulants speed up the heart rate and boost energy. They fill the athlete with alertness, and make them more aggressive. These include: cocaine, ritalin and amphetamines. Nicotine and caffeine are also part of the stimulant drug family but these are not illegal. 

Steroids

Anabolic Steroids can help athletes boost their muscle growth. By raising testosterone in the blood, the muscles are able to build faster and grow larger. Weight lifters and swimmers have been known to use these substances in the past. 

Hormones

The Human Growth Hormone is a naturally-occuring substance in the body. It helps the growth of physical development. If an excess is taken, the drug can increase muscle, boost energy, and breakdown fat quicker. Lance Armstrong, the famous cyclist, admitted to doping these substances. 

EPO 

EPO – or erythropoietin – was another substance that Lance Armstong was known to take at Tour De France. EPO is produced by the kidneys but, again, can be taken in excess. The substance stimulates the production of red blood cells, which increases the amount of oxygen that is carried around the body. In essence, the entire body can work quicker and more effectively. 

Doping in Football

Interestingly, when it comes to football, there have been less cases of doping. Especially 

when compared to athletics and cycling. However, there is just as much of a reason to make use of performance enhancing drugs. If used, it would have the same benefits: including increased energy, alertness and muscle mass. According to Fifa, over 33,000 doping tests were done in 2016, with 0.29% testing positive. This can be compared to 9 out of 5000 athletes testing positive in the 2012 olympic games. That is around 0.80%. There seems to be a sly belief that footballers are somehow allowed or able to hide it.

fifa anti-doping laws

Arsene Wenger, the ex-Arsenal manager, came out and said that his team had played against many other sides using performance enhancing drugs. However, that’s not to say that doping hasn’t occurred. In fact, one of the world’s greatest – Diego Maradona – was excluded from the American 1994 world cup for using ephedrine. He was consequently banned from the US and has been unable to go back since. But, since this incident, there hasn’t really been as high a profile case. Some people believe that doping simply is not an issue in football, whilst others claim that Fifa are not doing enough to look into it. 

Fifa Anti-Doping Laws

When it comes to doping laws, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA) is the national rulebook that the majority of the world abides by. Fifa adopted the World Anti-Doping Code, but was one of the last federations to do so. Before this, they preferred to deal with each incident on a case by case basis. With many tournaments happening internationally, it is pivotal that there is a consensus approach. Fifa writes:

“Whether it is fear of failure, bad advice by a coach or doctor, a need to speed up recovery, or simple ignorance, the results of doping in football are the same: players can not only lose their professional career and damage their personal reputation, they can also harm their physical and mental health for the rest of their lives.”

According to Fifa, the use of any banned WADA substance will lead to a ban. These substances are listed on their website. The length of this ban will depend on the intention behind it. 

1 year or less – No significant fault or negligence 

2 years – Taking the substance without intent to cheat

4 years – Intent to cheat

Life Sport Ban – Multiple occasions or multiple substances

It’s important to note that this includes coaches and staff, as well as the players. The aim is to maintain that any person involved in or around the football is checked. These tests – by urine or blood – can occur anytime and frequently. Fifa have the right to do this. If a footballer does test positive, then It is very hard to prove that they were not aiming to cheat, as the anti-doping laws are set in stone and are assumed to be known by everyone. 

Conclusion

Doping in football seems to be far less common than many other sports. However, seeing as Fifa have been corrupt enough to allow a nation like Qatar to host the 2022 world cup, it wouldn’t be too far-fetched to imagine that they could also be hiding the doping of their athletes. But perhaps that’s too conspiratorial? But what do you think?

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How to Make Quick and Easy Cannabis Tea

Cannabis can be consumed in a variety of ways, and sometimes vaping or smoking just isn’t the ideal method of choice. Perhaps you don’t want that harsh feeling on your throat or quick high. Sometimes a warm beverage is actually what you need. Why not make a quick and easy cannabis tea?

As the days get colder and winter comes, there is nothing like combining the two in one epic drink to really warm yourself up. There are many benefits to cannabis tea, and with this quick and easy recipe, you can enjoy them all yourself. So, if you’re feeling adventurous today, why not give it a go? 

Benefits of Cannabis Tea

Why bother making cannabis tea? Many weed-lovers may not understand the point in spending a little longer preparing a hot THC beverage, when they can just roll a joint or pack up their vape for a hit. The truth is, there are many benefits of making cannabis tea and the time it takes – which isn’t that much at all in the grand scheme of things – can be extremely worth it.

Long-lasting

Like with any edible, the high can take longer to come – perhaps up to 1 hour or a little longer. However, once it comes, this high will last a lot longer than the average joint or vape. You will likely be comfortably stoned for up to 4-6 hours. This is perfect if you’re about to embark on a day that you’d like to be high for. You won’t need a top up for a while. Cannabis tea is long-lasting. 

No Smell

Another huge benefit of cannabis tea is its discretion. Unlike a joint, you will not be left with your body and clothes stinking of smoke and cannabis. You are simply drinking a hot beverage, no undesired scents will linger. This is a huge positive if you’re going somewhere that requires you to be discreet with your weed use. But even if that is not the case, it’s always nice to avoid the smell of smoke. 

Flavour

The flavour of cannabis tea is up to you. You can choose the tea bag of your choice, as well as adding any additional ingredients too, to ensure your tea is the tastiest it can be. There’s no unwanted smoke flavour. In addition, the terpene flavours of your cannabis strain will be far more recognisable in the tea, due to its boiling point. You may be surprised to taste that your lemon haze actually has scents of lemon. 

Health 

The most obvious benefit of cannabis tea is its benefits on your health. Inhaling cannabis is by far the most dangerous method of consumption. Smoking triggers the process of combustion, which causes dangerous toxins and cancerous carcinogens to enter the body. This damages the lungs and major organs. On the flip side, cannabis tea does not do this. It allows the substance to enter the body without damaging the lungs. If you suffer from anxiety or specific mental health issues, the slow release of weed tea could be the perfect remedy

Decarboxylation

Whenever you’re making cannabis edibles or cannabis drinks, it’s important to remember the process of decarboxylation. There are a large number of people who have eaten a dry cannabis bud raw and wondered why that has not got them stoned. Well, the answer is, decarboxylation. Weed needs to be heated in order for its effects to be unlocked. This is how the THCA becomes the THC. By heating the cannabis, the psychoactive components are unlocked. This happens when it’s smoked, vaped, cooked or boiled. Before any edible is made, the cannabis will be heated. Without this, no high. 

Recipe

This recipe will make around 3-4 cups of tea. 1 should be the perfect amount per person. Therefore, it’s ideal for sharing with friends or, if you’re in for a really big one, a long day in stoned-city. Before you put the tea bag of your choice in, the water will taste slightly like cannabis. This is normal and unavoidable. Therefore, find the right tea bag that balances the flavours out. Many go for breakfast tea, whereas others may go for a lemon and ginger. Experiment to see what you prefer. It might even be worth pouring out 4 teas with varying bags to see which tickles your fancy. 

What You Need

Feel free to mess around with amounts if you want to make more.

  • 1 gram of cannabis 
  • 1 tablespoon of butter
  • 1 tea bag
  • 4 cups of water 
  • Potential additions: honey, sugar, cinnamon, milk, berries or basically anything you want. 

How To Make

Step 1 – Hype Yourself Up 

First things first, you’re about to make some awesome cannabis tea so get ready. Put some music on, or a podcast, or silence, basically whatever you need to have a great time. Then make sure you have all of your ingredients in front of you and ready to go. Let’s do this. 


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Step 2 – Cannabis Separation

Get yourself a decent sized pan or pot – something that you’d usually boil pasta or rice in should be fine. Then you’re going to pour 4 tea cups of water into the pan and begin the boiling process. Once the water starts bubbling, you can add your butter. Wait until this dissolves and then you can add your cannabis. Don’t feel too stressed about grinding the bud, although the more even the pieces are the quicker and easier it will decarboxylate. Once the weed is in, turn down the heat to a simmer and leave for as long as you can wait. 15 minutes will do, but some prefer to give it more time as it will enhance the flavours from the terpenes and the potency of the cannabinoids. 

Step 3 – It’s Straining Time

Now if you look into your boiling mixture, you will see quite a bit of floating cannabis pieces. Not to worry, we’re about to get rid of these. When you’ve turned off the heat, you can grab a tea pot. Using a plate carefully placed on the top of the pan, slowly pour the water into the teapot, ensuring that the cannabis pieces do not slide past. This is again another reason why you don’t want to grind your cannabis too thin at the beginning. You can of course use a pasta strainer instead of a plate, but this may allow some cannabis to go through undetected. It’s really up to you and how much you care about loose buds in your beverage. You should now have a full batch of cannabis tea in a teapot. 

Step 4 – Teabag Time

This part is very much up to you. For ease, you can place your teabag of choice in the pot and wait for 5 minutes for it to add flavour. Alternatively, you can pour out four separate mugs of tea and add whichever tea bag everyone wants and do the same. It all depends on which tea bag or tea bags you prefer. This would also be a prime moment to add any additional accessories that you may want. Honey? Mint? Lemon? Sugar? Now’s your chance to really make this cannabis tea the best darn thing you’ve ever tasted. Remember, there will be a natural hint of cannabis within it, so ensure to add additions that go well with this innate flavouring. Once the tea bag has worked its magic, you can take it out and serve. 

Step 5 – Enjoy

Now you should have a mug of beautiful and warm cannabis tea in your hands. The next step is simple: enjoy it. Like with any edible, it can take around 1 hour to feel its effects so be patient. Going out of your way to make cannabis tea is an art form, and it deserves the time to be properly appreciated. There are many ways of doing this. You can go for a little stroll outside and idle at the wonderful world of nature. You can sit somewhere comfortable and ooze in cosiness. You can watch something funny and laugh your head off. Whatever you decide to do, make sure to leave the time to smile. Well done. 

Conclusion

If you’re new to the world of cannabis tea then definitely give it a go. It might take a little longer than rolling a joint, but the overall benefits are something you may never have experienced. Cannabis can be enjoyed in a variety of ways – why not try a new method?

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Diego Maradona: A Magician and an Addict

There are few football players in the world that have lived, and that will ever live, who will be able to do what Diego Maradona could do on the pitch. In his prime, he was nothing short of a magician. Whilst the Hand of God may have broken English hearts it was still, as it says, the hand of someone beyond this world. Maradona will forever be considered one of the best football players ever, and his career was full of incredible accolades.

However, with every up comes an equally impressive down. His life was not always full of positives and – during the American World Cup in 1994 – he was convicted for serious doping charges. In addition, during his spell at Napoli, Diego Maradona was also known to suffer from drug addiction and be involved with the Italian Mafia. In summary, Maradona’s career was full of exciting twists and turns. But how did the Mozart of football end up having issues with substance abuse? Let’s find out. 

Maradona 

With the Qatar world cup underway, one’s mind can’t help but wonder back to past tournaments and past magical footballers. A handful of name’s come to mind: Pele, Zidane, Ronaldo, Messi and – of course – Diego Maradona. These players all have one thing in common – they were above the rest. They were, simply put, unbelievable. However, in November of 2020, Maradona sadly passed away from a heart attack at the age of 60. 2 years on, let’s take a look at how he graced the game, whilst also being surrounded by controversy.

Career & Early Life

Maradonna was born on October 30th, 1960, in Buenos Aires, Argentina. He was brought up in a poor area of the country, with little financial support. However, at the age of 14 he signed with Argentinos Juniors. Then, at 16, he made his debut for the national team – making him the youngest player to ever do so. Even at a young age, it was evident that Diego had a rare ability to control the ball, run fast and score goals. He was small – only 1.65m – but he made up for it with a low centre of gravity and silky skills. After leading the national team to a Junior World Cup championship in 1979 – at the age of 19 – he then moved to Boca Juniors.

With Maradona, they instantly won the championship. Then, of course, in 1982 he was rightfully bought by the legends of Barcelona. He won the Spanish Cup with them in 1983. However, it was at this point that his career made an unpredictable turn. In 1984, he joined bottom of the Serie A team Napoli. What made him leave the Spanish giants and sign for the poor and downtrodden Italian side? The season before, Napoli were only 1 point away from relegation. Football Espana writes:

“Josep Lluis Nunez, the former Barcelona president, was the man who sold Diego Maradona to Napoli… in an old interview, (he) revealed that it was a combination of Maradona not living up to the image he believed Barcelona players should project, a drug issue and the promise of more money that made him sell the Argentine.”

Since the incredible Maradona documentary was released in 2019, a lot of home truths have come out. Diego, himself, admitted to taking cocaine at the age of 24 whilst playing at Barcelona. He has described it as the biggest mistake of his life. Nonetheless, in 1984, despite the odds, Maradona – the king of football – joined the bottom of the Italian league side Napoli. Who would have thought it? 

Napoli & Argentina 

To put this into perspective, Maradona joining Napoli is the equivalent of Lionel Messi or Cristiano Ronaldo joining Burnley. Essentially, it is unheard of in football. Not only was Napoli a lower than average team in Italy, they were also very poor. They needed a questionable loan in order to purchase him. But, as you can imagine, when he arrived, he was the hero of the city. With Maradona in the team, Napoli somehow managed to win the league title in 1987 and 1990, as well as the cup in 1987.


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On the surface, Maradona was doing the impossible both for Napoli and Argentina. For his national team, he won the World Cup in 1986, scoring two of the most memorable goals ever. One was a silky dribble past the entire England team and, the other, was the famous ‘hand of god’. To put it simply, he scored with his hand and the referee didn’t notice. Oh well, he’s a legend. English legend, Gary Linekar, said:

“When Diego scored that second goal against us, I felt like applauding. I’d never felt like that before, but it’s true… and not just because it was such an important game. It was impossible to score such a beautiful goal… He’s the greatest player of all time, by a long way. A genuine phenomenon.”

However, whilst Diego Maradona was breaking records and achieving unbelievable success, his substance abuse was about to catch up with him. 

Drug Use

Maradona’s cocaine habit started in Barcelona but it worsened in Napoli. The Italian mafia would help him find the substance, it was their way of controlling him. In 1991, he was banned from football for 15 months after testing positive for cocaine. This was a serious blow to his career. Any legendary football player wants to be on the pitch as much as possible so they can continue to break records and score goals.

He was then arrested again in Argentina for having half a kilo of coke on him later in the same year. This extended his ban. In response, Maradona left the country and did not return, joining Sevilla instead. He supposedly still owns over 30 million pounds in unpaid taxes, according to Italian authorities. However, he declined and never paid it.

Nonetheless, Maradona’s career wasn’t over. In 1994 he joined Argentina in the 1994 World Cup. He played well, but his tournament was over early due to failing another drug test. He tested positive for ephedrine, a performance enhancing drug. Ephedrine is performance-enhancer as it energises the user, stimulating the central nervous system. It improves endurance, alertness, reaction time and strength. FIFA consequently banned him for 15 months, which all but ended his international career. He was certainly made an example of. With his Napoli career over, as well as an International one, this was the end for him. He continued playing for a few more years and then retired in 1997. He has himself admitted to feeling completely lost after receiving such harsh bans – there was nothing left for him to do but turn to more drugs. 

In his later life, he was in and out of addiction. He suffered an overdose in 2000 and had a drug-related heart attack in 2005. He never really recovered from his drug abuse and he sadly died from another cardiac arrest in 2020. Supposedly, after millions being made during his career, he was left with only £75,000 in his bank account. The god of football was dead. 

Final Thoughts

Maradona played 490 games during his career, scoring 259 goals. He is considered one of the best footballers ever and his controversial life off the pitch will never change that. The man was a magician, and that will always remain fact. However, he did suffer from drug abuse. Diego was allowed to reach god-status, and be forgotten up in the clouds. Perhaps if he’d been a footballer today he would have been better looked after. The diet and lifestyle of footballers are strictly controlled in modern football.

Many have wondered how great Diego could have been had he never started taking the addictive substance of cocaine. Would he have done even greater things? The truth is, Maradona is another example of fame grasping a young person – with its fake promises of happiness – and introducing them to a world of wealth and loneliness. Perhaps he never had a chance. But still, all in all, we are incredibly lucky that the god of football graced the pitch. Drugs or no drugs, Diego Maradona was a magician with skills that we probably will never see again. 

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What Makes the Best CBD Gummies?

Sometimes when you’re searching for the best product on the market it can be especially difficult. Everyone is paying for promotion or using their networking to boost themselves to the top of the list. Where can you find the genuine best CBD gummies? Well, we’ve researched and collated the ideal list of cannabis sweets that are genuinely trialed and tested to be of great quality.

CBD is now legal in most of the world and, with this, transparency should come. We’re going to take you through all of the important information surrounding CBD and, of course, our top CBD gummy products. Let’s go. 

What is CBD?

Whilst CBD is becoming a household name these days, with many nations legalizing the cannabinoid, there are still many who are unaware of what it actually is and what it does. There are 100 cannabinoids within the cannabis plant – these are responsible for the effects that it has. CBD and THC are two of the most prominent. THC is psychoactive, which means that it has mind-altering effects, whereas CBD is not. Cannabis with high percentages of THC are used for recreational purposes, which is why CBD is probably more likely to be legal in a country than its psychoactive cousin. The truth is, CBD is legal in most of the world, whereas THC is still fighting to be accepted. This does not mean, however, that CBD has no effects.

Benefits of CBD

CBD has many benefits on the user. The cannabinoid enters the body when consumed and reacts with the receptors in the central nervous system. It has a calming effect, and this has many positives for the body and the mind. CBD has proven to help with a variety of issues:

  • Anxiety
  • PTSD
  • Sleep deprivation 
  • Psychosis
  • Alzheimers 
  • Parkinson’s 
  • Tourette’s 
  • Acne 
  • Cancer-related symptoms 
  • Chronic pain 
  • Inflammation 

What are CBD Gummies?

There are many methods of consuming cannabis, and each of these has its own individual benefits. Some people prefer to smoke it, which will give a quicker high but also has its health risks. Combustion – when a joint is lit – triggers dangerous toxins and cancerous carcinogens to enter the body.

Alternatively, vaping CBD is now a very common method. As it’s vapor and not smoke, this is a healthier alternative of inhalation. However, when cannabis passes through the lungs it enters the body very quickly, this means that the high comes faster but the end of the effects do the same. Therefore, some prefer to use edibles as a way to have a more endured experience.


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This is where gummies come in. CBD gummies are sweets that are infused with the cannabinoid, and enter through the digestive system. Whilst it may take 30-60 minutes to kick in, the effects will last throughout the day. In contrast, smoking effects can kick in after 2 minutes but only last an hour or so. Gummies are a tasty and discreet way of consuming your CBD. They come in a vast range of flavors, colors, shapes and potency.  

Benefits of Gummies

CBD gummies have all the same benefits as any form of CBD. However, the benefits of digesting your CBD in the form of gummies are vast:

  • Tasty
  • Varied options
  • Endured effects
  • Discreet 
  • Healthier than smoking
  • Legal (CBD flowers can be illegal in some countries, such as the UK)
  • Easy to dose correctly

Gummies vs Flowers

Whilst some countries have legalized all types of cannabis buds, others have not. This means that even though CBD may be legal in a nation, they still may not allow it in its flower form. This is the case in the UK and much of Europe. Therefore, in the majority of the world, CBD edibles are actually the easiest way to consume the cannabinoid. Plus, you avoid smoking buds, which can vastly damage your health when done. Whilst it may take longer to experience the high, the health benefits make it worth it. 

Gummies vs Oil 

CBD oil has many of the same benefits as CBD gummies. It doesn’t require combustion and is thus healthier than smoking. Oil, like edibles, can be digested in food or drinks and thus take the same amount of time. All you need to do is drop some cannabis oil in a meal or in a beverage and away you go. However, there’s also another way of consuming it.

If you place some CBD oil directly on the tongue, and leave it for 30 seconds, it will enter the blood this way and speed up the process of absorption. That means that oil offers two methods of consumption. Nonetheless, gummies do not require any extra work. You do not need to pour anything into anything else, you can simply eat a sweet, wait for the effects, and enjoy your day. It is by far the easiest method of consuming your CBD. 

How Many CBD Gummies to Take Per Day?

There is no universal dosage when it comes to consuming CBD gummies. It will depend on the amount of the cannabinoid within each individual sweet, as well as your own needs. People’s bodies can react differently. Some professionals may advise that 1-5 gummies per day is a decent amount. Although it could be slightly more. Make sure to check with a doctor or the recommended dosage on the box. 

Do CBD Gummies Contain THC?

THC and CBD are completely different cannabinoids within the cannabis plant and, with modern research, you don’t necessarily need one when consuming the other. Many countries around the world have a 0.3% THC cap, meaning that any more potency will deem the product illegal. Therefore, none of these products have a THC dosage higher than that. CBD, on the other hand, as we’ve mentioned, is legal in the majority of the world. However, some of these items do still include some Delta 9 THC, as the combination of cannabinoids can boost the overall effects. 

The Best CBD Gummies

Here at Cannadelics, we are always on the lookout for the best products and brands. Over years we have collated some of the greatest cannabis-related items. But now we bring you our recommended CBD gummies. This list contains some cannabinoid combination options and a variety of gorgeous flavors and potencies – see what works best for you. 

Nighttime CBD Gummies 

Brand: Koi CBD
Price: $44.99

Koi CBD night time gummies are the perfect blend of cannabinoids. This product will give you the absolute sleepy chill you’ve been looking for and is perfect for sleep deprivation. Each tub comes with 30 gummies, with each individual sweet containing: 25mg of CBD, 10mg of CBN and 5mg of Delta 9. CBN is known by many as the sleep cannabinoid, which is why its addition in this product is the perfect asset to your night routine. But not only that, these gummies will calm your mind and relax your body. There are two optional flavors: black cherry or orange cream. Both are as flavorsome as the other. If you want to sleep deeply, these gummies could be your missing ingredient. 


Mixed Berry Gummies

Brand: CBDfx
Price: $49.99

These delicious CBDfx mixed berry gummies are as tasty as they are effective. If you’re looking for a dose of CBD that is perfect for any time of the day, then these may be ideal for you. The entire jar contains around 1500mg of CBD, with each sweet having 25mg of the cannabinoid. They are vegan, non-GMO and broad spectrum. What does this mean? Well, broad spectrum means that the product contains other cannabinoids as well as CBD, which delivers a more potent experience. However, don’t be afraid, these gummies do not contain any THC. Due to the potency of the sweets, it is recommended that you stick to 2 gummies per serving (which is 50mg). This is the perfect product to quench your daily CBD needs. 


Pinnacle CBD Gummies

Brand: Pinnacle Hemp
Price: $15.99 – $49.99

Pinnacle Hemp has a wide variety of CBD products and exists as proof of the plethora of benefits that the cannabinoid can have. Their items are full of class and are of a high standard – they even sell dog treats! Their CBD gummies are just as impressive. There are three pots to choose from, with each containing a different amount of CBD: 200mg = 20 gummies, 500mg = 50 gummies and 1000mg = 100 gummies. Each sweet has 10mg of CBD. This means you can take at least 2-3 per serving. Yet again, Pinnacle Hemp are benefiting from the ‘entourage effect’, which means that they are using a combined variety of cannabinoids to boost the overall effects. These include CBN and CBG. The best part of this product is that there are an assortment of flavors, so you won’t get bored. Use these throughout the day and enjoy your CBD. 


CBD & Delta 9 Gummies

Brand: TreHouse
Price: $31.99

These delicious TreHouse gummies will make your mouth water. The flavour of the sweets are a yummy combination of peach and pear, which means you can have your dosage of CBD and Delta 9 in the most scrumptious way possible. Each bottle contains 400mg of the combined cannabinoids, with 20mg per gummy. This means that there is 10mg of CBD and 10mg of Delta 9 in each sweet. You are likely to feel relieved, productive, energised and mellow. The combination of the cannabinoids boost the effects of both, allowing the user to experience the true potency. In addition, Delta 9 products containing less than 0.3% THC are technically a legal substance – this makes this item legal in many nations. Legal and tasty, what’s not to like? 


CBD & Delta 9 Peach Rings

Brand: Wild Orchard Hemp
Price: $7.99 – $34.99

Wild Orchard Hemp is another exciting brand that is constantly bringing innovative and tasty CBD products to the market. These sweets are no different. If you’re someone who prefers to have treats with a little more personality, then these juicy and sugary peach-flavored rings will be right up your street. The item comes in three different sizes: 2 packs (60mg), 8 packs (240mg) and 20 packs (600mg). Each individual peach ring contains 30mg of cannabinoids – half Delta 9 THC, half CBD. Also, each packet contains 8 delicious sweets. Again, the combination of Delta 9 and CBD gives the perfect balance of productivity and chill. There is also less than 0.3% THC, again making these sweets legal in many states and countries. With 30mg per ring, you probably won’t need to take 1 or 2 per serving for you to feel the full incredible effects. 


Why Trust Us?

Here at Cannadelics, we have been working tirelessly over the years to trial and test some of the best cannabis products on the market. In a saturated market, our aim is to brush past the useless and find the useful. Our mission is to lead the way in providing information that is accurate, effective and reliable. The benefits of CBD gummies can be life changing, if only people know where to get the right products. Well, hopefully you have come a little closer to that today. Let us know which products from our suggestions you prefer.

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My Experience: Taking Magic Mushrooms in Goa

If there’s one place on Earth where magic mushrooms are meant to be consumed it is the sun-kissed, stretched out beaches of Goa. With palm trees hanging over you like an omnibenevolent presence, the sea glinting for what seems like forever, the sky bluer than you’ve ever seen and, of course, the sound of light trance music comfortably guiding you into a meditative state – is there anywhere better to enjoy a psychedelic trip?

Whilst the south Indian state of Goa had its hallucinogenic hayday in the 60s and 70s, this does not mean that the place has completely lost its charm and soul. Drugs are not as easy to find as they were back then and the party scene has definitely become more commercialized, but when I was offered magic mushrooms by a green-haired lady who looked like a character from a Studio Ghibli movie, I knew I couldn’t let the opportunity pass. Maybe this was the chance to experience what the hippie paradise used to be like. This is the story of how I took magic mushrooms in Goa. 

Goa

Goa is one of the 25 districts that exists within the incredibly diverse and huge nation of India. It is the 7th largest country in the world, with the second biggest population. Whilst most know India for its temples, mountains, deserts and spiritual getaways, there is also another reality. This reality is, in essence, Goa. A coastal district in the south of the country, which still has the remnants of its Portuguese colonial past.

This place has some of the best food in the entirety of India, has beaches that stretch for miles and, significantly, had a large part to play in the 60s hippie trail. This was a gigantic journey around the globe that many westerners took in the 1960s – mostly with only a VW van, some light luggage and some great friends. It was a right of passage, a chance to see the world after generations of conflict. The trip for many started in London, went through Europe, into the Middle East and deep into Asia.


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This was, for many, where it ended; others boated over to Australia. Goa was like the promised land, the light at the end of the road. Those who’d managed to get that far would sleep in beach shacks, live in peace and enjoy all types of mind-altering substances. Duncan Cambell writes about his experiences in the Guardian:

“It was possible to live for months on a few quid. A bed in a shared bedroom could be secured for six rupees a night. “Imagine no possessions” was a creed as well as a line in a John Lennon song. Fresh fish, coconut rice. Paperback copies of Hermann Hesse and Rabindranath Tagore, William Burroughs and the Bhagavad Gita were swapped… Disconnection from the west was complete”

The question people seem to ask when they wander around Goa now is: is this still a paradise or is it a paradise lost? In other words, has its time passed? It is often irritating being told by older generations how much better life was in their day. An image of an old man, sitting in his armchair, reading a copy of Nietzsche comes to mind, saying: “back in my day, no one sat around looking at their screens, they would read books and explore the world”. Well maybe Goa was better in the 60s, but at least we have better healthcare, eh? 

Goa now still has its long beaches and palm trees, but they are no longer empty. The majority of the beaches in the North and South are full of resorts and thousands of tourists, many of them more interested in taking the perfect Instagram photo rather than learning about the culture. However, not all hope is lost. The soul of a place cannot be eradicated, but it can be led astray. One writer exemplifies this perfect: 

“While Goa today may not exude the carefree nature of the early 1970s when it was a hub for hedonistic Hippies from around the world, much of the culture that sprung the movement still remains in pockets.”

That is why when I was offered the chance to take magic mushrooms on a Goan beach I simply could not say no. It would be a disrespect to my ancestors. 

Magic Mushrooms in Goa

The drug scene in Goa is certainly different in 2022 from what it was back in the ‘glory years’. Many substances were easily available in the 70s due to a lack of police authority – hashish, LSD and basically anything else. In fact, it wasn’t until the mid 1970s that the majority of recreational drugs were deemed illegal by the government, before that they were accepted. Now, of course, all common drugs are banned and dealt with harshly. You may have to bribe a police officer 100,000 rupees if caught or be put in prison. Many of Goa’s best and most beloved clubs – including Curly’s and Hill Top – have recently been closed down due to drug controversy. Goan authorities are on a dogged mission to end the reputation of the beach district as a substance tourist spot. 

However, whilst I was in Goa it was still possible to find drugs. In the north beach of Arambol it was possible to slyly find hashish or some dodgy meth that was being disguised as cocaine. However, it wasn’t what I had imagined. I dreamt of a chilled shack that sold shroom shakes and hash, but instead I found myself in a dark alleyway and could feel the fear in the dealer’s eyes; being caught by the police being a terrible threat. The India Times writes:

“In the last seven months, Goa police has seized around 100kg of narcotic substances worth over Rs 2.5 croce. Goa police have not only arrested Goans in the trade but also people from outside the state and foreigners… Ganja, caracas, LSD, MDMA, ecstasy tablets and powder, cocaine, hashish oil, heroin and cannabis are among the drugs that have been seized.”

In essence, this wasn’t what I had really been expecting. However, hope was not lost. A few weeks into my trip I was visited by an elder Indian Canadian woman with striking green hair. She was incredibly warm and comforting, I felt like I’d known her my entire life. She approached me at a beach bar in Ashwem and we got chatting. Her line of work was rather extraordinary. She lived in Goa and worked as toad venom shaman; helping people through their trip. I told her my ambition to try psychedelics whilst in Goa and within 30 minutes she’d sold me 10 grams of magic mushrooms. After that she sort of disappeared into the etha, never to be seen again. 

The Trip

I was in Goa with my girlfriend and we were pretty overjoyed that we’d finally managed to find hallucinogens. The next step was to ensure our set and setting were perfect – we didn’t want any bad vibes to ruin our trip. We decided to take them early – 3pm – this way we’d be able to have dinner in the evening and enjoy a chilled sleep. Although, we managed to buy some valium at the pharmacy just in case we found sleep difficult.

We divided the mushrooms into 2 grams each and found a perfect shaded spot on the beach. We didn’t want to overdo the amount – I mean, they looked like liberty caps but how can you ever be sure? A magic mushroom trip usually lasts around 4-6 hours, with the peak coming at around 3 hours in, which we hoped would bring us to the beautiful Goan sunset at around 6pm. 

Then we ate. They tasted awful but we washed them down with a beer. It had been a few years since my last psychedelic trip so I was full of nerves, but I was actively telling myself to simply allow the experience to happen. My intention for the trip was: to see the beauty in everything. To be honest, I realise in hindsight that this intention was a little vague. Anyway, it was hot, very hot. Within 30 minutes I decided to go into the sea to refresh but as I walked back to the sun beds everything went strange. The beach stretched out for miles and everything sounded different; enhanced.

My body was heavier than it had ever been and I felt like I needed to sit down. The trip had begun. With magic mushrooms you often can’t quite work out why you feel a certain way, which is why it took us maybe another 30 minutes before we finally realized that it was the heat that was making our bodies feel so tired. We decided to walk back to our hostel. On the way back everything felt wavey and technicolor, and each interaction with another human felt like a video game. We tried to buy water from a shop owner and it felt like we had some sort of secret. 

The peak of the trip happened in our air conditioned room. We showered probably around 10 times each just because of how good the water felt on our skin. We cried, we had moments alone, we had moments together. An entire lifetime happened in that wavey, orange room. Nothing and everything had the space to occur. It was only when the visuals began to subside slightly that we felt able to go and see the sunset on the beach.

The trip was on its way down but one overriding sense remained: beauty. The world was beautiful. The people, the sunset; everything. We enjoyed some deliciously tasty food – enhanced by the shrooms – and watched as the sunset turned to stars. Whilst the trip was no longer at its peak, we were refreshed, rid of our anxieties and issues. All there was left was to allow the world to truly be its spectacular self in front of our eyes. 

Final Thoughts

Had we found old Goa? Of course not. You cannot recreate the past and you’ll spend your life disappointed if you try. However, we’d found our own version of Goa. Whilst the overriding sun may have caused us to spend a great deal of the trip inside our hostel room, it didn’t stop the experience from being wonderful.

My intention had been to see the beauty in the world and it certainly had worked. I felt clarity. One of the reasons why psilocybin is now being explored as a therapeutic substance is due to this exact experience – people report feeling happier and clearer for months after a psychedelic trip. If I ever return to Goa I hope I will one day meet that green-haired, studio Ghibli character again but – if not – I will simply write it here: thank you.

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