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.

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Should I Buy a Rosin Press?

If any cannabis lover had all the money in the world, their house would be full of all of the many weed accessories that are now available in the 21st century. The innovation that is now behind the cannabis industry is booming and, consequently, there are a plethora of exciting, strange and beautiful products.

The rosin press, a device that allows the user to create their own potent cannabis concentrates, is one of the more advanced accessories that a weed lover can buy. But in the capitalist world we live in, with thousands of new products coming out every week, it’s hard not to wonder: is it actually worth it? Should you bother buying a rosin press when the heat and pressure from a pair of hair straighteners could – theoretically – do the same job? Let’s find out. 

What is a Rosin Press?

Don’t stress, the cannabis industry has so many random devices and tools that it’s not hard to get lost in them all. What ever happened to the days of a gram of bud and a lit joint, eh? Well, times have changed. There are now vapes to unlock the flavorsome terpenes and potent effects of weed, as well as edibles if you’d rather not inhale anything at all. But there is also something else, an industrial level rosin press that allows you to unlock the world of cannabis concentrates.

This device comes in many shapes and sizes, but it is worth noting that they are often large – definitely too large to take around in your pocket. Some are so big that you probably wouldn’t even be able to pick them up at all without some help. Remember – rosin press’ use heat and pressure to turn cannabis buds into concentrates. 

How Does it Work?

Whilst a rosin press might look like a highly advanced and complex machine, it actually is pretty simple. The press has two slabs of metal that are heated to a certain temperature. These two slabs then press together – with the cannabis buds or hash between them – and eventually this results in a batch of concentrates, such as rosin or wax. It is important to remember that concentrates can be super sticky, so placing the cannabis in some baking paper before placing it on the machine is essential. This way, when the process is over, you can unfold the paper, slowly scrape out the wax and enjoy it. The common rosin press is powered by either pneumatic, hydraulic or manual power.

Pneumatic Rosin Press

This type of device uses air or gas in order to create pressure. A pneumatic rosin press is usually bigger as it needs an air compressor, but it usually has a higher yield. This is because air pressure can work quicker than water pressure.  

Hydraulic Rosin Press

Hydraulic powered machines usually come smaller and more portable. These use heated liquid in order to create the pressure. The issue is that the yield can be lower with these machines. 

Manual Rosin Press

This type of device is the simplest. It allows the user to use their own force to press the cannabis. These rosin press machines are the easiest to use and usually the most portable. 


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Cannabis Concentrates

A key factor to consider when debating whether to purchase a rosin press is whether you actually want to create cannabis concentrates. For some people, the idea of consuming a 40-70% THC product is close to a dream. For others, a 10-15% THC joint or vape hit is potent enough. Concentrate and its strength is not for everyone. NIH writes:

“Marijuana concentrates have very high levels of THC. Solvent-based products tend to be especially potent, with THC levels documented at an average of about 54-69% and reported to exceed 80%, while non-solvent based extraction methods produce average THC levels between 39-60%”

A rosin press is just one way of creating these sorts of substances, there are many other ways that involve both solvent and non-solvent solutions. Solvent methods use CO2, alcohol or hydrocarbons. Whereas non-solvent methods can use ice water, sifting or the rosin press (pressure and heat). 

Types of Concentrate

There is a wide range of cannabis concentrates that exist in the world, and many of them seem like they are just the same substance but with a different name. Nonetheless, people find strict differences in each of them. Here are some of those:

  • Rosin
  • Shatter
  • Wax
  • Hash
  • Kief

How much is a Rosin Press? 

Cannabis concentrates – if purchasing from a dealer – can cost you anywhere from $50-150. The market is wide open, and often many buyers don’t know how much they should be paying. This is why many cannabis fanatics are considering purchasing a rosin press and making the concentrates themselves. If you’re one of those people, then let’s take a look at the average price of a rosin press. To be brutally honest, finding a device that costs less than $300 will be a stretch, with some larger ones easily surpassing $1000. Remember, these are industrial-quality machines. However, there are smaller ones – such as the Nectar Pollen Pincher – that acts as a great beginners rosin press. 

If you think of it mathematically, the purchase of a rosin press only really makes sense if you’re going to use it reasonably frequently. The cost of a device can be around 5 times the cost of a gram of concentrate – at the least – which means that you’ll be starting in a deficit but can quickly reach a profit. This, of course, will only happen if you’re a cannabis concentrate connoisseur. Picture this: 

You buy a gram of concentrate once a week for 2 months:

8 x $75 = $600

But what if you bought a rosin press?

Let’s say a rosin press costs $300

8 grams of usual bud, which you’ll use to put in the machine, costs around $100

This totals a $400 expense. 

Therefore, in around 2 months you’ll be spending less than you would have done. However, if you’re not going to use it that much, then perhaps an alternative option is better. 

DIY Rosin Press

On Amazon, you can buy a pretty basic hair straightener for around 20 bucks. If you want to invest a little more than you can purchase one with specific heat controls, which will increase the yield of your concentrates. That’s right, you can use a device like this to create these substances too. It might sound crazy, but many people use this method as a cheaper and beginners way into the world of cannabis concentrates. It has heat and it has pressure. The issue is, the yield of a pair of hair straighteners is going to be a lot less than an industrial rosin press. For your information, the yield essentially means the amount of concentrate you get from your cannabis buds, and how much is or is not wasted. Nectar Medical Vapes writes:

“The usual yield received from a DIY rosin press (hair straighteners) is only about 5%… It’s harder to manually change the temperature and pressure of hair straighteners, whereas with a rosin press it’s built into the system… However, with a shop bought rosin press the usual yield increases to about 40%, which is a great deal better and more efficient.”

It’s also important to note that the durability of straighteners is far less than a rosin press, which is literally designed to create wax. But, again, if you’re only wanting to try to concentrate every so often then it probably isn’t worth investing in an expensive rosin press. Straighteners will do the job if you’re looking to experiment and don’t mind wasting a bit of your stash. 

Is it Worth It?

So, the question still remains, is buying a rosin press actually worth the money? Well, now you understand a little better about the different types, the price and what these devices can do, the answer to that question is left to you. It is evident that if you’re a concentrate lover then, in the long term, purchasing a rosin press will eventually become far more worth it. However, if you’re someone that simply wants to try these substances and are not looking to indulge in a long-term, industrial creation process, then why not just buy some straighteners? A rosin press is a powerful and wonderful device, but only if you really need it.

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MJBizCon: Still No THC, Still Alcohol Sales

The biggest cannabis business convention happened in November, and it gave us some great insights into the current trends in the world of weed. It also emphasized where there is still some funky discombobulation in cannabis laws. Once again at 2022’s MJBizcon, there was still no THC on the floor, while alcohol was still openly sold.

Why it matters – reason #1 – it’s literally a convention for weed

There are three main reasons why it matters that MJBizCon didn’t allow THC, but did allow alcohol. The first is basic logic. What’s the point of going to a convention, where you can’t sample real products? And therefore, what’s the point of being an exhibitor, if you can’t really get consumers, or potential business partners, to really know what you’re making. This doesn’t apply to every company, or every part of the industry, but it applies to many.

This is a business convention that revolves around making consumer products in some form, and as a business that revolves around THC, not having that main ingredient, means making it difficult for a lot of companies.


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Can you imagine going to a wine festival, or a whiskey festival, or a cheese festival, and being told that you couldn’t try any of the respective products. Imagine a wine festival with fake wine, or a cheese festival where you could eat the product, but without that specific ingredient. Whether you’re a consumer, or looking to make business connections, not getting a good idea of a product, stymies the entire process.

Functionally, as a convention about weed, in a state where weed is legal for recreational use, it becomes absurd that actual weed products, couldn’t be sampled or sold. As in, the entire purpose for many people to be there, was hindered by not getting a good idea of what the specific offering was. And that also meant ruling out a lot of companies from even showing, as not being able to preview their actual products, would make attending such a convention unnecessary.

Plenty of what was there didn’t technically need weed. Apparatus for mass growing or packaging, branding companies, insurance… But even those selling rolling papers or vapes had no way for their specific products to be tested, and therefore separated in any way from everything on either side. Realistically, when having a convention for something, its best to have that something there. In places without legalization measures its more understandable when this doesn’t happen, but in Las Vegas…?

Cannabis convention with no THC

Why it matters – reason #2 – it means weed is treated as more dangerous than alcohol

Maybe the bigger reason it matters that MJBizCon said no to THC, and yes to alcohol, is simply in the comparison it makes to a much more dangerous drug; which was openly sold and used, when weed products couldn’t be. Yup, I’m talking about alcohol. According to the CDC, in the US alone, alcohol kills about 140,000 people a year, while also being said to take as many as 26 years off a person’s life. While most of these deaths are not direct, they still make alcohol the #2 death-toll drug behind smoking.

Considering there is no death toll associated with cannabis, its odd that cannabis regulation often makes it harder to get to, than it is to get to the much more deadly alcohol. While real cannabis (and anything related to THC) was not allowed on the floor of MJBizCon, alcohol was openly sold and drank, sometimes right next to stalls where cannabis products were swapped out for fake plant material.

And while so much of the business industry focused on packaging (specifically child-proof packaging), a can or bottle of beer is still just as easy to open as a can of soda, and high proof alcohol requires nothing more than twisting a cap.

If you didn’t know better, and you saw this scene, you’d probably think cannabis actually is dangerous. And certainly way more dangerous than alcohol. In a scenario like this, without knowing more, it would appear that cannabis proposes incredible danger, while alcohol does not. Let’s remember, no one lives at that convention center, and everyone had to drive in if they didn’t get a ride, meaning plenty of people having drinks and driving back out. Seems like the convention organizers, and the state in general, were fine with that, but not with a person smoking a joint.

No THC, yes alcohol
No THC, yes alcohol

Why it matters – reason #3 – it means inconsistency and misunderstanding in cannabis regulation

Let’s be honest, I complained about this last year. This problem has existed for as long as the legal weed industry has been around. And pretty much every place with a legalization, follows these same crazy guidelines, wherein cannabis use must follow weirdly strict regulation, whereas alcohol, doesn’t. From where its sold, to who can use it, to where its legal to use. All these favor alcohol consumption over cannabis consumption, yet alcohol has only medical detractions, while cannabis is also used as a medicine.

That’s right, it’s not just that its consistently shown to be way less dangerous than alcohol for recreational use (like, not even in the same category), but it also helms a massive and growing world of medical use. People depend on it to live. We have study after study talking of the benefits for both medical issues, and general health, and yet its still easier to buy and use alcohol.

How long does it take for logic to set in? Why haven’t these laws been updated at all in a place like Nevada that has recreational use? And for that matter, how is it still federally illegal, while alcohol is one of the most ubiquitous drugs around? How can we ever expect this industry to function better, when we can’t even get regulators to regulate the industry honestly? It’s been years since many states passed measures, yet this inconsistency in regulation, never seems to go away. And when the biggest business convention, MJBizCon, says no to THC, while allowing alcohol, we know there really is a problem.

Why it REALLY matters at MJBizCon

This harks back to the first reason, but its an incredibly important point to make. MJBizCon is for the promotion of the weed industry, and all the businesses therein. It’s not a school, or a playground, or a bingo game. It’s a convention set up by industry insiders to help empower those in the industry by setting up a way for them to make new connections, and learn more about the industry.

In that sense, MJBizCon comes to represent the industry. And it’s not put on by parent groups, or teachers, or politicians. It’s put on by a weed-centered publication, and weed-centered businesses. Which makes me wonder how these proponents of weed, are okay with having this scenario. Why didn’t it come up as a major point of conversation?

Why didn’t we all sign a petition to get things to change? Why are we so complacent with having logic ignored in the face of nonsensical federal law? Am I the only person it occurs to that this inconsistency, when not focused on and fixed, just leads to more future inconsistencies?

Inconsistent cannabis regulation
Inconsistent cannabis regulation

It’s important for those within the industry, to stand up for it appropriately. That this issue has never been brought up at the convention, is sad to me. That there seems to still be a misunderstanding about these dangers in government regulation and statements, is sad to me. It means organizers are more interested in making a buck off alcohol sales, than working to make sure the public at their events is understanding of the regulation issue.

As long as nonsensical laws aren’t challenged, it means they’ll just continue on. Weed prices might have gone down in some places despite ridiculously high taxes, but that has more to do with overproduction driving down prices, than a realization that such heavy taxation, particularly sin taxes, make the industry less appealing than the black market. In the case of alcohol vs weed, we already have plenty showing us the danger of one, and the benefits of the other, yet the lack of consistent regulation, is constantly ignored, even though it too, hurts the industry.

Conclusion

MJBizCon was a great time, but it still represents through its barring of THC and allowance of alcohol sales, that the weed industry is very unevenly regulated, especially compared to the alcohol industry. Will this ever change in the future? We’ll have to wait and see.

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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.

The Detriments of Long-Term Opioid Use

We hear about opioid overdose deaths everyday in the US, but there’s a whole other downside to remember: the effects of long-term opioid use on health in general. So aside from falling down dead from overloading the system, here are some other things that can be expected if you’re popping these pills for years at a time.

Well, what about that overdose risk?

Obviously, ancillary medical problems are an issue, but what we hear about most are not the long-term effects of opioid use, but of the more immediate overdose issue. How much of an issue is this? Well pretty big, and growing at an incredibly fast rate. In fact, that’s part of the general scariness of this issue, not that it exists, but that it seems to grow massively at every juncture.

The last numbers put out on the issue came from preliminary data released by the CDC for 2021. According to this data, there were approximately 107,000 overdose deaths in 2021, up from 93,000 in 2020, and 71,000 in 2019. These numbers account for all overdose deaths from illicit drugs, but we know opioids make up the lion’s share of them. Though we don’t have a more specific breakdown for 2021, we know that of the 93,000 of 2020, that about 68,000 were related to opioids. And that of 2019 numbers, about 48,000 of the deaths came from synthetic opioids. For comparison, that year, there were less than 15,000 heroin overdoses.

This problem has gotten so out of hand, that states like New York and Rhode Island are already instituting safe-use site measures to give those in need, a safe place to use their drugs. Along with testing to ensure no fentanyl, emergency services, and other social services.


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It’s even got to the point that some places, like British Columbia, in Canada, are working to decriminalize all drugs, just to make it easier for people using opioids, to do what they have to without further punishment. Whether these are actually measures to help people, though, is questionable, as they mainly seek to promote the general problem, rather than finding ways to fix it.

If you want to know how ubiquitous needle disposal apparatus is in America, consider that at this year’s MJBizCon, which took place in the Convention Center of Las Vegas, there were needle depositories in the women’s bathroom. Apparently it’s expected that literally anywhere, someone may need to get rid of needles.

Damage from long-term opioid use: colon

Maybe you started on opioids the way many people do, to deal with a pain issue. And maybe you’re one of those people that loves the way the drugs feel. It almost doesn’t matter why a person started if they’re going to take them for years of time. Maybe you’re one of those people who takes them in a controlled enough way that you don’t have to worry about overdosing on them. Well, hate to break it to you, but these are hardcore medications that your body doesn’t expect to deal with, and they come with a myriad of long-term health issues, which vary by user.

One of the big problems, is issues in the gut. Opioids decrease general activity in the guts, which is why another one of their uses is for diarrhea. It essentially works to control it, and in doing so, can create constipation instead. This effect of creating constipation isn’t acclimated to, and in fact, tends to get worse over time. Meaning long-term opioid users can develop different issues related to their guts and colon.

Take Matthew Perry, for example, who we all know as Chandler from the long-running Friends. Throughout his professional life we’ve heard different stories of his issues with drugs, but perhaps the most daunting came recently from an autobiography he put out. In it, he details how his colon burst as a result of opioid activity in the guts. In his case, the incident led to a two-week coma, and nine-months with a colostomy bag. For anyone unfamiliar with the latter term, it’s a bag worn outside the body, which is hooked up directly to the body, and which collects the feces, as they can no longer go through the damaged colon. Sound like a fun way to conduct your social life?

This happens due to the colon stretching out of shape, which it can’t always heal from. If a person already has a bowel issue, opioids can make it worse, even causing perforations, which is apparently how Perry ended up in the situation he did. What happened to Perry might be one of the rarer cases, but with increased use of these medications, rare cases become more of a norm.

Damage from long-term opioid use: blood-oxygen levels and endocrine system

Many aspects of opioids are acclimated to with regular use. This unfortunately can include the effects on pain and sedation, but doesn’t include the effects on breathing. Opioid are known for depressing the respiratory center of the brain, the part that controls breathing. If enough is taken, a person can stop breathing, and this is how many people overdose.

However, even if a person doesn’t die, this can also lead to lowered blood-oxygen levels. This happens a lot when doses are increased, which becomes standard for these medications since other effects, like pain-relieving effects, are acclimated to, leading to a need for more to get the same relief. As large increases are often experienced in a short period of time, this creates a problem with users having low blood-oxygen levels.

Opioid long-term effect on colon

And then there are the effects on testosterone. Called hypogonadism, this applies to both men and women with extended use of the medications, and means a fall in testosterone levels. As these issues become more evident through time and increased overall use of the medications, this issue has presented itself, but with little known as to how reversible the effects are.

What has been noticed as well, are symptoms like amenorrhea in women, reduced desire for sex, as well as infertility (in both sexes), and erectile dysfunction in men.

Damage from long-term opioid use: the brain and other issues

Let’s be honest for a second, the reason people often get addicted to opioids, is because they’re affecting the brain, and bringing on feelings of euphoria. Anytime something is taken repeatedly that can impact the brain, there’s a question of what it’s doing long-term. In the case of these meds, perhaps it shouldn’t be surprising that long-term opioid use can cause changes in behavior and cognition, though much is reversible.

In the short term it does get in the way of the ability for concentration, as well as affecting abstract thinking. Not only that, use of the drug can lead to a diminished experience of pleasure, and can cause people to lose interest in activities that used to make them happy.

Effects of long-term opioid use
Effects of long-term opioid use

Another thing often seen, related to the sedation and disorientation effects of the drugs, is simply that people are more likely to hurt themselves. This is seen mainly though falls where bones are fractured or broken. It applies most to the elderly, and is similar to another class of drugs, benzodiazepines, which also cause sedation and disorientation.

Opioids have also shown to have an effect on the immune system and immunity. The immunomodulating effects of the drug, seen in both human and animal studies, effect immune effector cells, as well as the central nervous system, in the form of immunosuppression. This means the immune system is being suppressed, and won’t work as well. In animal studies specifically, opioids have shown to effect antimicrobial response and anti-tumor surveillance in the body.

Just to finish it all off, long-term opioid use can actually do something paradoxical, it can create a greater sensitivity to pain, which, when you think about it, is really not helpful considering their main purpose is in pain suppression. This phenomenon, called hyperalgesia, is generally only seen when there is no tolerance built to the analgesic effects of the meds. This pain doesn’t relate to the original pain suffered, and is generally less-well defined from the original pain issue. No matter how you look at it though, a pain medication that goes on to cause new forms of pain, is certainly not ideal.

Conclusion

Opioids cause much damage, both in the overdose deaths they promote, as well as the long-term issues that come from extended use. More and more, it should be asked why other, less dangerous drugs like ketamine, aren’t immediately being substituted to help ease this growing opioid issue.

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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.

The post How to Vape Cannabis Concentrates appeared first on Cannadelics.

Colorado is 2nd State to Legalize Psychedelics: Voted in By the People

Mid term elections came and went, and they certainly changed the landscape in terms of drugs. Not only did Maryland and Missouri pass cannabis legalization measures for recreational use; Colorado also made a big move when it became the second state to legalize psychedelics by allowing entheogenic plants. What does this mean for the state?

How did the vote go?

Mid term elections aren’t always exciting, particularly because they’re not for presidential candidates. But that doesn’t mean exciting things can’t happen, and Colorado is a great example of this. This year, while five states allowed residents to vote on recreational cannabis legalization measures, Colorado did it a bit more like Oregon, putting it to their people to choose if they wanted to legalize some psychedelics.

And the people said yes! Coloradoans had Proposition 122 put before them, the Decriminalization and Regulated Access Program for Certain Psychedelic Plants and Fungi Initiative. The winning yes vote came from a massive 91.46% of the voting population (you read that right), which was comprised of 1,296,994 votes. The no end accounted for a mere 8.54% of the voting population, with 121,111 votes. To say Colorado really wanted legal psychedelics, is practically an understatement.


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So what does this Proposition 122 do? The newly passed Colorado measure works to define specific plants containing psychedelics, as natural medicines. These include dimethyltryptamine (DMT); ibogaine; mescaline (but not the peyote plant, which is technically already covered federally under the American Indian Religious Freedom Act, while the other mescaline-containing plants were never federally illegalized, making for a loophole); and psilocybin; and psilocyn, the compounds found in magic mushrooms.

It also decriminalizes the personal possession, use, transport, and cultivation of these plants, so long as the person is 21 or older. Along with this, it creates the Regulated Natural Medicine Access Program which will be used to open an industry of licensed healing centers where such medications can be administered as a part of natural medicine services.

How does this differ from Oregon?

Colorado is not the 1st state to pass a law to legalize psychedelics. In fact, its technically the 2nd state to pass a recreational legalization, and the 3rd state to offer some form of access measure. The most well-known, is the first to do it, Oregon. In the 2020 elections, Oregon also put it to its people to decide if they wanted to specifically legalize psilocybin mushrooms.

In November 2020, 55.75% of the voting population gave a yes vote to Measure 109: Psilocybin Mushroom Services Program Initiative. That equaled 1,270,057 votes. 44.25% of the voting population voted no to the measure, comprised of 1,008,199 votes. This measure came with far less specifics than the Colorado measure, and there was uncertainty for many months over what kind of a legalization it was, and if it counted more as medical. In 2022, Oregon released its first draft rules for the industry, making a few things clear.

According to these rules, not only does this only relate to magic mushrooms, but only one kind of magic mushroom applies: Psilocybe cubensis. Meaning once its not this particular magic mushroom, the legalization no longer holds. But it also doesn’t apply to some other important things. Like personal possession, or the ability to self-cultivate the mushrooms. Oregon only went as far as to legalize use of the mushrooms in approved centers, under the eye of trained, but not medical, tripsitters. Everything outside of this specific scenario, is not legal.

Colorado and its move to legalize psychedelics is much wider-reaching. It involves many different plants with psychedelic compounds, it allows the personal possession of the plants, and the personal cultivation of them. Though it will set up centers for use, it doesn’t disallow the personal use of the substances outside of this. As it relates specifically to plants containing psychedelic compounds, it excludes psychedelics like LSD and MDMA, which are synthetically-made, and do not appear in nature.

But didn’t Colorado already legalize MDMA?

Yes, Colorado has been on a rampage. Not only was Denver the first city in the US to pass a decriminalization measure for psychedelics in 2019, but in 2022, Colorado passed HB 1344, which was officially signed off on in June of this year, after essentially racing through the state’s congress at nearly unprecedented speeds.

HB 1344 is an interesting bill. It doesn’t exactly legalize MDMA, because it’s not federally legal yet. What it does is work as a pre-emptive legalization. As in, the second the US passes a federal legalization, Colorado is already ready to go with laws set up to govern the use of the drug in the state. This means, should it not get a federal pass, HB 1344 is useless. It goes into action only upon the federal passage.

Colorado legalizes MDMA for pilot program

How likely is this federal passage? Very likely. When the FDA gives ‘breakthrough therapy’ status to the medication a company is working on, a status meant to quicken a drug to market in the case of it being a new therapy that can offer benefits that existing therapies don’t offer; it means a government agency is literally pushing for it to happen. And such is the case for both MDMA and psilocybin on a federal level.

In the case of MDMA, the company leading the charge is MAPS (Multidisciplinary Association for Psychedelic Studies), which not only has this breakthrough therapy status, but which organized its Phase III trials directly with the FDA to ensure that results meet regulation. It would be short-sighted to believe that a legalization isn’t coming, especially considering how well the trials have been going for the treatment of PTSD.

But wait…Connecticut gives access to psychedelics too, right?

If you’re paying attention, I said Colorado is actually the 3rd state to pass some form of a legalization measure. Oregon was first, and as it turns out, Connecticut was second, though with a different kind of measure, which isn’t considered an outright legalization. It’s also strictly for medical use.

Connecticut passed Bill No. 5506, which actually makes use of an existent federal pilot program, that is unfortunately, not often accessed. The federal program is the FDA’s expanded access program, which allows the use of drugs that have not been approved yet and are still under investigation. The point of the program is to allow patients in dire need, to access medications that have made it at least through Phase I, with the thought being that dire circumstances allow for dire measures to be taken.

Connecticut’s bill really just accesses this program through its own pilot program, and is meant to begin in the state in 2023. Once the compounds it allows are officially approved by the federal government, the pilot program ends, and the new legalization measures take over. The Connecticut bill specifically allows for the access of yet-unapproved psilocybin and MDMA medications.

This pilot program will allow access solely on a medical level, which is different from both Oregon and Colorado. It comes with absolutely no recreational aspects, and does nothing to allow for personal possession, use, or cultivation. What it does do, is reinforce the usefulness of both psilocybin and MDMA in treating different disorders, and works to start getting access to these compounds, to patients in need.

Moving forward

The psychedelics boom is happening very quickly. Way more quickly than the cannabis boom, which realistically paved the way of the former. Had we not gotten the country acclimated to marijuana, it probably would’ve been harder to push for psychedelics. But with weed now legal in just about half the country, psychedelics are sliding by much faster, and more easily.

Besides the three states just mentioned which have some measure in place, there are plenty of other states that have been/are considering full-state legalizations (California, Washington, Michigan), and a multitude of locations that have decriminalized use. These include: San Francisco, Oakland, Santa Cruz, and Arcata, in California; as well as Denver, Colorado; Ann Arbor, Washtenaw County, and Detroit, in Michigan; Washington, DC; Somerville, Cambridge, Northampton, and Easthampton, Massachusetts; and Seattle, Washington.

Should we expect more? You better believe it. Which one will be next, and how long it may take, are undetermined, but the trend is in place, and we know from watching cannabis, that the snowball becomes an avalanche. States where legislation was recently introduced include New Jersey with its Psilocybin Behavioral Health Access and Services Act; California with its SB-519 to decriminalize several compounds and open facilitated use centers; Oklahoma which introduced HB 3414 to study psilocybin and give access to patients in need; and Hawaii, which passed SB No 3160 to create a task force to implement psilocybin medications for adults medically.

Conclusion

Colorado shows that the push to legalize psychedelics didn’t end with Oregon, and that we can expect way more. It also shows the progression already in motion for these laws, as it offers a much wider legalization than its predecessor. It will be interesting to see what happens next in this world.

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Cannabis Trends From MJBizCon: Cultivation, Rolling Papers, Vapes, & White-Labeling

The biggest cannabis business convention came and went last week. And it made a lot clear, particularly in trends. So, what are the biggest cannabis industry trends currently going on according to MJBizCon? Read on to find out where the money grabs are in the legal world of weed.

What is MJBizCon?

If that word looks strange to you (and maybe a little familiar), let me explain what it is. MJBizCon is a cannabis convention that’s put on every year by the Colorado-based publication Marijuana Business Daily, AKA MJBizDaily. If you read a lot about the weed industry, you’ve probably come across plenty of their articles.

In 2012, this publication launched the first Marijuana Business Conference & Expo, which we lovingly refer to as MJBizCon. The convention serves as a national trade show for businesses within the legal cannabis industry. This is an important note to make, because for the most part, it rules out gray market areas like the cannabinoid industry, which offers us synthetics in the form of delta-8 and HHC, among others. Right now, MJBizCon is considered the largest business trade show of the legal industry.

Every year, the business end of the cannabis space gathers in Las Vegas, so new connections can be made, new products and services put on display, and for the general public to get a gander at what’s out there. Complete with after parties, and big names like Mike Tyson, MJBizCon has become a popular event for anyone related to the world of weed.

The public is also allowed in this trade show, and the ability to be first in line to see what’s new, and for special convention deals, brings in those unrelated to the business world. Overall, it’s like one big weed party that we all get to play at. And regardless of whether you make a big purchase, or get a good new business connection, you’re sure to walk away with some interesting goodies and samples to try.

Biggest cannabis industry trends according to MJBizCon: Cultivation

Now, technically, as a business convention, MJBizCon leans more toward a B2B experience, and less towards B2C. In that sense, its great for seeing how businesses are trying to make money in the industry. The cannabis market is still relatively new, and still getting its footing, and those eager to make a buck tend to gravitate toward where they think its possible. There are a lot of issues with the industry, and it not performing to original expectations. These trends show where operators are focusing within the legal industry, to make money.

The biggest trend was in cultivation. However this is an interesting concept because of what it implies. Cultivation itself comes with the issue of overproduction, something that can devalue a product simply by having too much of it. Cannabis prices have plummeted all over the place because of this issue, so it stands to reason that much of what is offered in the realm of cultivation, is geared not just toward large-scale growing, but towards individual cultivators as well.

This was made clear when I picked up a sample of GrowSafe Bio-Pesticide. Sure, the product is technically made for large-scale production, but the exhibitors were quick to throw in how their product can be safely used by any home-grower (and for that matter, with more crops than just cannabis).


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Cultivation might be key to the industry in general, but part of what makes cultivation products a big trend, is that cultivation equipment, especially when it comes to certain products like natural pesticides and lights, can be marketed to home-growers as well; who make up a big, and growing, part of the industry. For that reason, cultivation products, from lights to organic pesticide to growing chambers, should remain popular as they relate to both the mass production side, and the individual production side.

Biggest cannabis industry trends according to MJBizCon: rolling papers and vapes

I’m putting these together because it’s almost funny how opposite they are. One represents the standard way of smoking, and one, the newer healthier option. I should clarify though, when I say vapes, I mean oil vapes. And what this really means, is the batteries used to power the carts, and the carts as well. One growing (but still small) trend related to the carts specifically, is reusable cartridges, which will hopefully become an even bigger trend in the future.

While dry herb vapes were represented by companies like Storz and Bickel, (bigger names that have remained through time), the mass showing at the convention was for the newer oil version. Here there are less established names ruling the roost, and more way to gain entry; though with much competition, as evidenced by the convention.

They came in all shapes, colors, and sizes, with nearly every company advertising a square-shaped design; something they all seemed to think they cornered the market with. They also all do about the same thing. In fact, whereas it used to be easier to find better batteries with temperature control, now they’re all simpler models that don’t allow for such precision. There was very little difference between products, but an obvious desire to capitalize on the vape trend.

Conversely, rolling papers were also all the rage, and this was the case last year as well, and for good reason. Most people still roll joints. They’re offered with and without filters, as pre-roll cones, as blunt wraps, with and without flavors (advertised as terpene infused, but tasting like synthetic chemicals), and in a variety of sizes. Most were about the same, while some, like the company High Tea, offered products like blunt papers made of tea leaves with no tobacco, nicotine, or hemp involved. Much like with vapes, aside from companies like High Tea, there wasn’t a massive difference between products for the most part. Most were white-label products with different branding, which itself, was quite a trend this year.

Biggest cannabis industry trends according to MJBizCon: white label products

It seems the next big money grab in the legal cannabis industry, is in white labeling and branding. White labeling is when a product is made by a manufacturer, which can be individually branded as per a company. This means many companies are selling the exact same product, but with their own individual labeling. It’s very common in many industries. Tons of products you use that you thought were specific to a brand name, are likely white labeled products that a brand name was simply stuck on.

In the case of the weed industry, tons of white-labeling and branding services were offered. Whether you want to sell your own line of rolling papers or vapes, get sweatshirts with your logo, or whatever else, there are about a million companies that want to help you by providing a generic product to use as your own.

I find white-labeling a bit sad. It’s outright saying that we can expect companies to no longer come up with and market their own products. And it exemplifies the idea of a money grab. Rather than come up with inventive ideas, companies just use the model out there, and slap their label on it. The whole reason all those vapes look exactly the same? Because they are. They come from just a few manufacturers, and then get used by every emerging company looking to get in the industry. But such is the standard today for big business. The brand you love most, is sometimes no different then the product next to it on a shelf.

With all the issues in the cannabis industry, and the difficulty in making money, it’s not shocking that companies will reach for whatever they can. And with the industry being a bit flimsy in some cases, this means not putting in more money than necessary. White-labeling a product gets a company out of the R&D of making a product, and the testing, and ensuring that it meets standards. But it also means that everything we’re sold is the same.

This is truly one of the break off points between many high quality and low quality companies and products. Those actually in it to get you something good, or that offer something specialized or different, are the ones putting in the money to make it happen. It says a lot for the market in general that this emerging cannabis trend is one that generalizes the entire industry.

Conclusion

Last year I remember seeing several companies doing custom gummy molds, or offering products to neutralize smoke in the air. I saw less – or none – of that this year. Cannabis trends tend to come and go depending on where its thought a profit is possible, and if there isn’t one, the trend disappears. Vapes have grown (square is in), papers will likely always be big (now flavored with terpenes and/or chemicals), white-labeling is all the rage, and cultivation is key for its industrial and personal appeal. What new trends will pop up next year? We’ll have to wait and see.

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The Blunt Wrap Review – An Ultimate Guide for Rollers  

If there’s one thing you should know about me, it’s that I’m a blunt smoker. Although I have a small assortment of pipe, bongs, and vapes that I use throughout the day to save my weed, I always prefer a fat, neatly rolled blunt over anything else. I love the effects, and I truly just love the entire experience. Smoking a blunt is an experience in and of itself – from the starting process of rolling it up, to camaraderie of passing around a circle with friends.

Although it does seem that the younger crowd is skipping over blunts in favor of more health-conscious consumption methods (kudos to them), the blunt still remains a favorite among millennials and Gen X’ers. A good blunt is comprised of two simple parts, the flower and the blunt wrap. The flower chosen is very much a matter of personal preference and budget, but picking a brand of blunt wrap can be way more flexible. Which ones are the best? Let’s take a look at some popular options.

The Origin of the Blunt  

It’s hard to pinpoint when some of our most historical cannabis trends began, but according to the book Smoke Signals: A Social History of Marijuana, indentured servants from India and surrounding regions brought weed to the Caribbean with them sometime during the 1800s. The term “ganja” which has been strongly associated with Caribbean/Rasta culture for some time, was adopted from Hindi immigrants to the area.  

The blunt truly became a staple for cannabis smoking in the Caribbean, especially among farmers and laborers. Although there is no definitive reason for why blunts became so popular in this region, a few theories do exist. The first theory, and probably the most likely, is that blunts were used simply out of convenience and necessity. Because was the most abundantly grown crop in the Caribbean, it was much easier to get tobacco leaves than pipes or rolling papers.  

The second theory has to do with discretion. As cannabis was illegal and penalties against it were harshly enforced, some hypothesized that tobacco wraps were used to mask the smell of the cannabis when it was being smoked. This might have been possible with some of the older, more natural varieties that existed back then. But we all know that with today’s weed, it doesn’t really matter what it is rolled in, if it’s good you’ll be able to smell it.  

The third theory is one that we can all relate to. Blunts are fun, point blank. Not only do you get extra stoned because you’re consuming more weed in one sitting, but the blend of tobacco adds to the experience and makes it much more enjoyable for many smokers.  

Blunts in Modern Culture  

Throughout the late 1980s and 90s, there was an uptick in immigration to the United States. A large number of people from the Caribbean began to settle in various parts of New York city, bringing with them many traditional customs and traditions, some of which were related to cannabis use. During that same time, rap/hip hop music started to gain popularity… and we all know rap music is rife with blunt references.  

The word is that Snoop Dogg provided us with the first recorded evidence of how important blunts truly were to rap culture, during an interviewer with YouTuber, Nardward. During the interview, Snoop accredited fellow rapper Bushwick Bill for introducing him to his first blunt. Numerous other rappers including Big Daddy Kane, Notorious B.I.G., Tupac Shakur, and many others over the years have referenced the blunt in their music. According to a report from Complex Magazine, Snoop Dogg even hired a guy to roll blunts for him full time, who he pays $50,000 per year for the record.  


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In many ways, blunts are also comparable to spliffs. Although the idea of smoking spliffs is a bit foreign (pun intended) to American stoners, but smoking blunts is kind of similar. Afterall, you are still getting that mix of cannabis and tobacco, and depending on what type of wrap you use, you can get more or less tobacco in your blunt.  

Despite the undeniable influence the blunt has had on modern smoking culture, its popularity has been declining over the last decade (not in some circles, but generally speaking). A study (yes, a study/survey was done on the subject) published in ScienceDirect Journal published in 2015 found that only about 20% of cannabis users reported using blunts regularly. As a matter of fact, the majority of people who did prefer smoking blunts were 25-35 years old (I’m 32 to so this fits), or they were teenagers during the 80s and 90s. 

Do Blunt Wraps Contain Nicotine?  

This, of course, depends largely on what brand of blunt you’re using. Some of the more traditional blunt wraps like Backwoods, are made with tobacco leaves which do contain some nicotine, as it is naturally occurring in most tobacco plants. Pay attention to the packaging, as it will usually say if the product contains nicotine or not.  

These days, you can find quite a few healthier brands of blunt wraps (although, technically speaking, no form of smoking is actually safe). For example, King Palm makes their wraps out of Cordia leaves, which don’t contain any nicotine. You can find wraps made from hemp, tea leaves, rose petals, ebony leaf, and many more. 

Wraps, Wraps, and More Wraps 

Although I’m not covering quite as many different wraps as other reviews I have seen, I wanted to quickly go over a few of my personal favorites, many of which are stoner classics anyway. Below are the six different brands of blunt wraps that I use most often, or ones I have had good notably experiences rolling in the past.  

Swisher Sweets 

Ah, swishers… a tried-and-true classic. In my experience, most people begin their blunt smoking journey with swishers. It makes sense, they’re easy to find (pretty much any gas station, liquor store, or smoke shop will carry them, which is not the case with many other brands), they come in a huge assortment of flavors, and they are particularly easy to roll.  

Backwoods 

Lately, I’ve become a huge fan of smoking Backwoods blunts. These OG cigars are made from completely natural tobacco leaves which give provide for a nice, different type of buzz. They come in a handful of flavors (I like banana and Russian cream), and you can roll them really fat! Unlike other cigars that you have to split open and subsequently roll them smaller than the original size, with Backwoods, you unroll the leaf by hand and you can roll it back up either skinnier or fatter than the original size of the cigar. Some people find them difficult to roll, but once you get the hang of it, it’s pretty fun.  

Dutch Master 

Dutch Master is another classic brand of blunt wraps that are readily available throughout the US. People love Dutch blunts because they burn well and they’re easy to roll. But, one of the biggest perks of Dutch Masters is the fact that they burn slow, so you can enjoy that blunt for quite a while and share it with friends. Some people are not too happy about the price of these blunts, but that depends on where you live. In Indiana, where I currently reside, they are cheaper than swishers (2 for $1), but in California where I used to live, they cost more.  

High Tea 

High tea wraps are crafted from chamomile, mate, and cacao so they don’t contain any tobacco or nicotine. I came upon these at MJBizCon, and while I took them a bit reluctantly (I’m constantly offered papers and blunt wraps at these events that end up going to waste), I was pleasantly surprised. They came in handy when I had nothing else to roll with one night while in Vegas and I found that these High Tea wraps were very easy to roll and they burned smooth. They also were not harsh on my throat and lungs like some of the other, non-tobacco wraps I’ve tried.  

The Toad Blunt Wraps (Futurola/Tyson Ranch) 

These blunts are a collaboration between Mike Tyson’s brand, Tyson Ranch, and Futurola, a paper/rolling company from Amsterdam. The Toad Blunt Wraps, which are king-sized, are infused with natural plant terpenes for added flavor and enhanced effects. They are designed to burn slow, and coupled with the fact that the wraps are already large in size, that makes for some seriously long-lasting smoke sessions. These wraps are also completely free of tobacco or nicotine.

Juicy Jay’s Natural Wraps 

Juicy Jay’s are another well-known brand of wraps in the stoner community. Many people prefer the Classic Natural Wraps, but you can also find many other unique flavors like Strawberry Kiwi, Super Sour Apple, and Red Rum Raspberry. These wraps are made from tobacco, so they do contain nicotine, but the design has remained the same since 1993… so if you’re a fan of Juicy Jay’s, you know consistency is definitely their game.

Final Thoughts 

As the blunt wrap slowly becomes a stoner novelty, we can’t help but appreciate it as a classic symbol of cannabis use, cultural diversity, resilience, and rebellion. Although I personally find that most people prefer vapes and bongs these days, the art of the blunt roll is not lost on any stoner, and a perfectly executed blunt still takes center stage at all smoking occasions.

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Should Disposable Vapes be Banned? 

The vaporizer has gone from being a shoddy and fairly unpopular device, to the biggest smoking competitor on the globe. The world has undoubtedly been taken by storm and thousands – if not millions – of people are successfully using the vaporizer to quit their unhealthy smoking habits. It seems that, in many cases, the vape has done what it came to do. But is that the end of the story?

With money increasing in the global vape industry and new vapes being created daily, it seems that perhaps that original aim has been forgotten. The disposable vaporizer is proof of this. These devices, with their multi-colored design and various flavors, are appealing to young non-smokers in an alarming fashion and causing problems to the environment. In consequence, many officials are now calling for them to be banned outright.

The Vaporizer

Whilst the vape is a fairly modern device, it actually has a longer history than you would imagine. Some argue that the first conceptual idea of vaping a substance occurred during the Ancient Egyptians, when they used to heat hemp seeds on hot rocks and inhale the fumes. Nonetheless, it was in the early 1900s that the vaporizer was attempted. However, it wasn’t until Hon Lik – in 2003 – created the device that we would recognise today. After the death of his father from lung cancer, the Chinese inventor made it his goal to create a genuine smoking alternative. He was sick and tired of the uselessness of nicotine gum and pads. The Guardian writes about Lik’s process of inventing it:

“The breakthrough came in 2003, when he hit on the idea of using a piezoelectric ultrasound element to vaporise a nicotine solution in a device resembling a cigarette. These days battery-powered heating elements do the job, but the concept was born”

The vaporizer or e-cigarette is an electronic device that allows people to inhale nicotine without smoking it. The e-liquid is heated by the device’s battery to a temperature much lower than your average cigarette and, as a result, vapour is created. This substance is then inhaled and enjoyed by the user. When a cigarette is lit it is heated at around 900 degrees and begins the process of combustion. Combustion – when something is set alight – brings with it a whole load of difficulties. When the process occurs dangerous toxins and cancerous carcinogens are released and enter the body through inhalation.


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When you also add on top of that the addictiveness of nicotine and the damage the substance can do to the major organs, it results in a highly dangerous habit. Vapes, on the other hand, will not exceed around 250 degrees, which means that combustion never occurs. This is why vapor is released, instead of the smoke from a fire. Whilst e-cigs still have nicotine liquid inside them, the way in which they avoid combustion makes them – according to the UK government website – up to 95% more healthy than cigarettes. If you’re still unsure on why vaping is believed to be healthier than smoking, then here’s a clear explanation by Scott Roberts:

“Smoking is believed to be more harmful than vaping, which is why most experts recommend vaping for chronic smokers who’re struggling to give up the habit. In itself, tobacco isn’t a very harmful compound. However, harmful effects occur when it’s heated… The smoke contains thousands of compounds and most are considered to be highly toxic. Researchers believe that cigarette smoke contains more than 7,000 chemicals… scientists have cited 250 of them as highly toxic, with 70 of them containing carcinogenic properties.”

As you can see, it is the avoidance of combustion that is crucial. Not only do vapes offer a healthy alternative to smoking, they also are becoming increasingly popular. In fact, it is believed that by 2030 the vape market could be worth around 180 billion dollars. But of course, wherever the money goes, problems usually reside. As vaporizers have changed and adapted, it seems that they may have forgotten their purpose. 

The Disposable Vape

Disposable vapes have been surrounded by much controversy in recent times, especially due to their large appeal to the younger generations and their negative carbon footprint. These devices are increasingly popular in the UK and many government officials have been calling for action to be made against them. But what are they and why do they differ from what Hon Lik supposedly set out to do? First of all, disposable vapes are – would you believe it – disposable.

These devices do not have a refillable option, meaning that you cannot fill up the cartridge with more e-liquid. Instead, you have to throw it away and purchase another. Made from lithium batteries, copper and plastic, these vaporizers need to be carefully disposed of in recycling centers or are a damage to the environment. Many of those who purchase disposable vapes are unaware of this and simply throw them on the floor or in any random bin. According to BBC news, over half of these devices are thrown directly in the bin, with around 1.3 million of them being thrown every week. The issue is, these vapes have around 600 puffs in them and are worth only around £5 in the UK. The vapes that are refillable cost around £20, which makes them a more expensive option for buyers.

The disposable vape is the epitome of a short-term purchase and perhaps this is why they are increasingly popular with the younger generations. This is the second issue with disposable vapes. They are designed to ooze temptation, with many different colors and flavorings, they’re like candy in a sweet store. In fact, other than the fact they contain nicotine, there really aren’t any similarities left between these devices and cigarettes. As a result, many young people who did not even smoke to begin with are now beginning to get hooked on disposable vapes. The Guardian writes:

“Despite it being illegal to sell the devices to under-18s, research indicates a steep rise in underage vaping over the last five years, with the proportion of 16- to 18-year-olds who say they use e-cigarettes doubling in the past 12 months alone”

TikTok and other social media sites are advertising to under 18s without restriction. The question does have to be asked: what is the purpose of the disposable vape? It seems – with its colourful design and fruity flavours – that this device was made for younger people. However, none of the companies leading in the industry, such as Elbar and Geekbar, are being held accountable. In their eyes, they are not doing anything wrong. 

Final Thoughts – Should Disposable Vapes be Banned?

Elfbar recently spoke to BBC news and recognized that the growing rate of the vape market does have environmental implications. Their next move is to implement recycling boxes for retailers to use to collect the vapes, as well as designing them to be longer lasting in the future. Nonetheless, there is no doubt that vaporizers have become an issue. The question is, is it a big enough issue to warrant a ban? Well, with 9% of 11 to 15 year olds in the UK using e-cigs, there does seem to be a problem.

The issue is, how can you avoid ever banning cigarettes but then suddenly decide to ban a much less harmful disposable vape. It just wouldn’t make sense. The industry is led by money and, therefore, it is highly unlikely that these appealing devices will be banned. Nonetheless, it is definite that something needs to change. There needs to be more of an effort by these companies in altering their design to stop appealing to younger generations. Why do they need to be so colorful? Why do they need to have raspberry fizz, kiwi watermelon and pink lemonade flavor?

There are plenty of actual smokers out there who enjoy the flavor of cigarettes, these e-cigs do not appeal to them whatsoever. Therefore, there needs to be some real change made in the design and some real conversations around their target audience. From a climate change point of view, it seems crazy that disposable vapes are legal to begin with. Hasn’t the environment got enough to deal with? The situation at the moment is not working. BBC writes:

“Material Focus are pushing for vape recycling to be made much easier, and for manufacturers and retailers to install collection points inside shops… Currently large shops must take back all items of small electronic products like disposable vapes in store to be recycled for free, regardless of whether the item was bought in that shop.”

Movements like these ones will hopefully change the negative effects that disposable vapes are having but, at the moment, the situation is not a positive one. The banning of anything does not seem to work and there is a great deal of history that proves that. Nonetheless, hopefully more people become aware of the harm that disposable vapes are causing. Vaporizers can do a lot of good, but it’s devices like these ones that tarnish the name.

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