Discover more from Sticky Bits by Lauren Yoshiko
Yellowing Leaves & Weed Boss Retreats
Plus: A Gray Market Takedown in NY
The Broccoli Report
Monday, August 22, 2022
Time to read: 4 minutes, 45 seconds. Contains 952 words.
Have you visited a fresh produce stand lately? It’s a beautiful rainbow of colors—so many hues of tomato and berry and corn. I’ve been thinking about markets a lot lately, not just because of the season’s bounty, but because night markets and more shop-oriented vendor fairs have been a lifeline for cannabis and cannabis-adjacent businesses in Portland, Oregon this past year. It’s a venue where CBD brands can interact with customers and talk people through applying their products, and THC brands can offer locals uninfused samples and make a connection that doesn’t require a driver’s license scan. It’s also a spot where accessories can shine, even if they have had trouble finding brick-and-mortars willing to stock another pipe.
So, this Friday, we’re heading to the market—a dream farmer’s market where real and fantasy cannabis edibles and artisanal products are showcased like the boutique apple farmers, whiskey, and cheese brands I see at market stands in Southeast Portland. Paid subscribers will see me in their inboxes Friday, per usual, but if you want to join us at the market, hit that subscribe button. Thank you for supporting independent journalism. 🌸
One-Hitters: Cannabis News at a Glance
Weed entrepreneur retreats are trending. Perhaps it’s a sign that our industry is maturing—or maybe just because things for smaller licensed cannabis companies in most states are pretty stressful right now. The Trailblazers series returns to Southern California’s Ojai Valley Inn for an all-inclusive, two-night experience in October, bringing together “over 200 executives, leading investors, and influential change-makers within the cannabis and hemp industry” for panels, networking, hikes, and spa services. This optimized relaxation experience starts at $3,299 for a solo room. On the more intimate end of things, Portland nonprofit NuLeaf just hosted the first of their Love Camp series. This two-night, all-inclusive retreat was limited to 30 cannabis or cannabis-related founders, and featured fireside meals cooked by an on-site chef, self-care sessions like yoga and massage, and executive and fundraising coaching from leaders like Ben Cohen of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream.
Well, the cops are crashing the party of New York’s booming gray market. Last Tuesday, NYPD seized 19 cannabis-vending trucks and buses in the Times Square area. This follows the $200,000 in parking fines paid by the not yet licensed—but notorious—Times Square edible purveyor, Weed World. They still owe another $300,000; a payment plan is in place.
A situation in Connecticut’s licensing scene hints at troubled waters ahead when it comes to licensing social equity applicants funded by non-equity companies. Kebra Smith-Bolden is a prominent figure in the state’s cannabis scene, advocating for recently passed recreational legislation, serving as president of CT United for Reform and Advocacy, and a member of the governor's Social Equity Committee, which helps set up the state's cannabis regulatory process. However, since receiving a $3 million investment from Canadian giant Acreage Holdings, Inc., her application to the state’s equity program has been denied. Smith-Bolden’s company filed a lawsuit against the state’s Department of Consumer Protection and its Social Equity Council, alleging there’s been a misunderstanding of how much legal control she has over the business. Regulators haven’t responded yet. It’s hard to say whether any decision in any state will set a precedent that other states will follow, but this certainly won’t be the last of these kinds of conundrums.
Supernova Women is hosting a Bay Area mixer for current and interested cannabis entrepreneurs Thursday, August 25. Produced in partnership with the Cannabis Chamber of Commerce, there’ll be good food, beer, and a mix of major players in the social equity scene.
Next month, Fruit+Flower Unfurled is throwing an LA-based celebration of the Autumn Moon Festival, complete with a screening of the film “Everything Everywhere All At Once,” mooncake tasting, and storytelling of the Moon Goddess and Jade Rabbit.
There were highs and lows while writing this recent piece for Thrillist about cannabis brand Sonder, the queer-owned California company that makes those infused popping candies. It was incredible to hear one of the founders share her experiences being raised by a single mom who grew weed to pay the bills, and upsetting to learn that even in West Hollywood, there are still bigoted dispensary buyers.
Any vintage or band tee aficionados out there? You might enjoy this smoke sesh with renowned distressed vintage picker and stylist Patrick Matamoros, a.k.a. Saint Luis, talking about his work, favorite music, and relationship with cannabis.
Have you ever thought to yourself, “One day we’ll live in a world where weed is so normal, Martha Stewart will sell pumpkin spice edibles.” That day has come. Her CBD gummy line is expanding to include a pumpkin spice flavor, and I suppose that this is just barely newsworthy indicates just how far we’ve come with destigmatization.
If you’re seeking more greenery in your home or wish to manifest some abundance in your workspace, check out Pot Plant’s latest fake cannabis plant strain drop—Sunset Sweets. This version evokes the sunset of the harvest season, the time when the buds are reaching their peak and leaves’ edges start to turn yellow and orange.
Fake Cakery’s new clay grinder, made to look like a buttery stack of pancakes, drops this Thursday and is sure to go fast. The metal grinding components in the ceramic housing are a nice touch, and there’s even a slim kief catch—about one pancake’s width.
Also sure to go fast—the upcoming drop of Edie Parker Flower’s joint hair barrettes. Not sure how I missed these last time, but my flyaways are demanding I set a calendar reminder.
Somehow losing hair ties faster than lighters,