In the past, when my car broke down or needed mechanic work
for whatever reason, I generally call around to every mechanic in a nearby
radius to get quick price quotes on my replacement transmission/tires/brake
pad/ whatever issue I have.
More and more everyday this is how people are going about
purchasing bulk marijuana. Over the past year, a significant percentage of the
phone calls received at our shop are consumers inquiring about the cheapest
ounce of flower for sale.
Two to three months ago you could call your average Tacoma
marijuana retail shop and their cheapest ounce of flower would range from $40.00-$60.00.
Twenty-eight grams for $40.00. That’s friggin’ cheap.
Fast forward to now, if you call into your average Tacoma
marijuana retail shop asking for their cheapest ounce of flower they’re going
to tell you $75.00-$80.00. Everybody, lend me your ears, that’s still friggin’
Over the last two years Washington’s weed market, similar to
Oregon’s, over produced useable flower, which drove prices down and created a demand
for that $40.00 ounce. Today, as a retailer looking around for a producer/processor
to sell us an ounce at a price point that allows us to get it to the consumer
at $40.00 is impossible. With a less than standard 2.5x mark up to cover our
own costs and excise taxes Tacoma’s bulk purchasing consumer is demanding a $16.00
ounce from the producer/processor.
Companies that sold their ounces at that $16.00 price point
to retail shops do not exist anymore. That is a less than sustainable price to
sell packaged marijuana for that is consumer ready.
Some company’s in Washington’s market have a business model
in which they operate at a loss to put pressure on the market and drive consumers
to their stores or create a demand for their product. This is happening at the producer,
processor, and retail level.
Personally, I am worried what effect this business model
will have on the future of the industry. Lets say 30 years pass by and all the
sixteen marijuana retail licenses within the city of Tacoma are controlled by 2
people, and they operate as a hive to hike the prices up or only carry certain farms
and basically take out the things which make this industry good for the consumer,
diversity, fair competition, small businesses, etc.
Whoa now, Ill pump the brakes on the theorizing of the
future of Tacoma’s weed market… Back to cheap ounces. I am predicting that the
average price of a normal budded ounce in Tacoma’s market will not drop below
that $60.00 to $70.00 price point. Unless of course the retail store is letting
them out the door at a stupid low price to drown the market.
Governor Jay Inslee signed SB5605 into law at about 4PM on Monday, May 13th 2019, after its passage in April via both the State Senate and House. The Senate did need a further reconciliation passage after the House amended the bill. The bill would require sentencing courts to vacate cannabis possession convictions, assuming that the person was above the age of 21 at the time of arrest. At the time of passage in the house, The News Tribune quoted State Senator and Bill sponsor Joe Nguyen (D-White Center) as saying:
“This proved you can do transformative justice reform issues and it’s a bipartisan thing,” said the bill’s lead sponsor, Sen. Joe Nguyen, D-White Center. “Our unjust laws of the past shouldn’t hold you back from being successful in the future.”
This could potentially be a boon to otherwise law abiding citizens who have had to uncomfortably confront this injustice on housing and employment applications, college loan applications, military service, and travel abroad. The Washington State Patrol reports that as many as 68,000 convictions could be expunged, affecting more than 58,000 individuals.
Brad Klippert (R-Kennewick) sought to limit the effect of the bill by sponsoring an amendment that would have given the courts the discretion of vacating the conviction, rather than compelling the court to do so. The amendment failed. However, through the House Appropriations Committee, the bill was further scoped to include verbiage that compelled the same action in all jurisdictions to ensure those charged and prosecuted under local, municipal ordinances were vacated, as well.
The Cannabis Alliance, was instrumental in lobbying the legislative body on this and several other bills during this and the previous sessions. The Cannabis Alliance is an industry group focused on introducing common sense laws and regulations to the industry, that benefit the industry as a whole, as opposed to a selective few.
Of further note, SB5442/HB1095 was passed by both chambers and would allow medical cannabis of certain types and dosages to be administered at public schools in accordance with a physicians instructions. Similarly, HB1401/SB5719 aim to bring Washington State Industrial Hemp laws in line with Federal laws, making it easier for Washington State Industrial Hemp based businesses to compete in the national marketplace was also passed in both houses and await the governor’s signature, on his desk.
Well, The Dandy Warhols (PDX) just got their tour underway, and DJ Rescue (Zia, their bass manipulator) does a series of after-show DJ sets at a watering hole after their legendary psych-rock gigs. The tour isn’t coming to Seattle, Tacoma, or Portland, but on June 22nd, 2019, DJ Rescue aka the one and only Ms Zia McCabe will be at Tacoma House of Cannabis on June 22nd 2019 from 7PM into the night, spinning some tunes! You can say ‘high’ and ask Zia to sign your Dandy merch. We will have some hardcard posters on hand to commemorate the event if you need something for her to shine. We are looking forward to having you in.
The first time I took a dab… wow… seems like quite a long time ago. Probably around 2011, my homeboy from work at the time told me to come blaze before work, naturally, I said “Hell yea!” Little did I know the doorways that were about to be opened into the fantastical world of hash oil dabbing.
I vaguely remember my buddy’s rig at the time, probably your run of the mill bong with a titanium nail equipped, perfect for hot dabs with no flavor and all that punch that goes with smoking hash oil. Before you go to judge me remember it was literally my first time dabbing and the year was 2011, so yeah, cut me some slack.
I was on my way to work, stopped by my dude’s place, took my dab, left shortly
after. BOY-O, did I get the most baked I’ve ever been in my entire life!
I continued to voyage my bicycle to work at the local steakhouse where I worked as a line cook at the time. When I arrived, needless to say, my manager saw right through my Visine lacking eyes, told me I wasn’t allowed to use any sharp knives for the day, and banished me to the dish pit, I abided.
forward eight years and I’m doing a demonstration on how to do a cold-start dab
for my legal weed shop’s online blog. God bless America, and especially our
beautiful Pacific Northwest.
“What is a cold-start dab?”, you may ask? I’ll give you a quick description, as well as a video in which I will demonstrate the speedy cold-start dab.
cold-start dab is achieved by simply scooping up the desired amount of hash oil
and placing it into a non-heated quartz banger, attached to whatever rig you
may have. I personally have never attempted a cold-start dab on any other type
of rig besides your standard quartz banger setup. You proceed to cover the
banger with your carb-cap, prepare yourself for your dab as you heat up the
banger for 10-15 seconds (depending on the thickness of your banger).
then use your carb-cap to move the oil around your banger as you hit that shit!
Way to go dudes and dude-ettes! You have just completed your very first
convenient and tasty, cold-start dab.
We see lots of resumes from prospective job seekers at all three of our stores. Sadly, there aren’t nearly enough jobs at our facilities for all the qualified job seekers that we see. However, the Tacoma and the Seattle area at large have a great resource for the green job seeker. We have a local blogger, Pink Boots 420, who is dedicated to maintaining all the green industry jobs she see’s posted to her blog. The list of things she posts are a LOT longer than just ‘budtender’. . . From marketing to trimming, in fact. You really should check it out over at website (pinkboots420.com) and her Facebook page.
So probably at least once or twice every day one of our customers says to me in the most Dazed and Confused-esque way. . . “Man . . . you got like the dream job man… Do you like get to test all these strains?” to which I reply in my most Half Baked-esque way, “Hell yea dude! And you best believe it my man! And the proper term is cultivar.” Okay, I may leave out the latter in my best attempt to not sound like a douche-bag, much to my boss’ dismay.
It had to have been about three to four weeks ago my boss was super excited to geek out on the latest terminology he heard from a key speaker at the Terpestival. The words “cultivar” and “chemovar” are more informative synonyms to words I classically knew as cannabinoid/terpene profile and strain.
So, long story short, he informed us about this new terminology to help classify marijuana correctly for lab technicians and growers and everyone in-between. Nicholas Demski, a writer for terpenesandtesting.com, gives a clear and concise description of the differences between the term cultivar and chemovar.
A cultivar is what a grower might cultivate, a variety of a plant created or selected and maintained though cultivation, For cannabis; Sour Diesel, GG#4, and OG Kush are all examples of different cultivars, so yeah its means the same thing as the term potheads have used for decades, strain.
A chemovar is the term used when considering cannabis from a more scientific approach. By observing the terpene profile, cannabinoid presence, and other elements of the whole plant that are not inert, labs are able to identify different chemovars within the cannabis plant.
Demski paraphrases Dr. Ethan B. Russo in saying scientists don’t have the luxury of using generic names for plants that vary so wildly in their appearance yet have strikingly similar compound structures. Russo says that cultivars are eminently malleable, and are as simple to alter as writing a new label. Chemovars is needed for precise dosing and consumers looking to replicate an exact effect. Lab technicians need to isolate these measurable chemical markers found in cannabis to help classify the industry and differentiate between plant chemistries, and the physiological effects the plants will trigger.
Before I give you my opinion on this spicy new terminology, I highly suggest reading a piece by Dominic Corva, titled ‘The Chemovar and the Cultivar.” Corva does a beautiful job explaining the differences between some of these newer terminologies and how they relate to older ones we might be using wrongly.
So back to my opinion piece . . . I am 100% for the unifying of cannabis culture and mass informing of any thing that has to do with a positive effect in the industry, especially when talked about by significant industry players like Dr. Ethan Russo, and Dominic Corva. But holy shit, most consumers aren’t ready to hear these pretentious sounding words describing weed.
At the end of February, I was invited by Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy founder Dominic Corva to attend a private mixer and recognition party. The event was held in Seattle, WA, just under the monorail on 5th Ave, near the Belltown neighborhood. Of course, designated representatives of all the producers and processors who had entered their product in the competition were on hand to witness their potential victory as the cannabis competition results were released late in the evening.
I spent the early part of the evening consuming some fine cannabis from TopShelf Cannabis in the pre-roll format, chatting with some of the reps from Uncle Ike’s in Seattle, and visiting @RosinHoe in the dab room. I had my good friend and R&D/production guy at Optimum Extracts, Mag Hanfbauer, sharing my company, as well as my girlfriend, Heather, and a lot of industry types. Olalla soft drinks were present (I LOVED THE FRUIT PUNCH!), Heather was enjoying some CBD infused Ale from Coalition Brewing, and the dabs brought from personal stashes were flashing on terp-delivering e-nails up in the dab shack. I hit some amazing Hindu Kush from Puffin Farms (omg super terpy) and something amazing from Megan at Kush Creams (available at Tacoma House of Cannabis) on her ridiculous rig.
After quelling our desires for a warm, fuzzy “high” feeling, we settled in to our seats for a keynote speech from Dr. Ethan Russo. My mom, Grandma Cat Jeter, has always said that cannabis leads to harder things . . . like graduate school. Well, in this case, it led me to Dr. Russo’s talk, and it was nothing short of a seminar on the organic chemistry of the cannabis plant, including its cannabinoids and terpenes. I highly recommend you take the chance to watch the 57 minute video about terpenes and cannabinoids at the link in his name, above.
Dinner followed, and was a fabulous vegetarian Greek / Mediterranean catered spread from Eggs and Plants, the kitchen / eatery attached to the Seattle Glassblowing Studio. Falafel, tahini, red cabbage salad, hummus, pitas, and other wonderful goodies were stacked to the rafters, and delicious.
After dinner and a few more refreshments, we settled back in to the audience area and watched the awards ceremony unfold. Custom glass awards were blown by Seattle Glassblowing Studio (see Duncan Rolfson’s photo below) handed out one after the other to celebratory representatives from the competing farms (full results below).
As the evening came to a close, we said our goodbyes to friends new and old, thanked our hosts, and, taking with us some great knowledge about some amazing vendors, made our way safely into the night, onto the freeway, and home to Tacoma.
MORE ABOUT CASP:
The Cannabis and Social Policy mission is to promote public and private efforts to use cannabis legalization to end the war on drugs, or “prohibition.” We understand prohibition as a cultural, political and economic phenomenon that has been very useful to many different people in many different places as a means of social control, not protecting society.
Donate to CASP
Terpestival 2019 – Winning Entries
Flower Company Strain
Flower Earth Type I House of Cultivar Sugar Berry Scone
Flower Fuel Type I Artizen Galactic Glue
Flower Fruit Type I House of Cultivar Tropicana Cookies
Flower Fruit Type II Puffin Farms CBD Yummy
Flower Fruit Type III Millenium Green Ringo’s Gift
Flower Floral Type I Secret gardens of washington Sunset Sherbet
Flower Floral Type II Millenium Green CBD Dream
Flower Floral Type III Trailblazin Harlequin
Concentrate Company Strain
CO2 Earth Puffin Farms Wifi OG
CO2 Fuel Puffin Farms Girl Scout Cookie
CO2 Fruit Optimum Extracts LA Ghost
CO2 Floral Puffin Farms Silver Bubble
BHO Earth Lazy Bee Wifi OG
BHO Fuel House of Cultivar OG Chem
BHO Fruit House of Cultivar Kosher Tangie
BHO Floral Solstice Shurman
Non Solvent Earth Cascade Gnome GG4
Non Solvent Fuel Secret Gardens of Washington SG
Non Solvent Fruit American Hash Makers
Non Solvent Floral American Hash Makers Omega
Plant-Derived Cartridge Earth Top Shelf
Plant-Derived Cartridge Fruit Optimum Extracts
Plant-Derived Cartridge Floral High Noon
Cannabis-Derived Cartridge Earth Puffin Farms
Cannabis-Derived Cartridge Fuel Lazy Bee Gelato
Cannabis-Derived Cartridge Fruit Ollala Sour
Beverage Ollala Pineapple Soda and Spiced
Vegan Edible Craft Elixirs Lorrie’s Sweet Potato
Chips and Black and Blueberry Squares CBD
This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of the reach of children.This product has intoxicating effects and may be habit forming. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. Do not operate a vehicle or machinery under the influence of this drug. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. For use only by adults twenty-one and older. Keep out of the reach of children.