420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Cultivator Kevin Jodrey, Wonderland Nursery

Trailblazers In Cannabis
Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create this series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we’ll profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions. This week’s featured trailblazer is Kevin Jodrey, the creator of Port Royal, owner of Wonderland Nursery, and co-founder of The Ganjier. He’s been a cannabis cultivator for decades, running his own operations and offering consulting services to the broader community.

Tell us about your company.

Based in Humboldt County, CA., the company is comprised of a nursery operation, a retail storefront, a mixed light greenhouse operation, a full sun farm, a distribution facility, an extraction facility, a terpene distillation and biomass drying facility, and labor, compliance and financial management services. With the exception of the full sun farm and the terpene distillation facility, all the other permitted operations are all located at the One Log House property in Cooks Valley, right on Highway 101. The One Log House is an historic Humboldt location, and one of the world’s best-known redwood attractions, complete with a coffee shop and gift shop.

Wonderland Nursery is what I’m mostly known for, and I couldn’t be happier that we were able to bring the business forward from the Prop 215 era to the new Prop 64 compliant model. We have a tissue culture facility that we partnered with, so we can produce true-to-type pathogen-free clones for the regulated industry, and also for growers who would like to cultivate the legal six-plant limit set under prop 64. We do contract work for larger clients who provide the plants they want us to propagate, and I still hunt for plants that the market wants, to provide to those in need and to stay current with those markets.

The new storefront turned out beautiful. We hired a design team from Los Angeles to help us create a modern feel without removing the roots of where we are located — in the heart of the redwoods. One of our partners is a master craftsman/mason, and he oversaw the building of the project so that it came out as desired. The feedback has been excellent, and we will celebrate our first year at this location in March. We focus on carrying products from craft batch farmers located in the Emerald Triangle. I’ve been involved with dispensary operations for about 11 years now, and I’ve always strived to support and highlight the incredible small batch producers from the region. I’m grateful to still have the ability to do so, and intend to for as long as I’m in the business.

wonderland nursery humboldtThe new mixed light operation features greenhouses sourced from Forever Flowering and lit by Fluence LED lights. We can use the range to produce flower for research and development, and for seed production. Having the mixed light operation on site makes testing what cultivars we produce and release to the public so much more exact, and let’s us create the map of how to grow the plant. and what difficulties one may find while growing it to make it a simpler process for the farmer at the farm sites. We’ve been friends with the team from Forever Flowering for a long time. They were our primary sponsor for the Golden Tarp Awards ‘light dep’ competition that I put on every Fall in Humboldt County,  and I’m very happy that I can use them as my greenhouse provider/greenhouse consultants. The same appreciation applies to Fluence Bioengineering as well. We use their fixtures on our plants in the nursery, and really look forward to seeing the greenhouse lit with these excellent LED lamps.

The full sun farm is my family farm, and being able to finally get the County and State licenses is a joy words can’t adequately express. I’ve worked on that project for over six years to get the environmental components up to code, and I’m looking forward to Spring planting this year more than maybe ever. The entire goal of the farm was to be able to maintain ownership of the property and to be able to pass it along to my future generations. Using cannabis cultivation to preserve the land and maintain the animal habitats that have existed on that mountain for millennia has been the goal, and with the new permits I believe in some small way we can achieve that.

The extraction facility, terpene distillation facility, and distribution facility are being built as I write this. Having the ability to remove desirable terpenes and infuse them back into distillate cartridges — to make a true cannabis derived cartridge — is critical for the craft market. To me craft means attention to detail of what makes up your cartridge. A premium extraction facility, coupled with a dedicated terpene stripping operation, allows the smaller farmer to be able to create cartridges that give the satisfaction to the end user. The more options a smaller farmer has to reach his market audience, the better.

In the same vein,  we created a distribution service that can follow the chain of custody so that the quality control stays high throughout. If we begin with the genetics that are in demand, and make it easy to maintain the quality throughout the rest of the downstream steps after cultivation, the end user or the buyer will have a greater level of satisfaction. I believe that efficient production practices coupled with a desire to deliver unwavering quality is where the craft brands must position themselves, and we want to be a part of that process.

We created farm labor, financial services, and compliance assistance packages as well. These issues are ones that many, if not most, farmers have never had to deal with to the extent that they do now. Competent honest assistance is what was needed, and what we have tried to provide.  So far, the feedback has been great. Being local, it is easier to understand the needs of the local farmers and operators so that we can provide what they really need and allow them to do what they really want.

Wonderland NurseryWhy did you choose the cannabis industry?

I have to go back 40 years to answer that one. I chose to be involved with cannabis because the people I saw partaking and selling the product had  — with the exception of being arrested —  a great life. It made me curious, and after smoking my first joint in 1978 I understood why. Cannabis is the greatest social bridge I’ve ever found. It allows people from dissimilar backgrounds to find the common ground needed to make real human connection. Using Cannabis has the ability to reduce petty competition and hostility. It allows for more elegant acceptance of other behaviors and differences. It’s what has sustained my desire to remain in the industry for the past 40 years. I love cannabis and am grateful I made the decision so many years ago to stay true to what I believed in and being able to share in that love with others is just incredible to me.

What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need?

Our firm addresses the integration that’s needed to be efficient. Supply chain management — being able to keep the quality up across the entire production process — is critical for success in today’s competitive markets. Career cannabis operators who assist other cannabis operators know better about where the loss of quality can occur, when compared to operators who simply have a license. By being directly involved in so many aspects of the industry, we have a broader understanding, which we can use to direct operators how to best achieve their objectives. From what plants to grow to how to grow them; from harvesting to sale and where one should focus their energies; from compliance to payroll so infractions don’t make it impossible for the small farmer to succeed — these things are what we think about, and assist farmers with. That is our mission.

I’m not sure if anyone in the state is offering so many services wrapped into such a tight bundle right now. There are many groups who do the different aspects, but I’m not aware of any that handle so many different phases with experience in all of them.

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What has been the reactions to your product/services/technology?

Fantastic! We are so happy with how the operation has been received. The storefront is doing great and people love the design. The local farmers we deal with love having a storefront right on Highway 101 with 40,000 cars a day passing by. The ability to showcase your products to a diverse group helps to get the knowledge of your products out there. The nursery is producing stock and we have a delivery truck that delivers across the region. The financial, labor, and compliance services are in demand. The extraction and terpene facilities should be operational by the first of June, in time for the region’s first harvest. Mixed light operation will be ready to go by Spring, in time for first planting. My full sun farm has thankfully always done well, and I can’t wait to get what we produce into the storefront. Humboldt is large, geographical speaking, but not in population. I think our smaller population creates a more intimate relationship between the cannabis participants in our area,  and we all seem to want to see each other succeed. The saying “a rising tide lifts all ships” gets used a lot, but here in Humboldt I believe it really holds true.

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Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

The dispensary will be in operation for a year come March. Wonderland Nursery was begun six years ago on February 14, and I couldn’t be any happier that it is still here and expanded. After almost two decades of unregulated nursery operations, I began nursery operations in medical cannabis almost 11 years ago by creating the very first vertical nursery model in the United States. A patient could enter the store and purchase flower from the plants they could see growing in the indoor grow operation, and then purchase the exact clone used in that production. We still follow that model. By constantly exploring what the market desires, and by either breeding or sourcing the plants in demand, we can keep the farmers marketable. There is nothing better in business than being able to stay current by serving people what they need and want.  The years slowly go by and each year passed adds another layer to your acumen and interests. In another 20 years, I’d love to be asked this question again as I hope I can say we are still growing, still serving, still enjoying being part of our cannabis community.

Where can readers learn more?

You can follow us a few different ways to see what we have cooking and what’s in the works. The main site is oneloghouse.com. The nursery is wonderlandnursery.com and @wonderlandnursery on Instagram. A great way to see what’s happening at the nursery is also through @wonderlandoos on Instagram. He and I have been working together for over 20 years. You can follow me directly at kevinjodrey.com and on Instagram @kevinjodrey

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: CSC Events CEO Joshua Crossney

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we’ll profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions. This week’s featured trailblazer is Joshua Crossney, CEO of CSC Events, the host for the Cannabis Science Conference.

Tell us about your Company

CSC Events, LLC, hosts the Cannabis Science Conference- the world’s largest and most technical scientific and medical cannabis event. Our conference pulls together cannabis industry experts, instrument manufacturers, testing labs, research scientists, medical practitioners, patients, policy makers and interested novices. Our semi-annual event is aimed at improving cannabis science.

We hosted our first conference in Portland, OR, in 2016 and have returned to Portland every Fall since. At our third annual event in August of 2018, we hosted over 3,000 attendees from 27 countries and featured more than 150 vendors in our 60,000 sq. ft. exhibition hall.

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Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

I chose the cannabis industry because I have always been interested in the medicinal properties and science behind the cannabis plant. When I started to look a little closer into the national industry, I realized early on that quality control testing was not regulated and standardized and at the time in 2015, some states didn’t even require QC/QA testing for their medical cannabis programs. I also saw that there was a lack of information sharing when it came to research and medical advances that were being looked at.

I created the Cannabis Science Conference platform as a way to bridge the gaps between the cannabis industry and traditional science/medicine, as well as bridge the gaps between medical professionals and patients/consumers. When we started the conference, there were mostly only general business conferences and trade shows on the market. We sought out to create a space for the world’s leading researchers, analytical chemists, medical professionals and cultivators to share their data and research.

What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need?

As we work to bridge the gaps between science, medicine and cannabis, we are constantly innovating. At our 2017 Cannabis Science Conference, we added our Medical Cannabis track that focuses on topics, like pediatric and geriatric care, routes of administration, advocacy and patient rights. We expanded our educational content again in 2018 with the addition of our Cultivation Science track. This track focuses on the science behind the cultivation of cannabis. Jacklyn Green, PhD and Roger Kern, PhD (formerly with NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory) along with Autumn Karcey of Cultivo, Inc., worked with us to curate the content for this track that featured leaders from academia and industry alike. We also created the Canna Boot Camp in 2016, our full-day, hands on workshop that covers cultivation, extraction, sample prep and analytical testing. This event is a great way for participants to experience hands on learning in multiple aspects of the cannabis industry and walk away with usable industry knowledge.

We have created an event that highlights advances in cannabis science, medicine and cultivation. As I mentioned before, prior to the inception of the Cannabis Science Conference, there were little to no outlets for research and advancements in science to be shared. Our conferences have filled that void and we’re doing great work to bridge the gaps in education. We are proud to provide a platform for the world’s leading key opinion leaders to gather and share their research and insights on cannabis.

Montel with Josh

What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?

The reaction to the Cannabis Science Conference has been overwhelmingly positive! I get emails and calls regularly from past attendees telling us how amazing they think the conference is. The positive feedback we have received from our attendees, vendors and speakers really means a lot to us, as without them, you have no show. Our conference has continued to rapidly grow since inception in 2016. The launch of our first east coast conference was in response to the increasing interest from the community to bring our platform to this market. We’re excited that we have continued to accomplish our goal to advance cannabis science and we’re honored that so many individuals and companies have chosen to support our mission.

Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

The Cannabis Science Conference team is excited to be expanding our brands portfolio to also include an east coast, spring conference. The first of which will take place April 8th -10th, 2019 in Baltimore, Maryland at the Baltimore Convention Center. Tickets are now available for the 2019 Cannabis Science Conference East. We’re thrilled to have celebrity keynote speakers, Ricki Lake and Montel Williams both joining us for this event. We will also be hosting a special screening of Ricki Lake and Abby Epstein’s latest documentary, Weed the People, a ground-breaking, award-winning film that follows five pediatric cancer patients and their family’s journey in using cannabis as a treatment. Directly following the screening, there will also be a special filmmaker’s Q&A with Ricki Lake, Abby Epstein and participants of the film, including Tracy Ryan, CEO & Founder of CannaKids & SavingSophie.org and Dr. Bonni Goldstein, a CA based pediatric cannabis specialist with Canna-Centers.

We will be back in Portland, OR for our flagship Cannabis Science Conference this September 4th-6th, 2019. This will be our biggest event yet, as we are expected to have 180 vendors and at least 4,000 attendees. More details on this event will be coming soon, including the announcement of our celebrity guest speakers.

Where can readers learn more?
Readers can learn more about Cannabis Science Conference at www.CannabisScienceConference.com.

2019 Cannabis Science Conference East Hype Reel

 

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Leo Bridgewater, Co-Founder CannaGatherNJ

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we’ll profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions.  This week, we’re pleased to introduce you to featured trailblazer Leo Bridgewater, co-founder of Cannagather NJ.

Tell us about your Company

CannagatherNJ is the largest and most diverse Cannabis Industry Networking/Education platform in the Garden state. Every 4th Tuesday of the month we host events where entrepreneurs, investors, and business owners in the industry can meet and exchange ideas. We highlight businesses that want to announce themselves, their business model, and their intentions in the Garden state. Our keynote speakers range from elected officials to former pro athletes, advocates and CEO’s, all in the cannabis or hemp industries.

LeowithCoreybooker

Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

Considering my NJ medical marijuana patient advocacy work, I honestly feel my involvement in the cannabis/hemp industry is more of an evolution than a choice. In fact, it was through advocacy that the business revealed itself to me. The early history of our industry has not been kind to minorities and women. We’re currently living in that early history, and this is how I evolved into the business rather than it being a choice.

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What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need? 

The extreme lack of consumer education, coupled with an extreme lack of minority inclusion and participation, are all symptoms of chaos. This chaos only exists because the industry is still in its infancy, and we’ve yet to figure out how to effectively communicate with one another. Cannagather NJ looks to address those needs by hosting affordable education/networking events.

Those of us whose craft and business it is to either touch the plant or support the plant need a consistent place where we can meet up, learn, exchange ideas, and talk business amongst each other. Until Cannagather NJ, access to an environment like this would cost in the range of $100-$400. We bring quality speakers and exposure to some of the brightest minds and talent in the Industry and we charge just $35.00. We believe access to industry information is paramount if NJ is to have a robust and inclusive cannabis/hemp industry.

Leobridgewater2

What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?

Humbling to say the least. Every month since its inception here in NJ our attendance has averaged between 200-250. Attendees and featured business alike have expressed both excitement and gratitude. The diverseness of our business owners is what we are most proud of. There’s an entire demographic of industry professionals whom have been largely ignored, locked out, missed, and passed over. CannagatherNJ looks to correct that problem.

Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

Yes, we are in the midst of a national expansion. We are set to bring CannagatherCT, CannagatherATL, cannagatherMIA, CannagatherPhilly, CannagatherNO and CannagatherLA online in the coming months.

Where can readers learn more?

https://cannagather.com/nj/january2019

https://www.facebook.com/cannagathernj/

https://www.facebook.com/marcel.bridgewater

https://www.instagram.com/cannagather_nj/

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Home Grown ORegonicX Founders Angela & Jared Panks

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we profile a noteworthy business pioneer and ask each 5 questions. This week’s featured trailblazers are Angela and Jared Panks, founders of Home Grown ORegonicX.

Tell us about your Company

Our farm, Home Grown ORegonicX is a medical garden in Southern Oregon. We provide our deaf community and patients with a place to grow organic medical cannabis and teach conscious cultivation practices. We use nature and biodiversity to provide the cleanest herbs possible and employee our deaf community to the best of our ability. A hands on learning approach is the best way to teach our deaf community.

We have been growing cannabis since 2007 for our family and patients. We recently started doing tutorial videos on cannabis cultivation and the medical benefits of cannabis for the deaf and hearing impaired community. We want our community to understand the medical benefits of cannabis and about the Endocannabinoid System, Organic cultivation and how it can benefit us all. It’s a challenge for us because the ASL Language is still being created on cannabis and science in general. A lot of words or concepts need to be finger spelled for people to understand what we are taking about which can be a challenge in itself. For many years the science behind cannabis and cannabinoids has been hidden to our community and we are trying to change that.
homegrown ORegonicX logoWe began terpene mapping the various strains we would grow so that we could get a better idea of how our herbs would interact on a patient and try to make specialized medicine to help with people’s various issues. Our goal is to work with nature and your Endocannabinoid System to allow people to live a quality of life. Knowing which strains produce specific terpenes and how it will affect someone is important. Not everyone wants to get high. Most people want to lead a productive, healthy life style and we are here to support that.

We also want to open up the cannabis industry to the deaf global community. We need to dispel the negative stigmas associated with cannabis and promote knowledge and a deeper understanding of nature and its importance. Breaking down these communication and information barriers for our deaf community is our mission; giving our community a better opportunity is our goal.

Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?
We are passionate about medical cannabis, we know that it has healed so many people and has had a positive impact, giving people a better quality of life. The majority of our deaf community is missing out on the benefits that cannabis could bring to their life and surroundings. Some people are still stuck on the stigma behind it. We travel to lots of cannabis events during the past 5 years to bring deaf/cannabis awareness to our industry and community. We still haven’t met another deaf grower aside from our little tribe. We must change that by providing an education and opportunities. Without education, there is no opportunity for this forgotten community.
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What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need?

The change we will address is raising deaf awareness in cannabis industry by inspiring cannabis entrepreneurs to be more involved in the deaf community. We want the deaf and hard of hearing community to be part of this industry. Going to cannabis related events has brought awareness and people want to be a part of opening this world up to our community. Providing education content to the deaf demographic in the cannabis community and getting sign language interpreters for future events.
We are working with ECS Therapy in CO to develop sign language for cannabis world, making it easier for the deaf to be part of this fast growing industry and creating language to represent the science behind cannabis.

We want to raise awareness on Cannabinoid Hyperemesis Syndrome (CHS) which is a rare condition where a heavy cannabis user can become violently ill over a period of time. The symptoms mimic those of someone going through a detox. CHS expresses itself with a fever, cold sweats cyclic vomiting, extreme dehydration and the relief of extremely hot baths or showers.

Usher Syndrome is where deaf and hearing impaired individuals slowly go blind. It is a genetic trait that only effect the hearing impaired. Angela was diagnosed with Ushers Syndrome as a kid and has experienced persistent vision loss. She believes that her cannabis use has slowed the diseases progress and it’s a topic that hasn’t been researched.

Organic practice. Making more videos in sign language demonstrating organic cultivation practices. Demonstrating how you can build an ecosystem, worm farming, Integrated Pest Management, Fermentation, compost teas, companion cropping and so much more. Without education there is no opportunity.

 

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What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?  
The responses we’ve received have been amazing; people have told us so many times how we open their eyes to the deaf world, and that they want to do whatever possible to help. We met a man at a conference he was speaking at 3 years prior. Jared was interpreting for our group at the Oregon Marijuana Business Conference when we first met. We ran into him again at The Emerald Cup and he was anxious to tell us how after that experience he went on to take sign language. He also as 2 employees that speak sign language.

For being a small group, we have made a lasting impact on this industry and we hope to leave a mark on the world. Jared was a Paramedic/Hotshot/Fire fighter in his former life. Angela owned her own painting business and worked for Legal Shield providing the deaf community with legal representation before getting into the cannabis industry. Our mission has always been to change the world and to leave a positive impact on anything that we put our minds towards. Our lives are a testament of that.

Many people ask how they can help and urged us to form a nonprofit organization which is a difficult thing to do in the cannabis industry. Luckily enough we have partnered with ECS Therapy and we now have a way for people to help us in our mission. We want to be able to change the world for the better and now we have another way for people can participate.

In general, the cannabis community is a kind group of individuals who are genuine and sincere. There have been many life changing experience for both the people we meet and for us as well. We look forward to seeing what God bring into our paths.

People are often bewildered by what we are trying to do. When they see the cannabis we can produce with minimal cost. We can grow organic sun grown cannabis and compete with indoor cultivators in quality. To be able to do this with a small group of deaf patients and create opportunities for them is surreal. Showing our deaf community how to work with nature and building something that will provide food, health and benefit the world. When people actually see the garden they always comment on the attention to detail that we have put into this project. We have had a chance to We had Tommy Chongs family to our home and the first thing they said was, “they had never seen a garden like this before.”  What we do has been around for a long time, how we do it is original and progressive.

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Are there any upcoming milestones for your company? 

Just being a part of this industry is a milestone. With how Oregon’s legalization process has gone, it has been very difficult. Medical Cultivators have been locked out of a legal market since recreational use was passed. Medical growers fought for legalization and created a great medical system. We were in 70 different stores in Oregon before the OLCC pushed us out of the legal cannabis business market. Continuing to fight for fair access to a legal market is important and we can’t stop until all medical cannabis is no longer the face of the black market.

Creating Sign Language for the cannabis industry is a pretty big milestone too. Working with ECS Therapy to create these opportunities for our deaf community is such an honor. Getting a Non-Profit organization to sponsor us was a pretty tall task considering the Federal Laws and this newly emerging industry. It’s a step in the right direction and one of many obstacles we have been able to overcome. 

We would also like to build a garden where we can bring deaf people from all over the world to teach them hand on cultivation practices and to have a home for those in our community who want to participate in the cannabis industry. We can’t wait to represent the deaf in this industry and get our products out there so people experience it for themselves. 

We have just started going around and making videos of cannabis cups and different events surrounding this industry. We have had the chance to conduct a few interviews and we look forward to getting this stuff put up on our website. Doing things like this will only debunk the stigma around cannabis culture and help people make better life choices. 

We would like to work with a lot of different people on different platforms to create educational content and bring the cannabis message to the globe in Sign Language. We want to share their testimonies and hopefully change people’s lives for the better. Maybe a movie in the future…. Lots of people have bounced ideas off of us. It’s just about finding the right people to do the right things with for the right reason. We want to change the worlds perspective and we can’t do it alone. 

Where can readers learn more?

We are working on website at the moment.
For now, you can check our Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/homegrownoregonicx/ and our Instagram: Home_grown_oregonicx

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Muriel Young Bear, Bear Cub Consulting

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we profile a noteworthy business pioneer and ask each 5 questions. This week we talk to trailblazer, Muriel Young Bear, Consultant at Bear Cub Consulting, LLC.

Tell us about your Company

My traditional name is Mekw iid (Me’qu’ish), or Bear Head. I am a Bear Clan member of the Meskwaki Tribe in Tama, Iowa, Haskell Indian Nations Alumni, current board member of the Planted Association of Kansas, and Iowa Hemp Association board member.

I specialize in Economic development and diversification in Indian communities. I started my company to contribute my business background to Tribal Nations, specifically. I founded Bear Cub Consulting in 2017, where I work specifically with tribal communities to diversify Tribal operations, investments into the emerging Hemp industry. I also work in tribal entrepreneurship & small business development for tribal members. I am passionate about the sustainable use of land and resources, as well as strengthening sovereignty for all tribal nations and local economies. I began studying Hemp markets, supply chains, and business models as a graduate student at the University of Kansas in 2016, finding ways to apply them to Indian Country.

Screenshot 2019-01-08 07.35.50Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

Historically, Indian tribes had a close relationship with this plant, specifically fiber. Hempstead Project Heart, founded by John Trudell and managed by Tribal Hemp advocate Marc Grignon, has uncovered historical Hemp artifacts such as Traditional twine bags, prisoner hand ties, fabrics for our bandolier bags and our bow strings. Our relationship with the Low THC fiber plant, is apart of our traditional history. I am excited to see this industry happen in Indian Country!

I am also an advocate for local, organic food systems, slow food, and food sovereignty. This Hemp seed is a perfect superfood and is highly nutritious. With food items such as hemp meal, hemp milk, hemp seed, and hemp flour, this is one of my PERSONAL favorite usages of the Hemp plant. It is also how I found Industrial Hemp!

I strongly believe this plant is MORE apart of our culture than we realized, or simply forgot. I want our tribal governments to be confident with economic diversification into this industry, it is in tune with our beliefs about sustainability. Along with the incredible history we have with the plant, the environmental benefits far exceed what we are invested in today! I would love to see us move away from fossil fuels, tobacco, timber and grow sustainable and renewable resources like Hemp! 

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What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need? 

I am looking for partnerships, between states, tribes, and farmers to create a strong domestic supply chain for future generations. Right now, we all are aware of the lack of infrastructure in the US, and I know tribes can provide capital, as well as tax incentives and vast amounts of land for large-scale products like fiber and seed. Now that “And tribes” has been included into the revised 2019 Farm Bill, the possibilities are only the limits of our imagination.

Industrial usages in fiber and seed constitute 90% of its overall potential, versus CBD Flower. When I think of HEMP, I think of the Hemp American Flag. I think of Henry Fords’ Model T reinforced with hemp fiber, and the Hemp oil it ran on. I think of the FIRST Levi Strauss hemp Jean! I am highly interested in other areas of the Industrial Hemp market and I would like to see tribal councils start investing in the domestic supply chain, on tribal lands. Diversify our business investments into something more sustainable and renewable. Which aligns with our belief as caretakers of the earth.

What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?

I provided education and advocacy for the last 2 years in illegal midwest states. Ever since I launched my “Hemp is the way” social media awareness campaign in 2016, I have received such an AMAZING response from both Tribal Members, Tribal Councils, and Hemp Industry leaders alike! I have been invited to discuss Tribal Economics and how we would diversity into Industrial Hemp on several occasions.  I feel many people would love to see tribal economies thrive, as a way to strengthen sovereignty.

Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

I will be attending at the 2nd annual Tribal Green symposium, in Las Vegas. Feb. 19-20 at the Paiute Golf Resort. This will be the FIRST chance tribal leaders will be able to take investments seriously, with the support of the Farm Bill. Excited to consult with attendees.

I am also currently a CSA (community supported agriculture) coordinator at a local, organic Kansas farm. 50 acres USDA certified organic. We are applying for my FIRST license to grow Industrial Hemp. This is my first year with the plant in the ground, It has been a long road, but now the real work begins! Stay tuned for updates

Where can readers learn more?

Please visit my facebook or LinkedIn page, all my upcoming projects will be available as we enter the 2019 growing season.

Ke ti’ bi – Thank you

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Norman Ives, Broker & Cannabis Specialist Worldwide Facilities

Trailblazers In Cannabis

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions. This week we talk to trailblazer Norman Ives, Insurance Broker and Cannabis Specialist at Worldwide Facilities. 

Tell us about your company: 

Established in 1970, Worldwide Facilities is a national wholesale insurance broker, managing general agent and program underwriter. For nearly 50 years our team of insurance specialists have provided innovative solutions to the specialty US and international insurance markets. More recently through a combination of organic growth, recruitment and acquisitions Worldwide Facilities has aggressively expanded presence, standing and financial strength more than tripling its size to more than $1.5 billion in premium and is among the four largest wholesale brokers in the US.

Norm at MJBA Booth

Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

Did I choose the cannabis industry, or did it choose me? It was not long after Initiative 502 passed in Washington legalizing the production and sales of adult-use/recreational marijuana that I started receiving inquiries from business owners and investors trying to understand what kind of insurance policy options were available for a marijuana license holder and other marijuana related endeavors. Not long after some of the first policies issued to license holders I began speaking business networking groups like the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) and Washington Marijuana Association (WAMA) to help educate the community and committed myself to volunteering in the community like the non-profit Cannabis Coalition for Standards and Ethics (CCSE) and later The Cannabis Alliance. I am honored to be able to contribute my time and energy in support of the cannabis movement and the many amazing, caring, compassionate individuals who have been doing this meaningful work at great risk and often their own expense to deliver meaningful healthcare services to some of our communities most vulnerable members.

norm at dope mag party

What change will your firm address in the industry? 

Progress & solutions!  With more than 20 years of experience in the nutraceutical space, Worldwide’s NutraRisk practice group is already the recognized leader delivering insuring products for dietary supplements, CBD, vitamins, health, nutrition and naturalist products. The expansion into regulated cannabis is a natural progression of our continued commitment to its core institutional strengths. Over the course of the last year, they have done more than any other insurance organization to improve the market following the launch of two new insurance carriers (both highly regarded A+ XV carriers) including their best in class, exclusive cannabis offering that was announced in September of 2018.

MJBizCon on the bus

What has been the reaction to your product?

Over the past four years I have placed more than 1,000 policies generating $4.5 million in insurance premium delivering insurance protection to more than $400 million dollars in legal/regulated cannabis sales.

What have been some key milestones for you? 

This past year, I have been honored to serve as an elected board member of The Cannabis Alliance, Washington State’s largest and most influential non-profit advocating for the advancement of a vital, ethical and sustainable cannabis industry.

I am proud to serve my fellow insurance professionals as a panelist for Business Insurance Master Class “Cannabis Cover” held in Denver & Los Angeles in March 2019.

This spring I have been invited to speak by the Defense Research Institute, Washington DC, to the international organization of attorneys defending the interests of business and individuals in civil litigation for their May 2019 installment of “Marijuana Law”.

Where can readers learn more?

Nives@wwfi.com

LinkedIn:              https://www.linkedin.com/in/normanives/

Instagram:           @Cannabiznorm

Twitter                 @CannaBizNorm

 

 

420MEDIA Trailblazers In Cannabis: Sproutly Canada CEO Keith Dolo

mjba Business

Digital marketing agency 420MEDIA and the Marijuana Business Association (MJBA) have joined forces to create a series highlighting entrepreneurs trailblazing the cannabis scene. Each week, we’ll profile a noteworthy business pioneer, and ask each 5 questions. This week’s featured trailblazer is Keith Dolo, President and CEO of Sproutly Canada.

1. Tell us about your Company

Sproutly is a licensed producer of Cannabis in Canada and is positioning itself to develop and bring to market unique consumer products with a focus initially on beverages. We have a purpose-built facility for the production of high grade cannabis based in Ontario as well as a ground-breaking technology that will revolutionize how cannabis is formulated into a wide range of products such as alcohol replacements, functional beverages, consumables, topicals and variety of other products. Sproutly recently acquired, in a transformation acquisition, Infusion Biosciences Canada, the first company to produce a truly water-soluble natural cannabis solution. It’s revolutionary to the entire cannabis industry so we are extremely excited to bring it to market.

 

Comparison-Inforgraphic-2

2.  Why did you choose the cannabis/hemp business?

For me personally, the development and growth expected within the cannabis industry represented an opportunity to be part of a growth initiative that is poised to have an incredibly drastic impact on the global market. It is a rare occasion when the legalization, decriminalization, or mainstream adoption of a product such as cannabis, can have such an impact on so many different facets of life around the world. Most people only consider cannabis as something you smoke and view this a short-term play to allow people the ability legally smoke or consume cannabis recreationally, this is so much greater than that. Cannabis will be broad reaching, have massive implications and impacts on the pharmaceutical industry, the beverage industry, the pet food industry, nutritional food product markets, and beauty products amongst many others. Being part of something this exciting, not only in Canada but globally was the key driver in getting me involved.

With all the large beverage companies looking at or investing into the sector, it provides validity to what we are working on here at Sproutly. The recent announcement of Molson entering the Canadian cannabis scene, or the rumors of Coca-Cola in discussions to enter the industry, allows investors and consumers to start recognizing that Cannabis will have a large impact on existing products from alcohol to tobacco companies. The majors are looking at how to position and hedge themselves moving forward, it’s exciting.

3. What change will your firm address in the industry? Does it address an unmet need?

For Sproutly, we have positioned ourselves to stand out and provide access to what some are calling Cannabis 2.0 the ability to be produce products that bring additional consumers into the cannabis industry that have previously sat on the sidelines. Our cannabis products will be seen in everything from edibles, to beverages, to topicals, to health and wellness products both recreationally and medically. We have the ability to produce two unique products that once launched in the market will stand apart from their competitors, our Bio-Natural Oils and our Infus2O product.

The INFUS2O product is the first truly water-soluble cannabis solution that does not need massive amounts of sugar or chemicals to mask the bad tasting flavor of a chemicals currently used in cannabis beverages and the solubility of INFUS2O has also solved the rapid onset and off-set problems that currently plague cannabis consumables. People will be able to consume our liquid cannabis in any drink, that’ the idea here.  Like alcohol that is processed by the body through the blood stream, the effects of our product will be felt in 5 minutes and will last as long as 45-90 minutes, like having an alcoholic beverage.  The big advantage over existing oil products in edibles and beverages will be the ability to know the timeframe of the effect, as opposed to eating a product, where the person does not know when they will feel the effect or when it will wear off, it’s the answer people are searching for.

4. What has been the reaction to your product/service/technology?

At this point, it’s been extremely positive. Obviously, with any new disruptive technology, there exists a necessity to prove it out from a scientific standpoint as well as consumer response perspective…we are working hard on both fronts. With now over 200+ consumer tests completed, the response has been consistent, and the feedback of the fast onset / fast offset has been verified. For validating the products within a lab testing environment, we are currently partnering with an analytics laboratory in Washington state and a soon to be announced Canadian partnership in order to finalize the analytical testing methods on our products as well as other cannabis oils that have been diluted into beverage products. More to come on that in the next few months…

5. Are there any upcoming milestones for your company?

We are working extremely hard on a number of projects and milestones that will move the company forward on many fronts. One vertical, in our strategy, is to solidify business joint ventures with existing CPG/beverage companies that have recognized brands. We are working on selecting the right partnerships with companies that are as forward thinking as we are and can move quickly and nimbly to complete formulations and have products ready for launch when the legalization of these products commences in 2019. We feel we will advance the Sproutly brand much quicker with multiple companies than finalizing a relationship with one company. We are also in the process of determining our international expansion plans, specially the European Union and the countries that support legal cannabis within their regulatory framework. The company is very new, receiving it’s licence to cultivate Cannabis from Health Canada in June, going public in July, closing the acquisition of Infusion BioSciences Canada in August, now executing on it’s business plan through the fall months leading up to legalization in Canada. We are excited for what is to come and what we can share with our shareholders and future users of the Sproutly products in development.

 Where can readers learn more?

We are working on our US OTCQB listing requirements currently which will drive more marketing activity and traction in the US over the coming months. Readers can always sign up on our website for up to date information at www.Sproutly.ca or simply stay tuned to the cannabis content platforms such as 420MEDIA for more to come.

Social media: https://twitter.com/SproutlyCanada