Recently some light-dep Green Crack and Blue Dream nugs were gifted to HU – both impressive; the true fruit of the hills of Northern Cali. Interestingly Wonderland Nursery advertised both these strains on fliers inserted in the local weekly (The North Coast Journal). A cutting of Green Crack was given the front page – $10 for a start, $15 potted. Blue Dream shared the second page with OG Sour and Ghost OG. Finding it unique that the fresh and expertly grown cannabis HU had been provided was the same pheno-type that wonderland nursery was advertising, HU set out to compare the strains.
HU staff started researching info to write a cannabis review. Great idea, right? Here’s the industry, full circle, right in our hands – cutting to nug, cool! Looking on the Internet, HU shortly realized that Leafly.com had already made strain reviews somewhat obsolete. They kill the strain review game. Feeling defeated, our collective minds shifted back to our week of reading local cannabis industry media and that’s when we decided to take a step back and figure out all the moving parts of Humboldt’s’ frantically emerging cannabis industry.
I mean nugs – Green Crack and Blue Dream – cool, right? First light-dep of the year coming out of our hills, cool right? Yah, but what’s more interesting is the story these two nugs produce. Not their yield, or terpene profile, or lineage, or the type of high; what’s interesting is the potential route these nugs took from cutting to our vape and all the ecological, economic, and social commotion these nugs make. HU staff and contributors have been frustrated for years with the inaction Humboldt County has shown in preparing for cannabis legalization but all of a sudden the pound (turkey bagged of course) has hit the fan.
After years of nothing (predominantly is probably a more accurate word choice here) but crime reports and law enforcement scare tactics, HU staff has noticed an explosion of cannabis advocacy, media, and industry. Mostly fledgling – none-the-less exciting – a potential legal industry is popping out of the illegal woodwork. Finally we are seeing residents’ frame cannabis as normal (as opposed to criminal or medical). Of course this is accompanied by push back from typical opponents of cannabis legalization but HU has also noticed some new voices emerge out of Humboldt’s cannabis culture. The following will highlight some of these new voices and try to make sense of their claims.
- It’s light-dep time of year and that’s the focus of Emerald Magazines July edition. This free magazine seems to be going all-in on cannabis recently and that has drawn HU attention. Not sure the reason for the shift but Emerald Magazine is emerging as a community leader in promoting Humboldt’s legal cannabis industry. Staff writers and publisher Christina E. DeGiovanni seem to be pushing Humboldt/Mendo/Trinity cannabis branding. Its good to see and many groups are beginning to brand their products. Emerald Magazine is here to help (thumbs up). Branding is an interesting topic, some view branding as the only way to save Humboldt’s economy. Branding can make a certain product from certain region more desirable and therefore command a premium dollar. Humboldt already has synergy in this direction but Emerald Magazine seems to be pushing the Emerald Triangle angle – Humboldt, Mendo, and Trinity included. Another emerging player is Emerald Grown. This group is a farmer owned services coop. Much like Real California Milk, this cooperative will attempt to promote and connect small Humboldt farmers so they can compete against inevitable big corporate competition. After-all medical growers are already familiar with cooperatives as most cannabis clubs are nothing more than coop’s and collectives. Seed collectives and some farms have emerged and began branding themselves as well. This will be the topic of future posts at HU.
- Along with the branding there has been some ranting. An Op-Ed by John Harden on the Lost Coast Outpost bashes the cannabis industry and bids it good riddance. Humboldt’s community and economy has already been ruined. The War on Drugs ruined it and now all that’s left is a wild west shoot between cops and dope growers while Humboldt’s true community is in the middle. End the war on drugs, end Humboldt’s illicit cannabis industry, then we’ll see the end of environmental damage, end of potsititutes, end of vagrants, end of punk kids with money, and back to “rusty old ranch wagons.” Simple as that. Cool story John. In the North Coast Journal an article titled Left With Nothing by Steve Dodge of Humboldt Growers Collective provides us with a mathematical breakdown of how legalization will leave cannabis farmers at the bottom rung of society making a measly $40k a year! Leaving no money to buy a home, send the kids to college, or pay for health insurance! Rough world this new legal world is… How is a cannabis farmer going to pay for a new well or truck? Well Steve, we have to state the obvious: most people get a loan to pay for a new well. Steve, I know you haven’t been able to get a loan making $30k a year (on the books) from landscaping and I know your use to paying for things outright with cash but its time to share the wealth, brah. Lastly, I thought a fellow cannabis aficionado – whose totally not in it for the money – would realize by now that one can pull off three runs a year with supplemental-light and light-dep techniques and not just the one as your article uses to produce your $40k figure. So actually using Steve’s math that $40k is actually a $120k. Is that enough? Just saying, first world problems…?