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The Truth About Delta 8 THC

The Truth About Delta 8 THC

Does delta 8 thc get you high?

CBD wasn’t the only cannabinoid that inadvertently became legal when the federal government passed the 2018 Farm Bill.

We know that there are currently over 100 known cannabinoids in the cannabis plant. When industrial hemp was legalized on the federal level in 2018, the only cannabinoid specifically kept illegal was Delta 9 THC, the main psychoactive cannabinoid that produces the common cannabis high.

Leaving over 100 other cannabinoids to fill the space, growers began experimenting. We saw the CBD boom and the rise of CBG and CBN over the past year, but another cannabinoid has broken into the spotlight and has a lot of enthusiasts curious.

Delta 8 THC claims to be the legal alternative to Delta 9, providing similar effects to a traditional THC high. But is it really a 1:1 replacement?

Delta 8 THC explained

Just like D9 THC, our knowledge about the effects and benefits of D8 THC are limited due to lack of research. For the most part, the resources for learning about Delta 8 THC come from first hand accounts of users.

What we do know about D8 THC is that it is chemically different from delta-9-THC by only a few atomic bonds, and according to the National Cancer Institute is defined as, “An analogue of tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) with antiemetic, anxiolytic, appetite-stimulating, analgesic, and neuro-protective properties.”

In other words, it sounds a lot like plain old Delta 9 THC. However the experiences noted by Delta 8 THC users reveal some slight differences.

Does Delta 8 THC get you high?

The short answer seems to be yes. Most descriptions of the Delta 8 THC high note that it is more mild or “lighter” than a traditional Delta 9 THC high. User have also said that the high feels almost identical to D9 THC but without the associated paranoia or anxiety many experience.

Other anecdotes note how it can take multiple hits of a D8 THC vape to get a similar effect to a Delta 9 THC vape of similar potency, and that the flavor differs, and not always in a good way. Granted, taste is typically associated with processing, especially when it comes to distillate cartridges.

The most popular form of consumption seems to be vaping and consuming D8 edibles like gummies. However just like CBD, you can also find Delta 8 THC flower and other extracts.

This Week’s Episode

In this week’s episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker, Chip sits down with Matt Chandler from Sunshine Connect, a Full-Scale Hemp Product Development, Supply Chain Management & Production company. Matt has been involved with hemp and CBD for over four years, and he’s learned a lot about the different cannabinoids in the hemp plant, including Delta 8 THC.

Learn whether Delta 8 is just a new hype trend that will fade away, or a solid replacement for Delta 9 THC in states that haven’t yet legalized. Plus dive into the science and real dirt behind hemp and CBD, projections for 2021 and more.

Transcript

Chip: Well, here we are. The Real Dirt 2021, thank God. Welcome back. Oh man, it’s so good to be on a roll of Real Dirts. Right now, we’re recording all the season, and it’s just been really exciting. We’ve been doing a lot of market research, really, you know, trying to hear what you guys want to listen to, and give it back to you. And today, man, we’re real fortunate, because one of the most asked about topics we have is hemp, and the chemistry of hemp, and the genetics of hemp, and the genetics of cannabis. And today, I have Matt Chandler, and we’re going to talk about all of that. How’s it going, Matt?

 

Matt: Doing great, man. Thanks for having me.

 

Chip: So Matt, tell me how you’re involved with CBD and hemp.

 

Matt: So currently, I have a brand really focused around more of the experiential side of CBD. And we kind of talk about more of that of like the market. I got into cannabis and hemp about four years ago, I’m actually from Oklahoma where you’re at now. And then you, you were from Colorado. And we switched, right? 

 

Chip: So where did you grow up?

 

Matt: I grew up here in Oklahoma City area, just a little bit east of the city, Choctaw area. You know, around here growing up, cannabis was pretty taboo.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, this was a really hard place.

 

Matt: Yeah, they’d even have tattoos that were illegal when I was growing up here. You had, people had to go down to Texas to get a tattoo. 

 

Chip: Absolutely, you know. So Oklahoma, for those of you who don’t know about the free lands of Oklahoma, now we have tattoos. We have beer over 3.2. Yeah, totally. There’s breweries.

 

Matt: And cannabis.

 

Chip: And there’s medical cannabis.

 

Matt: Yeah. And when I was growing up, or actually, when I got into cannabis when I was 26. And mainly got into it, because my partner at the time had a hard time sleeping, and was trying to decide between Ambien or that. And we had a small kid and it was like, I can’t do anything. She’s like, in college cannabis helped me a lot. And so I was like, “Let’s do that.” So we went found her some. And at the time, it was illegal. And that year was right before we got into the business. And I think they had 20% increase in incarcerations for cannabis. Yeah, and here it was like a pretty stiff penalty like, two years for possession.

 

Chip: A small possession.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s ridiculous.

 

Chip: Crumbs, and that’s all changed.

 

Matt: It’s all changed. It’s all changed. So that’s kind of how I got in the industry,  just coming for the plant that way. Really just –

 

Chip: The medicinal side. 

 

Matt: Yeah, the medicinal side.

 

Chip: Man, yeah, that is the true great gateway to cannabis is the medicinal side.

 

Matt: The medicinal weed is the gateway drug. Yeah, exactly. But I feel like I contribute cannabis to really helping me open up my mind to many things. I feel like you know, growing up here, we’re all taught, you know, proctor our own environment what we’re, you know, our experiences growing up and it’s a conservative state, and cannabis was the devil’s lettuce and all that bad stuff, so.

 

Chip: Pass the devil’s lettuce.

 

Matt: That’s right. So – 

 

Chip: You know what Oklahoma’s really done? One of the things that’s obvious for me now, and this is might be a stereotype.

 

Matt: Yeah?

 

Chip: But now we write country songs.

 

Matt: That’s right. We got some good cannabis country songs.

 

Chip: All the time. We just came up with “pass the devil’s lettuce.”

 

Matt: I like that one, man. I like that one. You guys are making hits over here. 

 

Chip: No, it’s me and you. It’s not –

 

Matt: Yeah, right. There we go. Do you play guitar or anything?

 

Chip: You know, I just, I make noise. I make noise. I just picked up a hybrid dulcimer. 

 

Matt: Oh, okay.

 

Chip: Totally pretty cool. You know the dulcimer?

 

Matt: No, I don’t. 

 

Chip: Well, I found out it’s the easiest stringed instrument to play so I immediately excelled at it. It’s the easiest to pick up. Yeah, I started with the banjo and then I moved to the guitar, and I’ve been banging away with those guys for a few years. But I’m kind of new to at all like, maybe three, four years I’ve been playing. My David dulcimer just has this hybrid dulcimer. It’s a Merlin dulcimer. it’s only has, it has four strings. They’re metal, like a banjo. You can play it however you want. You can pick it, you can claw banjo style it you know, you can strum it. Dulcimers are traditionally made to be on your lap. But this Merlin style is more like a guitar. It’s also half. It only has seven frets and I believe the dulcimer normally has 11.

 

Matt: So when do we get cannabis country album this year, dropping this year?

 

Chip: Yeah, let’s drop that shit.

 

Matt: 2021.

 

Chip: You know what it’s, you know what I really like about it, is it sounds it is, so I really love the banjo sound and the banjo tuning, right? You get the claw, the banjo claw to it. And really have a great like, banjo like, sound.

 

Matt: Nice.

 

Chip: Right? 

 

Matt: Yeah, I like the banjo sound, too. It’s unique and different. 

 

Chip: Yeah. I mean it’s all based on that root music back from Africa man. You know, that same tuning. There’s something with the harmonics in the world and like, how that same tuning that’s in many instruments, Indian stringed instruments, and African string instruments. It resonates.

 

Matt: Creates a unique sound.

 

Chip: The universal buzz.

 

Matt: Yeah, I like that.

 

Chip: Yeah, totally, totally. Universal frequency.

 

Matt: Universal frequency, that’s right.

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

Matt Well, sounds good.

 

Chip: But yeah, just kind of like weed.

 

Matt: So yeah, that’s why I got into cannabis that way. CBD was a big part, probably about a year into after I started in cannabis, smoking cannabis. Pretty much on the back porch at night, relaxing, chillin’. Notice that I stopped watching as much TV, it was more of just like, hanging out, having more conversations. And so, it really improved my life in a lot of different ways. And I felt like just some of the patterns I had growing up and programming of what to do in life started to become more aware and more conscious. At the time, my ex-partner had a couple of autoimmune disorders, and we started learning about CBD through it. And it started really helping her improve her energy, and overall mood, and different things. And so at the time, was wanting to get out of Oklahoma, wanting kind of a lifestyle change, because I grew up here my whole life. And we were looking at places in Colorado. It was obviously a big cannabis state. They were big into hemp. It’s probably one of the biggest places in capital for yeah, for hemp. That and Kentucky, I think was two early adopters. 

 

Chip: Absolutely. 

 

Matt: And so moved up there to learn about the plant. We started our own brand. I started consulting with a company that was making CBD isolate at the time, which is about flexing, four and a half, five years ago, so it was pretty new. Yeah, I learned a lot about the chemistry side, started jumping in the supply chain about the growth side, and really just learning good growing techniques, what people were doing, how to grow hemp, because I was unfamiliar at the time. And then how to extract it, and basically for minors and different things like that. So like I said, I’ve been involved with a lot of different areas in the supply chain. But when we first moved up there, it was a brand. When we started up there, I think when we first started CBD, there wasn’t like many manufacturers won’t touch this stuff. There were still a lot of regulations, banking was a mess. And we got shut down several times and banks, and credit cards, and all sorts of stuff. And so it’s just, even now it’s still a little bit challenging, we’ve got a lot better. But really, there was no manufacturers that took touches so we ended up getting our commercial kitchen license and getting some of the licenses we needed to start manufacturing products, and doing products ourselves. Did that for ourselves and other people, and the market’s taken to some crazy turns over the last three years.

 

Chip: It’s been like a rodeo man. 

 

Matt: Oh, yeah. Oh, yeah. Well, I think with hemp because it’s not, it wasn’t, it had that not same regulations as cannabis did, because it was federally legal, it got a lot more attention and money. So there’s big players starting to dump money in the last three, four years, because there’s a multi-billion dollar market that’s forming. And so people are wanting to get into it. But then, there’s a lot of people that I feel like with cannabis that they’re like, “Oh, it’s gonna be big. We’re all gonna throw money into it.” And so they infrastructure, almost overbuilt, a lot of people started popping up that were making different isolates, and different farming. And when I first started, our farmer made $90,000 an acre on his farm. 

 

Chip: Oh, wow.

 

Matt: Drawing hemp. Now back then, it was I think Colorado had like, three or four years that they had that pilot program that they were able to do that.

 

Chip: Oh man. I tell you, I saw all that happen and I really missed out on it all. I tried to get involved with it, but like, it just, I was just so busy with the rest of my world that I just couldn’t get involved with it. It was an awesome, that was an awesome time to be in hemp. And I mean, it still is.

 

Matt: It is still is, yeah.

 

Chip: [inaudible 9:02] now though, ’cause you know, now you’re like, maybe a couple $1,000 an acre, $3,000 an acre if you can.

 

Matt: If then, that’s when you have to be really efficient. Yeah. Just last year, my farmer that made that $90,000 that I’ve been working with a lot, he ended up getting out of the business, because he made less than he did growing watermelons. And he’s an organic farmer and he’s like –

 

Chip: I grow watermelons, right? They’re just farmers.  Like I grow watermelons more. That was my first crop, watermelons.

 

Matt: And you don’t deal with it, any of the shit. They can sell the whole foods at Walmart. You know, the watermelons, where the hemp market, people that buy it are all over the board, and changing, and it’s constant chaos it sounds like. So, yeah.

 

Chip: The market got flooded in so many different areas. There were multiple bottlenecks, there were multiple issues with it. One thing that happened you pointed out was that the hemp market was flooded with manufacturers of hemp juice products flooded with brands, lots of co-packing going on. So a lot of this stuff was all just the same stuff even, right? It was all, so much of it was just and is still just homespun. Homespun people never dealt with marketers or copackers, and might not realize that like, “Oh man, they just made my hemp product the exact same thing as everybody else.”

 

Matt: Everybody else’s. Yeah, exactly.

 

Chip: Right? 

 

Matt: And then the more it started being acceptable nationwide in the like, stores and things like that, and all the bigger brands that might already have a name for themselves, but just was looking at CBD as another health ingredient, or adding it to their products and their lines, and they already have the distribution set. So I feel like it pushed a lot of the brands out. And then the ones that got in early that were making stuff like us, it made it very difficult, ’cause as soon as the manufacturer started opening up, they’re set up with large facilities to scale. And so if you’re a –

 

Chip: You guys are a boutique style. As nice as it might be, it’s just the volume that’s just boutique.

 

Matt: Mhm. So you got into it, because you had to because the bigger ones weren’t doing it at first, but then after a couple years of regulation changes and them getting more comfortable, they started flooding it in and bring in some of the bigger companies over. And so, I feel like a lot of people that invested heavily in the manufacturing side, which a lot did end up in trouble, you know? And they’re still, some of them that made it survived a little bit longer. But a lot of them those big companies are in trouble. 

 

Chip: Yeah. And it went a couple different ways too, because there was the initial scale that happened where it went from homespun boutique operations to like, the step up, or maybe two steps up even.

 

Matt: Oh yeah. 

 

Chip: For manufacturing. And then hemp was federally legalized, right?

 

Matt: Yeah. Which made it a lot easier.

 

Chip: Everybody could, everybody that ever wanted to grow cannabis could do it. And they did. 

 

Matt: They did, yeah. 

 

Chip: So it seemed like.

 

Matt: No it really, that’s true, that’s true.

 

Chip: Do you know any stats from the last year? I mean, 2019 production?

 

Matt: As far as production, I really, the more familiar set I am is just price per acre. Because you know like, from the farm it was like from 90,000 the first year down to I think it was like, cut in half the next year, down to 10 that was last year, which we were making around $1,000 an acre. And it was like, there wasn’t much sense. They could grow multiple other things. And I think too, it’s just because the amount of hemp licenses I did look at per state, just skyrocketed. I don’t know the numbers off my head, but it went significantly up. And I feel like the supply, basically there’s an oversupply.

 

Chip: Oversupply. Absolutely, absolutely.

 

Matt: Yeah, there was an oversupply of the growth, because people and the growers – 

 

Chip: Was Colorado and Oregon could have probably produced all of the hemp for the country, right?

 

Matt: Yeah, exactly. You know, acres and acres are, that’s a lot.

 

Chip: That’s a lot.

 

Matt: It’s a lot. It’s millions and millions of dollars of actual products.

 

Chip: People went in from the homespun people, the small farmers, the farmers wanted to stick your toe in it. We’re doing one acre, 10 acres, 40 acres. And then all of a sudden it became legal, and I heard multiple people say 100 acre, 1000s acre, right?

 

Matt: Well if you’re a farm that’s a mass farm and you’re growing hundreds of acres of certain crop on your on your farm, you can make sense out of it, out of $1,000. And that’s still a premium than what you’re getting paid over weed, and other things that you can farm and sell. So yeah, the farmers that have bigger farms, I think they’re the ones that are like, kind of coming in and cutting down the rest. I know so many people that came in hemp that wanted to grow those 1 to 10 acre range. And if you’re doing it by hand, it doesn’t make sense for the labor, and your time, and all that stuff for what you’re gonna to sell it for.

 

Chip: There is a market for the smokable, or the higher end hemp that you can get into with those smaller acreages.

 

Matt: Yeah. Which is that, is that popular in the dispensaries here? Or any like, do people buy hemp?

 

Chip: Oh, it’s at gas stations.

 

Matt: It’s at gas stations, so people are buying in there?

 

Chip: It’s a non-weed illegal state, I have been into a gas station that has had hemp or a head shop that has hemp buds for sale.

 

Matt: Nice. Yeah. Which I don’t know if you’d, do you use hemp, have you smoked them personally?

 

Chip: Yeah, totally.

 

Matt: Yes. I’m mixing them with mine.

 

Chip: I mix it with the ganja.

 

Matt: Yeah. I mix them with the ganja. I think it’s good like, I blend it.

 

Chip: Absolutely, it blends great. Because you know, that’s the thing for a lot of the hemp is it’s not fed at all. And it’s just given water, there’s hardly any fertilizer in it. So it might not have the best look. But like, it smokes really great. 

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s more earthy.

 

Chip: Or it can smoke a really good. The quality of the smoke is good. It might not have the flavor, it’s not stunning but like, it’s a really good smoke.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’d be more like more of an earthy blend to me as I’m grounding and mixing it.

 

Chip: Matt, you know what? We’re gonna grow some ganja that way next year.

 

Matt: What mixing them, half and half?

 

Chip: No, no. I’m just gonna grow it like hemp, and only water, and just give it some water, and not pay it any, much attention at all, just for the smoking quality. 

 

Matt: Yeah, okay.

 

Chip: Because then I can mix ganja in with my ganja.

 

Matt: Okay, yeah.

 

Chip: No, water only cannabis is the best smoking cannabis, no matter how you, if it’s ganja or hemp, just –

 

Matt: Just water only.

 

Chip: Just water only. It’s just how it is. The volume of water just changes the composition of it.

 

Matt: Okay. Do you give nutrients and things like that?

 

Chip: Mix it all into the soil.

 

Matt: Soil, right. Caring more about the soil.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah care more –  or I mean even if you use synthetic nutrients, you just like, give it the synthetic nutrients two, three times and then water.

 

Matt: Yeah. So water is the main, yeah.

 

Chip: Yeah, water. Water. But yes, it’s not. I mean, fat kids love cake. That’s my theory of growing cannabis. And if you want fat cannabis plants, you got to feed them. 

 

Matt: Feed them water. 

 

Chip: No, feed them fertilizer. Fertilizer, if you want fat ones.

 

Matt: Okay, gotcha. Gotcha.

 

Chip: I know that’s not a politically correct statement. But everybody can identify that I was a fat kid. I loved to eat cake, I get it, right? 

 

Matt: That is the perfect analogy. 

 

Chip: Right? But yeah, no, you gotta feed it. Yeah, I don’t know why like, a million people tell me that you don’t after we just said it. But hey, that’s cool. 

 

Matt: Yeah. Do what you do.

 

Chip: No, yeah. Hey, man, if you want to get that price per acre up, you got to spend the money on it in order to put the fertilizer in it to get more out of it. And there is a cost benefit there. You know, like, you can either do it for $10,000 an acre organically, which is a shit ton when we’re talking about 100 acres or 1000 acres, right? Or like, synthetically, it might cost you 500 bucks.

 

Matt: Yeah, exactly. I don’t think that the organic markets quite doesn’t pull that much higher of a price right now, for cannabis in general. I’m a profound proponent of organic farming or [inaudible 16:50] and stuff like that. But I do feel like there’s not enough market right now to differentiate if you’re a grower for the cost sometimes. So yeah, I think it’ll start to pop up a little bit more. There’s gonna be some buyers that are –

 

Chip: No, it already happening. No, it’s already happening. I already see organic cultivation in Oregon. And people ask if it’s organic, you know, and I haven’t seen that for a long time. 

 

Matt: Yeah. Certainly. People are caring more for sure.

 

Chip: Yeah. So hey, man, this is a perfect time for us to roll into a break. 

 

Matt: Sounds good. 

 

Chip: Hey, let’s a take a moment.

 

Matt Alright.

 

Chip: Hey guys, it doesn’t matter if you’re a hemp farmer, or if you’re a medical cannabis farmer. If you’re farming in your basement, if you’re farming out in the back, 40 Cultivate Garden Supplies can help you. If you need anything from truckloads of soil to pints of fertilizer, we have it all. You can contact us online, we ship all over the country and the world. You can look us up at cultivatecolorado.com, cultivateokc.com. And if you need to talk to somebody great, just walk into one of my shops. Ask to speak to anyone, anybody. You don’t even have to ask to speak to someone, we just come up and start talking to you. They can help you solve all of your fertilizer problems, all of your lighting problems. We serve as the largest, most commercial gardens in the country, and the smallest most boutique. And I’m just getting started guys. So please come by. We welcome all of you Cultivate Colorado in Denver and Stapleton, Cultivate OKC in Oklahoma City, and please check us out online, cultivatecolorado.com. Yeah, man. Nice little break. Wow, I can’t believe you did that with that bong man. That was incredible. I can’t even smoke one of those anymore, you know?

 

Matt: I like the bongs. Yeah.

 

Chip: I know, I know. Everybody’s heard about the bong at The Real Dirt studio. Man, the industry kind of, it went flat. It went more than flat this past 2020.

 

Matt: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: Right? Has it recovered?

 

Matt: I feel that it is recovering a little bit. I think most of the people that have flooded the market with like, came into hemp as like, this is a gold mine. Farmers are making 10,000 an acre were used to doing this –

 

Chip: Gold diggers. Gold diggers.

 

Matt: Exactly. They came in and lost their ass in 2019, 2020. And so, they’re slowly getting up.

 

Chip: Oh man, I’m sorry for you guys.

 

Matt: Yeah no, I mean it’s, if you were in those, if you came into hemp for the first time to grow during those times, it was definitely going to be challenging. Not only to grow, but then to sell, because I don’t know about you, but I think every hemp farmer I’ve met, any cannabis grower, the first year is always a learning kind of journey. And you know with hemp, you get one shot that year in most places, at least I think in California and places they might have more growing seasons, but yeah, you had a hard time. And so, most of them I think are got out and so where it’s kind of normalized the supply chain a little bit. Some of the bigger guys that are still in there, they’ve kind of driven the price down, got their price to where they know that they can money on it. And yeah, that the hemp market is completely changed, and it’s really elevated on a global level too. There’s people growing all over different countries, and just like most of the other crops and commodities that we have, wherever the cheapest and makes the most sense to grow for the climate, is where I feel like there are gonna be the most growers, and the most  activity going. And I think that’s gonna be happening with hemp too.

 

Chip: Oh yeah, absolutely. I mean, it’s that way with every other crop, right? There’s some superior areas to cultivate it. It doesn’t matter if you’re talking, we were talking watermelons earlier. Like man, Florida’s a great place to grow watermelon.

 

Matt: Yes, yeah. Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But weed is harder to grow there, right?  It’s just so humid.

 

Matt: Humid, yeah. I figured it was the humidity.

 

Chip: You know, I mean, it can be done, absolutely and people are crushing it down there. But it’s not as easy as say like, Oregon or southern Colorado, right? Where it’s nice and dry, and you get, all your water comes from irrigation. You can control it all.

 

Matt: Control a little bit more.

 

Chip: You know,  and in Tennessee like, it might rain every day of the harvest season. Yeah. Kentucky’s kind of the same way, but it can be a little drier all throughout the east coast are affected with the hurricane season like, which correlates with harvest season.

 

Matt: Yeah, growing’s different in every climate, I’m sure. Obviously, it changes constantly, and so, yeah. It was –  

 

Chip: Absolutely there’s always something to learn no matter where you go, it’s gonna, it can if you’re open to it, you can submerge yourself into the environment and kind of read what’s going on, understand. If you understand what the plant wants and needs, right? Then you can manipulate both the plant and the environment to do what you want. It might not be exactly the same, but you gotta pay attention.

 

Matt: Oh yeah. And I feel like with cannabis or hemp growing is going to be, if you’re starting out, it’s probably not the best place to start in the industry right now. If you’re looking at doing smokables and growing some higher end stuff, then that’s a little bit different. But I think there is a market for those and they are pulling in the $150 a pound versus right now, I think like, yeah. 5, 10 bucks for you know, or lower depending on you know for points, yeah. It’s pretty high.

 

Chip: I even see people pulling good money on it, on 

 

Matt: Smokable?

 

Chip: Smokable. It  all depends on how they sell it. But you know, it’s out there. So the future, I mean, the history of hemp has generally been CBD, and maybe some like, snake oil medicine and but it’s really started to mature. And this flood, the thing about floods is historically, the flood will come in and they wash off all the trash us humans like, have put in the way, you know? What they leave is fertile ground, for us to like, rebuild on, you know? And then that’s what’s going on right now in the hemp industry. I think a lot of the like, gold diggers came and went big and small, came and went. Some of those gold diggers turned into like, real cannabis farmers and are interested in it and like –

 

Matt: Yeah went to stick with it early –

 

Chip: Went to stick with it and you know –

 

Matt: All the brokers went to PP or the you know, the PPE or whatever equipment [inaudible 22:23] they just follow the money and whatever big industry is there.

 

Chip: “Oh, I’m a broker hemp, oh a broker PPE.” Yeah. There’s nothing wrong with making money, dude. I get it if that’s your hustle like, sell buy, buy, sell. Whatever it is. 

 

Matt: Sure it is, yeah.

 

Chip: I mean, [inaudible 23:42] to this plant. I can’t seem to do anything different beyond it. Or even want to honestly. I mean, I have other interests in my life, but this is the only business I want to be in.

 

Matt: Yeah, no, I’m the same way. I’ve been in it for almost five years now. And I don’t, I’m in it for the long term too. So not one of those quick fly by night.

 

Chip: Because I mean, it is a business plan. People come in to me all the time and they say, “Hey, in three to five years we’re gonna exit,” right?

 

Matt: There’s probably a lot of opportunities with dispensaries and cannabis, especially if it’s been federally Iegalized –

 

Chip: I have seen people do it all the time successfully. And I don’t see anything wrong with it. Tap on, I hope people do it. You know, like lately, “Hey, let’s go do it man,” you know? I’m on different trip, bro.

 

Matt: You like to be in the plan and learn it, yeah. Be in the –

 

Chip: Yeah, totally. I want to be in the mix, man. I want to be in the dirt. That’s why this is The Real Dirt, right? So the real dirt on hemp, cannabis genetics. We just started to like really, like, really get into that right? You know, the first thing is everybody just wanted some weed, wanted some hemp, wanted some CBD oil, wanted some relief, wanted some, those urge for cannabinoids that us humans need and want without even really realize it, but the truth of the matter is coming out. Now there’s all other secondary compounds that are being developed, they’re are already there or have been like, applied. Let’s talk about some of that.

 

Matt: Sure. I think the first one that kind of came out was CBG, because they can, they’re making genetics now that are high-end CBG, which is the first cannabinoid that the plant grows into before it kind of blooms to CBD, THC and the other various cannabinoids. And the genetics, when they’re making that plant high-end, it’s going to grow higher percentages and extract at higher percentages too, that you can make final products with. And I think some of the things that are going on right now that I see in the industry is that on the chemistry side, they’re learning how to take industrial hemp, which is 0.3% by dry weight, Delta-9-THC, and basically formulate through chemistry mainly by sunlight, heat, sometimes pressure to form different cannabinoids. All the cannabinoids kind of like, turn into different cannabinoids, and don’t care which side off the top of my head, but there’s like, a whole entire tree where CBD might turn into CBN, and then after a while, CBN might turn into a CBC. And there’s this whole like, tree that they turn into different ones. And so yeah, I feel like the you know, we’re able to generate from industrial hemp which can be mass harvested through chemistry, turning them and things like Delta-8-THC, which I feel like it’s very popular. We kind of talked about it a little bit. I like how you said a THC light?

 

Chip: THC light.

 

Matt: It’s like THC light to be really honest. But I think it’s awesome for people that are new to it. And like you know, new to THC, or maybe they taken, to me, I feel like hemp is a good stepping stone to people that are like, brand new to the plant. You know, they’re a little sensitive. And so you know, if they took a big bong rip, you know, it’s gonna be a little different experience for them. But taking –

 

Chip: They might pull a Stevie Wonder that’s for sure. 

 

Matt: Exactly.

 

Chip: You know, getting stoned blind and start singing.

 

Matt: Oh, yeah. Definitely, man. Definitely.

 

Chip: Oh, that goes out to my good sister in law.

 

Matt: Yeah. Yeah, nice. It’s a good stepping stone. And, you know, D-8, I’ve experimented a lot recently myself, and I really enjoy it. You know, it’s more of a body high and less of a heady high. It kind of gives me that giggly and relaxed feeling, not taking pretty high doses. I feel like with D-8, especially for me, it’s been like, 100 milligrams, versus like, 20 in the edible that I might do. So it’s probably five, four or five times, I feel like you need more of. But really, it’s been great. And I feel like, you know, if I’m trying to still focus and get something done, but want to relax and have a body high, Delta-8 has been great for me on that. And so there’s just cool that there, I think the market, new market is like-

 

Chip: Let’s talk about Delta for a second. It’s legal in many areas, and only a couple of states have defined it.

 

Matt: They kind of defined it as legal.

 

Chip: Yeah. Right, right.

 

Matt: And who knows what’s gonna happen? Because I think the DEA or the FDA, right now it’s in that gray area, because the only define laws we have are around Delta-9, and that you’re in 0.3% by dry weight. So when you extract it, it’s even in higher percentages, and that’s another debate. But yeah, I think like, some states have came out and said they don’t want it. But overall, the DEA and some of the statements have around from, it’s still derived from the plant, as they term in the Farm Bill industrial hemp. It’s kind of one of those areas where they might come in and interpret it someday, and be like, “It’s too close” and things like that or whatever, but we’ll see. I think in the next six months to a year especially with all the activity we have with like, federal legalization and things like that, we’ll know more on those. But I feel like there’s a lot of opportunity right now, because they’re getting popular, and less people are doing them. And there’s some good alternatives to like you know, I think for more affordable like Delta-8’s pretty affordable in general for you know, comparatively to Delta-9 just because of all the regulations and things you have to do around Delta-9.

 

Chip: Oh, absolutely. Give me the 9’s but hey, I’d love to have some 8 too. Don’t get me wrong. It’s fascinating, we’ve been saying this for years, that it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC, it’s not just THC. But be it in Colorado, and California, and some of the other states have really pushed this certificate of authenticity, this high THC number to sell product, or low THC number to sell product. But you know, they’ve just put THC-9 as the boogeyman honestly.

 

Matt: They have.

 

Chip: You know? And the good thing  is it means everything else is pretty much legal on the plant.

 

Matt: Yeah, pretty much. So they focused on that entirely and forgot about the other seeds that are very similar. They play on one of the two receptor cell sites in your body CB1 and CB2 and –

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah. So it’s good. Now see, CBG was one of the first alternative cannabinoids besides CBD, CB, THC that I had –

 

Matt: Heard about so?

 

Chip: Well that I actually got to use. Like I’d seen like, I’ve seen them all, read papers about so many of them, and there’s like, theories. There’s hundreds, or 15 or –

 

Matt: Gave you used the CBG product? Like have you dabbed it or..?

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah I had CBC, CBG Hash, CBG Key – 

 

Matt: What did you think? 

 

Chip: CBG – first it was a Moroccan style hash made from CBG. She was great, very uplifting, relaxing at the same time, but we literally like, packed a bowl of it thinking it was bedtime. So we packed some hash. And because we also had their CBD hash, this is in in some part of Eastern Europe. Man, we fired up the CBG, we started chatting, everybody started chatting for hours and hours more. Like, “Let’s go get some more food.”

 

Matt: You got more like I guess, energized?

 

Chip: Energized, yeah, totally, totally energized. You know where the CBD is far more relaxing.

 

Matt: Yeah. Some people say CBG is more relaxing too. I don’t know, it seems like everybody’s system sometimes responds slightly different.

 

Chip: It is. I’m a professional user. So it really, it’s similar to how cabo works, that’d be a great description. It’s stimulating yet relaxing.

 

Matt: Yeah. Yeah, I would agree with that. I feel like all cannabinoids are still overall relaxing. I’m more chill. I’m more sitting back, I’m more aware and observant around me. You know, some of them make me a little more tired. CBN specifically makes me a little bit more drowsy when I take CBN. Even Delta-9 sometimes makes me tired, but depends on you know, terpenes have so much to do with that too. 

 

Chip: Sure. Absolutely. Yeah, we’re big fans of Lemon G, and we’ve got a Lemon G Dosidoe. And we also have a Gils and Nils which is a Y cross with Georgia Pine Skunk strain. But none of those are real –

 

Matt: Stimulating?

 

Chip: Yeah.

 

Matt: Also tried those. Yeah. 

 

Chip: Sometimes I’ll confuse those in the evening. And like, like last night, right? Or it’s just so good, because it’s got that pentatonic buzz we were talking about earlier, you know? That I’m just buzzing and don’t want to stop, you know?

 

Matt: Oh yeah, oh yeah. When you do that, does it make you not fall asleep? When you have the [inaudible 32:36]?

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah. 

 

Matt: So you’re up more when you do that? 

 

Chip: Yeah. Totally, totally. 

 

Matt: I always see that I could find like, sleep though when I’m, when I need to even with –

 

Chip: Yeah, you’re like my wife, Jessica. Yes. She’s like, “Oh, I’m gonna go to sleep now,” you know?

 

Matt: That is like me.

 

Chip: You know? And I’m like, yeah, I struggle.

 

Matt: Yeah. Okay. Is that one of the reasons why cannabis helps you a lot, is it? 

 

Chip: Man. I am manic as hell, man. I mean, up and down. I get so excited about stuff. Oh, I’m so excited. Right? And then I mean, I also like, feel it really, too. And I get like, really like, you know, depressed. I shouldn’t say really depressed but like, you know, I really feel it when I lose something, or it doesn’t work out for me. I’m a little bit of an emotional roller coaster and cannabis absolutely evens that out quite a bit. It makes it oh, man, the font’s not exactly right on that, right? Like, you know, instead of just like, “Oh my god damn it. This font’s not right,” right? And for those of you who get into fonts, you’ll understand. “Not that one. Not that one. Oh, man, this, I need this one. Where did the guy get this one?” Yeah, you know, there’s just like, a million fonts out there. You know, I’ll obsess over it. I’ll swing one way or the other. Like, “Fuck it. I don’t care. Use anything. Oh, no, that one sucked. I can’t use that one.”

 

Matt: Not that one.

 

Chip: Not that one. You know? Yeah. So cannabis really helps me with that. But you know, I mean, I also, like, a common problem so many of us have is like, I really enjoy the manicness of it sometimes, too, right? And it’s part of like, who I am. And you know, it keeps you know, things exciting to some degree. I don’t want to just be “brrr” all the time. Yeah, you know, but I need to calm down a little bit. Yeah, I need to calm down a little bit.

 

Matt: Helps you, yeah calm right aways.

 

Chip: Right, right, right.

 

Matt: That’s one thing that’s helped with me too. I agree. I think that’s one of the biggest things that I’ve noticed people overall takes them down a notch, kind of where they, a little more chill, and calm, and look at things from a little bit different perspective.

 

Chip: Yeah, I definitely don’t want any medication over you know, my manicness. But I bet many people with my condition are given it, you know? Or don’t even understand their weed, or do they have like, this simple access to it. Heed on to the nation, man. Hey, I gotta give a big shoutout right now to King Shiloh Sound Systems. If you guys don’t know King Shiloh, I want you to stop what you’re doing, go onto Facebook, go onto YouTube. Look up King Shiloh Sound System. He’s out of Amsterdam. And it’s a group of DJs who previously pre-COVID would go around and have these big speakers and do these big sound Wall of Sound type shows, right? Old school 70’s Led Zeppelin, Pink Floyd, Grateful Dead style. 

 

Matt: That’s awesome.

 

Chip: Right? But the best reggae you’ve ever heard. These guys have the deepest cuts. They have the best, the biggest collection of reggae singles and vinyls I have ever – I love reggae, I’ve been listening to it for 25 years. And these guys absolutely crush it. Nettie? I think he’s one of the DJs, big belly, overalls, a big white beard. Man, he plays just incredible singles. And, you know, interesting thing about Jamaica, is they got all of our leftover recording equipment from the 50’s and 40’s. And back then like, they just made singles and radio stations would have songs and you know, and so they got all of that equipment, started kind of replicating the same type of thing, right? Like, lots of small producers, lots of like, singles every week, singles every week. Anybody could show up and make a single every week. So all this stuff’s off copyright now, right? So King Shiloh, they play it, so it’s all the stuff you’ve never heard of from artists that you know they’ve lost the copyright or publishing or however YouTube allows you to do it.

 

Matt: So they can just take it and run with it then. 

 

Chip: King Shiloh Sound System, YouTube, Facebook, everybody please check it out. Tell King Shiloh Chip from The Real Dirt sent you.

 

Matt: Alright. I like it. I’ll have to check them out. Definitely check them out.

 

Chip: Oh, it’s great. They play a live show out of Amsterdam every Saturday at noon. 

 

Matt: Okay. How many of you been to? You said –

 

Chip: Well, it’s all Facebook now. So he’s got 42 that he’s released since COVID, right? Yeah, and man, if you love reggae, or if you’re even interested in it. That’s how to find out about it. Listen to his 80 hours of reggae.

 

Matt: Nice man. [inaudible 37:45]

 

Chip: I would suggest episodes, some of the mid-teens, 12, 13, 14s, those are some of my favorites.

 

Matt: Okay. Good to know, man. Thank you, reg.

 

Chip: Reggae sidenote.

 

Matt: Reggae sidenote. Reggae and cannabis goes along great though, and there’s something to them that – 

 

Chip: I mean, just music in general and cannabis go pretty good together.

 

Matt: Yeah.

 

Chip: I need more musicians in here. I’m gonna bring some more.

 

Matt: Yeah, you have to have some people play in.

 

Chip: Yeah, yeah well, you know, just talking about getting stoned and you know, using you know, cannabis as a performance enhancing drug.

 

Matt: Yes, exactly, exactly. 

 

Chip: A little PED.

 

Matt: It’s part of the like, a reggae musician prerequisite is cannabis, I think. A  lot of them use.

 

Chip: Yeah, I’ve met a few that have shoved it but not many.

 

Matt: Not many. 

 

Chip: But yeah, not many. You know, reggae’s not really off topic, but we did move along a little bit. So what do you see coming forward for hemp and hemp farmers and hemp industry people?

 

Matt: Sure. Like I said, on the farm side, I feel like the boutique side, the smokable flower side, if you’re looking to get into business or looking for opportunity, that’s going to be a better opportunity. Most of the products and industrial size are going to be mass farms. If you’re not into that, then it’s gonna be hard to compete, and the market’s more of commodity. I think on the extraction side, same thing. It’s a little bit more commoditized now. There’s some large companies that got into it, got a lot of investments, so the price for them to create CBD oil and isolates and things like that have gone way down. The labs that seem to survive and that I work with a lot now, are the ones that are good with minor cannabinoids. Finding ways to produce these minor cannabinoids from hemp, so they can be sold on the market. Like the ones that are Delta-8 are crushing it obviously, because it’s similar to Delta-9, but they’re able to sell it in more states and things. And so, I feel like that’s yet another opportunity. And then on the brand side, I would say, if you’re just gonna say, “I want to set up a CBD product,” it’s gonna be, you’re gotta have to differentiate yourself. You need the target market you’re going to be going to, an audience you’re going to be serving, and really trying to – I feel like with anything, like Dollar Beard, Shave Club or whatever, razors and stuff wasn’t new and it was a huge market already. But they took it, did a little something different with it, made more of a, targeted to a certain audience, had a different experience and packaging and stuff, and then they crushed it, didn’t they? So I think you know, doing those kind of things in cannabis is more what I’m really focused on, and creating experiences around it. Would love to have a property in the mountains and doing retreats and events around it. And really people can come in and experience it in a safe way, as well as try some different parts of it, I think are going to be really popular. You know, and I think overall just the event and experience industry is going to grow starting this year, from this whole last year not having any events and experiences. So, I feel like that’s going to explode as well. So those are the areas that I feel are most going to explode if you’re looking to get into the hemp and CBD industry. You know, the minor cannabinoids, the boutique products and if you’re on the brand side, it’s really finding your audience and unique people that you’re calling to. 

 

Chip: Everyone who had a rough year in 2019 that decided to keep into it they did, they probably scaled back and really realize this year how to move forward with their business. Some people fell apart, some people waited. I know a few big organizations who were just like, “Oh, yeah, we don’t, we’re not going to grow anymore.”

 

Matt: Yeah.

 

Chip: Right? And some of those people may come and go. I think the wisdom of age of the industry is starting to develop. And you know, out of the necessity or the desire or the want, so many businesses and so many products and so many brands have been developed. Nike’s one of my favorite, favorite stories and it came out of like this need for an athletic shoe, right? And even though there were stuff out at the time like, they were the first people who really started to do research on it –

 

Matt: And cornered that market.

 

Chip: And cornered that market. And I think that like, the hemp industry is in exactly that place. The cannabis industry is in exactly that place where now, we have time to do research and development. We have time to like, standardize practices and not just think about it as like, this get rich quick scheme. My friend Stacy Johnson, Stacy J of Harvest House, he likes to say, “Getting rich quick since 1989.” And it’s so true but like. right now, I think it really offers that time. And people had all this hemp laying around the past year, they were able to do all kinds of stuff with it. I think the textile market’s coming down.

 

Matt: That’s different, yeah. I feel like that could be a huge market that really is picking up. Again, I feel like on the growing side, they’re going to be in huge farms that are you know, they’re growing and 15, 20 foot high plants, and they’re coming with harvesting machines that are you know, it’s very efficient, and you get very little bit of a –

 

Chip: I met some guys that have got 1000 acres in like, Nebraska or Oklahoma someplace. They’re doing it for industrial hemp and they’ve got a pressboard plant or something like that, and man, that’s gonna be great. You know, they like, just harvested their crop and like, they’re trying, they’re gonna go and do it all this next year, they’re gonna have their first round of product and, but it’s good.

 

Matt: Yeah, it’s the innovation I feel like that has the opportunity in those areas of like, taking the hemp [inaudible 43:20] from the growers, and making plastics out of certain molds for construction, or developing products from hemp on the industrial side is going to be big. I think the bigger stuff like the growing, or the extracting, and the commodities are going to be tougher to get in. There’s a lot of people in there and prices are pretty far down, but creating and innovating from those are what I think there’s, it’s infinite opportunity. Like Nike, shoes were around forever, but Nike came in and claim this domain and you know, has crushed it, and I think there’s gonna be, there’s a lot of opportunity within industry to be able to do that.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. Yeah, man, it’s all just started. It’s all just started. For people who think it’s over with, or you’re not able to like, it’s all like, just starting so hold on to your hats.

 

Matt: Exactly.

 

Chip: It’s happening, man.

 

Matt: It is, it is. A lot of opportunity. Sticking a plant in the ground and thinking, “Alright, I can just do this, follow this process, and make a shit ton of money,” those are over. You know, you had a short window on those, but the opportunity to take something, and do something cool with it. 

 

Chip: Man, I’ll say I’ve been doing it for you know for, wow, a long time. This is my 32nd outdoor year. 

 

Matt: Yeah. You’re OG.

 

Chip: It’s never been that easy to just stick a plant in the ground and pull money out of. Yeah, like some people, I hear that works. But like, it’s not real, dude. That was fantasy. 

 

Matt: Yeah, you’ve had, every year has been learning, huh?

 

Chip: Every year has been great, every year has been a learning curve every year. But it’s just, it is a job. If you want to do it professionally, it’s a job. Go grow a plant in the backyard, you don’t have to do much if you want to, right? But you know, we’ve got great top soil there, you got a water sprinkler there like, you got a fence around, like, you know, go grow a field.

 

Matt: Personal use plants are like that, yeah. 

 

Chip: Right? It’s just a different scenario, but love weed, love everything about it, and just wanted to keep learning more, talking to more people about it, and, you know, helping more people grow.

 

Matt: Nice. Which I know you do a lot of growing supplies. What do you feel like the market for people that are just trying to do things at their house? Or, you know, I think that’s another opportunity to like, growing kits. Especially if things come  –

 

Chip: Yeah, you know, we’ve tried to put a lot of kits  together over time but people, the cannabis industry or DIYers for sure, they just want to buy the parts and pieces, and kind of put it together, right? But I’ll say that part of that is grow tents. Grow tents are, you know, they’re hard to get. I mean, there’s just so many of them out there now. Like, if you are one of the 300,000 people in Oklahoma that got your prescription for medical cannabis, you try  to go by a grow tent, which is like a little 4×4, 8×8 or 4×8 little vinyl type cloth tent that you can erect in your house, and it’ll light tight it so you can flower cannabis. Right. Everybody is interested in that. And I think they’re one of the greatest things in the world, man, honestly. The entry level for everybody who’s wanted to grow a plant, they can easily go do it in their backyard with a bag of soil.  Go pick up a bag of growers, Coco HP, or just drop it in hole in your backyard and plant your plant in it. Like, everybody wants to do that, who’s ever smoked weed or thought about it like, “It’s legal now. Let’s grow.” And honestly, everybody should. Think of how much better it would be. If 150 adult Americans all went out and planted one plant in their backyard. . Alright, let’s split it off into couples and families and just say 50 million Americans went and planted out one plant of ganja in their backyard. Wow, man. We could see some real change in the world.

 

Matt: Yeah, that would be. It would, and maybe there will be that one day. You know, that’s what I was wondering like, you know, coffee people. I mean, they don’t necessarily grow the coffee, but they’re grinding up the beans, they’re French pressing, they’re doing like, you know, all the extracting basically, the coffee right there in the house. And I’m wondering if cannabis is gonna have that same kind of market to where there’s all these at home, kind of little extraction systems and things like that, it becomes like that much of a household plant, you know? Especially as we get deep down of like, learning more about the plant, the different cannabinoids, and growing different strains. I think it’d be interesting you know? Like I want a little more CBD, or this is more for daytime, or this is more for my nighttime. I’m curious of how the market ends out. And I think there’s a lot of innovation in that area. There’s a lot of room to grow.

 

Chip: Oh, there’s tons of room to grow, man. It is just starting. Well, hey, Matt, let’s talk about the brand you’re building, and what’s going on with you and your business?

 

Matt: Sure. Well, thanks man. So currently right now, like I said, I’m really focused on the experience around cannabis. It played such a large role in my life on the way it helped me open up to patterns, and things, and programs that I had that weren’t necessarily serving me, and I feel like it’s a big stepping stone in that. So currently, I have three main core values around our products. Number one is intention setting. So I like to say the analogy of a car analogy. To me, cannabis, and CBD, and hemp are the vehicle that we’re using to get to a place. Our intentions, our navigation, basically like, where are we wanting to go? So we’re really big with for the first 30 days people taking our products, trying to connect with them and find out what are their intentions for taking the products. Is it to sleep better? Is it, why are they wanting to sleep better? Because they’re starting a new business, or whatever it is in life, right? Really be clear  –

 

Chip: The sleep feels good.

 

Matt: Sleep feels good, right. 

 

Chip: No joke but like, you know people, like, sleep is one of those things that people like, oh, you can’t sleep. And it’s like, if you haven’t been in that position, you know not being able to sleep, we talked about this already, you sleep great.

 

Matt: I sleep great.

 

Chip: And I don’t at all, right? And like, man, it is hard, man. Like, you know, and then like, when you start like, taking you know, substances to help you sleep, most of them have some hangover effect.

 

Matt: Yeah. More drowsy in the morning more. Yeah, I agree. And so yeah, cannabis has been one of the biggest things I feel like for what I hear most people taking them for, help them relax and sleep. 

 

Chip: And you know, inflammation, any type of inflammation I see. I see with CBD specifically, I see the aid in, you know, they’re the other, you know, pharmaceuticals they’re using, right? They don’t have to take as much. It means that they don’t have as many adverse side effects from the pharmaceuticals as well, right? And all that means something.

 

Matt: Yep. Oh yeah.  I think that it’s a natural plant that has a lot of different uses. But I think mainly in helping people relax, kind of helping work on the nervous system and their immune system, which is basically taking their inflammation and why people say that cannabis has helped with such a wide range of things, because it usually comes down to those two things. It helps calm their nervous system down, which I think everybody’s a little bit more wired nowadays. There’s a lot more stimulus we have coming at us in COVID and things like that. We just, there’s more nervous system disorders, anxiety, depression, things like that where I feel like you know, definitely cannabis and endocannabinoid system when it’s healthy, helps the nervous system regulate as well as immune system with inflammation. And like I said, it works on a host of different diseases, and I guess conditions that people say it helps with so yeah.

 

Chip: And hey man, it’s fine to self-medicate. Damn right, we do it all the time. Like there’s nothing wrong with it. And, you know, that’s why all the over counter drugs are there is because you can self-medicate. Self-medicating with cannabis is one of the most effective, less, least harmful things that anyone can do. And I know I’m preaching the choir here, because we’ve got 30,000 listeners here that are just gonna say, “Right on, Chip!”

 

Matt: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But it’s true.

 

Matt: It is true, it is true. You know, and that’s, I think with our brand, it’s more of like, set your intentions, have gratitude around it, and really just focus on like, what are you trying to bring this plant to do in your life? And you know, our deal is building a community where we can support each other in those changes, right?

 

Chip: Are you guys, are you connected on Facebook or Instagram? You have social media platforms you work with?

 

Matt: Yes, we have. We’re on Instagram, @thealchempist.com. The alc-hemp-ist, I don’t know if some people would debate, the name was based on the book, The Alchemist, have you read the book?

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, sure.

 

Matt: Yeah, I love that book. And, you know, to me, there’s a lot of hidden stories in that book and hidden gems in that book of good lessons that you can learn. But for me, it was more about that, you know, the boy that kind of went against the programming that he was taught, and what he’s supposed to be in this world to, you know, discover his own personal legend. And that’s kind of what I you know, with that with hemp. ‘Cause as you know, I kind of was the same way I grew up in a, this was not an acceptable plant, like the devil’s lettuce, like we talked about earlier. And, you know, and finding it, helping in my life and following that path, and my intuition that I’ve discovered my own journey. And so, I feel like everybody can do that with cannabis in their own way. And our goal is to kind of help them set that intention, help them form the gratitudes around it, and then build a community where people that are going in the same direction like, “Hey, we’re all trying to sleep better, we’re all trying to do this.” We can kind of share openly like, “Hey, this is this is working for me. These you know, I’m smoking cannabis at night and I’m using CBD during the day, and this is how it’s affecting me, and these are the dosages I’m doing,” because you know, we haven’t had a lot of research around the plant because it’s been illegal.

 

Chip: Yeah, next to none.

 

Matt: Next to none. Because federally yeah, it’s still Schedule I which hasa prevented colleges and things like that, which I’m sure your listeners know too. But Schedule I, you can’t do any research around as much where you know, you have cocaine and meth and all of them are Schedule II. So it’s just nuts how that works, but I feel that you know, there’s starting to become more research, especially hemp and stuff is least introduced the plant because I you know, I tell people hemp is cannabis, there’s no difference. It’s the same plant.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. All the time. People are, “Oh, hemp, not cannabis.” I’m like, “Same stuff. Same stuff. ” They’re like, “Well, not the new federal regulations.” I’m like, “Nope, new federal [inaudible 53:46].” Right?  It just the same plant, it’s just –

 

Matt: Government had to reclassify to make them feel better about you know, “Alright, we’re stepping, we’re stopping the line at 0.3%.”

 

Chip: That’s hemp. 

 

Matt: That’s hemp. Now it’s hemp. Now it’s okay. Yeah, exactly. No, it’s an artificial line in the same plant. And so, we’re able to study it from that angle a little bit to kind of see what THC is doing and what, you know, CBD, and CBG, and all these different minor cannabinoids and terpenes are doing inside the body. I feel like that’s going to continually grow. And the more we get into that and more research we get into that, the more we’ll be able to develop products, and have businesses that are focused around certain parts of the plant, and what people are dealing with or need help with in their life.

 

Chip: Hey, Matt. Well, hey, thanks for joining me today, man. This was a great conversation. I was looking forward to it. We always talk so well together about hemp, CBD and cannabis. Next time you’re down here in Oklahoma, we’ll, let’s go track down some of those industrial hemp people.

 

Matt: Sounds good, man. Sounds good. Thank you for having me. Appreciate it. 

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. And thank you once again for listening to another episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker and today, Matt Chandler. Hey, you guys. We all love cannabis. And you know, the hemp, and the medical cannabis, and the ganja people, you’re often fighting this wrestling match. And I’m gonna ask each and every one of you to embrace each other. Embrace your cannabis brothers and sisters, it doesn’t matter if they’re a hemp grower, if they’re a medical cannabis grower, they’re a ganja grower, if they’re a personal grower, or if they’re a home grower, right? Hey, we’re all in this together. And let’s work together and really find out the real dirt on hemp, ganja, and medical cannabis. This is it. The Real Dirt with Chip Baker.

How to Ruin Your Weed with a Paper Bag

How to Ruin Your Weed with a Paper Bag

oregon cannabis, colorado cannabis and oklahoma cannabis

People have some whacky ways for curing cannabis, but a paper bag ain’t the way to do it!

When it comes to cannabis, there’s a lot that Chip Baker and Justin Jones can agree on. But when it comes to curing your cannabis in a brown paper bag, the two are at odds.

To Chip, it’s a figment of the past that’s best left there, and age old drying technique before the days of plastic bags and bins. For Justin, it’s a quick and easy way to finish out the drying process that works for him.

The paper bag dry method

Before the days of turkey bags and metal storage bins it was common for growers to dry their flower in brown paper bags. They keep light out and they’re discreet, but that’s about it. The problem with paper bags is that they absorb moisture.

If your flower is sitting in a paper bag, over time the bag will suck the moisture out of your plants. Left too long, your flowers will dry out too much and the bag can instill a strange flavor. But Justin has a technique that he insists works just fine.

Justin puts his flower in a brown paper bag that is extremely dry, so there is no moisture already present. Then with a dehumidifier or fan nearby he can keep the paper bag dry as it absorbs moisture from the plant. After 12 hours doing this process, Justin insists that his flower comes out perfectly dry.

Those days are gone

In Chip’s mind the days of needing to use a brown paper bag are gone. With the advent of Turkey Bags, plastic bins with liners and plain old traditional hang-drying in commercial facilities, not only have brown paper bags become unnecessary, they have become irrelevant.

Legalization has given cultivators access to better technology for harvesting, drying and curing their cannabis to the point where using brown paper bags or cardboard boxes is a figment of the past.

This week’s episode

This week on The Real Dirt, Justin Jones returns to talk about why he likes the paper bag method, how the cannabis industry has evolved and matured in Oregon, how it compares to Colorado and Oklahoma and more!

Roll up a nice hemp/cannabis blend and puff away while you enjoy another great episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

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Transcript

 

Chip: Once again, you have reached The Real Dirt podcast. Thank you for joining me today. On today’s real dirt, I once again have my good buddy Justin Jones. We just got so much stuff to talk about. And honestly, conversations with Justin was really how I developed the idea of The Real Dirt podcast, because I have such interesting conversations with my friends within the industry. Now I wanted to share those with you, and today we have Justin on the line again. Justin, are you there?

 

Justin: Hey how you doing, Chip?

 

Chip: Oh man, doing good, bro. Feeling good. What’s going on over there on the West Coast?

 

Justin: I’m just transferring some sherbadough here from a ziplock bag into a brown paper grocery bag. And I just want to know, how many guys out there and gals how many people, cannabis growers, know anything about the old brown paper grocery bag?

 

Chip: Oh, I’m moaning, dude. I am moaning over here. I can’t believe you’re telling me you’re putting your fine buds into a paper bag. Oh my god.

 

Justin: Man.

 

Chip: What, why are you ruining your weed? Why are you doing this?

 

Justin: No, man. No, no, no, this is a good thing. This is what you want, it’s good for it.

 

Chip: It’s good for your weed to taste like cardboard?

 

Justin: I don’t know. I don’t know if that’s what it does.

 

Chip: Man, you put your wet weed in a – or dry weed – in a brown paper bag, and it sucks up all of that moisture that’s inside that paper bag before it releases any outs.

 

Justin: But you got to have a dry paper bag. You can’t start with a moist bag, bud.

 

Chip: Oh okay, so you’re telling me it’s all in technique?

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: Well, let me hear it. Let me hear your technique on how you don’t ruin your weed by putting it into a paper bag.

 

Justin: Well, I don’t put it in there for that long. And you got to know whether you’re rolling the top down all the way, or if you’re just kind of crumpling it up a little bit at the top, or whether you’re leaving it just open.

 

Chip: Okay. Alright, alright. You’re gonna have to start at the beginning. Start at the beginning. Tell me what you’re doing again.

 

Justin: It’s something that the old school probably guys that are older than us smoked, it’s a way that you can – 

 

Chip: Before they had plastic bags, all they had  – 

 

Justin: Before all those plastic bags, you had paper bags, because you could use the paper bag to just kind of shift that lot in a slow way when you’re at the end of your dry and cure, and you’ve done your hang. And now you’re doing your seal and burp, and you just got to get that last little, make it perfect. You could use the brown paper bag, you know? And you got to look at other industries too. I mean, the people store seeds in paper bags, people store other thing, because it does have a little bit of a –

 

Chip: Breeze.

 

Justin: If you have any takes, breeding with the moisture. And so you know yeah, you don’t want to push your, a wet cell paper bag moisture into your bud, but I would say it’s a way to kind of temper it, right at the end a little bit. If you need to, you don’t always need to.

 

Chip: Man, I have seen so many people ruin weed by putting it in a cardboard box or in a paper bag.

 

Justin: Well, why do they put it in there for?

 

Chip: The same, they’re trying to do the same thing you’re doing. Hey, they got their weed almost dry, and they cut them down and put them in a paper bag to like, finish them out, right? Or cure them in a box. And I believe a lot of this came from early 2000s Cannabis Cup, where that’s what Arion of Greenhouse said that they did, is they cured their weed for months in a cardboard box, right?

 

Justin: Would you think there’s actually a certain taste or flavor that gets put in there?

 

Chip: Absolutely. Oh absolutely. It is – alright, so here’s the thing. And you kind of said it earlier about you have to have a dry paper bag, right? Well, it is a little more than that. If you have a dry paper bag, if you’re in Colorado, if you’re in California, if you’re in the desert –

 

Justin: Oh yeah, wait a minute, hold on. 

 

Chip: You’ve got a dry paper bag.

 

Justin: I got a dry paper bag in a small closet that’s got a dehume pounding on the other side of the closet too. So –

 

Chip: You got a dry paper bag?

 

Justin: Or I’ll blow a fan, right? If you point a fan right at the side of the paper bag, what you’re trying to do is get some movement, but not too much. And get a little bit of that wet in there, but not too much.

 

Chip: You’re trying to control the dry, so that it doesn’t dry so fast, because you don’t need, you don’t have the best drying room.

 

Justin: Right.

 

Chip: That’s where the paper bag really started as and became, is if you didn’t have enough or the best dry room, you’d hang your plants. And so they, because they won’t at some point in many – unless you have a proper dry room, they’ll never dry. 

 

Justin: Right.

 

Chip: Right? On the coast of California, Oregon, Washington throughout the southeast, you can hang weed up in your house, and it will never dry in your closet. 

 

Justin: Here in Oregon, I struggle with that. And you know, coming from Colorado where you have a hard time not over drying, here you just I mean, most of the time here, your relative humidity is 50 to 60%, which is kind of where you want your stored, finished dry material to kind of, I don’t know.

 

Chip: End up.

 

Justin: Right. Right, right yeah. And so it just is like, you’re fighting the moisture, the over moisture and those sort of things all the time on the west coast, for sure. Especially coming into this time of the year here, where it’s gonna rain three or four days a week, and you’re just always gonna have that moisture in the air.

 

Chip: So yeah, I mean home growers and commercial growers would take their buds down, put them in paper bags, and it would allow them to control the dry rate. They’d increase the heat, or the moisture would be sucked out of the paper bag until they, it would help them dry.

 

Justin: It’s easier, it makes, it gives them a wider landing pad on not fucking it up, right? And so instead of being like, “Oh, if I miss the wind,” if you’re not doing that, you may be, you missed your perfect window by a couple of hours. Maybe this gives you a day of a window to get back to it, to get it fueled up.

 

Chip: So here’s the folly, is because you’re in these wet areas, those cardboard bags and the cardboard boxes, they’re sucking out moisture.

 

Justin: Oh yeah, you can feel it.

 

Chip: Right, yeah, they suck up moisture. So one, you got to get those dry, you have to get all the moisture out of them to dry. So you have to put, get a dehumidifier or heater, right? That’s going to dry out these boxes and get all that moisture out of there, right? Because if they leave the moisture in there, and then put your weed in there, as your weed dries, it’ll suck the moisture out of the bag. 

 

Justin: You’re going the wrong direction, you have to have – yeah. The box of the bag’s got to be drier than your cannabis and you can only leave it in there for a certain amount of time. And you should, if it’s doing its job, the bag or the box should be super brittle dry. And then you put your material in there, and let’s say after 12 hours, you come back. You should be able to feel the difference in the paper, and then get it out of there. 

 

Chip: So you’re not going in the wrong direction. 

 

Justin: It’s the technique. 

 

Chip: Now your bud’s gonna suck it back up. I’ve used the paper bags like, so, so many times. I’ve had, years and years ago.

 

Justin: Well, it’s about, it’s all about reusing, you know? We try to recycle and recycling is good. But reusing is even better than recycling. And at the end of the day, I think cannabis guys are great at reusing those thin metal hangers from the dry cleaner? The dry cleaner hangers, you know? Those are real popular for hanging new branches, right? And so, there’s a way to, ‘cause those hangers suck. You get them from the dry cleaner, and then you don’t really use them to hang your shirts back up later, right? So they get kind of built up, so those are good. And then the brown paper bags, got to have them.

 

Chip: I’m definitely not a brown paper bags fan. I do, however, like to take the brown paper bag, fold the top over one time, maybe one inch or two inch fold and then insert a turkey bag. And then hold the turkey bag up, right? And as you’re going through your cannabis you can just put it right inside to a standing up bag, you know?

 

Justin: I like that.

 

Chip: Yeah, totally.

 

Justin: So, it’s a stand, it’s a turkey bag stand.

 

Chip: It’s a turkey bag stand.

 

Justin: Turkey or goose bags?

 

Chip: All depends on what you’re doing, man. Here in Oklahoma, we sell cannabis out by the gram. Meaning, that we sell it to an extractor by the volume. So we’ll have a volume and it’ll be like, 4,382 grams, right? That’s not quite 10 pounds, but we just, we’ll bag them up in a goose bag like that. 

 

Justin: In those large goose bags. Yeah.

 

Chip: And just get as much as we can, specifically with trim. When we do that with trim, right? And we try to get at least a thousand grams in one container. But it’s going to the extractor, they don’t care. They check it into their system by the gram as well.

 

Justin: You’re not trying to sell some of the, a perfect one pound?

 

Chip: I’m absolutely not. And, we try to go in 500 and 1,000 increments, just to make all the math easy.

 

Justin: Less brain damage.

 

Chip: Yeah, exactly, less brain damage. And I would use a larger container and I’ve been told, and I am we’re going to start the stock these bin containers, the bin bags. So they have a large turkey bag style that goes into the thirty gallon Rubbermaid bin now.

 

Justin: Nice.

 

Chip: Right? Yeah, totally. So I think we’re going to push towards that, and try to even get more cannabis in, right? Into one bag. Because man, it’s one bag, one label. Here in Oklahoma, 10 pounds is a batch. We’re not –

 

Justin: You guys got rules in Oklahoma now for that stuff? 

 

Chip: Yeah dude, there’s all kinds of rules here. Yeah, Oklahoma is really – 

 

Justin: Yeah, we knew it was coming. It was wild west there at the beginning.

 

Chip: Oh, at the very beginning, it was like, you can show up and in 30 days be doing whatever the fuck you want. And that changed, that changed to you can just show up in 30 days, apply for whatever you want. And then that changed to you can show up in 30 days, apply for whatever you want, and then depending on your local municipality, it might take one day to four months for you to get into any type of business, or get in to have a building plan passed or anything like that. And now, we’ve just –

 

Justin: Now you’ve got residency, two years?

 

Chip: Two years residency here. If you’re interested in coming to Oklahoma, you can only be an investor for 25% now. If outside residents of the state of Oklahoma, they have a 25% stake max for two years. And then, there’s a lawsuit I hear that they’re trying to lift that. Who knows if that’s going to maintain other states it has maintained?

 

Justin: We have a chain in Colorado, we spent years fixing those laws. Because they were very restrictive, and once all the money inside of Colorado ran out as far as investment money and that sort of thing, then you had to be like, “I gotta go outside of the state.” So I first started that you could get a, you could get an out, you could get a loan. And the loan could be guaranteed, like a convertible into ownership is that. So you get a loan from a guy from another state that says that could turn into ownership if that person moved to Colorado, lived there for two years, became a resident, then they could like, convert. So that you could do a loan that was convertible, if these other things happened. And then after that – 

 

Chip: That’s a convertible loan.

 

Justin: Right. And then after that, it became you could just have out of state ownership. And then now it’s, in Colorado, the public, pub coast are circling and making moves, because now you can have 49% ownership can be a publicly traded company. So, it was always that they wanted to be able to just go, background check, deep, deep dive on every single owner. So having a publicly traded company that could have thousands or tens of thousands of stockholders, right? Didn’t work. So now, so they fixed a lot of that. And so now, you’re seeng companies in Colorado start to go public, or go that direction. So Colorado’s now available for the multistate operator, the MSO. But we were really talking about Oklahoma moving forward and the regulations, and so you guys are now using the Franwell Metrc tracking system?

 

Chip: That is not in place yet, but it will be.

 

Justin: They’d said they’re going, so they’ve contracted.

 

Chip: Mhm, they’ve contracted. They say it’s going to be six months before they get it in place, who knows? 

 

Justin: Sure.

 

Chip: Right?

 

Justin: Yeah, well, that’s good. And what I like about that, and be it what it is, Metrc really is tracking probably 90% of the legal cannabis, and as we move forward towards a national legalization effort, having one company that’s kind of got most of that in line, it should be good down the road. That we hopefully in the next decade start to integrate the entire country into –

 

Chip: Yeah, well Metrc’s – 

 

Justin: Legalize cannabis.

 

Chip: Metrc definitely steps it up. It’s costly to scale Metrc, it’s difficult to scale it. So maybe some of the people who were, got tons and tons of square feet, and lots of plant numbers, they may change their operations.

 

Justin: There’s new companies coming in that are going to make it, they’re going to take and give you a user interface for your company that really works for you. And then behind the scenes, it plugs everything in the Metrc the way it’s supposed to. And so, Metrc is very clumsy, and it’s very designed towards the applications that the states want to use it for, for tracking the inventory, for tracking taxes, and these sorts of things. And yeah, there’s things that they thought were, would be great for the license ease on the user end, but they’re still real clumsy, and that hasn’t been their focus. So there’s some definitely some other companies that can overlay, and they’re trying. Nobody’s really knocked it out of the park yet, but I think that’s coming. 

 

Chip: It is coming. And it is easier, you can print your own tags now. The technology’s changing. It also makes monitoring, enforcement and regulation, the local government here easier, right? And it will drive more of that, because now they can go into a field that is all RFID, they can immediately get all the data of all the plants in it, you know? They can immediately like, follow that all the way from seed to sale in your operation that will make people tighten up their operations, their business models, account for everything. I mean, I tell you, I hope they haven’t made all the rules, because I hope they don’t make us weigh that shit, wet, dry, stem weight, bud weight. I hope we could skip all that. I know you got, I know Colorado has, I mean it is, that’s not just a Colorado thing.

 

Justin: No, it really, tracking the waste, tracking all that plant material is kind of the foundations of the early legalization, and it really hasn’t changed. And it’s really if you look at other industries, people are doing that on multiple levels. So, you just, when you’re trimming a plant down, just stick it all in this bin, the leaves go in that bin, the bud goes that way, weight it wet, we weigh it, we weigh it wet before we weigh it dry after you get all those markers all the way through.

 

Chip: Yeah, I mean, in all of my business, we monitor all of our waste, right? Our waste stream really does say a bunch about what you’re doing in business. And for instance, at Growers Coco, my soil manufacturing plant, we monitor all of the coco dust that’s wasted, we calculate all of the inputs into what all the outputs are, we’re always looking at our trash stream, our plastic, our wood stream going outside the business. Because the fact of the matter is, if you have a lot of bags that are torn in production, that shows up in your trash. And that means that there’s something wrong with your machine, or my employees, or the material where the bags are getting ripped and used inappropriately, right? Are not used inappropriately, thrown away. And each one of those bags cost us 40 cents, or something like that.

 

Justin: Well, it adds up. Yeah.

 

Chip: Oh, it adds up, man. And then you, also on the waste stream, you get to calculate how many pallets of material that you’ve gone through. So it is important in that business, that manufacturing business to track it for sure.

 

Justin: Well, that’s really what we’re doing with cannabis now that you can see the flow. It’s all manufacturing, you know? It’s agriculturally based, growing, processing, packaging, manufacturing, all the way down to get those consumer items.

 

Chip: Now, at some point though, it’s over regulated, right? It’s something I mean, from in my view, cannabis is harmless, right? Until you turn it into an extract. And at that point, it becomes like, I’ll call it dangerous, right? Because if anyone consumed or a child consumed a chunk of extract, a gram of extract, they would be fucked up, right? And they’re not going to die, but it would definitely be a, considered a poisoning, an overdose, right? They’re not going to die, but like, you know –

 

Justin: Yeah, you don’t want to do that to your kids.

 

Chip: You don’t want to do that to your kid, or to yourself, or to anybody. And like that’s to me where it becomes dangerous, and it should be regulated in some way.

 

Justin: Well, that’s why the regulations, well and that’s why you’ll see 10 milligram doses of edibles and not a hundred milligrams. 

 

Chip: Yeah, I don’t believe here in Oklahoma there’s a limit, currently.

 

Justin: There will be, there will. It’s five here in Oregon, 10 to 5 milligrams a serving, 50 in a bottle or a pack max. In Colorado, it’s 10 per serving, 100 in a pack, you know? One item is 100 milligrams, 10 pieces of whatever edible, or however that looks. Your Dixie Elixirs you talked about in one of our previous chats, they’ll have measuring guides on the model, or even sometimes they’ll come with a little cap, like your [inaudible 21:01] bottle has your little one ounce measure cap. Yeah, that’s how [inaudible 21:05]. So the tracking’s overly done, but that’s because we’re still operating under these, the guys that the feds aren’t going to do anything to you, if you’re operating legally in your state. And so I think that the tracking system is there, because it’s been there since day one of Colorado rack, the tracking systems are what’s helping protect the industry from the feds saying, “Hey, we’re going to take these guys out.” So, as legalization happens nationally, maybe some of these, some of these things will become less burdensome. That’s not happening anytime in the future. So you just have to get used to it, you just have to spend the money on that end of the business, and compliance, and inventory tracking and do it right. 

 

Chip: Yeah, man. And it is exciting to see it blossom here in Oklahoma, it’s a great place to be. The people are just incredibly nice for sure. It’s inexpensive to relatively speaking, to California or to Colorado, to set up an operation. But the real reason we’re here is the opportunity to help other cannabis farmers to cultivate OKC. And through our research at our cannabis farm, really figure out how cannabis grows best in Oklahoma, indoor or outdoor, greenhouse, the best type of products to use, how the season works, like, it’s really just this huge R&D effort on our part.

 

Justin: That’s what sets you guys aside from some of the other companies out there that are selling nutrients, or equipment, or dirt, or whatever, is that you guys are actually practicing, and have been the whole time. You’re in it, you’re in the same side of things so –

 

Chip: We want to get better, we want to help other people do it better. We want to overgrow the current stigma of cannabis, and that’s what we’re doing at Cultivate OKC, Bakers Medical, Growers Coco, at our farm here in Oklahoma. I mean, man, this place has been, this was a really great spot. I mean, Oregon was in a similar manner years ago, and Oregon had a boom and bust. I mean – 

 

Justin: It’s all balanced out here now.

 

Chip: Oklahoma is going to do a similar thing. Hey, give me the timeline, because Oklahoma will boom and bust due to the open regulations. And then the regulations and just the market environment, it’ll make it change. 

 

Justin: Yes, eventually. 

 

Chip: Right, eventually.

 

Justin: And how fast it happens. Here in Oregon, they’ve had to remove us to marijuana [inaudible 23:56] –

 

Chip: Was it medical and then rec? How did it fold out there?

 

Justin: Right. So medical has been around forever. Obviously, there was a great private market scene going back, 40, 50 years now. But medical converted into recreational and here in Oregon, they actually did away with the medical marijuana system from a commercial standpoint. So when all of the medical marijuana stores were forced to convert to recreational marijuana, and give up their medical marijuana licenses, and just sell recreational marijuana. And so, that’s what you see now. There’s still a few handful of just medical only stores here in Oregon, but it’s only really in areas that are banning the recreational sales. So at the end of the day, if you have a medical card which you can still have your medical card in Oregon, and you can still grow your own, and if you have a medical card, you can grow a few more plants that just with your recreational growing rights. But at the end of the day, you can go to the recreational marijuana store with your medical card, and then you pay no taxes, and you can get a higher amount. So instead of one ounce of flower, you can get four ounces of flower at one trip. And instead of four grams of hash, you can get whatever, whatever it is. So they haven’t totally screwed over the medical side. But at the end of the day, people jumped in and it was wide open. And it was really easy to get a license in [inaudible 25:28]  Oregon, and that would have 2015, going into ’16. And then, that’s when the conversion started happening here with Measure 21 and the, it Measure 21 which was the legalization of recreational here. And then they really were able to find out how much cannabis these guys can grow in Oregon and it became a huge overproduction, especially of outdoor. You could get an outdoor rec grow going for pretty cheap out on a farm down in Southern Oregon, and these guys just grew way too much. And that first year –

 

Chip: Best climate in the world. Best climate in the world.

 

Justin: And I think it was 2000, it was fall of ’16 that was going in as there were still a conversion going on, but it was it was going in and I believe that it was like the best growing year ever. It was in the 80s and dry all the way until Halloween. And so it was just a major harvest. So anyways, a lot of guys were only able to get 100 bucks a pound. That’s kind of what it came to for outdoor, and people just started really not doing well. So I think that people started dropping out and then with the hemp thing, in ’19, a lot of cannabis guys grew hemp, smokable hemp instead of ganja, and that cut it down even more on the licensed growers here in Oregon. And now, it’s bounced back out. And if you’re growing indoor, and you’ve got some really good indoor hydroponics type of bud, you can get up to 2500 a pound now wholesale, selling to the stores. I think it’s more in the 17 to 2, and maybe 22. And then maybe there’s a few of the really good name brand grows up here that are that are really great that are getting more, a little bit more with that 2500 premium.

 

Chip: I mean, two years, it’s been.

 

Justin: It’s just now been turning hemp. I’d say five years, four to four years.

 

Chip: So it took four to five years of like, flooded, like, what was the lowest price that cannabis, that quality cannabis got to? Tell me that.

 

Justin: Five to six hundred.

 

Chip: What about that greenhouse cannabis? That major production, the major –

 

Justin: Less than 100, less than 100. ‘Cause we had to start specking out a tier two outdoor grow in Oregon, which is 40,000 square feet of canopy. So that’s an acre of canopy. And basically, if you looked at what it costs you to grow, and for your licenses, and obviously it’s pretty cheap, because you’re just using the sun, natural stuff there. So you’re not like, paying for electricity like you would an indoor thing. These guys were lucky to get 100 bucks a pound and basically pull off 1000 pounds. So you get 1000 pounds of, you could revenue about 100,000 on an acre. 

 

Chip: Grown it like that, it’s fairly inexpensive putting it into a grow, right?

 

Justin: Yeah but I mean, it’s just $100,000 is not a lot of revenue. And especially –

 

Chip: If for just the costing, agree.

 

Justin: Costing, harvesting, it all has to come down at the same time. So you can’t necessarily just one man that. It just doesn’t work. It didn’t work. Now that’s changed. It came back up. Yeah. Well, and they were just trying to call them those oil fields. And nobody really was buying that material for a smokable sort of thing –

 

Chip: Oh man, all of our R&D, that’s what we’ve done with it for sure, man. It’s like –

 

Justin: It’s just going to the extractors.

 

Chip: It’s going to extractors. “Oh, I don’t like that strain. Oh, that didn’t work out. Oh, that takes too long. Oh, that one’s a little sick. Oh,” you know?

 

Justin: It’s different if you’re a vertically integrated company. And so if you have an indoor and an outdoor grow in Southern Oregon, and you have an extractor, and you have a store or two, then it’s fine. Grow the outdoor, because you’re just going to shove that through your extraction mine, and take it to your store, and you’ll eventually get retail for it, right? So, but there were too many independent growers that weren’t vertical also. So all the guys in Oregon that started out vertical and went with the grow in a store, that sort of thing, they’ve all have done well the entire time.

 

Chip: Yeah, right. Absolutely. Oh, man, you know, it’s business dude. Those same years in the hydro industry were a lean eight years for us. And I would say, it was about three years. ‘Cause it hit, well one, Oregon and California ruled the cannabis industry, regardless if you’re independent in your state, like their numbers and their volume like, really has a lot to do with what’s going on the rest of the country. I so

 

Justin: Oh yeah.

 

Chip: But in Colorado, it kind of hit peak about the same time, right? But it was more affected in some way, and we seem to like, the flood happened there a season before, and slow up a season before it did out there, too. The numbers started coming up a little bit earlier on, it was a solid three years though, in Colorado.

 

Justin: Yeah, for sure. Well, it just took longer. It took longer. Yeah.

 

Chip: Right.

 

Justin: And it’s a different curve but no, it’s definitely – 

 

Chip: [inaudible 31:00].

 

Justin: You brought up the outdoor. You bought an outdoor, we’re talking production, we’re talking where, who produces for what, so what’s up with all these fires, and what’s going on –

 

Chip: Oh man, everybody [inaudible 31:13].

 

Justin: How’s that going to affect the industry?

 

Chip: Dude, I’m telling you all the ganja from, I’m not saying all, but a shitload of the ganja producing region in the country just got burned.

 

Justin: Even if it didn’t actually get burned down, did it – I just read an article about all the grapes in Sonoma and Napa are going to be unusable this year, because they smell like fire. And so they’re, even if the farm didn’t get burnt on, there was so much smoke for such a large amount of time, it’s still happening.

 

Chip: Yeah, fires aren’t new over there. We lived over there for almost 20 years. And yes, some of it is so smoky that it will not sell and then, people have developed an ability to like, get that smoke out in some way, too. I’m not exactly sure how it’s done. But maybe just with the natural aging process, the smoke goes away. I’m not sure if you can extract it with that smoky flavor. I do know that, I mean, I personally know three different people who’ve lost most of their gardens, or all their gardens, right?

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: And it is, as far as my listeners and people that I follow on Facebook and Instagram, multiple farmers have lost their gardens and their infrastructure, and it might not come back next year. 

 

Justin: Right. 

 

Chip: Right. So I mean, this is like, last I checked, I’m not sure if you’re in front of the computer, but this is the August complex, right? It’s what they’re calling it now. And they had several different fires that merged together in August. And it was 100,000 acres, right? Like, that is such a huge area, man. I mean, it spans like, from Santa Rosa all the way up to Hayfork and beyond.

 

Justin: I just was looking at a map yesterday and it’s a huge part of the region there for sure.

 

Chip: It’s a huge part, and that’s not the only fire, that’s just the biggest one. There are other fires throughout California, Southern California. And those coastal regions are where the cannabis is produced, a lot of the hill cannabis, so to speak. Now what this won’t affect are the people that are in, I mean for next year anyway, it won’t affect for all those people in the valleys, and in the “ag land.” A lot of those people were pushed out of the forest area, even though man I mean, fire does not care where you are. And the wind starts to blow, and it moves as fast as the wind blows. And I’ve literally watched it travel what looked like 10 miles to me in the matter of moments.

 

Justin: ‘Cause that’s what we just had in Oregon here. And it did affect a lot of the, a bunch of marijuana guys, and hemp guys.

 

Chip: Southern Oregon’s huge, had a huge fire too.

 

Justin: Huge fire, but the one we had up here by Portland was big too, and it caused some problems. And same sort of thing you’re just saying, we had a big windstorm, which normally doesn’t happen until like November, December once it’s rainy. It happened starting the day after Labor Day, and basically there was already a fire going, and it wasn’t that big and then we got these like, hundred mile an hour winds up in the mountains coming down into the valley. And it moved, the one fire moved 20 miles to 12 hours. 

 

Chip: Wow.

 

Justin: Yeah. So –

 

Chip: Man, that was just big.

 

Justin: I’m concerned about that even just the size of some hemp fields and they look fine, but you just, I didn’t get, I don’t know what’s going to happen. It was so smoky here, and the air quality was like, as bad as it can get, you don’t even want to be outside. So, what did that do to the outdoor cannabis plants, hemp or whatever the, you know. We know them to be a sponge, we know them to be bioremediators of some level. So is the, are those plants going to be infected, or toxic, or have heavy metals, or some other thing from being smoked out for about seven or eight days here in Oregon? So even if you weren’t close to the fire and didn’t get hit that way, you lost sunlight production really because there was this weird sepia filter going on for the last eight days. And all the plants just stopped growing. Yeah, all the plants just sort of stopped growing, everything, like, everything stopped growing. 

 

Chip: [inaudible 36:10] max CO2.

 

Justin: Yeah. So, it’ll be interesting to see what that just did to these plants. And maybe they got cleaned up. Because that went away and the weather’s been good. And they’ve had some good, maybe they were able to well still –

 

Chip: Well if there’s enough time, if there’s enough time before harvest, the plants outgrow it.

 

Justin: Sure.

 

Chip: Right? And, and but if you’re harvesting right at –

 

Justin: It’s different if it got rained out on you. Right. 

 

Chip: If you’re harvesting right at the smoke, right? Like, if the fire is at your house, if you’re under that sepia layer we’re talking about, and it is the harvest season, you’re going to be the most affected, unfortunately. And maybe you’ve got some technique or something that we’d love to hear about here on The Real Dirt, let us know. Man, that’s just is hard. When it’s just smoke, and you’re harvesting your weed.

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: Oh, I’ve been there, man. 

 

Justin: You guys didn’t have any fire problems in Oklahoma right?

 

Chip: Fire season comes like fall and winter for us. That’s the dry season.

 

Justin: Yeah.

 

Chip: That’s because – but last year, there was some fires and fires happened here. They put up fire warnings, do not burn warnings. It’s windy, lots of grassland, it’s dry. The trees are small, comparatively. 

 

Justin: Definitely sounds like there’ll be a shortage of, there’s gonna be some sort of shortage for the suppliers. 

 

Chip: It is going to affect the demand. And it was already, demand was already up. So, demand is not going anywhere. It’s going to keep going up, just prediction. And supply, man, we just lost a huge chunk of the supply. And I mean, I’ll tell you, Oklahoma didn’t have the best outdoor growing year this year. If you were trying to pull before October, it was rough. It was humid and rainy throughout the state. Colorado, they had that early freeze this year. 

 

Justin: Oh, yeah. 

 

Chip: So their outdoor, their outdoor, like, it was diminished by that. Sure, some people have survived and a chunk of people lost out over that. On the East Coast, it was also a little bit more humid and wet, more hurricanes came through this year than any year before. So I think the overall outdoor production for 2020 is gonna be low. Combined with COVID, with all the new farms not being able to get the supplies, the materials, the people, the employees out to the garden, this is a really great year to be involved in cannabis. I predict that the price will initially dip as outdoor, what is comes into place, and everybody floods the market. And then between December and January, most of that will have run through the marketplace. And then the price will increase. Currently here in Oklahoma, there’s indoor weed between $3 and $3600. 

 

Justin: Yep. 

 

Chip: Right? Wholesale. This is of a similar nature in California. In Colorado, it’s cheaper, but  2800 bucks, $2600, that’s all going to go up next year, right? The wholesale price of weed is gonna go up. Fortunately for you listeners and consumers out there, generally the end user price doesn’t go up terrible. No, you guys are gonna, you guys are going to continue to pay $10 to $20 a gram, $40 to $60 and eight, right? And that’s been going on since 1996.

 

Justin: Yes, it has. Well, that’s good. Yeah, the consumer price is, well, and they might go up a little bit. Or you might see the higher end cannabis become a little bit more expensive, and maybe the quality of the lower priced stuff is not quite the same, right? You see a little gap, a bigger gap there.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely, man. It’s a good year to be in it. I’m glad I am. Things are good. We’ve had a better year than ever at my grow stores and with Growers Coco fiber.  More people than ever are growing cannabis.

 

Justin: When’s Oklahoma going recreational?

 

Chip: Oklahoma.

 

Justin: Yeah, when’s that going out? 

 

Chip: I just said some Chip’s predictions, okay, here’s the other, here’s more of Chip’s predictions. I think sometime next year, it’ll be introduced into legislation. I think it’ll be a legislative movement here. If it’s 2021, and they’re just gonna push it over to recreational 2022. Maybe –

 

Justin: Right. No vote, no public vote?

 

Chip: No. 

 

Justin: Just go to dispute the laws downtown, and get it, and then pass it?

 

Chip: Yeah, I think that’s what gonna happen.

 

Justin: We’re gonna see more of that as the country goes that way, it doesn’t necessarily gonna have to go to a big statewide vote. And in which, if they feel like everybody is good with it, and you trust your local congressperson and representatives to do, then it works.

 

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. Maybe it moves to 2023, if it has to be a voter sponsored initiative here, that might occur. But as far as yeah, recreate or adult use I would prefer to call it, I’m [inaudible 41:46] for 2022. 2022! Yeah, I mean, who knows? Who knows what’s gonna happen with the economy and the recession and, and everything. It’s incredible how like, because we’ve kept all of our spending and whatnot, internal, and everybody’s just like, sitting at home, and buying stuff online, and saving money, and not doing stuff. And it’s, our economy ain’t so bad right now. I mean, the stock market’s holding its own, banking hasn’t crashed, people are still buying houses. I mean, I know there’s a bunch of people out there hurting right now, and I’m sorry to hear it if you are, man. I know it. But like, it’s weird that to me, that just a little bit of stay at home, a little bit of government sponsored cash, has really kept this country floating, man.  I don’t even know what’s going on.

 

Justin: Yeah, well, people definitely are smoking more cannabis. 

 

Chip: Absolutely. ‘Cause unemployed people smoke more weed. That is a 100% a fact. Every time I’ve been unemployed, I’ve smoked more weed. How about you?

 

Justin: Yeah. Oh, for sure. I think that it’s also, if you’re stuck at home, and you’re dealing with this pandemic and everything, it’s a smarter choice. If you’re bored, and you’re not going out. I mean, the thing about alcohol and how social it is, is that maybe you go out two or three times a week, and maybe it’s a happy hour with some work colleagues, or you’re meeting some friends over here, and have a couple beers.

 

Chip: You might say, fuck it. 

 

Justin: Well, people don’t necessarily feel the same about just sitting at home every day chugging three, four beers, bored by yourself. So we’re, because it just the social aspect. So but, sitting at home and packing a bowl, I think it’s more tangible in the situation, in the current situation, right?

 

Chip: Absolutely. Oh, absolutely. And Netflix is like, I mean, weed and Netflix has been the number one way people have billed their time this past six months.

 

Justin: That I mean, I gotta admit, I got my kids the Nintendo Switch, and I found some games that I enjoy on there that are kind of fun. I didn’t see myself playing Super Mario Brothers at my age, but hey, it’s something you can catch a buzz, sit there and do that for 20 or 30 minutes. I mean, I don’t, I’m not promoting gaming as a full time job or anything, but you got to find some different home enjoyment. And people have been putting time and effort into their home gardens, and hopefully people have been, grew some extra, grew some cannabis plants at home if it’s legal in your state, just because you spent less time running around town and doing stuff away from the home front this year, and I think next year will be similar so.

 

Chip: Absolutely. I think people are going to stay at home more. I think that people are going to grow their own at home more. I think that throughout the country now, it’s legal to grow your own, and accepted to grow your own even if it might not be legal where you are. That people are going to sit home, man. They’re going to grow some weed, the amount of weed that enters the marketplace isn’t going to be, isn’t going to meet the demand. We’re not gonna have an oversaturation. I could be wrong, but that’s my prediction. There’s gonna be a lot of first time weed growers this year because of this, right? 

 

Justin: Well, it’s been good catching up here.

 

Chip: Yeah man.

 

Justin:   Some different topics, and jumping around a little bit but –

 

Chip: Once again – 

 

Justin: Hopefully, you can turn this into a good a good podcast.

 

Chip: How we’re just throwing it all out there these days, Justin.

 

Justin: I know. Hey, you know –

 

Chip: [inaudible 45:47] The Real Dirt is we just throw it out. 

 

Justin: We need to do an episode, we did it years ago where we were, we just prank called a bunch of people and did like, a 10 minute check-ins.

 

Chip: We should prank, we should do Justin, Chip and Justin prank call. Okay, we’ll schedule that one up next up.

 

Justin: Yeah, let’s do that again. That was fun, just check in with a bunch of people. But otherwise, it’s harvest time here in Oregon. The hemp plants are coming down, we’re here, we’ve had decent weather after all that smoke. But we got a rainy weekend going on now, and then a little bit more dryness coming, and so people are scrambling. I got a call the other day, and somebody needed help harvesting 50 acres of hemp so, it’s going down. And we’ll see, we’ll know here in the next six weeks how it all ends, I suppose.

 

Chip: Well thanks for the call again, Justin. Thanks for joining us on The Real Dirt. 

 

Justin: Always a pleasure. 

 

Chip: And thank you for listening. This has been The Real Dirt podcast with Chip Baker and Justin Jones. If you enjoyed this episode, you can download others at iTunes and Spotify. We’re The Real Dirt podcast. Please, please, please subscribe. Hey man, thanks for joining me. You guys have a great rest of your day. Later.

The Science of Breeding Triploid Cannabis

The Science of Breeding Triploid Cannabis

the science of cannabis cultivation

Justin Jones has been in the cannabis industry since the very beginning.

He opened the first ever recreational cannabis dispensary in Colorado, Dank Dispensary in Denver. Justin has been a leader in the legal cannabis industry for close to a decade, and now he’s taking over the hemp industry too.

It’s not so simple for most to transition from traditional cannabis cultivation to hemp cultivation. When you know the science of the plant and how to cultivate it to get the results you want, you can create some incredible strains and genetics.

The evolving science of cannabis and hemp cultivation

Justin made his transition from cannabis to hemp when the Farm Bill passed in 2018, making hemp legal at the federal level. This legalization has given farmers and researchers the resources they need to study hemp more thoroughly without government intervention.

Through his research Justin has been able to develop triploid hemp plants, or sterile male plants put simply. Traditionally hemp and cannabis are diploid plants which means that a male can pollinate a female and produce seeds.

But diploid and triploids are just the tip of the iceberg when it comes to science of cannabis cultivation.

Plant science, patents and more

In this episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker, Justin and Chip get into the real dirt of cannabis science and how changing techniques are producing stronger, better cannabis and hemp strains and what that means for the future of the industry.

Roll it up, spark it up and check out this episode of The Real Dirt Podcast!

Follow Dank Dispensary and High Grade Hemp

Dank Dispensary

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Transcript

Chip: Hey, this is The Real Dirt podcast. I’m here with Justin Jones today, Real Dirt, Sunday morning dirt. How you doing, Justin?

 

Justin: I’m good. I’m good, Chip. Just got the sun peeking out here coming up, gonna have a nice rainy day here in Oregon. It helped tamp out some of these fires that we’ve had, to help wrap up the end of the harvest here, end of the year.

 

Chip: Yeah, man, we’ve hit the dry season down here in Oklahoma. The fall and winter are drier, that’s when we have our fire seasons. It’s almost perfect for harvesting cannabis, because it just starts to get dry around first of October. So if you’re lucky enough to be harvesting in October, November, December, those are really good months for you down here.

 

Justin: We call those fine finishing days.

 

Chip: Fine, there’s fine finishing days. And if you’re finishing in the next 10 days here in Oklahoma, which many people are, wow man, you’re gonna do really well.

 

Justin: That’s good. I just was talking to some friends up in western Colorado and they were finishing everything over there and pulling it down out in the Paonia areas. Good value for grown cannabis there in Colorado, maybe the only real value for growing out there in Colorado.

 

Chip: We’ve had a couple opportunities to move down to Paonia. I wish I could have more time to explore that during our time in Colorado. You know, Paonia was the first like, namebrand weed I would ever, I ever heard of.

 

Justin: They had a purple or something back in the day.

 

Chip: Oh, yeah, yeah. Paonia Purple. Peabuds, peabuds.

 

Justin: That was the pea bud, yeah. And they lost it, nobody’s got it. Some people claim they still, but no one’s seen it for a long time.

 

Chip: Yeah, you know, that’s what happens with a lot of the famous strains. That’s why like, I call bullshit on anybody wanting to harvest I mean, hold on to their strains. Few people have the overall impact to make a strain happen. And the only way that it happens is through volume of buds produced. And few people can drive that demand, you know what I mean?

 

Justin: I totally do. And you know, as far as that goes, Matt Deckel, good friend of ours told me about this a while back. Years ago, we started doing that. And so you know, our favorite strains, we don’t just keep them and try to hoard them. We kind of to pair them, let other people enjoy them, and then also backup your cuts. So if you get a bad bug infestation, and you got to [inaudible 2:33] some stuff, or somebody kills your plants, or you know, there’s lots of things can happen. And this way you can start over, and go get your, go get your favorite strains back in your library. So got to back that up.

 

Chip: Of course, you got to hold on to them. I guess my real, my question is or point is, do you have a strain that’s been a popular, long standing strain in your shop?

 

Justin: For sure. We definitely do.

 

Chip: What is it? What is it?

 

Justin: I would say we’ve got a Chemdog, we had a Chem before that we’ve had for 10 years. It always sells, everybody loves it. We’ve got one of the old school, old school Sour Diesel strains –

 

Chip: Is that the original, because –

 

Justin: Yeah, the original for sure.

 

Chip: Here’s my point, is you’ve got Chemdog and Sour D. And people come there and buy it at Dayton, Colorado. Do you think they would be as possible if there weren’t millions of other pounds of Chemdog and Sour D being grown in the past 20 years?

 

Justin: I think that that’s, plays a major role. And I think that strains because where we’ve come from and where we still are in most places, but where we’re coming from and moving towards with legalization, people at least now know that they’re getting something that’s repeatable. And so you know, back in the day it gets, and that’s where Chemdog came from, right? Somebody bought an ounce of weed at a Grateful Dead concert. There was 10 seeds in the bag. It was the best pot they ever smoked, they had the seeds, they started planting them, right? And so, they don’t really know what that cannabis was. You have no idea you know, you’d sell whatever they said on the street when you bought it and –

 

Chip: It was kind [inaudible 4:16] back then. Back then it was –

 

Justin: KD, yeah. It was just KD, it was just nine Mexican bud. And you know, at the end of the day, now we have, can enjoy the fact that you can say this is Chemdog Four. And then, you can grow it. You can grow it the same way every time and put it out there. And so people that like it that can go and buy it, and get the same thing. And if they’re, you know I, it was really dawned on me about 10 years ago when I started my medical marijuana company in Denver. I had a patient with Crohn’s, really bad Crohn’s. And he told me one time, “The worst thing about Crohn’s  is that I’ll find some cannabis that works and it literally will cure my Crohn’s, but I have no idea what it is. I bought it on the street. I don’t know what strain it is.” They could, it could be the name they said or not. And he said, “It’s almost worse for me to find the bag that like, cures my Crohn’s, because I know I’m going to run out and I can’t go get the same stuff again.” For us back then, the Durbin poison that we grew, and we still grow, it was a cure for him. And all of a sudden this guy’s like, “Well, I can get the same thing every month, cures my Crohn’s, and  now I’m not so stressed out about finding the right medical cannabis.”

 

Chip: Man, and Chemdog’s not the easiest one to grow either. To make it consistent and look great, it’s not easy.

 

Justin: Not necessarily. I think it’s easier than some of the other gassy strains that we’ve seen come out of the skunk lines. But where did the Skunk No. 1 go? That’s what I want to know.

 

Chip: Oh man, you know, you can still get it. I mean, I bought some seeds several years ago from Sensi Seeds, it’s still, you can get it. It’s still there. I mean, the European Skunk one is.

 

Justin: Well, the real answer to that question is that it’s everywhere, because it was used in pretty much all the background breeding going on for the last 30 years. So, if you look at the data on strains, pretty much everything that’s got any gas to it’s coming out of Skunk somewhere.

 

Chip:  Yeah, you know, I’ve grown these perfect Diesel buds in the past and I’ve also grown a fair amount of Skunk 1 and Super Skunk. And the Diesel really does have a Super Skunk look, that’s for sure.

 

Justin:  We’re in the world of hybrids now, you know? So, it’s, you never know.

 

Chip:  Well, they’re all hybrids, man. You know, it’s a big conversation we’ve been having about indica, and sativa, and hybrids and we just call it all hybrids now. We’re never going to convince people that cannabis sativa is just hemp and that cannabis with THC in it is indica. Oh, I shouldn’t say never. It’s going to take a few years before people like, start talking, stop talking about cannabis in terms of indica and sativa.

 

Justin:  Well, and as we get some more science involved, I think that’ll help, where the hemp industry is seeing some help from real science, or university science. I just tested a bunch of new hybrids that we’re working on in the hemp side of things. You know, I’m able to take those cannabis samples right over to Oregon State University, drop the leaf samples off, get the test that I need to get done. And you know, that was not available before, you know, a year and a half ago, and really a year ago. And so, it’s still mostly unavailable to marijuana growers, but it’s coming, you know? And as we move along with legalization, I think that we’ll be able to get the science and the real agricultural science guys, those that’ll become something we can use in the cannabis and the marijuana side of cannabis as we are now starting to in the hemp. But that also says, “Hey, what’s going to happen to these marijuana genetics over the next few years if that kind of science becomes more available? And what are we going to see, are the strains going to get better?” Right now there’s a bunch of hemp breeding going on where you’re taking and making triploid hemp plants, and the vigor and the production on these plants is 20 to 40% more than their same diploid siblings. And so what’s that mean, when you kind of start changing the science on the breeding? And using modern techniques, and really not even the modern techniques, just using the traditional plant breeding techniques?

 

Chip: Yeah, I mean –

 

Justin:  To get better plants?

 

Chip:  Diploid, it’s been around for a minute. I mean, people have talked about this for a bit, diploid, triploid. Why don’t you explain that? You’ve been doing a little bit of this with hemp?

 

Justin:  Right, right. 

 

Chip:  I’ve heard, it’s read about the amount of time. David Clark’s book, Marijuana Botany, I think. It was written in the 70s. So it’s not new science.

 

Justin:  No, no, this is not new. And you know, this is not also not necessarily considered GMO either. And that’s another conversation that now we’ve had to have in the hemp industry. Is your hybrid GMO? And is the techniques that we use to feminize seeds in the hemp industry a GMO process or not? And so that’s, and there’s another whole, a whole section of talking.

 

Chip:  Do you have, is there a thirty second disclaimer you have for GMO?

 

Justin: Well, I mean, GMO doesn’t necessarily mean it’s bad. And you know, there’s obviously people or companies that have used GMO in what I’d like to say a Dr. Evil and I’ll put my pinky in the corner by mouth. You know, if you use GMO to spray poison on plants that won’t kill them and it’ll kill the weeds, then you know, that’s maybe kind of Dr. Evil-ish. But GMO, the GMO process has also done some amazing things for us like anybody that you know that’s a type two diabetic that’s got an insulin dependent thing going on, GMO’s the reason those guys can live a fairly normal life. That’s where they’ve found those, that medicine. So anyways, back to the cannabis side of things on the hemp, you know, what we’re seeing is, you know, lots of different breeding techniques. And so all of a sudden, we can get a triploid and what are the triploids? So your standard cannabis plant is diploid, diploid, diploid, I don’t know, I’m not a scientist, I’m a stoner. So you have a diploid patch. What you do to make a triploid, which the reason we’re trying to make triploids is because they are a sterile plant that will not get the seed, so they are not able to be impregnated by pollen and create a seed. And on the same side of things, you’re also hoping that the pollen that would be produced from those plants might not work to inspect another plant to create – 

 

Chip:  Sterile, sterile male?

 

Justin:  Yes. And so, and even if you get a, even if you get a hermaphrodite –

 

Chip:  They do this with other crops, right? Like,

 

Justin:  Well, this is revolutionary for hops. One of the big reasons that the beer industry has gotten just insane in the last 30 years, just because they came up with the seed was hops. I think it was in the Willamette hops from here in Oregon, where the, it was the first variety of seedless. And what that allowed the farmer to do is push the crop out and harvest it when it’s truly ready, and at its full potential. But in hops to do that, you’re risking it going to seed and if your hops go to seed, you get like, a dime on the dollar, okay? So the seedless hops allowed the hops farmer to get bigger production, bigger, you know, more hops per acre and better hops, without accidentally screwing it up and blending. So –

 

Chip: And this started in the 50’s, 60’s, do you know?

 

Justin:  No, I think the first seedless hops that came out of Oregon State and it was, I think it was more like closer to the 80, early 80’s. So the seedless hops was something that came out of Oregon State and Oregon State developed that original Willamette, I believe, the Willamette hops. And they made that available through the public as you know, the fact that Oregon State’s a land grant university. And so that allowed other hops breeders to go and start breeding projects to seedless. Anyways, what you do here with hemp is, we’re going for this triploid so that we don’t have seeds in the crop. And that way, you can grow whatever you want on your plot of land. And I can be right across the street and I can still grow some [inaudible 12:55] essential oil cannabis for CBD or CBG production, these sort of things. And so, you know, as the industry matures, that’s going to become something that we want to see. And even if you’re in the Midwest, where there’s a lot of rogue hemp, and rogue male cannabis plants, you could still grow seedless oil crop, right? Right. But it takes a long time and you know, you can’t skirt the fact that it just takes a certain amount of days to grow plants out, and then cross breed them, and then grow them back out, and test them, and check them, and regrow, test them and test them and you know, all these things. So, I’ve been working on that now. 

 

Chip: And the flowers there is, they do have, or reported to, reportedly to be larger and more vigorous triploid cannabis, right? Correct? 

 

Justin:  Yes, the plants we’re seeing, even if we just look at them from early stage, bigger, it’s just unbelievable. Then I’m hearing 30 to 40% more production, save your buds, less flowers, less leaves, more this, and your ratio of a usable commodity off of a plant versus you know, on a triploid looks like you’re gonna have a lot more sellable weed. 

 

Chip:  Yeah, absolutely.

 

Justin:  And you have no seeds in there, so you know, nobody wants to process seeds, because it does something weird to the oil. And then they have to go through it and remediate that. So basically, you know, as a farmer, you’re trying to produce the best material for the person that wants to buy it. And so, in the past, we’ve kind of been like, “Any material produced is fine, because there’s not enough.” Now, we’re getting to like, “Who’s going to produce the best material? What farmers are going to grow it, and then get it into the right form?” And if you don’t have to deal with seeds, and if you’ve got 30% more flower mass over your stems, all these things are exactly what we need the plants to do. But we’re also going to hopefully start seeing this creep into the marijuana side of things. And as I think as some of the genetics, cannabis genetics hemp guys are looking at, how can we start to look at this over at the marijuana side also? So that when we do get a lab, when we can go get on a flow spectrometer machines and test the ploidy level of a plant, and see if it’s a diploid or a tetraploid, or a triploid. You know, we’re gonna see this enter over into the marijuana thing. And maybe some of these old genetics that start to delve out over time from clonal, from over cloning and just being, you know, in that world, we can revive some of these things. And then, you know, again, you know, is it GMO, isn’t it GMO? I mean, you know, truthfully, if you’re not using marker assisted breeding, you know, I’m looking at it that way, you’re still using it, you’re still using your brain, and your eyes, and your nose to –

 

Chip:  Map. Map. 

 

Justin:  Yeah, to select strains or select –

 

Chip:  And that’s traditional breeding, right?

 

Justin: Right, right.

 

Chip:  Hey, man, this summer, we grew a bunch of autoflowers, you know. This is my first like, big autoflower year. We planted out cumulatively about 20,000 autoflower seeds this year, all different types, all bunch of different vendors. And man, I’ll tell you, we got some product from Mephisto Genetics, Three Bears, OG, and they don’t pay me to say any of this, guys [inaudible 16:28]. But we all, everyone who saw this plant were like, “Wow, that’s like genetically modified weed? Like, what the fuck is that?” Because, you know, one, like in 65 days, it’s done. But there’s literally no leaf on these flowers. It’s the perfect cannabis for extraction. It was all bred with traditional techniques. And I mean, 20 years ago, I saw a big bud that looked very similar, right? These huge buds with just a little bit of leaf on them, you know? And that was bred traditionally, as well. That was straight [inaudible 17:06] seed’s product and now they’re Skunk product. But you don’t have to have genetically modified, or use genetically modified technology to breed superior cannabis. You can use science, our current observations with plants, math, additional techniques, all of these things have worked for hundreds of years.

 

Justin:  And even the work that we’ve been doing in the last year, you can really, you don’t necessarily need the university level agricultural science lab, but it makes things faster and better. And here’s the example. When you’re looking for tetraploids, and you’re doing a pheno hunt, but you’re looking for a tetraploid, not a diploid, you look at the size of the stomata, and the shape of the stomata on the leaf. So if you use a nice microscope, like a $200 microscope these days, and these are all, all these microscopes plugged right into your computer, and you can go in and capture your screenshots and look at things. 

 

Chip: Oh sick, man, we just got one. Like, I was gonna get one for the clone nursery, so anybody can look at any of the clones or any of the weed, make sure there’s no mold or mildew or PM or any bug, or anything. It’s right there on the counter, $200. 

 

Justin:  Great, yeah, look at it. And so what we’re doing, is we’re actually taking and looking at the size, and measuring the size and the shape of the stomata to see, and that can tell us what the ploidy is on it, okay? So when you’re hunting for a tetraploid, you’re looking for a different,  a less round stomata, and also the size of stomata is bigger. And so –

 

Chip:  Like how, that’s two, three times bigger, you know, how much bigger?

 

Justin:  From what we were working on, the microscope that we had was measuring in pixels. And I don’t even know what, we don’t even give a shit what that prize is. Because what we are doing to say, “Okay, this is a, this has this stomata is 70 pixels. This is 80. This one’s 100. This one’s 110, this one’s 60.” And what we’re looking at, first of all, we’re looking at stomatas that don’t have a perfectly round shape, first of all. That’s a first indicator that it could be a tetraploid. The problem is most of it falls in the 70 to 90 zone, okay? And so you know, you start to, so what we would do is we would use the microscope to get a bunch of the work done, and to measure and know. And then we would send all those samples to the lab and find out, yeah, that is not a tetraploid. That is maybe a tetraploid. That is a tetraploid. And then you know, then you get that data back and you start to say, “Okay, I can probably guarantee anything above these 90 pixels is a tetraploid.” But when you’re breeding and you don’t, you know, and you can’t get back the time that it takes. You want to know for sure. So you don’t waste six months on something that turns out, you’re wrong. And so, you get your tetraploid stock and then you start breeding with those plants. And I guess in layman’s terms, they have six sets of DNA. That’s why is it tetraploid, and then a diploid has two. And so, when you hybrid the two, six divided by two becomes three and that’s your triploid. And then those because of the three sets, DNA cannot make babies. Collect the donkey and the horse, make a mule, right? But then a mule can never replicate, the mules are optional.

 

Chip:  Oh, the mule cannabis, Justin Jones, we’re talking about genetics, random other thing, but mostly –

 

Justin:  Yeah, well, I finally got that –

 

Chip:  It’s all about the ganja.

 

Justin:  I finally got that ganja rolled up here for the Sunday morning smokedown but –

 

Chip:  Oh, what are you smoking? What are you smoking on?

 

Justin:  Sherbadough from Archive.

 

Chip:  Sherbadough, that’s Sherbert and Do-Si-Do, right?

 

Justin:  Yeah, you know, the boys are like, “I’d love to hit that, hit everything with the Do-Si-Do.”

 

Chip:  Oh, yeah. I just planted out a huge pheno selection of Archive Do-Si-Do crosses, Fletcher over there’s got always running some R&D. And he had a new Do-Si-Do male or a new Do-Si-Do donor he was using for his feminized line. And these guys, Sherbert Do-Si crossed with Do-Si-Do. Diesel, OG Face Off, T-1000, Tangie, Lemon G, Skittles all crossed  with the, that new Do-Si-Do donor. So we’re excited about it, they look great. 

 

Justin:  That’s good. I’m sitting here, I’ve got, I’m talking about you know, breeding and hybrids. I’ve got a Gorilla Glue 4 here from Archive that I grew. And then I also have a Duct Tape, which is Gorilla Glue 4 divided by the Do-Si-Do. And so to see like just the pure Gorilla Glue 4, and then right next to it, you know, it’s sister, or, you know, half sister, whatever, whatever with the Do-Si-Do. They’re very similar, but yet very different on the terpene profile. That Do-Si-Do gives everything just a little something I don’t know, that’s more magical. It’s different, it’s better.

 

Chip: It’s bigger. It’s bigger, for sure. It is better. And yeah, I’m really excited about it, man. You know, we’ve planted out of 2,500 of those seeds, and I’m going to have an incredible Do-Si-Do out of it all. I’ll be able to pick the Do-Si-Do. And I’m looking for the hybrids too but, man, it’s exciting just to see it all. That’s for sure. Right now I like the Do-Si-Do Face Off and the Do-Si-Do SFP backcrosses the best. If you think about it, those are almost all just like BX backcrosses, because the Face Off is in the Do-Si-Do. And then cross it back to the Face Off and cross it back to the SFP.

 

Justin:  Well I’ll tell you what. The marijuana breeders right now need to get hip, start trying to work on protecting their IP if they have it. Because that’s going to be the next thing once we get some sort of federal legalization, and guys want to become the next Sierra Nevada of marijuana or the next Two Buck Chuck or whatever. People are going to start going to war over their genetics and I’ve even had conversations with some guys in California that already want to start working on a Mendocino hamlet. And you know, Humboldt hamlet –

 

Chip:  Yeah, the Appalachian, the Appalachian is definitely starting to grow in ideology. Yeah, you know, Calculator right now, famous MAC line. He is upset that clone dealers are dealing his MAC 1 strain. He claims just recently on his Instagram channel that he’s going after some major clone producers in California for selling his MAC 1. I don’t believe he really has any legs to stand on currently, because there’s not going to be a court that’s going to enforce it. And you know, also just because like he claims to own a plant, doesn’t mean he owns anything, right?

 

Justin: No and it’s going to come down to the processes too. And so, there’s a popular hemp breeder here in Oregon and they’ve already got that patents filed on a bunch of things. And one of their patent pendings is on crossing autoflower genetics into full term photo plants. And so, if that patent gets issued, anybody into choosing that process will have to pay them some money. Maybe, right? I mean, everything has to be, try to be enforced. But at the end of the day, they’re saying that they own the rights to cross a ruderalis with a, you know, cannabis sativa or whatever, and get that early hybrid.

 

Chip:  Yeah, this is Phylos. Phylos – 

 

Justin:  No, no, it’s not that one. Were filed that is Oregon CBD.

 

Chip:  Oregon CBD. But Phylos, they have a couple similar, similar thing going on, right?

 

Justin:  Phylos has been collecting data on the different strains of cannabis and trying to relate them to each other to say, “Okay, you have a -“

 

Chip:  Oh, okay. So Phylos was not involved with the autoflower?

 

Justin:  Well, where they could become involved in is to who has the real, true, earliest version of a strain? And so there’s a, you know, let’s just say Jack Herer, okay it’s famous person and also a strain.

 

Chip:  Yep.

 

Justin:  If somebody wants to say, look, in order for you to say that that’s Jack Herer, it’s gotta A, be this, 123. This terpene profile stand, it’s got to be grown in Mendo or in this Hamlet, right? So they’ve done that with wine, obviously. If you grow your grapes in Washington, you can’t call it champagne. You gotta call it spark, white, sparkling, because it didn’t come from France. You’re gonna see that play out. Part of what Phylos is trying to do is they try to find those oldest, earliest grandparent genetics, or who’s  got the oldest clone that’s not, you know, whatever. We’ll see. We’ll see how, but there’s already people trying to patent. And I don’t think anybody’s trying to patent Sour Diesel, I think.

 

Chip:  Well, cause if you can patent cannabis sativa strains, you can patent hemp.

 

Justin:  They’re trying to patent the processes to feminize. So if you spray a certain type of silver on your plants, then to get a feminized pollen, and then you’re using that in your breeding, that that would be infringement on their IP. So again –

 

Chip:  Yeah, the plant’s gotta stand up in court and somebody has to enforce them and sure.

 

Justin:  Well sure, but I’m just saying that you know, hemp has become you know, fully legal before marijuana. It’s you’re seeing it already, the –

 

Chip:  Oh, there’s already a patent with hemp. There’s a hemp, or hemp people have already received patents for hemp, right?

 

Justin:  I believe so. I would say probably yes, but –

 

Chip:  Charles Webb. Those guys, they got a patent. They were the first people to get a patent.

 

Justin:  Probably.

 

Chip:  Yeah, totally. I’m sure others have by now. It’s a little weird thing to do, but yeah, go file for a patent if you think you got special shit. Then go sue everybody who uses your special shit without your permission. I guess that would do it, right? Mostly, I don’t really have special shit, though. It’s just normal weed that’s hype.

 

Justin:  Well, it comes down to this. The best advice I could give any of these breeders and I’m not a breeder, we’re messing around with some stuff for fun. And maybe it turns out to be something, you know – 

 

Chip:  We’re messing around with stuff for fun. How many seeds you got in your seed vault right now? Can you count?

 

Justin:  I don’t know. A couple hundred, 300. You know, at the end of the day though, what I you know, the people that have been breeding in the marijuana side of things, you know, whether you’re the guys that wear the funny sunglasses and the fake mustaches at the Emerald cup, or not, because you’re trying to not necessarily be above you know, or be out in the public eye. You’ve gotta start getting into the science and you gotta team up with somebody with some sort of trust. Well, if you don’t go the bioscience routes, you’ll wake up and realize that the guys that did go that route, and jump you, and go five years ahead of you in a short amount of time. You can be scared of that, and I’ve seen them be scared of going that direction because of you know, just that Dr. Evil science side of things. But boy, a lot of knowledge out there that’s never been applied to cannabis from you know, from our modern world of agriculture. So yeah, find some science buddies if you’re out there breeding and, you know, try to figure out how to do all these things. Because even just getting your genetics into a tissue culture lab, you know, and having them clean them up and do all these things, that can take like up to a year.

 

Chip:  Yeah, no shit. Right.

 

Justin:  And so you can’t you know, if you wait too long, and then say, “Hey, we really do need to take this clone that we’ve been using forever and get it cleaned.” It takes a while. So in California, I think there’s a lot of bioscience companies and people are starting to jump in on the marijuana side of things. But until it’s federally legal, you really won’t get the doors opened all the way. But those who have already started something will be ahead.

 

Chip:  Well, it’s been another fine episode with Justin Jones. Thanks for joining us, Justin.

 

Justin:  Yeah, thank you, Chip. Great talking to you. We got off on some tangents there with the genetics and other things, but that was fun. And we’ll circle back and produce more sense of that some other day.

 

Chip:  Yeah, absolutely. If you’re like this episode, or interested in others, please download it at the iTunes. We are The Real Dirt podcast. Also look us up on Spotify, and you can check us out therealdirt.com Hey, remember, if you’re ever looking for soil or soilless growing mediums, check out growerscoco.com, ask for them in your local store. And if you’re cruising online one day interested in buying some hydroponic or indoor supplies, look at cultivatecolorado.com. This has been The Real Dirt. Love y’all.

The Real Dirt on Cannabis Consultants [ PT. 1 ]

The Real Dirt on Cannabis Consultants [ PT. 1 ]

best cannabis industry consultants

Got a grow problem? There’s a consultant for that!

At least that’s what it seems like these days.

The cannabis industry is inundated with consultants. From solving a pest problem to something as simple as picking out the proper nutrients for your first grow, people will hire a consultant for just about anything. It’s got a little bit to do with laziness and money, but more so a lack of knowledge about the plant.

When a new commercial cannabis operator is handed a bunch of money by investors and told to be successful, that’s a lot of stress thrown onto a person’s shoulders. Especially if that person is inexperienced or has only grown on a smaller scale, they will need help.

But just like any other industry, the cannabis industry has no shortage of snake oil salesman. These people call themselves “consultants”, but they usually just have one little trick or “bro-science” technique that worked a handful of times with their friends, so now they think they have the knowledge to tell others how to fix their problems.

A New Type of Cannabis Consulting

As the cannabis industry grows and the consulting market becomes more saturated, it has become easier to pick out the fake consultants and find the real experts. But the problem still remains; most of these experts only excel in one area. Whether its pest management, cultivation techniques, extraction technology, banking or security, it’s extremely rare to find a consultant with experience in all of the above.

That’s why Chip and his good friend and business partner Jim Gerencser came up with Greener Consulting Group, a firm of cannabis consultants with dedicated areas of expertise. Traditionally, a consultant operates alone in a contractor capacity. But Greener Group has evolved the cannabis consultant, and turned it into a team that can solve any problem in-house.

Greener Group aims to remove the hassle of searching the web and asking associates for consultant recommendations for every individual problem. No matter what the issue is, one or more of the consultants from Greener Consulting Group has the skills and industry experience to solve it, guaranteed.

In Part One of this two-part episode, Chip and Jim dive into the real dirt of cannabis consulting and how dirty the industry really gets. Plus, hear about which states are doing regulation right and which got it completely wrong, and what the future holds for medical and legal cannabis states in the aftermath of COVID and plenty of classic ganja talk between a couple stoners.

Roll up another one, sit back or get back in the grow, and enjoy this episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker!

Connect with Greener Consulting Group

Greener Group Facebook

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Transcript

Chip: Today on The Real Dirt, I have my good friend and partner. I mean, I’ve known you all this time and I can’t even pronounce your name correctly. Jim Gerencser.

Jim: My first name is Jim. My last name is Hungarian. It’s Gerencser, the cs is a letter in Hungary. I learned that last year when I went to Budapest.

Chip: Oh, that’s why I can’t pronounce it.

Jim: That’s why you can’t pronounce it. Yeah, you only have 26 letters in your alphabet. They got like, 41 or something like that. But I’m glad to be her.

Chip: I mean, thanks dude. Thanks for joining me. I’m glad we got you on. Me and Jim have been,  we got a bunch of projects the past year or so. We met through a group called Baby Bathwater. It’s a networking, marketing group, entrepreneur group. And we didn’t even meet there though. Did we?

Jim: We didn’t even meet there.

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Jim: I basically was on the island in Croatia, this private island for a week with all these,  150 people. I’ve met one of them before. And I probably became best friends with 30 of them. And I took over Chip’s job on the island.

Chip: And with the Baby Bathwater. I’m usually –

Jim: The cannabis –

Chip: I roll it up. Yeah, I’m the cannabis guy. I roll it up.

Jim: Yeah, they don’t have to hide that does that in Baby Bathwater. They outsource it to Chip. When Chip wasn’t there, it was a break in the supply chain. And, I started two days before I got there trying to create the supply chain. So they probably figured I was the best guy to keep it rolling. Honestly, I’m pretty good at that.

Chip: Yeah, absolutely. So the story I hear is after this event, it’s basically like a five-day crash course in advanced entrepreneurism and marketing, mixed with five days of long nights. It’s a pretty incredible place. But after the fact, a couple of days after it came, people called me up and he’s like, “Oh, man, you’ve got to meet Jim. Oh, you got to meet Jim.” Two different people like, sent us friend emails, right? You know, “Chip, meet Jim. Jim meet Chip.”

Jim: That’s the cool thing about the group. Yeah, they kind of mix and match you a little bit and then try to find either like-minded, or opposite-minded people that seem to get along. And honestly, they nailed this one.

Chip: Oh dude, me and Jim get along so well. You’re kind of like an evil older brother.

Jim: Yeah, I’m an evil older brother, but also with the cousin side to it. You know like, you got your cousin that you believe in 100%, because you have to, right? I mean, you’re in there. You’re messing with your parents and your parents are, came from the same family, you know? So it’s not like, you can trick them. Like, you can trick fuck everybody else. So yeah, you learn a lot from cousins. And I only had one brother. I didn’t have any younger brothers. So I think Chip and I have a love hate relationship in terms of we love a lot of things together. And we don’t hate anything, really. I mean, that’s the neatest part about us. We’re not haters.

Chip: Oh, yeah man. Not haters at all.

Jim: We don’t spend lot of time even going there. And anybody that has any of that in them doesn’t seem like they are allowed in what we’re doing. So it’s that simple, which is pretty awesome.

Chip : Well, yeah, hate’s a kind of a natural thing people have. I’ve really have had to work it, work with it. Coming from the south, Southerners are typically like, haters of things, right? That’s not Southern.

Jim: That’s sort of default.

Chip: Right?

Jim: Yeah.

Chip: Yeah, that’s their default for good or for bad. It creates a lot of interesting cultural things, that’s good for it. I generally try not to prejudge or, hate, I’ve had to work on it. I’ve had to work on it.

Jim: I think Chip, that’s a good point.  I believe that this entrepreneur group that we met through is a group that works on stuff, and you see that. And when I was there, one of the shows I went to, I think it was a marketing guy that runs all the advertising for Peloton. He started off the conversation with, “Who here is an entrepreneur?” Everybody raised their hand, so it was kind of humbling in the fact that, you brought that many entrepreneurs together. And we were all there to learn more. It was like, yeah, we’re entrepreneurs, but we’re thriving, we thrive for more information. And we’re all there together, not competing. We all could probably be in the same industry, because everybody’s fighting for the almighty dollar, in one way or another. But yeah, well that’s what I liked about it most. And afterwards when I sought out my cannabis, because I’m a medical cannabis guy, I’ve seen cannabis work for curing cancer and fighting cancer and making cancer cells commit suicide. So, my whole goal in this cannabis space was to meet somebody that I think can help me get to that space faster.

Chip: So Jim calls me, to the listeners of the podcast, I’m a very friendly person, but I’m very busy. And I have a lot of different projects. And I don’t really take meetings with people I don’t know. I communicate with people over the phone, or try to email back and forth with people in tool, like there’s a reason to me, and this is all pre-COVID, too. So it was back to my old MO of like, “Hey, would love to chat with you. Let’s get on the phone.” Right? Like, “What do you want?” on an email. And Jim wouldn’t be straight with me. He was like, “Well, I’d rather just come and see. You know, so I keep blowing Jim off. And then one day, he just showed up, right? Just like that. He’s like, “I’m coming tomorrow. I’ll be there at noon.”

Jim: I’m “the shorter the notice, the better” kind of guy.

Chip: Yeah, right. Yeah. He’s like a bill collector. You’re like a bill collector.

Jim: You don’t tell him you’re coming. Yeah.

Chip: Right. So Jim shows up, we meet, we hit it off immediately. Jim smoked more weed than I do. He immediately had some great, great weed. We smoked like, 10 joints in my store, before it was a store, I just rented the facility, my grow store, Cultivate. I just rented the facility. It was empty warehouse and we smoked it out, dreamed of what to be, huh Jim?

Jim: Yeah, I was looking for, I don’t know what I was looking for, Chip. I was looking for somebody like you. I didn’t –

Chip: You wanted to get into the cannabis industry.

Jim: I did. I wanted to be –

Chip: You’re a successful businessperson. And you wanted to get in the cannabis industry and didn’t quite know how, but love weed.

Jim: That’s it. That’s it, I saw all the things happening. I’ve got a bunch of my friends that are either retired or getting ready to retire. Half of them have never smoked a joint in their life, but they know that I have partaken my whole life. So they were reaching out to me like, “What do we do? Who do we invest in? How do we get into the space?” And I was like, “I don’t know. Let me find out.” So I started digging into it and honestly felt like I’ve gone through like a four-year education class in the last 12 months with Chip, because Chip is one of those guys that actually knows business, which I immediately realized that. I was like, “This guy is actually a business guy. And he’s in the cannabis space.” Because what I had experienced on a small scale was that you’re either one of the other. Like, most engineers don’t sell, you know what I mean? And that’s kind of what I consider like oil and water. You’re either an engineer, or you’re a salesperson, no way in hell you’re both. To actually make a certain person that can talk to both people, because they call it a liaison, because they can’t even talk to each other, they’re so far apart. So that’s what I really wanted to do in this space, is learn as much as I possibly could. There’s so much to learn about it, and what I ran into was a [inaudible 8:02]. Chip introduced me to so much crap I don’t even care about, but I was interested in it. I wanted to learn as much as I can and not that I’m a huge education freak, but this space intrigues me. So here we are a year later, we’ve run multiple different deals together. I’ve invested in some of his businesses, he’s given me some direction on some other businesses to invest in or not to invest in, which is probably the most important thing, what not to invest in. You got to –

Chip: Yeah, when to say no.

Jim: When to say no, you got to love what you’re doing, and I did love it. And like I said, now I’ve run the course of a year of investing, finding out that yeah, everybody in the space is cool, but I’m not sure I love everybody in the space. I don’t hate anybody, but I’m not sure I love everybody.

Chip: Well, many people just, they’re on a wing and a prayer, or they have like this idea, or this thing they want to do, and it might not have anything to do with the business of cannabis actually making a profit, which can be cool, man, right? Like those guys that are doing RSO for a penny a gram. Man, coolest thing possible right? But it’s a nonprofit business in the truest sense.

Jim: It really is. They don’t even let you expense your labor. What the hell, man? I mean, what kind of business,  it’s just such a federal, this is a federal fucking. it’s literally at the point, it sets a epitome of getting fucked.

Chip: Right, right. And Jim, speaking of the taxes, the 280 East Tax System. And basically, we in the cannabis industry get taxed at gross profit instead of net profit. And you guys can all go look that up, but it’s basically profit before expenses as gross profit. And cannabis industry generally can’t take off. Expenses only cost a good soul.

Jim: Which is ridiculous. So everyone is forced to kind of you know, still remain outlaws, right? I mean, we’ve talked about that from the beginning, Chip, we’re guaranteed outlaws. I mean, we were forced into it. We’re at different levels, but we’re definitely considered, you definitely would look at stuff out of the dictionary, and you would see pictures of us as an outlaw. Sure, no doubt.

Chip: Not criminals.

Jim: Not criminal.

Chip: But outside the law.

Jim: We’re forced to be outside the law.

Chip: Yeah, forced. Forced, not even like by choice. It’s like, oh, man, we can’t have normal banking. And since then, like Jim said, we’ve set up several cannabis businesses together and joined some other businesses. I previously had a hemp seed distribution company, that was more of just like a brokerage. We’ve taken that and we’re turned it into certified seeds. And we’ll launch that later on this year. It’ll be an online marketplace for certified hemp seeds.

Jim: The one stop shop.

Chip: One stop shop, multiple vendors. We’re not making any of the seeds. They’re all from the highest and most reputable vendors in the country associated with this.

Jim: Yeah so we started, we spent our time going through it, sure we have the best vendors instead of trying to grow the best seed.

Chip: Yeah, exactly. So we’ve gotten a bank account for that and how long did that take?

Jim: It took six months.

Chip: It took six months to get a bank account.

Jim: For hemp seeds, hemp seeds. And by the way, they’re legal. Interesting thing. And that’s what, this brought us to our most recent venture, right, Chip? I mean –

Chip: Oh, yeah, yeah, Greener Group.

Jim: Greener Group, yeah.

Chip: Greener Group.

Jim: Something I think that we’re both more excited about than anything else that we’ve got going. I mean, in terms of our deals, Chip has a lot of stuff going on, and so do I individually. But together, Greener Group is our baby. We’re nurturing it to a point, we’re still trying to figure out how to deal with, what space but we’re kind of dialing it in.

Chip: Just totally hit the ground running, that’s for sure, man. So you can check it out at greenerconsultinggroup.com. It’s a new website, you might have to like, look for it a little bit. You can find us on LinkedIn, on well, Facebook’s already kicked us out, but Instagram. What I realized was for years, people have been asking me for consulting, and I’ve done it sparingly over time. A big part of it was because I’ve just got so many other businesses, it’s hard to like, dedicate the time to somebody when they need to solve a cultivation problem. So over the years, we developed a lot of technical consultation that was just free of service at Cultivate Colorado, and it still remains true, right? If you want to light design or dehumidifier design, you just tell us the square footage and we’ll tell you immediately how many lights or dehumidifiers you need. I’ve shied away from all the other consultation, but what I realized was Jim had this really great business in the automotive industry. And one of the things that I really consider one of my assets, I look at what everybody’s doing, and I try to bring in great stuff from it. And Jim has this great business that he operates nationally. And I thought to myself, “Man, this is a great way to do this with cannabis as well.” Jim, tell me about Nationwide.

Jim: Yes, so what we do is we manage vendors across the country for recalls before they get to the dealer. So auto manufacturer –

Chip: Automobile recalls.

Jim: Automobile recalls. So a car that normally gets sold at a dealer has a recall, you go back to the dealer, they fix it. What we do is we manage these projects for the cars that have not been sold to the dealers, and they’re normally by the thousands. We go out there and bring whatever crews necessary. So they might need engines replaced, or they might need a light bulb replaced. So you don’t have the same people doing it. So I don’t hire these people until I need them. And when Chip was telling me he’s got this database of consultants that do from seed to sale, I was like, “Why don’t we just incorporate that into what we’re doing at Nationwide, and manage these vendors on an as needed basis?”

Chip: Yeah, Jim started like, listening to my phone calls basically. I was, you know, are hearing me complain about or talk or about like, my life or schedule, and he realized this, right? He was like, “Wow, man, your network is incredible.” I mean, I think you were the first person to really bring it up, Jimmy.

Jim: Yeah, well, everybody else has took it for granted. Because Chip, they don’t want to tell you anything, because they wanted you to keep giving them free information for the rest of their life. And that’s my biggest challenge is to get you to quit, we don’t want to quit giving free information, but we got to draw the line somewhere, right? It’s a bit, people take advantage of it. And well –

Chip: I definitely agree with that. But I’ll also say that by my unconditional giving, it’s brought me my network that I have.

Jim: I agree.

Chip: And what you have made me understand is there is a way that we can make business out of this information, and I’ll still be able to unconditionally give. Because like this podcast, we unconditionally give to people, right? Like yeah, I do this podcast to lead gen for all my other businesses and tell you about cultivatecolorado.com, and tell you about cultivateokc.com, and tell you about growerscoco.com, all my potting soil, and now Growers, and now Greener Group, too. We’re telling you about Greener Group but really like, I started this podcast because I wanted good information to go out to people about ganja, hemp, medical marijuana. I don’t use the laws, destroy the misconceptions and myths. And that’s all unconditional, mind conditional giving on the spot.

Jim: It’s a show of your unconditional love for the for the cannabis plant. I’s simple as getting people educated. I didn’t know that cannabis was both hemp and marijuana. It’s a very simple thing, but I’ve been around it my whole life, didn’t know that. Basically starting with that, it makes you realize that all these things, hemp is legal. It’s the same plant as cannabis as marijuana, or high THC cannabis is what they refer to it as, and low THC cannabis is hemp. One’s legal, one’s not, what the hell, man? So I want to talk a little bit about my project I’ve got going right now that we’re working through your grow in Oklahoma.

Chip: Yeah, yeah, yeah, let’s talk about The Health Camp and Eric and all of that.

Jim: Yeah, The Health Camp is one of the big projects that I’ve got going right now. It’s an app that’s going all out. One of the programs I’m working with currently, it’s called Cannabis Oil Success Stories. And it’s 175,000 people on a Facebook private group that share these stories about how cannabis has helped them fight cancer. And I’ve been looking at this page for a year and a half or two years. And when I met Chip, my intention was to make the best oil and share it with everybody. But then I realized that there’s a lot of good oils out there, and that I could probably be better spent using my passion to create a place to have everybody share their information. And then we can go through, and aggregate the data, and be able to find out the best way to use what product on what cancer for what type of person, and be able to get that information to the general public. Right now, it’s kind of hidden. It’s there, but it’s hidden. So I’m creating an app called Health Camp Buddy. Health Camp has THC in it. And it starts with the word Health, heal. Heal is a really big part of our world. And we’re creating this app, it’s a social media type of crowdsourcing platform that allows people that have used cannabis successfully, to be able to enter their information and we’ll aggregate it into a result that will be able to give a person that’s dealing with cancer the information easily generated for them. So they can either have access to the oil, and know what kind of oil to get, what oils work best for what type of cancers, certain body types work better with different types of FECO oils. We’re talking about fully extracted cannabis oil is what I’m focusing on. There’s a lot of other things that you can put with it, but I think my reason I’m on earth is to be able to focus on the FECO oil itself. So I’m going to be giving this app together, we’ve actually got phase one done. I expect it to be completely finished within the next month. I’m excited as hell about it. I think it’s going to save lives. It’s all ties to this charity that I run, it’s called Early Recognition is Critical. I want to talk to about my son, I could talk about Eric forever. He’s an awesome kid. He’s a three time cancer survivor since he was age eight. And anybody that has kids can relate to the fact of being a parent and being a caretaker of an eight year old son that’s very athletic and loving, and dealing with this kind of shit. So I’ve been dealing with it my whole life. I’m trying to give back. I believe cancer fights cancer, naturally. I don’t think that chemo is the, if it takes chemo, do chemo but also use cannabis. That’s my –

Chip: Oh, absolutely, man. Absolutely,

Jim: So it’s been awesome. Chip’s got a lot of experience with a lot of people. I’m using his network. We’re growing some marijuana in Oklahoma specifically to be able to be made into the best FECO oil, and different types of strains because each strain is different. I mean,  you want indica for cancer, if you’re fighting cancer you don’t use CBD. You might use CBG,  you might use CBA, but you need THC. And you need high THC indica, which is a very sedative cannabis compared to the sativa, which is a little more of a head high. It’s more medicinal, yeah kicks your ass. When you’re sick, you need to rest. So yeah, that’s what I got going on. And with the help of what Chip’s got going on, we’re working together to, we give back. It’s one thing that I love about Chip is the first day we talked about the Eric Charity and Chip wanted to, I could see in his eyes, he was a giver. And I learned at a late age that you giving back feels really good. I was selfish I guess, growing up. I’m a unique individual, I actually got divorced 12 years ago, and I’m back with my ex-wife so I don’t give up easy. So beware.

Chip: Alright, let’s not turn this into tilling the ball now. Come on, this is The Real Dirt podcast about cannabis, mostly.

Jim: Let’s do it. Alright, I’ll smoke it.

Chip: What are you smoking on today, Jim?

Jim: Some Humboldt. The same.

Chip: Oh, okay. Yeah, I got you. I’m on the porch this morning, this is a Friday morning porch session. And we got a tractor driving by.

Jim: Chip’s got the best porch, on the best thousand foot view in Oklahoma.

Chip: We’re a thousand foot high here in Oklahoma.

Jim: The weed is just okay, basically. So

Chip: t’s okay, kush okay. Yeah, Oklahoma has been a really great place for growing ganja. I mean, it has its set of circumstantial issues. But every place does, and yeah, Northern California has the best climate, when the climates right there to any place in the world probably. South Africa aand here also has similar type of climate. Maybe Argentina.

Jim: Is that the same longitude, latitude? I mean –

Chip: It is, except those on the southern hemisphere. And but it’s similar coastal mountain type environment.  Lots of indicator species, and wine, and grapes. And that’s kind of how I relate it, but hey, look. In Northern California in Oregon, the West Coast man, forest fires, dude.

Jim: Oh my god.

Chip: Right? Like, devastating the smoke. And like, sometimes it’s okay, but other times, it’s just totally ruined. And even if you don’t get burned out, it can be difficult there too. And last year here in Oklahoma, it was just hot, dry and windy. And this year, it hasn’t been as hot. But it’s definitely been more humid and with less wind. It’s definitely has its challenges, and we have been challenged, you know what I mean? We keep pushing the envelope, and COVID, and the employment shortage, all that caused us problems. I mean, I’ve been doing this my whole life. There’s no sure homeruns.

Jim: That’s why if anybody needs any help in Oklahoma specifically or Colorado or California, Chip’s the guy. He’s already been there, done that. He’ll wear a suit coat, I think. I probably won’t.

Chip: A suit coat. Man, I look fresh and clean. Jim, however, he’s gonna come right off the frisbee golf course, and pull off his visor, right? And go into the board meeting.

Jim: You may be right. Maybe that would be [inaudible 23:41]. But yeah, so we got a killer deal work –

Chip: Hey, Greener Group, man I mean, yeah. Yeah, let’s talk about Greener Group.

Jim: Let’s talk about Greener Group, yeah.

Chip: So what we’ve done is we have compiled a large group of experts in the field of cannabis that are already working as consultants in the cannabis space. And here’s what we realized, is even the best of the people, they started out just being best in their fields, right? And they know how to grow cannabis and scale it, or they know how to do financial assessments of cannabis businesses, or they know how to operate cannabis businesses. And they kind of just got like, through opportunity. They got moved in the consultant space, which is more of an entrepreneurial space, right? But in their heart, they’re tradesmen and experts in their exact field. And they have a hard time running business, because business is hard to run. So what we’ve done is we’ve aligned these guys, right? Right now, we’ve got 12 people that are official lead consultants for us. But I mean, the network is endless. If you call us in any state, pretty much I’ve got someone close to you that we can work with. We’ve built this network of consultants now. You call us up, we have a conversation about what your problems are, what your goals are, what you want to solve, whether you’re buying a cannabis business, or you’re building a cannabis business.

Jim: Or you want to invest in a cannabis business,

Chip: You want to invest in a cannabis business. I mean, we’ve talked to all of those types of people. We’ve talked to government agents, we’ve talked to investment groups,

Jim: Money laundering specialists.

Chip: Money, yeah, I hate that term. So deceiving, but it’s bank relationship specialist, we’ll just go ahead and explain that right now, so we don’t get off topic. Which is, hey man, if you are a bank, and you want to open a business to cannabis people, you have to do it in a certain way. So you bring on someone to help you do that. And our guy is one of the leaders in doing this. So you call us up, we chat with you about what your goals are, your problems are, we’ve got this list of consultants. We pull out our consultants, send them on the task, and they’re usually I mean, it’s usually accomplished, like, quickly. We’ve got a couple of projects that seem to last a little long, but like, they’ve almost, that’s the beauty of our network, right, Jim? Is we solve some problems immediately.

Jim: We’ve already seen them all.

Chip: Famous story about Picasso is – I don’t know if it’s real or not, maybe it’s not Picasso, but I think it is. A lady walked up and was like, “Oh, hey, Picasso, could you sign this paper, sign this napkin?” And so he does a little doodle, signs it and says, “That’ll be $30,000.”  Like, “Wait a minute. That only took you 15 seconds.” He was like, “No that took me 30 years.” It’s just kind of an example of how it works with us, too. It’s like, we’ve already heard all the problems, right? Just like our call yesterday with a bug problem the guy had, like, we immediately know how to solve that. But many other consultants or groups of people, they want to hook you in for a year-long contract, and we just want to solve your problem, walk away, right? And that’s really been our success is that like in just a matter of a day or two, we can solve most people’s problems.

Jim: The thing about this project with Chip and I is that we already have our livelihood covered. So we’re not desperate for like, paying overhead with –

Chip: Business, right?

Jim: It’s not a hobby, but it’s like a passion for us. I like to claim we bring the culture. I’m not sure Chip’s a big lover of that, because he’s been in, he’s been that guy for so long. And I haven’t been, so it’s kind of fresh to me. But I believe it’s important to bring that. I mean, Chip and his group have helped me make smart decisions on investments going forward. I highly recommend, if you’re 60 years old, and you want to invest in cannabis call Greener Group. I mean, we’ll go over stuff with you that you never have thought about. We can look at your books, we have a CFO that works for us, that works for multiple cannabis companies across the board. We’ve got people that –

Chip: Right, we can in one hour decide, like tell you literally if some investment opportunity is is full of shit, or worth investigating. And we’ve done that a couple of different times, it’s really amazing. Because we have so much experience in the cannabis industry, we can immediately look at operational costs and expenses, and tell if it’s real or not.

Jim: You can’t hide from our group because we have, we’re not one dimensional. We’re multi-dimensional. We’re like full spectrum. We’re full spectrum consultants. It is not us our way or the highway, when you call us and talk to us, you’ll realize that right away. We’ve got a great team together. One of the good things we do with our consultants is we support their back end too. We take that loosely, we support their business side of it that the stuff that they’re not good at. It’s like a doctor, a doctor doesn’t –

Chip: All the reports –

Jim: All the crap that they don’t get.

Chip: All the office support like, it’s really turned the consulting industry into a more professional organization. Because in the past and hey man, no offense to you consultants, you guys know what’s going on. You guys are growers or extractors or businesspeople, and you all need better back end offices. If you got a great back end then yeah, you’re gonna do great.

Jim: It all starts with that, and we’re getting better at it. We’re gonna have all of our guys with an app that can really communicate well with the customer. Like I said, we’re not looking at a full-time gig. We’re in and out. We’re in to fix your problem, get out. We’re problem solvers.

Chip: Yeah. And you know, our consultants also, they’re independent consultants. And so if you’re a cannabis consultant from hemp to extraction, from genetics to banking, IT, whatever, right? Give us an email, man. We want to increase our network and we might have some business for you. And you’re an independent contractor, we’re just helping you guys too, man. Sure, it’s business and I enjoy business, and this is a good, good business to be in. We saw there was a problem in the industry on both the consultant side and on the consumer side.

Jim: And like I said, I’m pushing that investment side guys. Anybody that wants to invest in the cannabis?

Chip: Yeah, absolutely.

Jim: Give us a call. We’ll go through the pros and cons with you. We’re gonna think of stuff that you’ll never think of, I promise you that. Because we have people coming to us on a regular, we’re still learning every day. And what we do is we learn every day, and then we share it with you. It’s a fun business to be part of, being part of Chip’s network has been amazing. All you gotta do is call Greener Group and you’re part of it, man. So it’s that easy. If you have –

Chip: It has been fun though, man. We’ve talked to like, we just launched this business a couple of months ago. We’ve talked to like, so many cool people about projects they’re doing. And working with so many cool people right now on projects, man without naming names or specific locations, like what’s the favorite call that we’ve been on?

Jim: I like the one that came from Tennessee, and they overgrew hemp. Because it was one of the first ones that we had. And these guys were like, “Man, we really don’t know what to do. We basically have thousands of pounds of hemp. We don’t know how to get rid of it. We don’t even know where to start. We don’t know what to do now, because we got so screwed this year. What do we do next year?” They were just completely at end, at wit’s end, you know?

Chip: They were real typical of what was going on in the hemp industry this year for sure.

Jim: Yeah, supply and demand. And –

Chip: I mean, they’re smart people, they were in the agricultural industry. They already had like, success doing other stuff. They’ve already got like, products on the shelves in the oil, ag space, like not cannabis-related at all, or hemp-related at all. They were successful businesspeople and had problems.

Jim: Which is very common. They thought, “Oh, it’ll just be like growing strawberries.” It’s not.

Chip: Yeah, we just grow it and somebody will buy it. And strawberries aren’t like that either, man. And nothing is. It has to have that sales channel.

Jim: I think personally from a business side, that’s the first channel that you should create before you grow anything.

Chip: Oh, yeah. Hey, you know, I mean, one of the things that we do a lot of is branding and marketing.  And it just naturally do all of our businesses. And the thing that both of us realized is, you can have the best brand, the best design, the best content, the best advertising, the best product placement of any of your competitors. But the only thing that’s going to drive your brand is sales, right? You have to sell. And honestly, that’s the first channel you should work on, instead of the last. People who try to get work on the opposite side, right? They work on the brand first and –

Jim: The easy stuff. Yeah, they work on the easy stuff. And one thing we’re finding out at Greener is that marketing is tough. Like I said, we got kicked off Facebook. I mean, both Chip and Travis, Travis is one of our partners. And they were like, “It’s not if we’re gonna get kicked off, but how long?”  And it’s like, “We got to work around this crap.” There’s constant contact won’t let you send out cannabis stuff.

Chip: Cannabis emails, right.

Jim: So at Greener, we’re figuring this out. We have our own CRM, and we’ll work with you if you need help with anything like that. If you’re starting a dispensary, if you’re getting ready to think about doing a grow, call us first. Let’s talk about a supply chain before you grow them. Yeah, don’t call us after.

Chip: I just realized we were starting to sound like an infomercial, which is totally cool, ’cause it’s my podcast and I can do whatever what I want.

Jim: Yeah, exactly.

Chip: But no, it’s exciting. It’s so exciting to talk to all of these different people. Man, I think my favorite conversation was also a hemp comp. I’ve had two conversations that were my favorite, I think. The cannabis farm on the west coast that wanted to relocate to another state. It was just, it’s difficult with the environment, the fires, the remoteness, the taxes, the state and local taxes over in California are just ridiculous. And they wanted to move, and I really liked this conversation, because they were cannabis, successful cannabis people.  They’ve been doing it for a moment. And they realized like, they needed a little help and reached out to us. They were interested in other states that they can move and operate in, because previously California for many, many years was the only place to operate. And now, it’s just not the case. So I really liked that conversation. And man, I also liked that hemp technologies conversation we’ve had. These guys are trying to develop some hemp technologies, and were really approaching in a different manner. And that was really inspiring, because the hemp textile industry is just growing so much, growing so quick.

Jim: It is, and we’ve got a great by the way, we’ve got a excellent connection with textiles, and hemp.

Chip: Yeah, absolutely man. Engineers…

Jim: Hey, we also have the ability to, we’re a specialist at building any kind of app or website in the cannabis space. So let us know, we’ve got all that covered.

Chip: I know it sounds like a one, not a one stop shop. But like, literally, through all of my years of business, I’ve had to do all this stuff for my businesses. And mostly I set up with my own employees or networks of people that now understand cannabis. And so I’m basically opening up my network. Jim has got a huge IT section and programming section to his business right? Like, we can pretty much design or modify any software, build any app or website through in-house means, that’s what you’re saying, Jim, right?

Jim: Yep, yep. We got the capacity, we’ve got people that, the team that’s building Health Camp Buddy. And what they do is, like I said, we can put you on a CRM that you don’t have any restrictions whatsoever. So yeah, give us a call. I’m a marketing, branding guy, I love talking about that. Chip and I dream shit up every morning, I kind of look forward to those calls, because it fires me up. It’s like, it’s better than exercise, that’s for damn sure. It does, it puts us on the same page. And it’s like, we don’t have to, I’ve never had a partner with, I gotta say, Chip, I got it. And he’s like, he hangs up. We don’t waste each other’s time at all. And if you’re going to get a partner, find somebody like that.

Chip: I couldn’t say enough about how much I’ve learned in the past year and a half that we’ve been working together. And I know you said you’ve learned but man, I’ve learned just as much. So that is the beauty of a good working partner relationship, is that you learn from each other. And me and Jim have both have poor partners in the past, and we’ve had exits from businesses that worked out or didn’t work out. And we’ve had a significant amount of experience of working with people. And having an active partner in your relationship, versus an investor is a completely different scenario. We should do a whole podcast about that. How to partner, how just specifically how to partner with people.

Jim: How to get along. It’s a hard thing, man. Get along, I’d start by get a bong, right?

Chip: Get a bong, yeah.

Jim: Yeah. I mean, I totally believe that you’ve got to have something in common with somebody and Chip and I, we found out our common denominator immediately. And we’ve never broken off of that. I mean, we’ve stuck with it, we stayed in course, we pivot left and right. But it always comes back to the, we’re business partners that have become friends. I highly recommend. Don’t partner up with a friend.

Chip: Yeah. That’ s a better way to do it, that’s for sure.

Jim: Become a friend after you become business. That’s my free information I give you.  Some of the other things that Chip has brought up that are pretty awesome are that we’re both businesspeople. We believe that entrepreneurship is awesome, I’ve been selling cinnamon toothpicks since I was eight years old. But the number one thing is that we support cannabis. We really believe in it and Chip more than me, he lives it. His goal is to grow more weed than people can smoke. And my goal is aid people’s lives with cannabis. So we got, if you want to participate in this mission, give us a call, man. Follow us. Follow us, Eric is a big mission actually, Chip and I were gonna talk about this and I want to bring it up is that I’m getting ready to –

Chip: Hey, let’s pause for one second breathe. Because Jim will just start talking and get so excited about stuff. But hey, let’s just break for one second and say, this The Real Dirt podcast. Thank you for joining and listening. Please join us on iTunes or Spotify. Hey, and if you’re out in the world, and you need some equipment of some sort, lights, soil nutrients, cultivateokc.com, cultivatecolorado.com. We ship all over the country. Call us if you’re in Colorado. Call us if you’re in Denver. Call us if you’re in Oklahoma. We’ll ship to you. We have commercial accounts. We’re one of the largest purchasers in the country of rock wall general hydroponics, botanic care, pure blend, growers soil, tuber. We ship all over the country. We support cannabis farmers all over the country, specifically in east of the Rockies. But coming to the west coast soon, and look for all of our products in the west coast, 2021. This is The Real Dirt.

The Highs and Lows of the Hemp and CBD Industry with Dan Ramsay

The Highs and Lows of the Hemp and CBD Industry with Dan Ramsay

colorado hemp and cbd supplier

Without the supply chain, there is no supply. That’s what Dan Ramsay specializes in setting up for hemp farmers across Colorado.

Dan Ramsay is a Hemp Supply Chain Specialist. He talks hemp all day every day (almost) and is a leader on the Western Slope of Colorado, helping hemp farmers accomplish their goals in various facets. Specializing in product fulfillment, education, and end product sales since 2015, Dan has had a pulse on the hemp industry in the heart of Colorado’s hemp country.

Currently, he’s the General Manager at the Natural Order Supply rooted in Grand Junction, Colorado. Natural Order Supply has been at the forefront of the hemp industry since 2015 and founded by a group of cannabis professionals and growers. Natural Order Supply advocates for and provides sustainable farming products that help farmers grow with confidence.

In this exciting episode, Dan shares his success story with their hemp business, how to cope with these hard times, and their advocacy to expand the awareness of cannabis and hemp benefits.

“As a company, as a person, my ethos has always been real education based in this industry.” – Dan Ramsay

Some Topics We Discussed Include (Timestamp)

18:53 – Getting involved with hemp

26:01 – Pandemic and hemp overproduction situation

36:56 – Fluctuation rate of some CBD products

40:11 – Hemp market’s downfalls

55:29 – Cultivation throughout the country

1:06:07 – Price per point of CBD

1:11:54 – Natural Order Supply’s future in the hemp industry

1:16:13 – Connect with Dan

People Mentioned / Resources

 

Connect with  Natural Order Supply

Dan Ramsay

 

Connect with  Chip Baker

TRANSCRIPT

Chip Baker: Hey, welcome to another episode of The Real dirt with chip Baker today I have Dan Ramsay from Natural Order Supply. Hey, thanks for coming, Dan, how are you doing today?

Dan Ramsay: I’m doing great. Thanks for having me, Chip.

Chip Baker: Oh man, I tell you in these COVID episodes, I’m able to talk to so many more people because, man we’re all just hanging out at home on zoom calls anyway, huh?

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, you know, there’s a lot more those talks just, one to one but but not in face. Or a bunch of screens at once.

Chip Baker: Pretty much had to turn off all my video. Audio seems to work for here at The Real Dirt studios but the zoom videos haven’t gone so well. Apologize for any fans out there any listeners who also have felt the poor quality of production and we’re going to try to pick up that and hey, we’re kind of starting today here with Dan. And Dan is a leader in the hemp and cannabis supply industry. He operates a supply store in Grand Junction, Colorado, the Natural Order Supply. And even though Dan sells stuff for all things growing, he have been focusing on hemp for the past several years.

Dan Ramsay: That is correct. It’s definitely been our niche and kind of the specialty where we feel like we’ve been able to, to fall in with a little bit of luck of you know, time and location. With just being out here located in Grand Junction, Colorado, there’s been a lot of hemp since we we 2015 out here.

Chip Baker: Yeah, and Grand Junction is one that has one of the best climates for growing outdoor cannabis in Colorado.

Dan Ramsay: It’s really a nice location just right up from us here in Mesa County. We’ve got you know, Palisade which is Colorado’s wine country and, you know, Grand Junction, always at the top for the most registered farms in the state or in the country. Especially when you look at the county surrounding us out here between delta and Garfield County, there’s just there, it’s been a good place to find hemp farmers in a country that hasn’t had them for so long.

Getting Involved with Hemp

Chip Baker: Yeah, so So Dan, how’d you get involved with hemp?

Dan Ramsay: So yeah, we’ve launched a Natural Order Supply. I come from a company called 3C Consulting and then working with some candidates and business investors who called Green Lion Partners we launched Natural Order Supply which I took over you know operations of in 2015. And you know, the first employee I got in Natural Order Supply was the first registered hemp farm out here in the area. So we started talking hemp when there wasn’t, no one had closed a sale yet with just the idea of the excitement. And as the years went on, it seemed like, given that like Grand Junction being in Colorado, there’s a moratorium on high THC so we don’t have any medical or adult use cannabis stores in Grand Junction. 

So I think it might have been a hotspot given the good climate, the land available. And kind of the lack of other cannabis entrepreneurial opportunities that might have just kind of made it a little hotspot. So pretty quickly, my goal was focusing on wanting to sell to businesses into farms that there was a rumor in 2015 that some of those marijuana entities were coming kind of towards our side of the slope, but we kind of shut down at that time. And every year as it grew, I found this niche in this new community, and I love the agricultural part of it. And that combination of what we’ve learned from growing in closets and how it translates to growing outdoors.

Chip Baker: Yeah, you know, that sort of the state is really responsible for a lot of the hemp genetics that are around the country right now. I mean, I believe the Wife came from the area and–

Dan Ramsay: Like Cherry Blossom–

Chip Baker: Yeah, Cherry Blossom. All of that stuff came from over there, right?

Dan Ramsay: Yep, we see a lot of that. And it’s like advocacy has been around here for a long time. And it’s always interesting, though, to see some of those genetics and other parts of the state back in the country and moreover, but then it’s, you know, back in expo days, as we travel a little more, it seems like there’s so many varieties that, it’s amazing how each state can find their own little set of new names or different varieties so quickly in this industry, but it is fun to see that some of these original base genetics have really made it throughout the country and being grown in different, you know, geographic regions and seeing how they’re doing.

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, absolutely, man. I see the Cherry and the Wife all over. I see it. You know, Maine I see it in Vermont. I see it in Oregon. I see it Tennessee Kentucky. They were really the first to hit the market is high CBD hemp products. And over the years people have been able to do add on and interbreed with them and develop stuff for their local geography. I’ve never really liked the way that the Colorado Cherry or the Wife grows. I like vigorous plants. Those are they’re a little delicate, but they’re grow really well for Colorado. They grow really well for Oklahoma and windy areas. They’re they’re smaller plants. And you know, when people look at an individual plant, they’re like, oh, man, what’s that plant, but like you look at a field of it. It’s a totally different story.

Dan Ramsay: Looking at those genetic And they get whether they get bigger kind of stayed kind of short and stocky on some of those, you know, we’re really just harvesting became becomes such a thing too like some of those yeah, and I love that huge plants I love it when they set the hammock between plants. But boy sometimes harvesting takes a little while and when you’re looking at 50 acres, 100 acres all of a sudden and trying to get something that can be standardized and mechanized, it’s always easier said than done with genetic choice at this stage of the game, which is how reliable we see those genetics in the field and how, especially since kind of seeds came to town it was 2016, 2017 to 2018 it was really the clone wars. 

And we made a lot of discussion and sales around bulk clones, and how to be in more of a nursery than just to grow in a lot of sense. Because when all of a sudden you’re starting 10,000, 100,000 million-plus plants, which we’ve worked with clients, and then all those numbers in, there’s just a lot more to consider as he started scaling up from, from everything about, like, operational approach to costs, but then you get them out into the field. And it’s those clones seem to be pretty consistent. So some of those first fields, I thought we saw more of that predictable growth out there, versus in the last year or so, where, you know, really, after the Farm Bill passed in 2018, last year was like, seeds were king. You know, there’s a handful of people doing at least where we are, just because I think the labor and operational costs the uniformity of timing and everything seeds make sense. But the stability of them is still a–

Chip Baker: Still in the process still in development? 

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, exactly. 

Chip Baker: Totally. Yeah, you know, another part I have many projects, many business projects, and other projects. I just to launch this year, but due to COVID and the hemp industry, we haven’t quite launched it yet, which is Certified Seed Bank. And it’s a seed bank that we’ve done the prep work ahead of time and certified that all of our vendors have a quality product. Because this was a story we heard from people over and over and over and over and over again like they got hermaphrodite seeds they often bought feminized seeds, but half of them were male, or a chunk of them was male, or the phenotypes were all over the place or they did perform, or they had high THC in them or no THC or no CBD or whatever the problem was. And we saw a need and marketplace. 

Pandemic and Hemp Overproduction Situation

But man that federal hemp the last year really kind of flooded the market. And then COVID hit here, and we just haven’t really launched that business yet. I’m going to put it off till next year, but uh yeah man how has [crosstalk] COVID and the overproduction in our marketplace, how’s that affected, you guys?

Dan Ramsay: You know, I wish I could be more like optimistic instead of realistic about what happened between–

Chip Baker: Oh, this is The Real Dirt. You got to give them real.

Dan Ramsay: Yeah. I tell you what, last fall we got flooded market. You know it started flooding into came came pretty hard. You know that all of a sudden these clients you know most of the clients in 2019, 2018, 2017 a lot of that product was sold before January. And, you know, we were planning and I was working with clients about their new plans for the next year almost pre January, you know, just a little bit in December and then we get hit the ground running up the new year. 

But last year, yeah, it got flooded. You know, and I think there’s multiple, you know, reasons that that might be we just grew so much, you know, so much was grown, like so many acres. And so when I went to the Texas hemp convention this spring I couldn’t walk to another booth and not just be like, you know, like the amount of flower that was for sale and the amount of biomass that like everybody was, whereas a lot of those industries trade shows and just a year or two back you’d walk in and finding people who had the raw product for sale in one form or another was a, I stepped into the industry. 

And now, it was just like, you know, you could walk ten booths in a row and have ten comparisons, and everybody’s kind of like racing to the bottom, we’re telling you why they’re the best. So, just not a whole lot of sales. And then once that, you know, I think a lot of people being that it’s a young industry, and it’s AG, we just kind of sat there and we’re like, hold off, it’ll recover, and that moment of like, just watch the market, which is probably a good idea for your company at the moment for 2020 is just watching and seeing and learning. 

So February seemed like it was pretty; it was hard to make sales. I didn’t know a whole lot of clients who were making sales and a lot of times we were already planning commercial farms at that point with people, and they wanted to plan, and so we saw a pretty big industry, shipped I think of farmers who stepped out this spring and did replant. And then on that same aspect, all of our propagators or, you know, who do seed production or new clone sales, they just got to that point where they were like, don’t worry sales are going to catch us because there’s some prevention pretty good money made in propagation in the last few years. And hemp for sure just selling clones and selling them back east and selling them in state and it’s pretty lucrative part of the industry too if you can get that niche. 

But then this year, just the amount of new farms, they were only a few new farms. Last year, Colorado went from having just under 1000 farms at the turn of the year to having 2700 registered farmers, so 17 new farmers that came if not more considering the few that had dropped out the year before. But this year, I think everybody who went COVID hit everybody who was on the fence to replant or to start a new farm. Kind of just got conservatives on hold my money. I’m just going to sit back and not do this. So I think a lot of my farmers that I’m working with right now had genetics going into this year there wasn’t as much of genetic sourcing as there would be in an average spring of people stepping into the industry.

Chip Baker: Well, so many people just lost their ass to last year. So on the fence man because I mean literally we saw the prices go from the high point of 2019 at $50 a pound for biomass, all the way down to like I had someone say they take $1 a pound and January of this year. You know, and I mean that they had a million pounds. 

Dan Ramsay: And those million pounders though, the issue was they went to the larger extractors and extractors were like, sure, we’ll take a million pounds. And then all these smaller farmers that have you ever to some of these larger ones all of a sudden, didn’t have that outlet were like, Hey, we please, we can go to them. They don’t always give us the best price. But we could you know, that [inaudible] has been there for the last couple years for at least the bigger extractors out here on on the western slope have been able to buy local for the years previous. I’ve been having these all of a sudden someone’s like I produced a million pounds, we produced a million pounds in 2018. 

Or if they did, you know, they were there on the fly. But the idea that that that just kind of been, you know, turns the market so when somebody’s saying hey, I’m not only going to sell this for $1 pound, I’m going to take over the sales that would often have reached 50 smaller farmers even you know I’m saying or something [crosstalk]

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, I mean, and it was the federal legalization of it the Farm Bill that brought like some really professional farmers. And at the same time, a lot of hemp farmers just hit their stride, kind of all at the same time. It was really a perfect storm.

Dan Ramsay: It was and you know, when you look at agriculture in Colorado, we are definitely like cannabinoid terpene farmers like, we just don’t have that, that infrastructure for grain or fiber, just like when you look at going to California or you know, heavy agricultural state where they’re like, oh, we’re just gonna do a couple minutes, 700 acres and like well, 700 acres, or 250 acres again, and unestablished market is that’s a lot to produce. Even if you have a lot of it not work out perfectly new and lessons you’re still gonna end up with a lot of product to move in a young industry. 

And it’s an interesting industry because hence unlike high THC, cannabis it’s like an open market you can sell it anywhere. You can sell it in gas stations, grocery stores you can find those outlets you can sell it anywhere. Whereas like marijuana that the fact that what you produce has to be sold in the state in the stores, it keeps a kind of a kind of sexy you know kind of elusive and suddenly you have to go there to get it and when you get it, hopefully, your budtender, tells you the right thing and helps push you in the right area so that you get what’s going to be the effect you’re looking for. 

As soon as all of a sudden CBD was in every gas station, I was making the joke like he saw CBD here now, I guess next to the Mountain Dew like all of a sudden, like even the retail outlets and advertently kind of sell down the value of it. Not meaning to, but just by the lack of education and presentation for a new market that’s trying to establish itself, I think as far as CBD goes.

Chip Baker: Yeah, absolutely. Well, hey, listen, Dan is a perfect place for us to take a break. When we come back. I want to talk about we talked about the farmers and the supply side. I want to talk about what’s going on within the consumable sides of CBD, and hemp. 

Hey, we’re going to take a quick break. This is Chip and Dan The Real Dirt. We’ll be right back. 

Hey, this is Chip from The Real Dirt. You know, I’m always starting new businesses. I’m a serial entrepreneur. I’m a little addicted to it. And I want to tell you about a new project of God, Greener Consulting Group. We see so many consultants throughout the industry. And some of them know what they’re doing. And some of them don’t, but almost no matter what it is, they have one specialty. And they might not have the specialty you need a Greener Consultant Group. We’re conglomerate of many different consultants all over the country. We have specialties from extraction, to municipal advisement, to venture capital. We kind of have somebody who is an expert in the industry, they can talk to you about whatever your problem is. And mostly we can solve that problem in just a day or two. 

So hey, if you got some time, check us out greenerconsultinggroup.com. Look us up on LinkedIn and Facebook. And yeah, hey while you’re out there, you might sign up for The Real Dirt on iTunes. Please subscribe. That’s how we get bigger is when you subscribe. So hey, man, thanks. And we’re going to get right back into this interview with Dan Ramsey.

Fluctuation Rate of some CBD Products

Hey, Dan, all of this overproduction on the biomass side on the flower side of it. How is it from your perspective, have you seen it affect the end-use products the thatchers, the edibles, the tinctures, the soaps, the shampoos, is that market increased any?

Dan Ramsay: I think that market it’s likely that it doesn’t seem to fluctuate as much from the price fluctuation we’ve seen, you know, as this year is continued, we’ve seen quite a few of those tinctures and topicals and things, at least go down a little bit in price to the end consumer. But you know, there isn’t always [crosstalk] Not much, it’s a good place to be. And I think that’s where there’s like a little bit of longevity for the smaller the larger companies that are vertically integrated so that they can actually be getting revenue on the accounts they grow once it’s like turned into a product

Chip Baker: You mean for farmers to make an added value product. 

Dan Ramsay: I’m saying for farmers and just the whole company as a general right like because once you farm it and you like extract it in house and you have a branded product you can get on the shelf, then all of a sudden, there’s a little embodied margin there for both the farmer the extractor and the retailer. You know, it all kind of because it works together. So I do think it’s getting going to be separated a little bit more just because so much of the industry has been weeded out right now for a better word to say

But I also think that like people are starting to tone down a little bit of the silliness with the in consumer products. Maybe I’m wrong, but some of the silliness is just seemed like you know, we like I’ve got a package of it. CBD macaroni and cheese, and you’re like Who are these people? You know, like, I don’t know where that was, and it seemed like in 2017 if you could think it up and put it into it, CBD had a little bit of an image on your face now–

Chip Baker: I have friends with CBD toothpaste and CBD shampoo. [crosstalk] they’re good at it. You know, they previously made shampoo and toothpaste but like you know–

Dan Ramsay: And that helps because they already know this niche market. I think that knowing a real niche in CBD is the key to be like resell tinctures that help people who don’t feel good, is rough to be like, Hey, we work with athletes. We work with toothpaste and people who have now been like, Where does CBD fit in the dental industry. It’s a niche community and you find the right people there and you can thrive there. But I think a lot of the companies that came out trying to define their voice and being general have just had a hard time being in like a CBD shop just another tincture on the wall right.

Hemp Market’s Downfall

Chip Baker: You know use a square bottle. That’s one of the downfalls to the whole industry too is that in high THC cannabis and medical marijuana, medical cannabis, adult use cannabis, a lot of it’s vertically integrated. And if it’s not vertically integrated, it’s in this tight community because you have to have a license of difficulty, a difficult license in most states other than Oklahoma. And where hemp is harder to grow here than high THC cannabis. But it’s allowed a bunch of co-packers and white label people to come into the marketplace. And that in itself is just like homogenized the marketplace that the you know the same guy is making The tinctures is the same guys making all the edibles, the same guys making all the gummies. And how are you going to differentiate yourself when you’re making the same gummy as the guy across the street? Right? You got the same blockchain as a guy across the street.

And I think that’s been one of the like downfalls of the industry, even though it’s helped so many people start and progress. I think a lot of those people are gonna fall out right now because they were co-packers of other products, and they hopped on the CBD make a billion bandwagon. And I think we’re going to see a resurgence. I think we’re going to see more on farm products, more specifically made products, like you said, more engineered niche products. And that’s going to, that’s the industry maturing.

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, I think so. I think there was a minute where a couple of these companies saw that accelerated growth and pretty quickly we’re like, Hey, we can crank out they want so much once they build a brand and they’re an established company that the ability to white label just seemed like the next– 

Chip Baker: No brainer 

Dan Ramsay: All of a sudden we went from being like just a couple white labelers or its is till, it’s like you know MJBizCon last year it’s like every, you can white label anything and can have a business it’s like the 133 booths down right and and i think that like you said, that’s gonna you know, the markets going to mature quite a bit this this year over having some hardships and we’ll see people who are in the industry for real and when we look at some of those, like cottage industries, more like craft beer or something and farm raid, like I’ve got a company here I work with Colorado Biodynamic that has a coffee shop and palisade where they have a consumption lounge and they sell the CBD, they’ve got their couple products but you know, smokeable flower and their topicals and they do all these things that are related there. So it really has a niche in the feeling that it’s all interconnected real nicely. And you see that kind of craft feel and mentality that you get back in the day from craft beer, you know?

Chip Baker: Sure, sure. Something that we haven’t been able to get with craft cannabis or craft high THC cannabis. It’s interesting. How like, well one it’s always interesting to me how there’s so much division over hemp versus high THC. I see it as all one plant and I know it’s hard but wow man hemp has really led the way for high THC in so many ways and you know, the products that consumption lounges man the commercial agriculture, the use of plastic culture, the use of aerial spraying with drones like all that’s happened with hemp first instead of high THC.

Dan Ramsay: You know hemp is gonna really look at that economies of scale. And as things get bigger, it’s like how do you really turn this in and the fact that hemp has all these uses when that will eventually come to the from the plant. And THC, a lot of those are their niche, right, they know exactly what they’re doing. They’re in these and they’re in these niche stores that still have a pretty nice. 

So I think when we see federal legalization, we’ll see a lot more of these practices being in, from hemp added to marijuana, but a lot of that has to do with regulations. Like, I think a lot of people in marijuana would like to do some types of cultivation that we see with hemp, but based on the square footage, they can have the plants, they can have, and state by state. It’s just enough that there’s no standard. And so once we see that, you know, kind of almost race to the bottom of cultivation of what people can do with the smokeable flower. You know, I project that we’ll see a lot of those same strategies just being implemented right into to the high THC platform as well.

Chip Baker: Yeah, we spoke about Oklahoma. You know, Oklahoma’s one of the only places in the country that you can scale and grow high THC cannabis in the same way that we’re seeing people grow hemp. One license, one easy set of regulations, and you can literally grow as much as you want. It’s been a testament to how much we’ve been restricted over research and development, because a man like in Colorado you can only plant so many plants, you can only have so many plants.

Dan Ramsay: And metric nose

Chip Baker: Yeah and metric nose. I mean we literally just planted 9500 seeds of 12 different high THC cannabis varieties the other day. And we’re of course are fino tracking and keeping track of all of this stuff but like there’s no regulations that say we can’t do it and a portion of the seeds I know they’re not gonna make it I’m just growing them to for R&D purposes and in other states that would be so difficult to do because tracking, keeping you know, destroying them. People think that you were trying to sell them on the private market. But here just the way that they’ve approached it, it’s just really good for high THC cannabis. We’re able to do all this R&D. And we got to culture stuff down here, I want to get this pivot stuff down here, tons and tons of hoop houses like field grown like acres, like you can do all of that here. And you can’t do it with hemp here.

Dan Ramsay: As soon as you step out and you start really getting those acres that we get that whole new like, controlled, uncontrolled environment. You know, things that have come out here from like pests we haven’t seen because hemp hasn’t been planted in a while to out in palisade last year there was you just if you did the little wine tour bike loop, if you were to like ride your bike around, you’d see 20 different fields of hemp and how much got seated out. 

Like a lot of people have lost even when we talk about more factors that kind of made 2019 painful for the hemp industry combat harvest was how many harvests I know that were seated out even before like the early frost. But yeah, stepping outside and all sudden getting into the hoop houses. But once you start planting like, you know, acres on pivots, there’s a whole little new set of approaches that need to come into each one of those stages where we’ve been able to give the plant time and energy that it will take all your time and energy if you don’t plant it, right.

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, absolutely. You know, we’ve got about an acre under plastic culture. For those of you who aren’t familiar with it, you may have seen it. We call it plastic culture, and it’s an implement that you run on a tractor, and it creates a bed out of the natural soil. And then it lay down some fertilizer your irrigation line and then wrap it in this really thin layer of plastic that acts as a mulch. And it’s incredibly effective for planting vegetables and weed abatement. It’s how like tons of organic foods and vegetables are grown. It really helps with water conservation. 

But I was just in this field this morning, and we were just doing some, like, it’s only an acre. So we were lightly steaking it up, right? In a trellising wine vineyard type of style, something that you couldn’t do in 20 acres, right. But in an acre, I can do it. But as I’m walking through it, I’m thinking about like, Oh, it’s time for all of these leaves to be picked off. And it’s like, dude, there’s no way that can’t happen in this. There’s not there’s no way that I’m going to send people out here to de-leaf, you know, the way up to center people out the bottom anything, you know.

Dan Ramsay: And then weeding has been a big thing because people love growing these monster plants and you know, put them on huge centers, but then on suddenly while you’re waiting for that plant to like cover that area, [inaudible] see weeds take over with your beds, you know, you might have more isolated watering, which is great for lots of reasons, but still just that meeting. And then also I’ve actually been talking with people who are trying to figure out some of the answers to like trellising some of these larger fields in some with a different way of trout just because of like out here. It’s like the wind, you know, because as soon as you’re at the mercy of the weather, is you’re like, oh man, it just needs a steak like you’re saying like it needs a little help because you can do so much work. But then it gets to the end where it’s got all that weight you want on it but you know those that fall weather’s for real most places. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, here in Oklahoma it’s a diverse weather system. The wind is no joke, that’s for sure. And you either have to like plant your canopy density has to be like an incredibly thick in order to guard against the wind because the wind will self prune the plants and keep them smaller here for sure. But if you don’t a wire them up, string them up, steak them up in some way. Like last year, we had a half acre field those literally all growing sideways. It’s just always this breeze. So it’s always just growing sideways.

Dan Ramsay: I was at a farm, a client just the other day where there were a couple bigger plants that had migrated Don’t just like the side of the roots, you know, and you’re like carrying Oh, and you’re like, Oh, isn’t that good? But it’s like, you know, once you start seeing that you’re like, how does it recovers the time we wanted stress but like, yeah, it’s like pulling them off. So, that’s kind of the next like, as we step out door and starting to say, like, wait, maybe a little bit smaller plant, maybe an auto flower, maybe more densely populated, and what’s going to get that being no raw plant matter per, cubic foot type thing or square foot, and as we kind of try to start realizing some of the these areas, that it’s got take some trial and error. 

So it’s good to hear like in Oklahoma, that they’ve created an area that’s with less regulation and has more ability for that R&D to get out there, at least just from a knowledge standpoint of we know what’s going to be effective here because, you know, I don’t can’t tell you how many people last year also had a like a, you know, early beat by curly beat top virus came through and we worked with the extension office here at like CSU and with so many clients just trying to identify some of these new diseases that we hadn’t seen or what we thought it was, you know, I thought it was tobacco mosaic virus thought it was, you know, you walk down through these and then to the end, and you’re like, Well, you know, and I’ve seen some, you know, it’s like, it’s now pet mosaic virus. Yeah, so it’s similar, but you know, they’re just things you haven’t seen, and it’s just such a different approach from growing in a controlled environment. 

Chip Baker: Now, yeah, it’s kind of the kind of the beauty of it all though, man is that hemp and cannabis is a new frontier for farming right now. Here ability to be able to do research in the area or develop technology or, it’s right now is the time for all of that.

Dan Ramsay: I always like to say that the learning for agriculture started in like 10,000 BC. So we’ve been learning for a long time all but like, education and, and transformation of knowledge was so slow, right? Every year, it slowly got faster until all of a sudden we got to like, and as we continued in the 19th century, early on to just like, keep pushing hemp aside and marijuana aside, it was like, we pushed cannabis out right when technology was really coming in. So now being able to take all this technology we’ve learned in the last like five decades and start saying, Wait, how do we apply this to what we know? We don’t have to jump all the way back. You know, we can jump right forward with a lot of the but I think one of the things I I really enjoy about this industry is that classic, what we can learn from other industries. Yeah, where there’s just so much,

Chip Baker: So many aha moments still to be had. You know, so many aha moments. It’s a great place, man. Certainly not boring, that’s for sure. Hey, Dan, let’s go. Go ahead, Dan. 

Dan Ramsay: No, you can go ahead.

Cultivation throughout the Country

Chip Baker: Man, I was gonna ask you, not boring man. What do you predict is going to happen here this year with the hemp industry. I mean, so many people haven’t planted that had in the previous some big people planted this year, some small people did but like how do you see what’s going on with current cultivation throughout the country? And how do you think it’s gonna affect the market?

Dan Ramsay: So I know in Colorado, there was, as you said, quite a few people who lost their ass man. It was just And got out of the game. So I yeah, I would predict that we have, you know, a good half of the market that grew last year in Colorado isn’t growing this year and those who were like, thought they were gonna blow it up. And do you know, hundreds of acres are doing 50 acres and people who were doing like, you know, everybody told me way back, instead of and was like, we’re going to focus on quality instead of quantity. 

My big question, as far as that is, how much our reserves do we have as far as like, biomass oil, flower that’s like stored in a way that it still has it’s all viable, so that the market once harvest gets here in a couple of months, most of that biomass I think, is kind of depending how it was stored, but I think there’s going to be a bad taste in the mouth for 2019 hemp season. It’s like the feel of it. And sometimes, people make decisions bound with feelings more than they do. But given that I’m in here I like to project that 2021 we’ll see a completely different situation because we will have like move through a lot of that inventory and the people who are around are people who aren’t here by accident and —

Chip Baker: Absolutely, it’s gonna mature the market for sure it has already like pushed out to get rich quickers.

Dan Ramsay: Completely. And the people who are like willing to put in the hustle work and and find a way when you can’t, it’s kind of one of those if you can sell in this market. If the water goes up a little bit, you’ll know how to swim. So I think there’s a lot of potential here the markets there, those in products are still selling. I just think that like we literally overproduced by whether it was one year or like a year and a half or where– 

Chip Baker: Most people can’t store the product, like you were saying, like, most people think that they were like, Oh, just hold on to it, uh, hold on to it, I’ll hold on to it, but like the product degrades, and they, some of them are out there still think they’re gonna sell their product from last year.

Dan Ramsay: And we used to be able to you used to be able to do in the good old days, you do more splits, right. So like the farmer [crosstalk] 

Chip Baker: Nobody wants to do split [crosstalk]. 

Dan Ramsay: Nobody is so like, now you have to pay more money to get it into oil and more storable form. But, you know–

Chip Baker: But hey, for our audience here, splits are a term we use for co-processors or toll processors, where you’ll split a percentage of the end product. And you provide the biomass. So, it may be a 50-50 split, it may be a 60-40 split, it may be a 70-30 split, you may be making crude oil or you may be making distillate or isolate or whatever on this split. But basically, I would give my product to an extractor and they just give me back a portion of it and extracted material.

Dan Ramsay: Exactly, well said, a split. And but that was a common move, right, like in the industry here was that people would get their product in the back, oh, we’re gonna do the split. Because, when you get, especially as a farmer, if you get one paycheck a year. It’s pretty rundown by the time you get back to October again. And so like shelling out capital to be able to process your material is not something who can’t sell it, the idea that they’re gonna invest more money into this business that they’ve already found on successful ah so i think a lot of that material is gonna go by the wayside and I know lots of people who are like I’m a storage shed you know with 20,000 pounds a hand and you’re like oh. 

Okay and then like in 2000, but at that point, and then I think the come it’s going to mature. And the cannabis industry is always one that loves your due diligence from a business standpoint. So as we have more established growers who have more established supply chains that can show that and a more established story that fits them in products. A desire for whatever it is they’re aiming for those niches will be defined, and I don’t think people are going to walk back in time as much as to buy that old inventory. They’re looking for you know that to make some, but I could be wrong there’s a couple of products you know companies out there that are happy to make shit products and just sell them. And [crosstalk]

Chip Baker: The technology can afford it because that is a thing but like the more the more the biomass degrades the less material you get out of in the long run less extractable material. So the harder it is for people to make money on it, or make the extraction [inaudible]. And now it’s August, I mean, all the early stuff, all the autoflower stuff, it’s starting to come out right now, like in the US and all over the country in the next two months. Like harvest is here.

Dan Ramsay: Yep, I’ve got clients harvest in this week for autos. And they’re sitting on product from last year too. And so but only a few of them. A lot of them and as I say that the last month has been been good for a lot of the clients I’ve talked to who have been able to move products that have stayed in here, you know, who are probably not as much biomass but people move in like smokeable flower and move in oil, or Delta 8 so hot right now. That’s so hot right now, Delta 8.

Chip Baker: That’s a sticky wicked, but it is.

Dan Ramsay: Mastered it is. Yeah. But it’s just like it kind of and the cannabis industry, I sometimes say is a bunch of early adopters. You know, like, the whole industry is like, we’re all early adopters of the industry, even our users. So as soon as we come up with a new technology, or a cannabinoid, CBG like, I’m interested to see how much CBG is harvested this fall, because I know a lot of people that went that– 

Chip Baker: Think they planned it out.

Dan Ramsay: For sure.

Chip Baker: Right. You know, interestingly we just plant out a bunch of autos for extraction this year. And we just got our first extraction results. And this is a butane extraction method, it’s for the medical market. But we’ve got 7% CBG in our extracted product. Something we’re like totally surprised that the seed producer that gave it to us they’ll don’t think they knew. Or they did mention it to me. Right, yeah. But we saw 19% in the flower that came out of the field and then that turned into an extracted 69%. But yeah, then the CBG was, up at 7.68%. Pretty, pretty surprised and impressed.

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, no, that’s, and that’s it. There’s a niche market for that, you know, and then the high kid side, that’s great. On the hemp side, the CBG is attractive because of a lot of those CBG strains don’t spike the THC as much. And while we’re waiting for– And then there’s some regulation coming in this, supposedly from the government in November, about the way that THC is going to be kind of measured on a national level. 

So, when we’re back in good old expo days, I feel, which seems like years ago, but it was January December. It seems like there’s real big talk about, like, do you really want to grow, these strains that could be higher with that risk for getting there and avoid content and just how it’s going to be enforced and interpreted.

Chip Baker: Oh, it’s all just started, man. The the terpenes the different cannabinoids. I mean, we’re talking about Delta 8 THC right now that’s extracted from hemp. And most people are familiar with Delta 9,and you know, there’s just so much research to be had in the coming years. It’s just really exciting. And, you know, necessity is the mother of invention. And part of the necessity is farmers trying to figure out like, how they can have that special niche and be able to be successful in the marketplace.

Dan Ramsay: Completely. And both the farmers and the market-defining itself and consumers defining what they want. But like I said, I think a lot of its just early adopters. Everybody’s like, Oh, [crosstalk]

Chip Baker: So, can you make a price prediction on price per pound this year?

Dan Ramsay: I you know, I think I’ll shy away from that one, just because–

Chip Baker: Can you tell me what you thought the low price per pound last year was?

Dan Ramsay: I thought people selling for like, I didn’t hear that dollar, but $10 a pound was pretty common and I heard people sell it for like seven stuff, you know the price per point of CBD, right?

Chip Baker: Sure. Hey, explain that. Explain that. Let’s talk about that. Explain what that means.

Dan Ramsay: So if you grow a pound of hemp, and we test it and has 10% CBD content, we pay $1 per point because when we extracted the CBD is what we’re after. So that would be $10 per pound. So if you grew for the molecule, plant, you have heard the molecule and you can get a little bit more technical, but that’s for the most part. The best way to realize that like not all hemp grown equally and that sometimes I feel like I have a 15% or 18% and and so much of what you know out here in Colorado I’ve seen just a lot more people who are doing you know biomass and extraction also really trying to leverage their greenhouses for flower. And that believing in that smokeable flower market which is I’ve seen 100 hundred dollars a pound up to like [crosstalk] probably seven you have seven or I mean they go all the way up there. And I the people I know who have been able to sell seven in those larger ones have established relationships and had a little bit more–

Chip Baker: And they’ve got a Primo smokeable flower– that’s the thing [crosstalk]

Dan Ramsay: It is and that Primo like hemp is like becoming a real thing like getting that next quality. Like cannabis, the cannabis industry has got a lot of pots knives in it like that quality is like really important. And so it’s It surprises me to have people being like, I want to evaluate putting you know, LEDs in my hoop house to for this hemp and you’re like, we just want to get every little, just trying to find every explore the different capital costs to get every little inch closer they can to being on the top shelf. So that’s–

Chip Baker: That’s cannabis in a nutshell man people. You know people, ganja, farmers, cannabis farmers throughout the known universe, all have incredible pride in what they do. And sometimes their egos get in the way. Our egos get in the way I’ll say and sometimes you’ll find those like really hidden gems that are just incredible and word to the wise when you see those people with really great, great, great great cannabis skills just shut up and listen man, take some advice in and really listen and see what they’re doing and check the ego a little bit at the door, you’ll learn line and you’ll grow better.

Dan Ramsay: For sure. That’s one of the things I get quite a few clients that will come to me because we do a lot of like product evaluations and just like little cost benefit analysis stuff to first your clients and when they come in– We all want to find that quick fix like you know, will the LEDs like increase my yield and make it that much better? I’m like, well not if you mess up the other parts. Like a whenever you’re growing and you meet somebody who’s done it well you better take pride in it because like a controlled environments. 

Like biomimicry, you’re mimicking the earth, like it’s a pretty there’s a lot going on here between the temperature the, the way your air and all of its changing and dynamic as the plants grow into the humidity at every part of it. And so to be able to move with a plant through that phase and control those variables and the way you want to you probably should shut up and listen to that person.

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, man, it’s so simple. There’s only four pieces of magic that make cannabis grow and that are genetics, water, soil, and sun. Pretty much like you can manipulate those in many, many ways. But those are the four things you have to have. 

Dan Ramsay: [crosstalk] You need some [crosstalk] that photosynthesis just by [crosstalk] time, augmented I’m just saying like, in the like, have to happen, though. 

Chip Baker: You have to have Oh plants gotta go synthesize. 

Dan Ramsay: [crosstalk] You guys got it. But and whether you are already to CO2 or not, but no, I like you’re saying there’s only these couple. These only five kind of like variables or constraints of sorts. And, but what’s fun about growing is like the plant grows every day, the bigger the roots, the bigger it grows next day and it grows exponentially. And like, how does that change what you did last week? And so, asking those and we’ve got a digital solution we’re working on, that we’ll be bringing out here soon with like an app that we’re building to try to answer a lot of these questions. But that’ll be next year. We’ll have to just hop on and chat again, you know about that. But I love those questions. I think that’s a really fun part of the growing is the fact that you’re like, it’s really simple. You’re like, yeah, until it changes every day.

Natural Order Supply’s Future in the Hemp Industry

Chip Baker: Yeah, Dan, one of the things that you guys are doing a lot of is education, and you just brought up this app. But what we haven’t talked about is like your education outreach, and you know what your plans are in the future for that. So tell me about that man.

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, so, as a company, as a person, my ethos has always been real education based in this industry. Tons of it’s needed. We, last year as a company started a monthly event we call on Here for Hemp, that was just real hemp centric events that we did monthly, where we brought everybody from, like the Department of Agriculture to talk about their handle, what they do when they do a walk through, it’s like talking about pest control. Or we also brought in like just parts of the industry of people from like, the banking, the insurance side, all those business components that are needed, because just because you started a farm, that’s, you need the whole business behind it as well. And there’s so much that can be gleaned and learned and needs to be done there. 

So we did that all the way up until this last February when COVID decided like no more events. And but those were in-person events where we had the last one we did in February was a champ event. That’s like Colorado’s hemp advancement management plan. But that one you can actually see a recording of that one on the, our YouTube page at Natural Order Supply or at the I believe it’s posted on the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s like notes sites for when they came in and kind of talked a lot about just the process of transport, how do you register that was a big question, actually. This last year was when they pull you over, how do you be like, here’s my form that says this is what it is and people believe you and how does that work when you drive around Colorado to leave Colorado. 

So we like as much as we love the cultivation and the plant. We see the bigger industry. We’re aiming to really make our impact. And so, you know, starting in September, we’re going to start doing our Here 4 Hemp events, again, with a webinar series, but we’re going to offer, we’re going to have ten different cannabis professionals or city professionals from Grand Junction because we work a lot with it. We work as the economic department there and different like sometimes it’s good to get somebody from the fire department to come in or depending on what the conversation is we really like to talk about to those city officials and regulators.

But we’ll be doing alike probably a 10-minute local webinar held in our store with a ten person event that’s about as big as you can blow up events right now. And then having a webinar, we’ll be inviting people such as, like I said, regulators and educators. Where people will be able to hop on in and join and see both those webinars which will be posted to our YouTube site but also if they wanted to be able to hop in and enjoy the conversation or apply to come and hang out is one of the ten people in the store and get some swag, and enjoy–

Chip Baker: Man, that sounds like a great idea. We’d love to help you out with that real dirt has really tried to push many of our interviewees, webinars and educational programs and the only way that we’re really gonna do better at this cannabis thing, this cannabis life is to educate ourselves and others about it. Yeah, okay, definitely. Let’s work together help you get that information out.

Dan Ramsay: Yeah, that would be great chip. We appreciate anything we can. It’s amazing what you can learn with the worldwide web too. When you jump into from a different place and you know, I’ve been hopping on webinars left and right and forgetting about them too. Yeah, the nature of the COVID world, it’s like I sign up on my calendar but it’s just so different than the expo world that I think we were used to in the networking for a company like ours used to go have booths and do quite a few shows. But all changing. Yep, exactly. 

Where to Find Them

Chip Baker: Well, Dan, it’s been awesome speaking to you today about hemp, the future hemp and what’s going on with you guys. Over at a Natural Order Supply in Grand Junction. Hey, if our listeners want to get in touch with you or research you more, how do they do that?

Dan Ramsay: You know, it’s pretty straightforward. We’re at naturalordersupply.com. That’s the same book for our our online. Our social platforms as well as Natural Order Supply or and if you go to our website there, you’ll see it’s all hemp centric, there’s an area in the top right button to click to join our next event on our website. So, yeah, that’s just the best way to, to reach us online and hit us on the website or search for us on social and we’re on all those platforms sharing what we’re learning and we’re real excited to step into pushing as much of our education that we have and keep in local, digital this towards the end of this year and all of next year. Really watching that.

Chip Baker: Awesome, man. Well, hey, that’s great. Dan. I hope we hear more from you. We want to definitely help you out with some of your webinars and education in the future. So listeners, look for more natural order solutions, Natural Order Supply, hemp webinar with Dan Ramsey. Dan, thanks for joining me today, man. I really appreciate it.

Dan Ramsay: Oh, thank you Chip it’s been great.

Chip Baker: All right, this is The Real Dirt. Thanks, guys! All right, Dan. Thanks. Thanks, man. That was a great, great conversation we just had.

All right, that was Dan Ramsay with Natural Order Supply out in Grand Junction, Colorado. Man I’ve always loved hemp since I read Jack Harrows book, The Emperor wears no clothes I was just fascinated turned on with this. This history international history they’ve been going on for thousands and thousands and thousands of years of hemp as a textile, cannabis as a medicine and the the interaction in a relationship that that humans have with it. And let us not forget the hemp has only been a legal cannabis has only been criminalized for just a small portion of the time that we as humans have been using it as a product and man now is really the time for hemp to come back to the world for cannabis to come back to the world. 

And I truly believe, and I have seen that cannabis can save the world. And the best way for cannabis to save the world is for us all the planet and consume it. So no matter if you’re consuming CBD gummies or if you’re smoking a large high THC joint or maybe a dab, man while you’re doing this, just think a little bit about the other people on the planet and how maybe hemp and cannabis can help them and help your relationship with them and unless try to pursue that. 

This has been The Real Dirt. If you liked this episode, please subscribe on iTunes, man I need more subscribers. It really would make this thing go is the subscribers on it. Hey man, check me out at cultivatecolorado.com, Cultivate OKC supply. If you need any equipment in the country in the world, give us a call, check out our website, sign up for a commercial account. And we offer awesome pricing to people all over the globe, awesome shipping from people all over the globe. And we’re really, really, really there to help you.

As I mentioned earlier, I’ve started a new project Greener Consulting Group. Check us out greenerconsultinggroup.com. We’re a full-service cannabis advisory company, and we have dozens of different cannabis consultants and advisors all over the country in the globe that could help you out with your problem. It’s easier than you think. So look us up. And hop on for the free advisory call.

Hey, thanks again. It’s been a great Real Dirt; this is Chip Baker. I enjoyed this episode so much. Look for a bunch of new episodes coming out here saying. Thanks again, Real Dirt!

From Red Bull to CBD: Reinventing Energy Supplements

From Red Bull to CBD: Reinventing Energy Supplements

best CBD supplements

John Zolikoff came out of the motorcycle and action sports world. He worked for 15 years at Harley-Davidson and Austrian sports motorcycle maker KTM.

During that time, John worked closely with Red Bull back in early 2000 when energy drinks were entering the market.

After experiencing the health benefits of CBD several years ago, and on a mission to find healthy energy that he could take any time, anywhere, John started ZOHKO in 2018. He pulled together scientists and doctors to create ZOHKO Energy, which is on the cusp of creating a new energy category.

ZOHKO Energy combines CBD with eight power-packed ingredients to boost energy, mood, motivation, and focus, all while the adaptogens strengthen immunity and help fight stress.

Here’s an exciting episode about branding and developing a company with a CBD expert. Remarkable insights await from John Zolikoff on how ZOHKO developed their brand, used unique marketing strategies, how they target their market and sell their products.

Download The Episode Companion For This Episode

Some Topics We Discussed Include

4:53 – Transitioning from motorcycle and sports world to CBD
8:24 – A light bulb moment on CBD
13:31 – Pushing through the CBD industry
18:05 – Branding ZOHKO energy
21:42 – Your brand is your avatar
33:52 – Sales channels
35:32 – Keeping the CBD business rolling
38:05 – Where to find them​

People Mentioned / Resources

Connect with John Zolikoff

Connect with  Chip Baker

Transcript

Chip Baker: Hey, this Chip of The Real Dirt. In today’s dirt, I want to talk about branding and developing a company. To talk to my good buddy John Zolikoff about his company, ZOHKO. Now it’s a CBD energy supplement company but the reason I wanted to have John on so he could talk to people about how they develop their brand, their branding strategy, how they develop their customers, how they sell the product, just all the like little things that it takes to bring a product to market. 

Now many people cannabis or hemp farmers, all they’re interested in is you know, growing lots of ganja which I’m totally fine with that. But many people realize they need to have some sort of added value product or they need something more than they can grow or they can produce, and so a branded or a formulated product is the perfect way to do it. You know, if you’re interested in hemp, you’re in Interested in CBD, if you’re interested in ganja, this is going to be a great great great episode. And we literally like you know you can use this format and develop your company kind of based behind it develop your brand, kind of behind it. So sit back and enjoy this next episode of The Real Dirt with Chip Baker and John Zolikoff

Hey, this is Chip from The Real Dirt, and on today’s dirt, I have my good buddy John Zolikoff come to you live from Sarasota, Florida. Say hello, John.

John Zolikoff: Hey, everyone. Hey Chip. Great to be here.

Chip Baker: Oh, man, the birds are chirping in the background. I hear you a little puppies going on. Just looks and sounds like an incredible place to be right now. What’s going on in Florida, man?

John Zolikoff: Well, it’s a it’s a good place to to be isolating for sure. So we’re close to the beach as you can see. Got great setup here so we’re hunkered down, good place for ZOHKO headquarters to be trying to support everyone and you know, Sarasota is where– So as you mentioned, we’ve got eight puppies right now.

Chip Baker: Oh, yeah, we can’t. I can’t really hear them. I hear the birds. They sound great. They’re very pleasant, John.

John Zolikoff: Yes. So we’re surrounded by nature. So that’s we’re enjoying this is how we’re gonna heal ourselves, right?

Chip Baker: Oh, man treat is just looks and sounds incredible. I’m also in a self isolating format, as you can see grooming myself so well.

John Zolikoff: I shave for you today!

Chip Baker: Oh yeah, that’s right. That’s great. What do you mean I think I shaved?

John Zolikoff: My Sunday best–

Chip Baker: My Saturday sweatshirt on, even though it’s Monday right now.

John Zolikoff: And that’s how we met. Was that baby bathwater–

Chip Baker: Yeah, baby bathwater on a Saturday or a day that felt like it anyway. 

John Zolikoff: Yeah, exactly. 

Chip Baker: Yeah. So John, the reason you know I have you on The Real Dirt is John, you’re one of the founders or the founder of ZOHKO, which is a CBD and energy supplement company. John, you’ve started several other businesses in the past, and you know this is a new venture for you and so many people are thinking about getting involved in a CBD or cannabis business or already have some sort of CBD or cannabis business and you took a slightly different approach to starting your business then then maybe many other people. And you spoke about it at all and how you kind of got involved with it but as the brand you want it to develop this brand. Because in previous businesses you didn’t necessarily own you know, own what you were doing. It was someone else’s brain. So, again, I’m glad we can chat with you about a day. Hey man, how did you kind of come up with this idea of to start a CBD energy supplement? 

Transitioning from Motorcycle and Sports World to CBD

John Zolikoff: Well, so as you said, I, you know, going back I came out of the action sports world so I was in motorcycles I was with Harley Davidson and then KTM sport motorcycles, and KTM has a relationship back between the founders in Austria with Red Bull. So back in like the late night 1990s and early 2000s when Red Bull was just coming into the market. We were doing crazy partnerships with them, you know, with like all that extreme sports and you know skydiving and motorcycle races. So I was in kind of in that group and saw like, I mean Red Bull created the category right before that there were no energy drinks and so then all sudden. I was also kind of in that extreme world of, you know, riding motorcycles and jumping out of airplanes and you know, so we want to [inaudible] Back in the day now I’m just the old guy with all the puppies and kids and grandkids. I saw what all that energy and what energy drinks and you know that how much people would pay for that energy and then also seeing the brand.

Chip Baker: So you learn from some of the major brands and a completely kind of different arena though it’s not healthcare or it’s I mean it’s a much more consumer oriented product than a healthcare product. No I’m talking to my ass.

John Zolikoff: Oh no for sure. So I come in straight out of university actually even my, my thesis, I did it on Harley Davidson. So I had a motorcycle. I bought a Harley when I was in college. I ran a business back then a bartending agency. 

Chip Baker: So you were a fan. 

John Zolikoff: So I was uh, yeah, so and I talked them into sponsoring my thesis and so that was what I love to do. But then about 13-14 years ago, I met my wife, as women will do they, they change you and she’s from Brazil, but she’s also a vegetarian and very much into sustainability. And so it was and then also I started my family and so it was this shift in my life I swore when I met my wife that I would never give up eating meat. And that took about a year to become a vegetarian because she was a really good cook. But more and more, I’ve become healthier with my life and the benefits I feel great. 

So with the energy drinks that we’re doing all the time in the motorcycle world it wasn’t hard to figure out that those are bad for you with all the chemicals and sugar but [inaudible] were much. Still, then you get into than I was into coffee and that’s how I kind of raise my kid was just drinking coffee all day to keep up with my– he’s 12-year-old years old now. But I was always looking for this natural energy and something I can feel good because otherwise, you feel like you’re always like stealing from the future, your future longevity for your industry today, right?

I was always looking for this natural energy and something I can feel good because otherwise, you feel like you’re always stealing from the future, your future longevity for your industry today. – John Zolikoff

Chip Baker: So you are you already looking at an energy type of supplement or you’ve been thinking about it for years and the CBD just it was the lightbulb moment?

A Light Bulb Moment on CBD

John Zolikoff: Yeah for the CBD for me was you know I’ve been into hemp and cannabis for years and but I had this chronic pain in my shoulders that came like out of nowhere. And and it hurt a lot just to raise a you know, higher than shoulder height. And we went through the traditional medical tests, MRIs and x rays and cortisone shots which you can’t do multiple times, but none of it helped. And then finally the doctors like I don’t understand it, can’t figure it out. And you just have to live with it. Maybe cut back on this or whatever. I tried to– 

Chip Baker: But you didn’t cut back in the weed? 

John Zolikoff: No, I didn’t [inaudible]. But just smoking the weed didn’t stop–

Chip Baker: Didn’t do it. No, it doesn’t. And that’s the thing is CBD is anti-inflammatory–

John Zolikoff: That was the medicine. And so a friend recommended it. And it was, I think it’s called ACDC. And, you know, within a day it cut the pain in half. And by the end of the week, like it was down to 10% of what it was before. So that was powerful for me personally. So then the —

Chip Baker: A major believer–

John Zolikoff: Exactly. And knowing as the market became more legal, at least enough that I wanted to look into it. And so then I sought out how could I find like the experts and the best– and then I found you, so but, you know, so that was like the next step [inaudible]

Chip Baker: Here’s how John found us as we were in the corner, smoking weed in a circle. So those large smoke cloud coming up between us and John recognize the smoke signal. And, Hey, man, what are you guys doing?

John Zolikoff: That’s exactly how it happened. And I think we played that out a few different times. But then we’re also you know, at that event, there were a number of really knowledgeable and experts in the new market in hemp, CBD and cannabis. I remember some really good advice that you gave, and some of it was, I was like, Okay, well, California is opening up. I would love to have my own.

Chip Baker: You want, you thought you wanted to grow it?

John Zolikoff: I wanted to do a farm. Yeah, exactly. And so you start calling me farmer John, I think was and somehow–

Chip Baker: Farmer John Oh, I said, Oh, John over there. He wants to be a farmer, farmer John.

John Zolikoff: And somehow I just didn’t, you know, I couldn’t see like, you know, I haven’t grown up in the field, right? I don’t have that kind of expertise. So something there– And I remember you also saying that they look at, there’s an opportunity now, but as soon as the big companies come in, it’s going to get, you know, the prices will just get gutted, like, soy and everything else, right. So, that made a lot of sense. And then you said that, the real places to focus on CBD, which is legal, and across the country and to, and to create a brand, you know, to– So, I mean I think two years later here, maybe from that discussion, but it was appreciated, is great advice. And–

Chip Baker: Hey, man, this is a perfect time for us to stop for a break here. We’ll come back and we’re going to talk about like, your next step, you had the idea, and how did you want to do it differently than you had before? All right, here’s The Real Dirt. We’ll be back in a moment. 

Hey, this is Chip, I hope you’re enjoying this episode of The Real Dirt. I just wanted to have a little public service announcement out there in these trying times. I just want to encourage everyone to have a little bit more tolerance with people around them, with their family, with their friends, and the people they interact in the world. You know, it’s gotten to be an incredibly small world lately, and we all realize that we’re in it together. So the next time that you feel a little stressed or you see somebody else stress, just take, just take a second. Relax, and if you can, roll up the largest join that you can. And then enjoy another episode of The Real Dirt. Thanks again, we’ll get back into it. Right now. 

All right, and we’re back with John Zolikoff. We’re talking about how John has started a CBD energy supplement company. So John, you had this idea and, you know, kind of– Take me to the steps of like, what kind of happened? What was the next thing that happened? You had the idea, and you decided you wanted to make some CBD products.

Pushing through the CBD Industry

John Zolikoff: Yeah. So for sure CBD. So we partnered early on with obviously we were starting with CBD and we searched out the best sources for that. Being able to go all the way back and trace the genetics and make sure that we’re getting full spectrum. So we got all the cannabinoids and so that was the foundation. But then also, for me, it was important I wanted to create supplements that people could really feel like from the beginning and so, the idea from the beginning was also to come up with engineered or formulated products with intentional benefits so, energy was the obvious one and the starting point. 

We searched out a group that is like the best in formulating performance supplements. And so, it was a little bit, I think, a different approach than most people. So product development was key. We wanted to include energy ingredients, but also adaptogens, which even now is, even more, I think timely with adaptogens are great at boosting your immunity and fighting stress and in fatigue. So, that was important. So coming up with the right formula was key, then sourcing the full-spectrum CBD then finding even the manufacturer. Our formula is unique it’s a like a liquid, so it’s like a maybe see here it’s got oil in there, so it’s MCT oil plus the CBD, but then it’s got seven other ingredients so there’s Caffeine, Dynamine, which is a Kucha tea leaf extract and gives a nice even energy that just kind of tapers off at the end versus kind of that nervous energy with a crash that a lot you’ll get from energy drinks. 

Chip Baker: Oh, hold on. Let me get some coffee.

John Zolikoff: Well, we got you got ZOHKO on the way. I know guys like it but yeah, exactly. So instead of that big, you know rush and kind of, you know jittery effect. This is a nice even the combination of the caffeine and the Dynamine and the hemp just really works nicely. Then so we’ve got lots of B vitamins and Rhodiola which like the Russian astronauts and cosmonauts and athletes have been using forever. Through Ginsengs, Spirulina, MCT Oil and it’s a vegetarian capsule. There are certain things that are really important for me I wanted this to be something that I was going to take. I mean I basically since I got my first samples a year and almost a year and a half ago, I’ve more or less given up coffee. I like the taste but this is just so much easier and I know that I’m getting all these other health ingredients on top of it but for example, vegetarian capsules were important to me being a vegetarian. 

So that was a big thing. I designed it for what I was looking for. Making sure people– a lot of people talk about their CBD, that they’re that it makes them tired or drowsy and they can’t take it during the day with [inaudible] You can get your 25 milligrams of CBD in each capsule, and you can go to work and be focused and, you know, the Dynamine–

Chip Baker: I usually take two. Just saying.

John Zolikoff: And that’s why each one has 100 milligrams of caffeine and all these other ingredients, but they’re, it’s the right amount that you can stack it. So that’s the official recommendation is not to exceed 400 milligrams of caffeine of the day. So we say don’t take more than four. But the Dynamine is really a neat ingredient. It’s new on the market, and they promote it. They say, EMF, I think it’s EMMF. So energy, mood, motivation and focus, which right now, like especially we’re all working at home. So how do you keep your head straight while, you got kids and puppies running around? Or if you’re trying to focus and create your new thing, right, it’s great for that. So that’s on the products side and we’re really happy. I mean, you’ve had it people really like it–

Branding ZOHKO Energy

Chip Baker: So you wanted to formulate the product, right? You didn’t want to do a white label product, you wanted something specific for you, you want to stand out. So you got a formulator you had the idea, right? You wanted something different. And how did you approach the brand side? How did you develop because many people don’t even know what a brand is. I guess that’s all up for debate. It’s more than just a logo. How did you approach the next phase?

John Zolikoff: Yeah. So this is what we ended up with, which is so ZOHKO energy, CBD plus energy. I have launched as you mentioned, I’ve started a lot of different companies and I’ve done kind of the branding and always just on my own right. Then just kind of didn’t take a disciplined approach to it, and go through a process and so knowing that the market was going to be so competitive, knowing that looking at the market and really, not to offend anyone, but if you look at the CBD market, there’s just like it all like–

Chip Baker: Charlatans and homespun bullshit and people just want to get rich quick, I’ll say it

John Zolikoff: Yeah, there you go. But no one really looking at it from like a consumer products perspective, right? Like how to really connect with people and like it’s always it’s CBD, the CBD this CBD that, hemp the you know, it’s just like, and even our first idea was like Blue River Hemp. Right? That was that would have been [inaudible] the process that would have been the first that would have been in and then we would have just been competing with every other hemp company to try and be the most trusted or the most whatever. So, we worked with branding for the people, a great group that so we invested first before everything in the brand and that process that we went through, forced us to identify our customers. So it was we came up with three or four avatars, but all around kind of active outdoor adventure type people. And then, you know, you relate to them a little bit differently, like I’m Gen X, I’m 49 right? So I kind of grew up in all this action, extreme sports stuff. But now like I mean–

We invested first before everything in the brand, and that process that we went through forced us to identify our customers. – John Zolikoff

Chip Baker: Now you’re beat up. 

John Zolikoff: I’m beat up and I need yeah, lubricate–

Chip Baker: My elbow, my arm, my shoulders–

John Zolikoff: Exactly. But this now gives me– This gives me energy, and it gives my body like the lubrication to go out and charge and do things than I used to, or not at the same level. It is so focusing on who was our target demographic. And for me, it was just kind of like looking. I’m just going to kind of do almost like the Red Bull in a healthy energy, right? And what’s great is like, so you get a bottle of this, it’s 30 servings, right? That’s like 30 energy drinks in your pocket, or 30 double shot, you know, Starbucks double shots like that.

Chip Baker: That’s a month supply.

John Zolikoff: Exactly. And so for me, like, I would always go to like these trade shows or even when I traveled, I’d go buy those little Starbucks double shot four packs. Yeah, totally. I would put those in my– every everywhere I went, I put those in my luggage because that was my best way to just get my caffeine and my energy to go and now I have this solution. 

Your Brand is Your Avatar

Chip Baker: Yeah. So you mentioned avatars early, you’ve had a couple of different avatars. Let’s explain to people what that means.

John Zolikoff: So that’s where you sit down and you describe the psychographics and the personality, the activities how people [inaudible]

Chip Baker: Of your perceived customer even. 

John Zolikoff: Yep. The media they consume, the places they go just how– so that you can speak specifically to them. What we’re finding is the formula. I mean, there’s so many people that want natural, convenient energy. And so our avatar was actually kind of this young like originally like 18 to 30 year old. 

Chip Baker: He’s made one avatar. 

John Zolikoff: The first one is that one avatar, so it was pretty, it was a younger one than what we’re finding it to be but so and we called him Travis like Travis Pastrana, if you know action sports, he’s like the original, extreme sports guy. And so you as a group we built out this whole page that describes everything about Travis.

Chip Baker: Who Travis’s what he looks like, what he drives, what he what he does?

John Zolikoff: Yep, we now have like four different avatars. So there’s Travis and you come up with names so that people can relate to a little bit better but so now there’s four. So that was the avatar part then you also wanted to come up with the Archetypes. It’s also like the personality of the company like are you like a National Geographic? Are you like the most trusted you know are you like IBM and so there’s this whole through the process. They give examples of other the personalities of other types of companies. And you pick you decide what you want your– So for me, what was really amazing for this was like, we spent a lot of money invested but it was so refreshing to be able to just like dream up who I really wanted my customer to be, right i mean like this.

Chip Baker: So the importance is this is like if you know what your customer is and what they look like your potential customer what they look like and then you start to imagine what they’re going to be attracted to the colors that they’re going to buy the colors that they’re using, the language the copy the content, the sales letters, all of that comes from this avatar. Alright, how do you speak to Travis? Right? How do you lore Travis to come over the ZOHKO–

John Zolikoff: Yeah. And then you start to build off of that. So the archetypes I mentioned. So ours is you know, kind of fun loving and there’s like adjuster, adventure adjuster, there’s two but so that’s part of the process, but then also, we had to come up with a name right? So like Blue River Hemp and then there was someone had you know, I mentioned earlier that like the CBD, as you get older, kind of lubricate. It helps with all your joints and everything just feels better. So one idea was, you know, Life Loob, which sounds a little bit too looby. But there was this whole process of trying to name storm and then come up with a– 

Chip Baker: That’s for a different avatar. 

John Zolikoff: Yeah, so Life Loob didn’t make it. So, ZOHKO, it’s funny I have been called ZOHKO. My last name is Zolikoff so not exactly ZOHKO. For 20 years I’ve been using ZOCO, which is kind of short for Zolikoff company for different projects and consulting. My good friend and my son’s godfather who is the director of motorsports for Red Bull, and he’s an investor in ZOHKO, when I was sending them, I think an invoice for something and had that Zoco name on it as he was involved in this name storming process or this naming process and he goes, he goes, Hey, man, and for me, it’s kind of like seemed a bit egotistical, you know, like I just haven’t. I’m not put my name on things kind of, but I love the name. I just love the sound of it. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, that was a great name. 

John Zolikoff: And so he encouraged that, and so then we had to figure out so ZOCO but then you have to get the domain name right so there’s this whole process and so it shifted to the ZOHKO.

Chip Baker: And that’s the other thing about making up, then the the spelling of it is you got the .com and we can see that and tons of stuff these days. It’s hard to get the .com so if you spell your own word–

John Zolikoff: I mean, ZOCCO was like out of the box– [inaudible]

Chip Baker: [inaudible] Percent. Yeah, of course. 

John Zolikoff: When we got ZOHKO– 

Chip Baker: I bought The Real Dirt. 

John Zolikoff: Yeah, you are The Real Dirt. 

Chip Baker: Yeah, totally. 

John Zolikoff: That was kind of how those [inaudible]

Chip Baker: I just found out that some of my haters call me The Real Dirtbag, but I believe it’s just because you know, that dude’s a jackass and like, you can’t– probably know who you are.

John Zolikoff: He’s probably more into tea bagging. Anyway–

Chip Baker: Definitely, he’s definitely a Tea bagger, which Hey, man, if you’re in a tea bagging, and I’m not gonna, like, you know, like down you for that, that’s your own sport, whatever you want. 

John Zolikoff: That’s also a different avatar. 

Chip Baker: Right? It’s a different avatar. I’m not going to judge you over your tea bagging but like, you can’t be an asshole about it when you do it. Right. Totally inappropriate John, let’s get back to branding. So the thing I love about the avatar is now you get to take that avatar to every person that you do business with. So your website guy, your label guy, your packaging guy, you get to go take him Travis avatar be like, Hey, this is our customer.

John Zolikoff: Yeah, so it’s even more than that. So the avatar definition was part of building the brand platform and that’s the whole process. So that’s not only so we we created the avatar– so we were working through a whole process over the course of about six weeks. And it was laid out step by step. 

The avatar definition was part of building the brand platform, and that’s the whole process. – John Zolikoff

The avatar was part of it as the name storming and then like one of the main guys, design guys, they came up with a storyboard, after you know, was another step of the process where you know, they came up with images that would help us like narrow zero in on on the logo and things like that. Out of nowhere, the dude came up with a techno zebra so there’s this really cool storyboard that’s got this the zebra with like headphones on and sunglasses and, and somehow that evolved into what we have and but it’s interesting. So Zolikoff is my last name, I always when I spell my name, it’s Z as in zebra, right? Because B and Z and all these other so like It’s just–

Chip Baker: I might spell an axe occasionally but–

John Zolikoff: Yeah, so this is you know it looks really nice on swag I made it. It stands out it doesn’t say hempright it doesn’t say CBD it’s something that people are can really relate to we have a lot that we can do. You know they were very–

Chip Baker: You’re not pigeoned into like a one product, you can do whatever you want and add CBD to it instead of just being pigeon holed into a CBD company. 

John Zolikoff: Exactly. CBD is an ingredient, right. 

Chip Baker: CBD is a main ingredient.

John Zolikoff: It’s not a whole product or a whole experience. And then the group took you know, as we work through the process, the first thing was to get our labeling because we needed to you know, we had product. We had about dozen different things all you know on parallel timelines–

Chip Baker: You developed your brand story, you developed your avatar, you developed your labeling, your bottling your packaging, like how long did it take in order for you to actually get sellable product. How many months did it take?

John Zolikoff: So we really launched ZOHKO on an island in Croatia, in June of 2018. We had product we had the energy capsules by the end of December. 

Chip Baker: June, six months. Okay.

John Zolikoff: And I would say that’s a pretty condensed I mean, I was pushing–

Chip Baker: That’s great. It’s hard for me to get a product in the market and within three or four months like that, I’m struggling to get in through it in four months [inaudible]

John Zolikoff: And for me, it was all new, right? Like, I have I have an engineering like a general engineering degree. So I I’m used to doing projects and business development developers but you know, just the labeling right every step it was like you have to learn a new a whole new set of notes right but you do that all the time–

Chip Baker: Oh man, you know, I mean once you get through a couple products, it’s not the same but it’s definitely something you have to think about in food and supplements those are absolutely different fertilizers but yeah, it’s just you know, huge you know, just rules you have to follow when you put the packaging together. So man–

John Zolikoff: [inaudible] fine with them, you know, we set up warehousing right. So you had to you know, with CBD only so much– fulfillment Yep, exactly.

Chip Baker: So, you contracted out your manufacturing. Well you have your formula, you’ve got your package, you contract out the manufacturing, they put it in your package, and then they send it someplace else to fulfill it.

John Zolikoff: Yes, yeah, exactly. So we have a third party warehouse that we work with ship offers. They’re a great partner in Colorado. But not everyone’s– it’s becoming more easier and open more free now, but not everyone wants to deal with CBD right. So, that was part of part of the step. So fulfillment, right and then selling right so then, you know, website is the most obvious but then and I’ve set up a lot of websites and web shops, and never even really thought us extra time about the processing, processing and banking, as we know is such an issue with CBD, cannabis and hemp. But the last [inaudible] has– I’ve we’ve gone through three or four processors already and not for any good reason they just like decide to shut down. Our first one came in I think it was US Bank decided they were gonna just go into CBD market after and then after four or five months and they were great they’re super low price and funded in a day but then yeah they pulled out and I heard that like it affected like 4500 accounts are something crazy. 

Chip Baker: Wow yeah

John Zolikoff: This was like an April last year and like everyone you know, trying to find it at the same time. So I come more from like traditional sales and marketing kind of brick and mortar or motorcycles, bicycles–

Sales Channels

Chip Baker: So your sales channels mostly ecommerce or do you distribute to retail locations?

John Zolikoff: So we were doing some retail. Our retail strategy is similar to our demographic right our avatar, so we’re going on after outdoor retailers independent retailers. So fishing, you know [inaudible] all the CBD companies are not right now–

Chip Baker: Sale boarding shop, paragliding shop–

John Zolikoff: Yeah, and that’s where the energy products gonna come in we were actually a 30 count bottle is a big, big commitment to make so we’re actually coming out with three packs and special packaging for that channel and the response has been really, really good so far. So that’s going to be rolling out I don’t want to get too much into– I’m really happy with the packaging. I’ll show you the next time. You’re gonna love them. So that’s the retail is like this, you know, outdoor, you know? So we got e commerce, we’ve got outdoor retailers and then the third that we want to go with these three packs. We think that there really is a mass market for healthy convenient energy. And so that’s where– 

Chip Baker: Like 711 market? 

John Zolikoff: That convenience store is going head to head with five-hour energy. 

Keeping the CBD Business Rolling

Chip Baker: All right, I think I think so too, man. John, long, long the way you wanted to quit I’m sure. Along the way you’re like– man, what kept you going to bring this product fulfillment?

John Zolikoff: The response from the customers is fantastic. Well, I love the product. Everyone around me loves the product. It’s something in the past, my most recent business before was children’s bikes, which was a lot of fun. And it really changed a lot of little kids lives and that was so this evolution from kind of like burning petrol gas for recreation to this more sustainable and healthy to where I really want to help people and CBD you know so we have an expanding line we’re going to have a bomb you know, topical coming out as well. We have plans for more functional blends after the energy but I think energy really is our flagship it’s where we’re hanging our hat but I think this whole that people can make more memories they can do more with their kids they can do you know, they can get their relief and their CBD and still be have energy to get through the day. So that gets me I like I’m organic, you know, vegetarian. I want to be natural and how I treat things. And I just think this is what the world needs more of. And so adaptogens and CBD–

Chip Baker: So you said you had a heart for it man. Did you ever have a down moment? Did you ever have a moment where you didn’t think you’re gonna do this?

John Zolikoff: Yeah, for sure. So the last year has been frustrating because it’s been learning ecommerce, and we’re trying to learn it and build it and fly it and prepare and all that at the same time. And, we are lean, you know, we have a lot of people helping on the project, but I don’t have you know, I’m working, you know, from a home office. So there are a lot of times that you can– yeah, so I guess, just believing and as anyone that brings a product, I mean, you have to have the belief, like it’s already exists right. You just have to know that it’s the right thing and just keep going. 

You just have to know that it’s the right thing and just keep going. -John Zolikoff

Where to Find Them

Chip Baker: That’s awesome advice for any business owner. Thank you, man. Hey, John, how do people get in touch with? Get in touch with you? How do people order the product? Are you on Facebook, Instagram? 

John Zolikoff: Yep, so zohko.com, and we are on Instagram and Facebook – Zohkoholics. Just search on ZOHKO, you’ll find it. 

Chip Baker: Okay.

John Zolikoff: So yeah and the idea was just to help people live their lives more fully, and give them energy to be able to get out and enjoy and now it’s I think it’s a it’s what our bodies need to help you know, CBD helps your body–

Chip Baker: It’s what the body craves. 

John Zolikoff: Exactly. I mean it gives it what it’s need to fight whatever is out there, it is what it occurs. Yeah.

Chip Baker: Awesome, John. Well, hey, thanks for joining me today, man. I really enjoyed hearing the birds and talking to you about branding and developing a new product line and new company.

John Zolikoff: Yeah. Well, we’re happy to support you guys. So anytime you need energy anytime the dogs over there need some and yeah, we’ll keep you updated as we get out there. Appreciate the time, always great seeing you. I missed your smiling face.

Chip Baker: Now, man. Well, here it is.

John Zolikoff: It’s beautiful.

Chip Baker: Cool, bro. Thanks again. Hey, this has been another great episode of The Real Dirt. If you enjoyed this episode, please download others at The Real Dirt podcast on iTunes. You can also download them on therealdirt.com That’s right. That’s our own website. We have a blog, links to our Facebook page, The Real Dirt podcast as well as our Instagram page, The Real Dirt podcast, please participate. Please tell us how you like this episode, please tell us about the episodes that you’re interested in. And once again, thank you for lending me your time. It’s The Real Dirt!

All right, well, I hope you enjoyed that episode, man. You know, John’s internet reception broke up a little bit. He’s down in Florida, but I loved hearing the birds chirping background and then there at the end the dogs you know so much about the podcast for me, is an audio escape when I listen to it and when I make these things that it is a little bit of escape for me. In these times we all need a little bit of escape and whether it’s a rolling up a large hemp joint or a large ganja joint or a small bong hit, or listening to The Real Dirt like and right now it’s about a great time to do it. So if you haven’t already, please subscribe to The Real Dirt podcast on iTunes. That way, you can catch up to all of our latest released episodes, and you can hear the 70 episodes behind. Also, join us on Facebook and Instagram The Real Dirt podcast and man look for all the special offers and whatnot we got coming in the future. As always, I appreciated your time. I know you’ve got lots more stuff you could do today. But instead, you chose to at least spend a little bit of time with me. So thanks again. You’ve been listening to The Real Dirt with Chip Baker.

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