June 10, 2020 4 min read
The year 2020 has been a roller coaster of events that will become notable moments in history. With an ongoing coronavirus pandemic and the beginning of the Black Lives Matter movement - the world is experiencing situations where the call to action is change. The cannabis community prides itself on inclusion and peace in everything we stand for. The Black Lives Matter movement is an opportunity for us to come together and contribute a lot of positive change, and we can start by highlighting black-owned cannabis companies and showing our support. We like to give credit where it’s due so here is a list of black-owned businesses that have pioneered an exceptional path in the cannabis industry.
Founded by former NBA star Al Harrington, Viola is a brand that stands for empowering minority ownership in the cannabis space with a team of minority investors that manage the company. Viola has created many initiatives to reinvest back into the community by participating in food drives all year and nationwide. What is most notable to mention is Viola’s commitment to providing more opportunities for minorities by investing over $500,000 to partner with, fund, and guide six applicants through Phase 1 and 20 applicants through Phase 2 of the Los Angeles Social Equity Program. Viola products are available across 15 states (where it is legal to purchase marijuana) and try ordering online for a quick list of options!
Owned by a married couple, CEO Wanda James and cannabis chef Scott Durah have been providing a safe space in Colorado to learn about cannabis. They are the first African Americans to legally be licensed and own a dispensary, cultivation facility, and edible company in the United States. After James’ brother was arrested for marijuana possession, it became her mission to educate others around the negative stigma regarding people of color and weed. Simply Pure Denver has thoughtfully curated cannabis products that are organic, vegan, and gluten-free!
The munchies kings and queens will love Satan’s Breath Hot Sauce, created by a former collegiate athlete and Executive Chef Paul Booker. From sports to the kitchen, Booker mentions cannabis was a “no brainer” when it came to life after football due to the physical stress on the athlete’s body. With a love for food and Mary Jane, Booker infused his passion for cannabis and food with his famous hot sauce recipes. This brand is dedicated to furthering cannabis education and the benefits cannabis can have in your daily life.
The Mary and Main dispensary was founded by medical professionals with diverse specialty backgrounds. This dispensary is located in the Maryland area but offers medical advice and resources on marijuana consumption online. Feel free to browse their Cannabis 101 section online or take a class! You can also view their menu which has a range of categories from flower to topicals and organized by brand to get straight to all of your favorites.
Founded and run by the Knox family (all three are doctors!), American Cannabinoid Clinics are available in 19 states. Its mission is to teach patients how toBe Well On Purpose™ with personalized and patient-centered care. AC Clinics offer medical card consultations and other services that are available worldwide including telehealth consultations.
With everything going on in the world, stress is at an all-time high. Yoga with Minelli is a great opportunity to unwind with your weed and get that tense body flowing through cannabis-infused yoga classes. Her goal is to provide affordable yoga and a mindful space to practice non-judgment, self-observation, and help awaken the possibilities of intentional cannabis use. You can sign up for a class if you’re nearby or take one online for those still practicing social distancing, which we recommend.
The true meaning of a come-up story, Elev8 Cannabis was founded by the youngest black man to own a dispensary in cannabis history.Seun Adedeji, Nigerian-born that grew up in the South Side of Chicago, started from the ground up and did everything himself to build Elev8 to what it is today. He hustled his way with a lot of passion and it shows since customers leave rave reviews about their experience with Elev8. Read up on his story if you’d like some motivation and visit a dispensary location in Oregon or Massachusetts with Illinois coming soon!
After Detroit local news anchor Anqunette Sarfoh was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, she chose to use cannabis as a means of therapy and healing. Sarfoh’s mission in creating Botaniqis to elevate the image of cannabis and have carefully chosen strains that are scientifically proven to target specific medical conditions. Botaniq grows its own plants and also sources from local farms which feed directly back into its community! It’s a beautiful thing and normalizes the use of cannabis as a natural healing remedy.
An organization formed by and for women of color, Supernova Women works in preparing and providing opportunities to women of color in the cannabis industry. This organization is important to both the cannabis community and the Black community as it works to educate and empower women of color that are usually not presented with as many opportunities. Supernova Women’s mission is to “foster community empowerment through holistic education, advocacy training, and skills acquisition.” There are three key programs available - if you are a woman of color we highly consider looking into this, but if you are not you can still support the initiative by spreading the word!
This list of black-owned companies only skims the surface of talented black individuals and organizations that give back to their communities through cannabis. We hope to continue a series of resources and recommendations to further help the movement and show solidarity. Now is the time for positive change so let’s light up a joint, identify the shifts we are able to make within ourselves and our community, and listen to Bob when he says “One love, one heart, let’s get together and feel alright.”
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