6 Black Cannabis Brands Fostering Growth In Maryland's Cannabis And Hemp Industry
By Alaina Dorsey, via Cash Color Cannabis.
Maryland’s medical cannabis industry is slowly expanding. And, at least from my standpoint, things are looking pretty damn dope for Black people around here.
No matter where your interests lie in cannabis (hemp, wellness, nutrition, community involvement, grinders), our burgeoning industry has open spots just waiting to be filled by the ambitious.
In the article below, Cash Color Cannabis highlights some of its favorite people, killing it and bringing the Maryland cannabis community of color closer together.
Keisha Reed: Explore Maryland Cannabis
Keisha Reed, the founder of Madame Green Grow, is also CEO of Maryland’s very fresh ecosystem The Maryland Cannabis Community Partnership. Run and operated by the Maryland Cannabis community, this organization provides education, information and accessibility that intersects with keeping people abreast of the constantly changing laws and regulations. Since it’s community-run, building connections is at the heart of the movement.
Their tagline is Explore Maryland Cannabis—which serves as the website URL and Instagram tag so that you can keep up.
We’ve explored Keisha’s story before, so be sure to read up about her on the Cash Color Cannabis website. Her weed tastes probably hasn’t changed: she goes weak in the knees for diesel-heavy strains and typically shoots for anything limonene heavy. All of it’s going to end up in a chocolate Philly blunt in the end.
If you’re tired of scrolling, Keisha recently launched the Explore Maryland Cannabis newsletter, so head to exploremarylandcannabis.org and sign up!
Ayanna Lawson: Front Row Travels
Front Row Travels® is the amalgam of two booming industries: cannabis and travel. Its founder Ayanna Lawson is a 42-year-old new entrepreneur with 5 years of travel agent experience. She transitioned to cannabis travel agent in April 2018.
Created with the trials of Black womanhood in mind, Front Row is meant to make cannabis-friendly travel seamless, low-stress and low-judgment. It’s a platform for erasing the stigma that carries with the plant and a worldwide opportunity to explore locations and cultures with an elevated sense of mind.
So who is Ayanna? She’s an edible-loving, tech avoidant woman with an 80-year-old man trapped inside her (her words). She likes uplifting sativa strains like Jack Herer, along with sativa-leaning hybrids.
Her entrance into cannabis was via self-care: her love for travel met at a crossroad with weed—and it’s all history as they say.
Explore your travel options and book a trip at www.frontrowtravels.com
Alex Vassell: Vassell’s Virtue
Vassell’s Virtue is Maryland’s first grinder company, founded by 27-year-old healthcare professional Alex Vassell. He saw an opportunity upon discovering that there were no affordable titanium grinders on the market. But why titanium?
Given his interests in health and wellness, Alex zoned in on this metal because it’s compatible with our bodies, safe to use and extra durable. Clearly quality is of the utmost importance to him, along with creating affordable products for his clients.
He opened his online grinder store on April 9th, 2018 with the intention of using its funds to open his own dispensary to help provide quality meds to patients in need.
Getting into his personal journey, Alex entered the world of cannabis fall 2010, his freshman year of college. Unfortunately, it was with some sad, sad weed he hit from an apple. But he kept exploring, digging into medicinal effects, terpenes and the like.
His favorite strains are Sour Diesel, Cinderella 99 and Jack Herer. Joints hit the spot for him but he’s down for an edible every now and then.
Check out his company at www.vassellsvirtue.com Hit him up if you want his grinders in your shop!
DRoc Palmer: Extreme Terpz
DRoc Palmer is the founder and hemp-loving extremist of his company Extreme Terpz. This Black-owned business provides hemp-derived CBD sublingual tinctures, caramels, gummies, hemp pre-rolls and hemp flower eighths.
Other than keeping the hemp game on lock, DRoc is a cannabis advocate and the new Central Vice Chair of Maryland’s American For Safe Access. He’s a very busy family man with a mission to change as many lives as he can with his products and positive energy.
Check out his CBD products at www.extremeterpz.com and be sure to reach out to him on Instagram.
Colyn Wanjiru: Zima 360 Wellness
Zima 360 Wellness is a CBD infusion company that specializes in Caribbean style food and drinks! It was founded by Colyn Wanjiru AKA Chef Wani, who’s committed to creating elevated culinary experiences for CBD enthusiasts.
She occasionally teams up with Grassroots Healing, another major Black cannabis brand in Maryland that provides wellness classes in yoga, meditation and other very healthy options. You already know it: I wrote about them on the Cash Color Cannabis website!
But anyway, Wanjiru uses this partnership for cooking workshops so that attendees can become their own healers. You can keep up with all the happenings on Instagram by following @zima360wellness.
Kevin Ford, Jr.: Uplift Maryland
Kevin Ford, Jr. is the founder of Uplift Maryland, an organization that strives for inclusion and diversity in Maryland’s medical cannabis market. Uplift provides training, business development services, employment opportunities, networking events and so much more to help people of color thrive and feel connected in this industry.
He was featured in High Times July 2019 and is a new father, ready to take on the world and reshape it with the power of cannabis.
Learn more at upliftmaryland.co, and if you’re planning a trip to the D.C. area, keep up so that you can attend one of Kevin’s dope events.
All pics in the article from Cash Color Cannabis.
The preceding article is from one of our external contributors. It does not represent the opinion of Benzinga and has not been edited.
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