Cannabis Startup, Tech, Entrepreneur & Business News – Direct Cannabis Network https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com Direct Cannabis Network provides the latest cannabis business news on tech, entrepreneurship and innovative companies. Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:15:19 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.2 https://i0.wp.com/www.directcannabisnetwork.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/12/cropped-ICON.jpg?fit=32%2C32&ssl=1 Cannabis Startup, Tech, Entrepreneur & Business News – Direct Cannabis Network https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com 32 32 122109914 Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | Product of The Month | OneGro “The Original Inhaler” https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/coffee-cannabis-one-gro/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/coffee-cannabis-one-gro/#respond Wed, 17 Jan 2018 19:04:02 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=14012 Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | The New Year for Cannabis | Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group Well Branded product of the month: OneGro The second segment of episode 14 features the well-branded product of the month, OneGro. What is One Gro? One Gro creates The Original Inhaler, a metered dose inhaler (MDI). Their patent-pending inhaler […]

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Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | The New Year for Cannabis | Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group

Well Branded product of the month: OneGro

The second segment of episode 14 features the well-branded product of the month, OneGro.

What is One Gro?

One Gro creates The Original Inhaler, a metered dose inhaler (MDI). Their patent-pending inhaler is easy to use with less waste than other “spray style” vaporizers.

The Original Inhaler is a metered-dose inhaler (MDI) is a device that delivers a specific amount of medication to the lungs, in the form of a short burst of aerosolized medicine that is usually self-
administered by the patient via inhalation.

Are you interested in the One Gro Original Inhaler? Are you a dispensary or distributor and want to get this product? Contact One Gro at www.originalinhaler.com

Patent Pending MDI
Benefit – You can be sure you are getting a true inhaler that delivers a single dose directly to your lungs. Non-patented imitations or vaporizers
deposit a spray to the back of your throat, which means the cannabis is absorbed via the tissue and you exhale a percentage back into the environment.
Feature – Inhaled directly into the lungs
Benefit – Our unique process creates a molecule size that is easily inhaled and allow the content to be absorbed by the capillaries in the lungs for direct delivery to the bloodstream.
Feature – Very high bioavailability
Benefit – Immediate effect; you do not have to wait to see if you need an additional dose of your desired effect. The effect is felt in less than 5 minutes vs. a pen which can take up to 20 minutes or an edible which can take an hour.
How much does each inhaler contain?
.480 grams / approximately 1⁄2 gram or 100 total puffs

How do I use the inhaler?

• Remove the cap and hold the inhaler upright.
• Shake the inhaler.
• Exhale away from your inhaler.
• Bring the inhaler to your mouth. Purse your lips (like an open kiss) Place the inhaler next to your lips.
• Tilt your head back slightly and start to breathe in slowly. Press the top of the inhaler one time and continue to breathe in until you have taken a full breath.
• Remove the inhaler from your mouth and hold your breath for 10 seconds to allow content to go deeply into your lungs.
• Exhale and enjoy! If you find the inhaler harsh, use a spacer (a hollow, plastic chamber available online) as a buffer between the inhaler and your mouth.

How long does the effect last?

This depends on user tolerance levels and can vary depending on each person’s unique profile.

How is it best stored?

Keep out of extreme temperatures – hot or cold, otherwise any place where you are comfortable so is your inhaler.

What can I do if I cough when using it?

Many people experience a cough when they initially use the inhaler. A cough usually dissipates as you grow accustomed to using it. You can use a “spacer” which is a device that fits between the inhaler and your mouth and is available for purchase online.

How long can I keep the inhaler?

The inhaler has a conservative shelf life of 6 months.

Can I consume too many puffs?

Yes, we recommend no more than 4 puffs per hour and no more than 10 puffs per day.

Hosts: 
Adelia Carrillo, Founder of Direct Cannabis Network
Roni Stetter, Founder of Righteous Relations
Christina Carrillo, Founder of Ohana, Co.
Video and Digital Media:
Stephen Sanderlin

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Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | Jazmin Discusses LA Cannabis and the Working Group https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/coffee-cannabis-jazmin-aguiar/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/coffee-cannabis-jazmin-aguiar/#respond Wed, 17 Jan 2018 18:42:24 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=14005 Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | The New Year for Cannabis | Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group Well Branded product of the month: OneGro On this week of Coffee & Cannabis, Adelia, Roni, and Christina were joined by special guest, Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group. Learn what the cannabis landscape is like in […]

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Coffee & Cannabis Episode 14 | The New Year for Cannabis | Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group

Well Branded product of the month: OneGro

On this week of Coffee & Cannabis, Adelia, Roni, and Christina were joined by special guest, Jazmin Aguiar of the Working Group. Learn what the cannabis landscape is like in Los Angeles and Mexico, and get educated on the launch of the Working Group.

Who is Jazmin Aguiar?

Jazmin Aguiar was born and raised in Los Angeles, Ca to Mexican parents, who instilled an entrepreneur lifestyle from a young age.
She started working at their first family business when she was 5, It was a grocery store named “Jazmin’s Market” which survived both the 1992 Los Angeles riots and 1994 Northridge earthquake.
In 1997 their family businesses expanded to commercial transportation and real estate. The drug war, broken schools systems, and violence forced her parents to relocate to Colorado in 2005. They then decided to expand both companies into the Colorado market as she stayed in LA to run existing companies.
In 2007 she moved to Colorado where she decided to enter the banking industry for 5 years where she received upper management experience in retail baking, state and federal banking compliance, business asset management, and community reinvestment agreements.

In 2012, Jazmin completed culinary arts and nutrition associates.That same year, she began her cannabis career when she discovered “Dispensaries” in Colorado. Growing up in a community where people went to jail, and some even murdered for the sale of marijuana, her MIND WAS BLOWN. She immediately begun educated herself on Colorado cannabis legislation and regulation.

In the beginning of 2013, she co-founded, RouxBlack a creative consulting firm that works with people places and things that want to expand their demographics. Her business partner Ru Johnson and Jazmin focused the launch of the company in three niche markets: Urban music, urban fashion, and minority PACs. In the summer of 2013, they added cannabis in both Spanish and English.  By 2014 adult use market opened in Colorado, which is when she was contracted by Women Grow to help expand the company. This allowed her to help expand the legal cannabis market in Mexico by importing products from Colorado companies Charlotte’s Web, and Concentrate. She even began helping draft a bill to legalize cannabis in Mexico.

During that same time, she also expanded a division of her family-owned business in cannabis transportation and cannabis commercial real estate. At the end of 2014, she got wind of Prop 64 in California and she decided to move back to LA.  During 2015, the traveling roller coaster begins, she split her time between LA, Denver, and Mexico, with conferences in the USA in between.

This led to her helping launch EXPOWEED Mexico and becoming their North American representative in 2016. In 2017 Mexico passes the bill legalizing the consumption of medical cannabis, which is also when she co-founded and produced CannabiSalud.

So what is to come for Jazmin Aguiar?

To kick off the year, she has announced the launch of THE WORKING GROUP. A collective of entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry who come together to support each other in the creation of cannabis companies through relationships and amplification of current law. Jazmin has taken on the role as the CEO of this company. She will also continue to build regulations for the city of Los Angeles, and transition operators into a regulated market.
US and Mexico Launch a cannabis education campaign in Spanish with major networks. Along with her work in Los Angeles, she will still be working directly with Mexico.

On May 18th-19th in Mexico City, they will be hosting the CannabiSalud at Intercontinental and the Expoweed on August 3rd – 5th at the World Trade Center Mexico City.

Hosts: 
Adelia Carrillo, Founder of Direct Cannabis Network
Roni Stetter, Founder of Righteous Relations
Christina Carrillo, Founder of Ohana, Co.
Video and Digital Media:
Stephen Sanderlin

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Entrepreneur of the Week: Kerry Harris of Jekyll+Hyde Group https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/entrepreneur-week-kerry-harris/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/entrepreneur-week-kerry-harris/#respond Tue, 16 Jan 2018 22:46:45 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13995 Each week we highlight entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry for our viewers to learn more about the leading cannabis executives of our time. This week, we highlight Kerry Harris of Jekyll+Hyde Group. Kerry is a serial entrepreneur who has worked with some of the world’s best known and best-loved brands, Kerry is the former President of The […]

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Each week we highlight entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry for our viewers to learn more about the leading cannabis executives of our time.

This week, we highlight Kerry Harris of Jekyll+Hyde Group.

Kerry Harris

Kerry is a serial entrepreneur who has worked with some of the world’s best known and best-loved brands, Kerry is the former President of The Canadian Business Unit of global PR firm Weber Shandwick. A respected brand builder, business strategist, international speaker, writer, visiting professor at Ryerson University and now a cannabis entrepreneur, Kerry bring over 25 years of mainstream business experience to J+H Group.

In our interview with Kerry, we asked a variety of questions to learn more about Jekyll+Hyde Group, what it takes to build a business in the cannabis industry and much more!

First off Kerry, congratulations on being featured as this week’s entrepreneur of the week and for all that you do! Can you please share with our readers your elevator pitch for Jekyll+Hyde Group? 

Kerry Harris: J+H Group is a cannabis-focused business — we have three divisions; our acquisition group which is actively looking for deal flow and soon to close on two major acquisitions, our brand building agency already working with some of the industry leaders and a soon to be unveiled media platform designed to be an engagement platform for the industry.

DCN: What ignited the spark for you to start to launch your business? 

Kerry Harris: The sheer force of the industry and the exciting opportunities for business and personal growth — as a veteran of the mainstream business community looking for a new venture, the cannabis sector offered an unparalleled opportunity to create something with legs, so to speak!

DCN: When you finally decided that you wanted to launch a business in the cannabis industry, what was your experience like when telling your family and friends?

Kerry Harris: They were — there were a few raised eyebrows from some of my more conservative family members but for the most part everyone has been very supportive and I must say intrigued by this new venture.

DCN: How are you helping the cannabis industry in a positive way?

Kerry Harris: Our goal is to work with industry leaders and help position the industry to consumers and other key stakeholders as a credible, disciplined business full of smart, hardworking and innovative professionals

DCN: As we go into 2018, what is one huge accomplishment that you or your team achieved last year that you would like to share with our readers?

Kerry Harris: We signed LOI’s on the first two acquisitions that will form the basis of our company going forward.

DCN: If you could talk to one person from history, who would it be and why?

Kerry Harris: I would want to speak to Nelson Mandela. His ability to stay positive during so many years of imprisonment, continue to push forward his dream, forgive those who wronged him and bring together an entire nation is awe inspiring. I am convinced that he must have moved on a higher plane!

DCN: What creative strategies did you use to execute on minimal cash flow?

Kerry Harris: We work with a passionate and committed investor group who came to us through our networks and connections in the cannabis space. Very early on, we identified our niche in the marketplace, put together a strategy and plan and started to act on it with passion and authenticity. Our investors clearly recognized the business opportunity that we had outlined and came on board based on our collective skills sets and proven abilities to build business and brands.

DCN: What did you give up to get where you are today? What did you have to sacrifice?

Kerry Harris: I gave up lots of evenings and weekends — I’m not sure I sacrificed anything but I did have to make some choices for my business that impacted my friends and family.

DCN: What is the best piece of advice you can give to others looking to launch a company in the cannabis industry?

Kerry Harris: Get deep into it — this is a sector that you cannot dabble in. Jump off the deep end, get connected to key influencers and get educated so that you can really connect with those individuals who matter in the industry.

DCN: What’s the hardest part of founding and running a startup?

Kerry Harris: Finding funding, balancing the need to stay lean and focused on the immediate road ahead while staying firmly ahead of the curve. Knowing when to pivot and doing it quickly.

DCN: Is there anything that surprised you about being an entrepreneur in the cannabis industry?

Kerry Harris: On a positive note — just how open and eager to help, professionals in the sector are. I have met some amazing people who are happy to share knowledge with you, assist with business connections, listen and answer your questions and share their personal stories (good and bad) with you — it’s been eye-opening!

DCN: What would you say are the top three skills needed to be a successful entrepreneur?

Kerry Harris: A thick skin, a passion to be always learning and the ability to quickly pivot after you realize that what you are doing isn’t working!

DCN: Who is your role model, and why?

Kerry Harris: Michelle Obama. She is an inspiration to women and has recognized where she can contribute to the greater good and then pursued those goals in a focused and disciplined manner. She is smart, accomplished and not afraid to take risks.

DCN: Building a business can be very time-consuming, how do you stay balanced?

Kerry Harris: I love to travel and have been “on the road” for the better part of my life. On quiet weekends, you can find me in my kitchen “team cooking” with my husband and friends and family. And, I love to write — I’ve finished one book and am working on another.

DCN: What is a favorite book you would like to recommend to our readers?

Kerry Harris: My favorite book is “A Fine Balance” by Rohinton Mistry., tied with “A Long Walk To Freedom” by Nelson Mandela. Another book that inspired me the most is “The War of Art” by Steven Pressfield.

DCN: Excluding yours, what company or business do you admire the most?

Kerry Harris: Apple — their ability to innovate is amazing. They are constantly surprising me with new products and features and they are a “lovemark” that knows no boundaries. I actually cannot live without my iPad!

DCN: How can we as an industry continue to make a positive difference in society? 

Kerry Harris: Stay innovative, vibrant and disciplined. Grow as a sector, employ smart and visionary people who will contribute to their communities and then give back to those communities that cannabis businesses live and work in.

DCN: Thank you, Kerry, for sharing your story and offering such real and insightful advice! It was so great being able to feature you as this week’s entrepreneur of the week! Is there anything you would like to share with our readers before we let you go?

Kerry Harris: I’m so excited to be working in this space — the opportunity to grow and develop is amazing and I look forward to being just a small part of those efforts helping to shape the sector as it moves closer to the mainstream.

For those looking to learn more about Jekyll+Hyde Group, click here. Find them on Instagram: @jekyllandhydebrandbuilders

Want to be featured? Click here to tell us why you should be an entrepreneur of the week on DCN.

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Outside-In with DCN: Meet Bohempia https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/meet-bohempia/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/meet-bohempia/#respond Fri, 12 Jan 2018 05:36:44 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13986 Welcome to Outside-In with DCN where we interview upcoming startups and businesses in the cannabis industry. Each interview you will get to meet the founders taking a leap into building a business they believe. Gain knowledge of their services, their mission and what makes each of the unique. On this Outside-In, with DCN we spoke […]

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Welcome to Outside-In with DCN where we interview upcoming startups and businesses in the cannabis industry. Each interview you will get to meet the founders taking a leap into building a business they believe. Gain knowledge of their services, their mission and what makes each of the unique.

On this Outside-In, with DCN we spoke with Tomas Rohal, CEO, and Founder, Bohempia.

Tomas Rohal

DCN: Tomas, I was so excited to learn more about Bohempia, to kick this off, can you please share with our readers a little bit more about yourself.

Tomas Rohal: Hello, my name is Tomas Rohal and I am founder and CEO of company Bohempia, based in the Prague Czech Republic. Graduated from Textile Machine Design at Liberec University, but at that time textile industry was in really bad shape so I worked almost 13 yrs for corporations in industrial gases and waste-to-energy industries. But a few years ago I was not very happy with “corporation life” so I decided to work on my own and started Bohempia as cannabis/hemp was my long time life passion.

DCN: Would you like to share anything about your team members?

Tomas Rohal: Our core team is Simona, Margareta, and Jan, they are responsible for retail store and e-shop operation. As well as
Dan who is our wholesale manager and product development.
Klara is responsible for marketing and social media, Tonda and Ondra care for the financials. And then we outsource various activities such as graphic design, PR, fashion design.

DCN: Can you share the backstory of Bohempia?

Tomas Rohal: Hemp fashion was not the direct choice, I wanted to work with hemp. (Rec or Medical MJ was not legal few years ago in the Czech Republic). I used my experience from the previous career and made a scorecard spreadsheet where I evaluated various hemp business opportunities as fashion, food, cosmetics, CBD, construction… and hemp textile was the clear winner for me also with respect to my education background.
Bohempia name is a combo of Bohemia as the old Latin name for the Czech Republic + hemp.

DCN: Why hemp? Can you share with our viewers why hemp was your ideal choice?

Tomas Rohal: Hemp is greatest plant on Earth with multiple uses, there is no other plant you can use for textile, food, medicine, construction, fuel, plastics and many many more. In textile, there are many benefits of hemp over cotton, which is the dirtiest agricultural crop. Not only all the environmental benefits of growing hemp compare to cotton-like the 4x higher yield of fiber per acre, 50% less water, 95% fewer agrochemicals but also all functional features of hemp textile – strongest natural fiber, moisture wicking, thermoregulation, UV adsorption, antimicrobial.

DCN: What have been the challenges launching a company focused on using hemp as the source of the product?

Tomas Rohal: The biggest challenge was to get access to hemp fiber with respect to quality, volume and price. We wanted to use as much as possible local sources. As we are in Europe we didn’t want to source hemp from China because sustainability is very important for us, we didn’t want to ship the fiber or yarn around the globe from China to the Czech Republic. Another big challenge was to secure the textile production supply chain, as we wanted to produce everything locally within the Czech Republic. It was hard work and success.

DCN: Your team searched for over 2 years testing out different hemp qualities, can you share a little background on what that experience was like?

Tomas Rohal: When we started the research we found out that almost all fashion textile hemp came from China and in Europe, you can get only industrial grade hemp fiber which is good only for construction and automotive industry. Sourcing from China has many risks as big minimum order quantities, long lead times, quality, advance payments.

You also meet a lot of cheaters on your way as the hemp/cannabis industry is very attractive now and people want to make quick money. Many products only look like hemp are made from other materials. We spend a lot of time meeting the local textile producers (spinning, weaving, knitting, sewing, washing dyeing shops…) and asking them to make hemp sample for us.

DCN: What makes your product line unique? Can you describe your product line?

Tomas Rohal: Our products are unique as they are made from hemp, made in the Czech Republic and not in Far East Asia. Our sneakers are PETA certified, we offer a full collection of hemp shoes in term of style and colors and not making only one hemp model out of many conventional models. Also, the vulcanized shoe construction with many functional benefits is unique compared to conventional glued sneakers.

Our main product as you already know are hemp sneakers in a couple of styles and colors – slip-on, low & high tops, urban boots. Then we have hemp socks which are great for its moisture wicking and antimicrobial properties and are very good match with shoes. And we have a collection of basic t-shirts.

DCN: Do you make shoes for men and women?

Tomas Rohal: Yes, we make unisex shoes for both men and women, but we also produced few models for girls only like ballerina and sneakers with pink outsole for example.

DCN: Did you or the team have any cons for launching a cannabis product?

Tomas Rohal: Fortunately, we didn’t face any cons as our products are made from legal hemp and we didn’t have to deal with “marijuana-specific” problems. We only have to deal with above-mentioned issues with sourcing the fiber and finding the production supply chain.

DCN: Is there any insight into the future of Bohempia? Any new products you may look at developing?

Tomas Rohal: For 2018 we are going the broaden the hemp textile upper color selection for our sneakers and preparing barefoot line for spring. A new product this year will be underwear.

DCN: Can you ship internationally?

Tomas Rohal: Yes, we can ship internationally.Currently, we sell internationally on Indiegogo platform and work on programming brand new global e-shop with improvements in global shipping and payment methods. Currently, people can buy our products not only in the Czech Republic but also in stores in Germany, Finland, Italy, Belgium, Slovakia, France, Austria and New Zealand.

DCN: We noticed you had a Kickstarter campaign, how was the experience?

Tomas Rohal: Kickstarter was a great experience and we learned a lot especially on social media marketing. It was like 3 months of really hard teamwork before we launched the campaign, working with influencers to promote our sneakers, setting the properly targeted Facebook campaigns etc. This was a really big learning lesson for us in a positive way. The Kickstarter project is actually a really complex task and also cost a lot of money not only to prepare but also to run it during the 30 days of the campaign and there is no space for mistakes.

DCN: You raised 248% more than you were asking for, how did that feel?

Tomas Rohal: We felt happiness and satisfaction for our hard work. Also, we felt the responsibility to deliver the product to backers.

DCN: What will the funds be spent on?

Tomas Rohal: The funds will be spent on the production of the shoes for the backers, of course, and then dyeing the new fabric colors as it requires quite a big piece of fabric to dye, improvements of the production tooling and finally the development of new shoes and styles.

DCN: As we all start fresh for the new year, what is the best piece of advice you would like to share with your fellow entrepreneurs?

Tomas Rohal: Spend time on development of the ideas before you turn them into a product or service, discuss it with your friends to get the feedback, pick the right people for the team. Learn, learn and keep learning new things within your business. And last but not least, prepare well for your financial plan.

DCN: Some readers may not realize how important hemp is, what is one thing that you would like to share with our readers about hemp that they may not know?

Tomas Rohal: One new thing we learned about hemp is the unbelievable antimicrobial and antifungal properties of hemp fabrics to kill a wide range of bacteria and other bugs including staphylococcus, e-Coli, pneumonia, fecal and many more.

DCN: Tomas, thank you for sharing with us more about Bohempia and your journey. 

Follow Bohempia: 

Website- www.bohempia.eu
Instagram- www.instagram.com/bohempia_prague/
Facebook- www.facebook.com/BohempiaINTL/

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here.

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Growers Spotlight: Sustainability with GroGeo LLC https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/sustainability-grogeo-llc/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/sustainability-grogeo-llc/#respond Fri, 12 Jan 2018 04:45:13 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13980 Hunter Wilson of Growers Network interviews Anthony Mollins of GroGeo about how forethought and building design can lead to highly sustainable, cost-saving growing practices. Growing Style Subterranean greenhouse? Explain to me! The facility itself is built into the ground, and if there wasn’t a roof on it, you’d fall into a 12-foot hole.The walls and […]

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Hunter Wilson of Growers Network interviews Anthony Mollins of GroGeo about how forethought and building design can lead to highly sustainable, cost-saving growing practices.

Growing Style

Subterranean greenhouse? Explain to me!

The facility itself is built into the ground, and if there wasn’t a roof on it, you’d fall into a 12-foot hole.The walls and floor are concrete with a glass roof, which pitches towards the south. Being mostly underground helps to maintain a consistent temperature in the grow space.

The idea itself comes from permaculture. There’s a structure called a “Walipini” that is essentially a subterranean greenhouse. We had some issues with airflow at first, so we started working on version two, which is what we’re currently growing in.

Tell me about the plants

We run a perpetual harvest system, and we harvest about 250 plants a week. In total, we have around 50 different strains. We hand water our plants with teas that we brew on-site. We even grow the plants that we use in the teas. We’re growing aloe, focaccia, comfrey, marigolds, and any other plants we can get our hands on.

What media and equipment are you using?

We currently grow in organic soil and use biodegradable plugs for our clones. The plugs eventually go into the compost pile. Because we’re in a subterranean greenhouse, we do need to use supplemental lighting and light deprivation depending on the time of year.

What automation and environmental controls are you using?

Most of our environmental controls are automatic or always-on. Our facility is designed with geothermal ventilation such that fans are constantly drawing air through the ground, which stays at a consistent temperature of about 60 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition to the geothermal fans, we have a bunch of fans that circulate air throughout the facility.

What pest issues have you had?

Back when we were starting out, we accidentally bought some plants from some pretty horrible growers. The plants were covered with root aphids. We battled the root aphids for over a year, and eventually, we decided the only way to get rid of the root aphids was to flush them out. We shut the whole greenhouse down, and it got up to 160 Fahrenheit for seven days, cooking the root aphids. We didn’t have that problem anymore after that.

Nowadays, we mostly just face your standard fare of pests. If we run into issues, we quarantine the plant and then use biopesticides such as predatory insects and teas to resolve the problem.

Sustainability

How does water management work for you?

The plants use up approximately 90-95% of the water we give them. Our “secret” is that we keep the environment nice and humid so that the plants don’t need that much water in the first place. Right now, we’re in the process of tweaking our VPD with the goal of higher humidity and higher temperature. Our goal for our VPD is 90 degrees and 70% RH with supplemental CO2.

How do you utilize CO2 more efficiently?

Our facility was designed so that the CO2 has nowhere to go. The whole facility is solid concrete, and you have to take the stairs down or an elevator to reach the base level of the facility. The CO2 is kept at around 800-1200 ppm, so we’re well within safety standards for humans.

What does the electric bill look like?

When we built the facility, we considered setting up renewable forms of electricity generation. Our grow happens to be in a very windy area, which would be perfect for windmills. However, the cost would have ended up being a bit too high for our needs. Currently, we only run on a 200 Amp breaker, and we could probably survive on a 40 Amp breaker in the summer.

We’re getting charged about $2,200 a month in our electric bill for a 12,000 square foot grow. For reference, I rented my house in Tahoe to some growers, and they have a much higher electric bill for a smaller grow.

What was the cost of building a subterranean greenhouse?

It was actually very competitive pricing; it was almost comparable to building a commercial greenhouse. In my experience, Nexus greenhouses cost around $100 per square foot. Our subterranean greenhouse actually turned out to be around $80 per square foot. For us, digging a big hole and pouring concrete into it was cheaper than building an above-ground structure.

If somebody wants to grow sustainably like you, where should they go for more information?

I highly recommend any grower who is interested in our practices start reading up about permaculture. Permaculture is the core growing philosophy guiding our sustainable growing practices.

This article has been paraphrased with permission from Growers Network.

Growers Network

Want to read more? Head on over to Growers Network to read the full article.

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here.

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California to Lead in 2018 With Recreational Cannabis https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/california-recreational-cannabis/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/california-recreational-cannabis/#respond Fri, 12 Jan 2018 04:33:34 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13967 California has always been a leader; people across the world often look to the west coast as a vision for the future, a catalyst for change, progression, and acceptance. At the forefront of progressivism, California takes the lead in the U.S. in areas of climate protection, civil liberties, and electing more diverse officials into office. […]

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California has always been a leader; people across the world often look to the west coast as a vision for the future, a catalyst for change, progression, and acceptance. At the forefront of progressivism, California takes the lead in the U.S. in areas of climate protection, civil liberties, and electing more diverse officials into office. The decriminalization of marijuana is now included on that list of progressive policy change.

On January 1st, California was positioned as a new leader in defining and legitimizing legal weed culture in the United States. If California does things right, it could really use this new platform to influence change throughout the country and become established as a global leader in the recreational marijuana industry. Here are some ways that California is positioned to disrupt the industry in 2018.

Opportunity for Better Laws & Regulations

2018 is going to be a historic year for recreational marijuana, but there’s still much work left to do in terms of policy. In fact, the first six months might be more of a transition period given the size of the market and that most cities and counties are still scrambling to establish regulations. Most of the state didn’t go live with recreational sales on January 1st. Los Angeles, for example, only began to accept applications for dispensaries on January 3rd and in effect, dispensaries themselves will not receive licenses for weeks. Availability will depend upon how a local government has treated marijuana for the past decade or more, so if your hometown never saw the sale of medical marijuana, you’re not likely to see recreational marijuana soon.

Although lawmakers have been slow moving on creating recreational regulations, perhaps that means there is still time for cannabis business owners to get involved. If ever you find an issue with a regulation your local lawmaker wants to pass, pick up the phone and call their office or attend a council meeting. It is important to lend your voice as a business owner, to tell lawmakers that you support regulation of the industry and what you feel would make it better. As a cannabis business owner, it is important to remain engaged and it will be only through collaborative effort that a better cannabis industry will grow. Click here to view who your local lawmakers are.

Global Brands

Expect to see a rise of companies looking to service the marijuana industry, especially in the tech sector, where people are reimagining how business is done. In today’s retail market, consumers expect convenience, such as online shopping and on-demand delivery. With a growing customer base, businesses need customer relationship management systems and marketing automation platforms to manage books, promotions, or loyalty programs.

Keep an eye out for ancillary businesses targeting the industry by developing new marketing and sales tools, advanced home grow systems, research & data platforms, apps and more. With startup hubs in San Francisco, Silicon Valley, Los Angeles, and San Diego, there’s a lot of possibility for growth in the industry with ample opportunity to become the next “Uber” for weed. Pay attention to the fast-growing cannabis economy and consider taking stock. With a rising customer base and consistent sales growth, marijuana stocks will certainly have investors seeing green. A few California-based companies to check out include Botana (LA), a data analytics platform helping cannabis growers become more efficient and profitable; EventHi (San Diego), an event management ticketing platform for cannabis events; and Loto Labs (San Francisco), who has built the first Smart Vape powered by Induction called the Loto Lux.

Shifting Attitudes & Growing Support

It is clear there has been a shift in the way the American public views marijuana, and according to a Gallup poll released in October 2017, nearly two-thirds of American adults believe marijuana use should be legal. Nevertheless, recreational cannabis remains federally illegal, making some aspects of normal business fairly challenging with disadvantageous tax laws and little to no access to basic banking services. As the public’s support continues to grow, perhaps mounting pressure will build on Congress to ultimately change its Class I schedule classification of it.

Other numbers that show how recreational legalization has benefitted society comes from Colorado. More than three years after Colorado legalized marijuana, a recent federal survey has found that teens are now actually smoking less, taking the centennial state below the national average. In fact, the number of 18-to-25-year-olds using alcohol on a monthly basis fell by four percentage points between 2014-2015 and 2015-2016. This is an age group with the highest proclivity to use cannabis, thus proposing a number of young adults are choosing to smoke marijuana instead of drinking now that the option is available to them.

Studies like this showcase the problem with theories which argue making marijuana use legal for adults will result in more young adult use. All in all, it suggests that tighter regulations actually help keep cannabis away from kids. This study and more adds to a growing list of evidence showing that marijuana availability can reduce alcohol consumption, and be considering what public health experts know about the harmfulness of marijuana compared to booze, this should be considered a big public health win.

News like this coming from Colorado and Washington is overwhelmingly positive and serves as an indicator that the economy and society shall move in a forward direction post-legalization for California. The world abroad will be looking closely at what’s happening in the states to learn lessons that can be applied to their own situations. In short, California is positioned to help the world improve by leading by example.

Closing Thoughts

On that note, Jeff Sessions jolted those in the legal marijuana industry last week by announcing his ban of the Cole Memo (you can read it here). His disdain for marijuana use is well-known, but what will happen next is foggy, to say the least. It will also depend on the actions of other federal lawmakers. If this isn’t as good a time as any to become politically involved – it’s now. The country is overwhelmingly in support of legal marijuana. It is time for members of Congress to work to change the laws on the books. Click here to view who your local lawmakers are, and we encourage you to email or call to say that you oppose Sessions’ rescission of the Cole Memo.

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here.

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Kimberly Simms Discusses Business, Regulation and California Cannabis https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/dcn-talks-kimberly-simms/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/dcn-talks-kimberly-simms/#respond Wed, 10 Jan 2018 15:52:56 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13971 This month on DCN Talks, Adelia sat down with Kimberly Simms of The Law Offices of Kimberly Simms to learn how Kimberly has been helping a business reach compliance and regulation standards, and how she got her start in the cannabis industry. Who is Kimberly Simms? Kimberly R. Simms earned her law degree from Thomas […]

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This month on DCN Talks, Adelia sat down with Kimberly Simms of The Law Offices of Kimberly Simms to learn how Kimberly has been helping a business reach compliance and regulation standards, and how she got her start in the cannabis industry.

Who is Kimberly Simms?

Kimberly R. Simms earned her law degree from Thomas Jefferson School of Law and became a member of the California State Bar in 2009. Kimberly has dedicated her entire legal career to the cannabis industry. She started her law practice immediately after law school with a focus on the legal and regulatory needs of the medical marijuana industry. In her law practice, she has negotiated with government officials to craft reasonable and effective regulations that allow for safe access, handled complex land use and zoning matters, and advised hundreds of cannabis entrepreneurs to develop their cannabis business strategy and structure.

Kimberly is recognized as a leading expert in this emerging area of law. She has taught courses and lead seminars which focus on how to comply with the ever-changing legal and regulatory requirements of the cannabis industry. She is considered a trusted source by the media and has been interviewed by NPR, CNN, and many local media outlets. Kimberly is a founding Board Member of the San Diego Cannabis Industry Association, San Diego’s leading cannabis chamber of commerce and political advocacy organization. Kimberly is also proud to serve as the founding and acting Chapter Chair for San Diego Women Grow.

Kimberly currently serves on the Retail & Delivery Committee of the California Cannabis Industry Association and is working hand in hand with other cannabis industry leaders to navigate the implementation of the Medical and Adult Use of Cannabis Regulation & Safety Act.

Kimberly maintains the following memberships: California NORML, American’s For Safe Access, National Cannabis Industry Association, California Cannabis Industry Association, Women Grow, the National Cannabis Bar Association and San Diego Leadership Alliance.

To learn more about Kimberly R Simms, visit www.simmslaw.com.

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here. 

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Loyalty Marketing Tech Platform, SpringBig CEO Discusses $3.2M Round https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/springbig-ceo-discusses-round/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/springbig-ceo-discusses-round/#respond Fri, 05 Jan 2018 07:27:22 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13950 Florida-based loyalty marketing technology platform, SpringBig, closed a $3.2M round of funding. This round was led by Green Acre Capital and HALLEY Venture Partners, along with participation from members of The Arcview Group, and other strategic investors. To date, SpringBig has raised a total of $6.3M. SpringBig was founded in 2012, by Jeffrey Harris. The companies […]

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Florida-based loyalty marketing technology platform, SpringBig, closed a $3.2M round of funding. This round was led by Green Acre Capital and HALLEY Venture Partners, along with participation from members of The Arcview Group, and other strategic investors. To date, SpringBig has raised a total of $6.3M.

SpringBig was founded in 2012, by Jeffrey Harris. The companies main mission is to help merchants keep their customers connected and engaged while allowing them to track their inevitable success and ROI in real-time.

We got a chance to chat with Jeffrey to discuss this current round of funding, fundraising tips and SpringBig’s plans for 2018.

Jeffrey, thank you for joining us today, can you please share with our readers a little bit about yourself? 

Jeffrey Harris: I founded a Loyalty Marketing Company (Inte Q) about 20 years ago focused on developing and manage data-driven programs for large retail and financial services firms. I am not active in that business but still am the majority shareholder.

Can you share the backstory of SpringBig?

Jeffrey Harris: I launched SpringBig to provide big business marketing tools to small businesses. About a year ago we pivoted to the Cannabis industry because we felt that we could make a real difference and saw a great opportunity in the vertical.

What is the elevator pitch for SpringBig?

Jeffrey Harris: Full featured Loyalty Marketing and Digital Communications software platform for Cannabis Retailers. Built to support all of the Loyalty Program and Digital Communications needs a dispensary/retailer might need yet easy to use and navigate.

How much were you initially trying to raise? 

Jeffrey Harris: Initially it was set to raise $2.25M. We were so oversubscribed that we decided to accept a bit more which led us to the $3.2M.

Any insight into how long your due diligence process was with the lead investor, Green Acre Capital, and Halley Venture Partners?

Jeffrey Harris: The due diligence process in total was about 2 months.

What will the funds be used for?

SpringBig will use the capital to expand its workforce with new hires in product management, technology development, analytics, sales, support, and finance, which would accelerate our growth.

Can you please share a few helpful tips and advice to our entrepreneur audience who will be raising capital this year?

Jeffrey Harris: Make it your full-time job, it requires a lot of time and attention. Network like crazy to get to the investors that will be a good fit for you and your business.

Earlier in 2017, you pitched at Arcview and won the pitch competition, how was that experience?

Jeffrey Harris: We did. We started out being one of a 100 to try and qualify for the event and made it to the top 9. I guess the audience felt that we did a great job which was very humbling for us.

What other plans does SpringBig have for 2018?

Jeffrey Harris: In addition to continuing our growth in the dispensary/retail side of the business we are looking at other areas of the distribution chain to see where we can add value and drive additional revenue.

Where are your services available?

Nationwide and in Canada

Since you offer services in California, can you share any insight into how you have prepared for legalization?

Jeffrey Harris: The California market will be a huge market so we have dedicated a good amount of resources to attack the market. We actually will be opening a sales office in Southern California very soon.

What would you say makes SpringBig different than your competition?

Jeffrey Harris: We focus on what we know and what we have been doing for 20 years. Different from everyone else in this market, we have brought our expertise in Loyalty and digital communication with us to the Cannabis industry. No one other than Springbig can make that claim. We also have a very dispensary friendly operating model. No contracts, no minimums, you simply pay for what the SpringBig services that you use.

As we all start fresh for the new year, what is the best piece of advice you would like to share with your fellow entrepreneurs?

Jeffrey Harris: Focus on what you do very well and stay dedicated to that, it will pay dividends for you down the road.

To learn more about SpringBig, visit www.springbig.com.

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here.

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Grow Op Overview: Golden Leaf Holdings https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/golden-leaf-holdings/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/golden-leaf-holdings/#respond Fri, 05 Jan 2018 05:56:33 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13946 In this Grow Operation Overview, Hunter Wilson of Growers Network interviews Elad Spiegel (pronounced “A-Lod”), Director of Cultivation for Golden Leaf Holdings in Portland, Oregon about his cultivation methods, equipment, and philosophy. The Operation Indoor, Outdoor, or Greenhouse, and why? It really depends on where you’re growing and what products you’re aiming to produce: Where […]

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In this Grow Operation Overview, Hunter Wilson of Growers Network interviews Elad Spiegel (pronounced “A-Lod”), Director of Cultivation for Golden Leaf Holdings in Portland, Oregon about his cultivation methods, equipment, and philosophy.

The Operation

Indoor, Outdoor, or Greenhouse, and why?

It really depends on where you’re growing and what products you’re aiming to produce:

  • Where cultivation needs to take place.
    • If you’re in an area with limited land, indoor may be necessary.
  • The kind of products you are producing.
    • If you’re making oil, outdoors and cheap makes sense.
    • If you’re growing for flower, then you’ll probably want indoors or a greenhouse.
  • The environment you’re growing in.
    • Ideal growing climates mean that greenhouses are your best option.
    • Challenging environments make an indoor grow may be the better option.

If you had a lot to spend on a grow, what would you buy, and why?

I would say that investment in automation is key because the biggest expense in cultivation is labor. People should be used for work that is very sensitive or requires high-level judgment and decision-making.

Do you have any favorite strains you like to grow?

I stick with what is called the “old-school” strains. These are strains that have special attributes which both consumers and growers find attractive. These strains are easy to sell.

As a grower, you should always have a good selection of two or three strains for cannabinoid levels, and terpenes. Avoid too many different strains, as you can spread yourself too thin.

Tell me about your environmental controls and automation.

Northern Oregon’s rainy season is long; heating and supplemental lighting are crucial. DryGair systems have been awesome because we don’t have to invest in 3 separate systems. Instead, we can invest in one system and make it a focal point in our production.

What is your preferred methodology for handling pests?

Russet mites and broad mites in Oregon have proven to be very challenging. They are difficult to spot when their numbers are small. You can treat the infestations with pesticides, but you sacrifice quality and money by doing so. I maintain a preventative protocol using:

  • Various essential oils
  • Neem oil

These natural, organic pesticides are quite helpful for prevention without sacrificing quality.

What’s your preferred approach to preventing fungal pathogenesis?

While fungicides work to a limited extent, you greatly sacrifice quality. As a result, fungicide use is unsustainable, because you will not be able to sell your product.

Therefore, the best strategy is prevention via environmental control. You need to keep the crop dry. Your structure should divert condensation away from the plants, and your environmental controls should avoid the dewpoint. I personally recommend DryGair’s products as very effective solutions for the price.

Philosophy

What are some of the biggest challenges you’ve faced?

One of the biggest challenges I faced was in my first year of growing back in Israel. I was growing AK-47s and Purple Kushes and thought I was hot stuff. Two weeks later, 90% of the plants had to go to the garbage because botrytis had taken over. My humidity was not under control.

Most recently, Marion County of Oregon opted out of recreational cannabis in the last round of elections. That meant we couldn’t expand our operation how we originally planned.

What are some of your biggest triumphs?

My biggest triumphs relate to people. At the end of the day, it’s all about the people. You could have the best technology in the world, but if you don’t have a good team to support that, then you don’t have much.

What differences have you seen between Israel and Oregon cannabis cultivation?

Regulations were virtually nonexistent in Israel while I was there. Israeli authorities allowed producers to produce as much medical cannabis as they could with basically no guidelines. They eventually regulated the price of the medicine for the patient. The result of this legislation meant that small, niche growing wasn’t possible. Growers needed to produce in bulk.

In contrast, Oregon’s recreational program was really thought through beforehand. There were some glitches and difficulties at first, but the smart people in the OLCC did a great job putting together a modular program that could be upgraded relatively quickly. On the other hand, the scale of production is extremely limited. Operations are limited to a small family farm. The market is limited to expansion.

What advice would you have for a new grower?

Talk less, listen more. It’s not about your ego, it’s about the plants. It’s not about your ideal garden, it’s about building good systems. Surround yourself with a good team of professionals that you can trust and learn from. Remember, the cannabis market didn’t invent agriculture. A good farmer can be easily trained to grow cannabis.

This article has been paraphrased with permission from Growers Network.

Growers Network

Want to read more? Head on over to Growers Network to read the full article.

Want to stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here. 

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Outside-In with DCN: Meet Rebel Coast Winery https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/meet-rebel-coast-winery/ https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/meet-rebel-coast-winery/#respond Wed, 03 Jan 2018 23:35:33 +0000 https://www.directcannabisnetwork.com/?p=13935 Welcome to Outside-In with DCN where we interview upcoming startups and businesses in the cannabis industry. Each interview you will get to meet the founders taking a leap into building a business they believe. Gain knowledge of their services, their mission and what makes each of the unique. On this Outside-In, with DCN we spoke […]

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Welcome to Outside-In with DCN where we interview upcoming startups and businesses in the cannabis industry. Each interview you will get to meet the founders taking a leap into building a business they believe. Gain knowledge of their services, their mission and what makes each of the unique.

On this Outside-In, with DCN we spoke with Founders of Rebel Coast Winery, Alex Howe.

Rebel Coast Winery

DCN: Alex, we are excited for our readers to learn more about Rebel Coast Winery, can you please share with our readers a little bit more about yourself and your business partner, Chip?

Alex Howe: I bring more than 14 years of experience working in corporate strategy and marketing/communications for cannabis, consumer, technology, Fortune 50 and sports and entertainment companies. I manage a consulting firm (Powerplant Strategies) that exclusively works with cannabis companies around the country. My experience in the cannabis space is a great match with my co-founder Chip Forsythe who has started three wineries and is also a marketing professional.

DCN: Can you share the backstory of Rebel Coast Winery and how the idea came to incorporate cannabis?

Alex Howe: Yes, so the backstory, no joke this concept has been passed down from winemaker to winemaker since the pioneers got to California.

Almost every winemaker worth his salt has indulged in marijuana. The two love the same climates, think Humbolt vs. Napa. You can literally throw a couple marijuana seeds into a vineyard that already has trellises and irrigation. Oh, and both plants harvest around the same time in September-October.

Traditionally, when the grapes arrive at the winery they are immediately removed from their stems and pressed. After the juice is transferred to a tank, fermentation begins. Meanwhile, the cannabis crop is harvested, trimmed and dried. To activate the THC cannabinoids, the flower is heated in ovens, and the marijuana is added to the partially-fermented white wine. Five days later we strain out the flower-like tea leaves, age the wine for 8-12 months, and boom,– marijuana-infused wine. Our winemaker at Rebel Coast was taught this as an apprentice back in 2004. It is super simple and SUPER ILLEGAL! Like, SUPER illegal.

If we did it that way we would lose the whole winery and then do jail time. No Bueno. But we did not give up and knew there was a way to make this work, (you have to remember that we really like marijuana, the taste of wine, and staying out of jail).

That was when the idea came to fruition.

DCN: So there is no alcohol in the wine, can you give some insight into how this works?

Alex Howe: Yes, legally no one can have alcohol and THC in the same product. However, what we quickly found it, turns out it’s way harder than it sounds. See, there are no books or classes to take because no one has ever done it before. So, long story short, after a ton, I mean a ton of trial and error and we can proudly say we created the world’s first Marijuana-infused Sauvignon Blanc that we can legally sell if you live in CA… and you are over 21… and it’s past January 1st, 2018.

Going through the actual process, we ferment the grapes normally, like in traditional wine, them remove the alcohol using reverse osmosis and infuse it with liquid soluble THC. There’s a bit more to the process but it is proprietary and our “secret sauce.”

DCN: Originally, when you first thought of the idea, were you considering keeping the alcohol portion in the wine with the cannabis? If so, what caused you to pivot?

Alex Howe: That was the original intention but legally wasn’t an option.

DCN: Did you ever envision you or Rebel Coast Winery being apart of the cannabis industry?

Alex Howe: We always had an inkling there would be a crossover product as there is so much in common between both industries.

DCN: Did you or the team have any cons to launching a cannabis product?

Alex Howe: Absolutely not.

DCN: What has been the hardest thing about launching a cannabis product?

Alex Howe: Navigating the state and local ordinances around cannabis, particularly as they change.

DCN: What challenges have you faced as a company with the new regulations?

Alex Howe: Obtaining licenses, ensuring our labeling is up to code.

DCN: What are you looking forward to as California moves to recreational?

Alex Howe: A larger market and greater understanding of the industry for the country as a whole. California has always led the rest of the U.S. with trends.

DCN: What do you envision for Rebel Coast Winery and your new product for 2018?

Alex Howe: We are focused on growing this flagship product throughout the Golden State. We will be launching new varietals and a CBD-infused line later in the year.

DCN: As we all start fresh for the new year, what is the best piece of advice you would like to share with your fellow entrepreneurs?

Alex Howe: The time is now!

DCN: Thank you for sharing with us more about Rebel Coast Winery, we look forward to seeing the growth of the company in 2018 before we let you go, is there anything else you would like to share with the DCN audience?

Alex Howe: Hangovers suck!

Follow Rebel Coast Winery: 

Website- www.definitelynotrebelcoastwinery.com
Social Media- Instagram: @rebelcoastwinery
Want to get pre-order Rebel Coast Winery? https://definitelynotrebelcoastwinery.com/product/marijuana-infused-wine/

To stay updated on the latest tech, entrepreneurs and innovative companies in the cannabis industry, click here.

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