How to Pick Your Perfect Cannabis Vaporizer

Versatile Firefly vaporizers work with flower or concentrates.

Versatile Firefly vaporizers work with flower or concentrates.

As cannabis moves into the mainstream, more people are trying it for the first time than ever before, and most of these new users don’t want to smoke. Whether it’s because of the smell that smoke leaves on your hands or clothing, worries about damage to the lungs, or the inability to roll a joint, the new cannabis consumer is more interested in the convenience of vapor pens and the health benefits of vaporizers.

Generally considered healthier than smoking (studies have proven it), vaporizers don’t actually combust the plant material, instead the cannabinoids are vaporized at a range of temperatures. A great alternative to smoking for medical users looking for healthy delivery methods, vaporizers also provide smooth flavor that lets you taste more of the unique terpenes within your weed.

Your bud budget will also go further when using a vaporizer, since the process is more efficient, meaning that less weed can be used to give you relief. After vaping, the plant matter can still be used to create edibles, meaning you can get the most value for your money by using this “already vaped bud.”

Pax Era Vaporizers have proven popular with KindPeoples' customers.

Pax Era Vaporizers have proven popular with KindPeoples' customers.

Looking to purchase a vaporizer seems like an easy task but believe us, it can be surprisingly difficult!

Ten years ago there were only a couple options available for vaporizing, either a no-name box vaporizer that sat on your table or a Volcano, which costs a pretty penny. While Volcanoes are still awesome vaporizers, there’s now a huge variety to pick from, since the market has rapidly expanded, with more portable options available than ever before.

The good news is that device quality has skyrocketed in the past couple years, but there’s now over 100 brands of vaporizers to choose from! That means that you have more options when purchasing a vaporizer than you do a computer or car.

If you've shopped around for a vaporizer recently you know it can feel like you need a PhD in vaping just to pick one, and the amount of internet research necessary to investigate every model can take up too much time.

Thankfully we found a flowchart from our friends at Vaporizers Direct which makes it much easier to pick the perfect vaporizer. After testing almost every vaporizer available right now, these folks designed a guide to make it easier for you.

Simply start at the top and answer a few questions in order to land on the perfect vaporizer for your needs and budget.

There are just a few things we should clarify before you get going:

  • "Vaping through glass" means using a bubbler or bong on top of your vaporizer which filters your vapor and allows you to get bigger hits. If you're new to vaporizing don't worry about this, start with something easier. If you're an experienced vaporizer user it's definitely worth trying.
  • While all of these vaporizers can handle herb, not all of them can handle concentrates (oil). If you want to vape your oil make sure you pick one that can handle them. It's one of the questions as you go down on the desktop and portable side.
  • Consider how much you're willing to spend as you navigate the flowchart. Vaporizers start at around the $100-200 range and can go as high as $800 for the top-of-the-line brands.  You generally get what you pay for but there are a few low cost vaporizers available that work great.

That's pretty much it, everything else should be pretty self-explanatory. If you have any other questions just let us know in the comments.

Have fun picking your perfect vaporizer!
 

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Use Cannabis Chocolate to Create Precisely-Dosed Valentine’s Treats

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The enduring popularity of edibles that combine cannabis with chocolate goes beyond just great taste. Before learning how to use cannabis chocolate to create a delightful Valentine's dessert, let's learn a bit about why chocolate became associated with romance, and then how cannabis creates a wonderful synergy with cacao as well as generating loving feelings.

Historically associated with Valentine’s Day, giving a box of chocolate to your crush became a social trend back in the 1840s, when Richard Cadbury designed the first heart-shaped boxes. Adorned with cupids and flowers, the gift boxes were an instant hit with Victorian ladies, forming the basis for modern-day Valentine’s customs.

Even before Cadbury’s marketing breakthrough, the raw cacao beans that chocolate is made from were reputed to have aphrodisiac effects all the way back to the Aztecs, with emperor Montezuma extolling their benefits. Explained scientifically, cacao contains anandamide, the so-called “bliss chemical,” as well as tryptophan, which boosts serotonin, and phenylethylamine, a stimulant. Combined and eaten, these components of chocolate mimic the chemicals naturally released by your brain when you feel love towards someone.

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Why does chocolate work so well with cannabis? Well, anandamide has been called the body’s “natural cannabis,” since it also binds to cannabinoid receptors and affects mood, appetite, pain relief and memory. It seems as if THC and CBD boost the activity of anandamide and help it impact the body more dramatically. There’s a chemical synergy that occurs when the two substances are eaten together, making cannabis and chocolate into besties that go everywhere together.

On a practical level, there’s many advantages for cannabis-infused chocolate as far as product design. It’s shelf-stable and freezes well, lasting a long time if it’s kept away from heat or direct sunlight that would cause it to melt. Easily molded into incremental 10-milligram doses of THC, chocolate makes proper dosing easy for new users of edibles. Also, chocolate is the easiest product to homogenize, blending consistent amounts of THC throughout the bar, so that you can rest assured that your edible is dosed according to the label.

Using cannabis chocolate as an ingredient for homemade desserts makes it easy to calculate the THC content. Check out the recipe below for instructions on how to melt cannabis chocolate into frosting for Double Chocolate Cannabis Cupcakes.

Increase your bliss with cannabis chocolate this Valentine’s Day, and enjoy aphrodisiac effects from both substances, as well as benefits for your mood and appetite! KindPeoples is pleased to stock amazing cannabis-infused chocolate from Satori, Kiva Confections, and Terra Bites. Start with just a 10-milligram square, or a few Terra Bites, and go low and slow while you’re learning how cannabis edibles make you feel.

Set a romantic mood with cannabis chocolate cupcakes plus some relaxing cannabis-infused topical massage oil and you’ll have a sensual, satisfying Valentine’s Day!

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Double Chocolate Cannabis Cupcakes

Use one entire dark chocolate Kiva bar to melt into the frosting for these cupcakes. California Kiva bars contain 100 milligrams of THC, so divided among 20 cupcakes, that’s a dose of about 5 mg per cupcake, allowing most people to enjoy more than one! You’ll yield about 2 ½ cups of frosting, so each cupcake should get about two tablespoons of frosting on top. Be as precise as you can when frosting the cupcakes so that each one gets an equal amount of THC.

Chocolate Cupcakes

Yield: 20 cupcakes

You can use a box mix if desired, or bake from scratch with this simple recipe. The cupcakes aren't infused with cannabis, just the frosting!

Ingredients:

  • 1 ½ cups all-purpose flour
  • ⅔ cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • ½ tsp salt
  • 1 ½ cup granulated sugar
  • ½ cup butter, softened
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • 1 cup milk

Heat the oven to 350ºF. Line your muffin tin with cupcake liners.

First, combine the dry ingredients in a large bowl. Mix the flour, cocoa, baking powder, salt, and sugar thoroughly. In the bowl of an electric mixer, beat the butter and sugar together until fluffy, then add the eggs one at a time, mixing to combine with the vanilla. While the mixer is running on low speed, slowly add a little of the dry mixture, followed by a little bit of the milk. Alternate between the dry mix and the milk until the batter is completely combined. Measure ¼ cup of the batter into each muffin cup.

Bake cupcakes in oven on middle rack for 15 - 20 minutes. Check for doneness by inserting a toothpick into the center of a cake, it should come out clean when the cakes are done. Cool on a wire rack before frosting.

Cannabis Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Yield: 2 1/2 cups

Ingredients:

Chop the Kiva Bar finely, and add it to the chocolate chips. Melt the chocolate together in a metal bowl fitted onto the top of a double boiler over low heat, stirring often, until the chocolate is smooth and shiny.

Use an electric mixer to beat the butter for 2 - 3 minutes, until it’s fluffy. Slowly add the powdered sugar to the mixer on low speed. When the sugar has been incorporated, add the vanilla. Slowly drizzle in the melted cannabis chocolate and mix for a few minutes until completely combined.

Use immediately or store the frosting in the fridge for 2 - 3 days. Allow to come to room temperature before using it to frost cupcakes.

California's Cannabis Edibles Get A Makeover

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You’ll notice that California’s cannabis edibles changed considerably after the New Year, with many new products being designed for consumers desiring a lower dose of THC. As part of the end of cannabis prohibition brought about by the Adult Use of Marijuana Act, regulations created by the Bureau of Cannabis Control and the Department of Public Health impact edibles manufacturers most dramatically. These changes include limitations on THC content, strict requirements for child-resistant packaging, higher standards for lab-testing, storage and ingredients, all intended to protect the health and safety of consumers.

Requiring producers to quickly adapt, these regulations necessitated a complete redesign of product lines for some brands, while others were able to make simple modifications to become compliant. All edibles must clearly indicate how much is a 10-milligram dose of THC through segmenting, marking or scoring the item, with a maximum limit for 100 milligrams for Adult-Use products.

Medical patients retain their access to edibles with higher doses, including capsules and tinctures which are allowed to contain 1000 milligrams of THC per package. This means that patients can still rely on THC for relief without needing to eat more chocolate, cookies or candies.

At KindPeoples, we’re excited to welcome several new vendors, including some fantastic savory, healthy and vegan options! Visit our online menu for a complete list of edibles we’re currently carrying, and please suggest new items that we should stock by contacting us.

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Perfect for athletes, health foodies and conscious consumers, Atlas Edibles combine a moderate THC dose with high-quality, vegan ingredients including various fruits, nuts and spices to create a nutritious, delicious edible. A second-place winner at the 2017 High Times Cannabis Cup, the chef-driven, sophisticated flavors of Atlas Edibles will surprise and delight you! Four varieties arrive in artist-inspired packaging, each containing four fruit-and-nut clusters dosed with 20 milligrams of THC each for 80 mg per package.

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Venice Cookie Company quickly redesigned their wonderful edibles to be smaller, making bags with bite-size, low-dose cookies in their established Hippie, Chipster and Surfer flavors, as well as savory options including pretzel bites. CBD-rich cookie offerings include 1-to-1 ratio Cinnamon Churros, which contain 10 mg of CBD and 10 mg of THC per cookie, with 10 cookies to a bag.

VCC’s award-winning Cannabis Quenchers now have a miniature version as well, with Quencher Sips containing just 10 mg of THC. Full-size Quenchers deliver 100 mg of THC in flavors including Lemonade, with CBD-rich options in Hibiscus and Mango. It’s so nice to be able to choose from a variety of CBD ratios, with the 1-to-1 ratio of 50 mg CBD to 50 mg THC in the Mango Quencher and 4-to-1 ratio of 100 mg of CBD to 25mg THC in the Hibiscus Quencher.

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Local favorite Big Pete’s Treats is back with lower-dose versions of their cookies. Peanut butter, cinnamon sugar, and chocolate chip cookies come in either single servings, or bags of six or 10 cookies, each with 10 mg of THC. This family-run business creates lovingly homemade small-batch treats, and they’re looking forward to serving all adults in 2018!

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California edibles powerhouse Kiva Confections only needed a few slight adjustments to their popular chocolate bars, Terra Bites and Petra Mints, changing the THC doses and pieces per package to comply with the new state regulations. Look for 100 milligrams of THC in each full-size chocolate bar, with the same great flavors in dark or milk chocolate varieties. Small-dose bites of 45 mg and 15 mg are also available, along with the new Petra Mints, which contain just 2.5 mg of THC per piece.

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Known for absurdly strong edibles with "unrivaled potency," the change in the Korova product line is perhaps the most noticeable. Retooling their offerings completely, Korova shifted from super-strong brownies to low-dose cookies. Look for CBD Vanilla Bean cookies, each containing 10mg of CBD with 10 cookies to a package, along with THC varieties also dosed at just 10mg per cookie. Flavors include vanilla, chocolate chip and ginger chew.

The Future of Cannabis in Santa Cruz

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As Santa Cruz County prepares to finalize its local ordinance governing cannabis cultivation and manufacturing activities, a group of interested stakeholders gathered on January 24 at the Resource Center for Nonviolence for “The Future of Cannabis” to discuss the short and long term future of the industry and how it will affect access, availability, cost, production and the environment.

Organized by Green Trade, the meeting is the first of several public events intended to build a coalition that includes consumer advocates, patients, caregivers, environmentalists, small growers and business people. Divided into two panel discussions, the evening also included addresses from County Supervisor John Leopold, attorney Ben Rice and Watsonville City Council member Felipe Hernandez, who stressed that the local tax rates and regulation of cannabis need to remain competitive with other municipalities. “Whatever benefits the industry, benefits the County,” Hernandez said, “we need to offer a pathway to licensing for everyone.”

Formerly the Mayor of Watsonville, Hernandez is running for a seat on the County Board of Supervisors this November, and his election to this position would be a key victory for the industry, tipping the Board towards a majority that’s supportive of the rich legacy of cannabis farming in the region. “We need Felipe as the third vote on that Board,” said KindPeoples CEO Khalil Moutawakkil, “these taxes are not workable, and the 7% County tax is egregious.”

Over one hundred people attended "The Future of Cannabis." (Photo by Rick Cook)

Over one hundred people attended "The Future of Cannabis." (Photo by Rick Cook)

Seeking tax relief on the local level is more likely to be successful than a change at the state level, and so Khalil urged all in attendance to be more active in local politics, including showing up at City Council meetings and the County Board of Supervisors meetings dealing with these matters. “The County does their best when they can,” remarked Moutawakkil, “they are responsive when people voice their issues.”

All panelists stressed the need for unity among stakeholders in the industry, since creating solidarity is the most effective way to wield political power. Pat Malo and Jim Coffis from Green Trade work tirelessly to articulate the shared values of the Santa Cruz cannabis community, which include being socially conscious, eco-friendly, and rooted in the traditional support of low-income patients. At this critical point in our local political process, it’s immediately necessary for activism aimed at preventing legacy farmers in the mountains from being disenfranchised in favor of larger agricultural concerns in South County.

Jeff Nordhall, the activist businessman behind Jade Nectars, raised the alarm that small farmers will be “bureaucratically banned through the Fire Code,” citing a document from the Fire Chief’s Association, buried in Appendix D of the Environmental Impact Review, which recommends requiring 25-foot wide road access as well as a holding tank of 120,000 gallons of water. These recommendations would make legally permitting mountain cannabis grow-ops virtually impossible, and are much more stringent requirements compared to what’s asked of vineyards, as detailed in a recent Good Times article.

Overcoming these challenges is possible with engaged political activism, and the collection of activists and business people present expressed optimism that Santa Cruz can create a local system of regulating cannabis cultivators and manufacturers that would prove to be a model statewide.

With overwhelming public support for cannabis evident in our voting records, Santa Cruz politicians have a unique opportunity to embrace the local growers that make our region stand out, and develop this wealth of expertise with an official appellation, as well as branding and marketing strategies. “Santa Cruz is a brand known across the world,” exclaimed Eric Shedlarksi, proprietor of GrowBiz, “so it’s not just about skateboards!”

How to Take Action:

  • Show up at two public meetings next week. The County of Santa Cruz will present a path forward for the establishment of legalized cannabis cultivation and manufacturing industries in Santa Cruz County. Interested parties and members of the public are invited to attend.

    The meetings will be held as follows:

    Wednesday, Jan. 31, 5:30 p.m.
    Governmental Building, 701 Ocean St., Santa Cruz, 5th Fl. Board Chambers

    Thursday, Feb. 1, 5:30 p.m.
    Felton Community Hall, 6191 Highway 9, Felton

  • Feb. 13, 2:30pm / 7pm - Show up at Santa Cruz City Council Meeting

  • Request to be notified of upcoming events by emailing Cannabis.Info@santacruzcounty.us to join a mailing list, or follow them on Facebook.

  • Review all relevant ordinance drafts and Environmental Impact Report information at the Santa Cruz Cannabis Licensing Office website.

  • Join Green Trade to make your voice heard as a stakeholder in the cannabis industry.

  • Follow KindPeoples for updates on these issues as they continue to develop.

How to Start Your Cannabis Career

Be part of the KindPeoples crew!

Be part of the KindPeoples crew!

Imagine working with cannabis all day, helping people discover how to select, use and enjoy this most beneficial plant. Sounds like a dream gig, right? Well, that dream is now a reality, so get prepared to pursue your bliss with a weed-friendly job!

California’s newly legal cannabis industry expects to expand rapidly due to adult-use law reform, with many people seeking to join this exciting marketplace. If you’re looking for a new career path that allows you to express your passion for the plant, consider applying to a local dispensary. As we’ve seen from Colorado’s experience, legal cannabis transformed the state’s 8% unemployment rate to just 2.9% in the years since 2012, with CNBC reporting that “its biggest problem now is managing the massive growth of Denver.” Much of that growth centered on retail jobs, as well as growing and manufacturing cannabis products.

As the sixth largest economy in the world, the potential for legal cannabis in California outpaces Colorado considerably, with the value of the legal market estimated at 5 billion dollars by 2019. The increasing social acceptance of cannabis means that many new jobs will open up in the next few years, with data analysis firm New Frontier estimating that “by 2020 the legal cannabis market will create more than a quarter of a million jobs,” and that nationwide legalization could create up to one million jobs.

KindPeoples staff on the day our licenses for adult-use sales were received.

KindPeoples staff on the day our licenses for adult-use sales were received.

If you’re interested in getting one of those jobs, then working at a dispensary is a good place to start. You’ll gain valuable experience with cannabis products as well as the basics of retail business, with plenty of positions available that need responsible workers. Starting out as a “budtender,” or cannabis consultant, is just one job title among many in a dispensary, where departments include security, reception, processing, marketing, administrative, human resources, compliance officers and much more. Many dispensaries promote internally, so establishing yourself as a trustworthy and loyal entry-level employee is key to advancing to higher management level opportunities.

Launch your cannabis career with these helpful tips on what to include in your resume, how to avoid common interview pitfalls, and what you should look for in a potential employer.

By the way, KindPeoples is hiring, so please consider applying for available positions! We offer competitive rates, employee benefits and a diverse range of opportunities.

KindPeoples staff works hard, but we also take time to enjoy the beauty of Santa Cruz!

KindPeoples staff works hard, but we also take time to enjoy the beauty of Santa Cruz!

Budtenders and Beyond

It takes a lot of work to keep a dispensary functioning, making the friendly customer service from knowledgeable consultants just one part of the overall business. While security, receptionists and budtenders are the public face of retail cannabis, there’s plenty that goes on behind the scenes too, so learn about the other jobs available at modern cannabis stores with this handy guide.

Cannabis Consultant

Also known as budtenders, these customer service positions require solid knowledge, including research and experience with the products, science, and culture of cannabis. You should be patient, friendly, welcoming and consider yourself a “people person” in order to excel at this job, where you’ll be guiding customers in selecting the right product for their needs. Committed budtenders frequently rise through the ranks to be promoted to floor managers and store managers, since its the most direct career path to understanding retail operations.

Receptionist

Greeting people at the front desk is the primary responsibility of receptionists at cannabis stores, but there’s more office management that goes into this type of job. Understanding phone systems, computer servers, and internal databases is key to functioning in a key role. This is a great role for organized people who enjoy doing customer service.

Security

Keeping everyone safe while also maintaining an approachable but not intimidating vibe is the main responsibility for dispensary security professionals. With cash and cannabis on premises, security guards must be friendly but alert, checking customer IDs and monitoring security cameras. These types of job require very trustworthy individuals who enjoy protecting and serving cannabis customers and other staff members.

Processing

Who breaks up the wholesale pounds of cannabis into the small gram jars that you might buy? Who rolls literally hundreds of joints every day? The unsung heroes of dispensary operations, processors must really, really love weed. This isn’t a public-facing job at all, so it’s suited for more introverted people who might not be comfortable talking with customers all day, but it requires patience, trustworthiness and extreme attention to detail.

Inventory Controller

Climbing the ladder of dispensary operations, the Inventory Controller is often promoted from a processor or consultant position to a more integral role in keeping the shelves stocked. At this level, solid business management experience is ideal, with competency in managing spreadsheets and tracking systems, as well as maintaining clear communication with floor managers and product buyers.

Cannabis Product Buyers

Often the most sought-after position in the dispensary world, buyers do much more than evaluate beautiful buds all day. Negotiating with vendors and setting the prices on cannabis requires deep understanding of desirable product characteristics, market trends and cannabinoid science as well as a discerning palate and a very calm and collected personality. Buyers frequently start out as processors or consultants, learning everything about quality cannabis and marketplace demands through years of hands-on experience.

How to Interview Successfully

Applying and interviewing for these dispensary jobs requires just a bit of common sense. Hiring managers aren’t interested in hearing how many edibles you can eat or how often you smoke, but they are more interested in meeting genuinely friendly, engaging, passionate people.

Be professional, courteous and prompt, arriving at least five minutes before an interview and never, ever flake out! Showing up on time, having a positive attitude and being a trustworthy person are a few things that require absolutely zero special skills or talent. While the dispensary environment is very welcoming to folks with tattoos, colored hair and body piercings, you should still dress professionally and maintain excellent personal hygiene to be seriously considered for any job where you’re interacting with customers.

For entry-level gigs, managers are looking for people who are passionate about cannabis, with stable housing and transportation, and a firm commitment to showing up on time, learning new things and following company protocols.

That’s it! Best of luck to all you job-seekers, and don’t forget to have a friend proofread your resume!

Cannabis Prohibition Ends as "Legalization Day" Hits Santa Cruz

Peoples crowd the interior of KindPeoples location at 140 Dubois Street in Santa Cruz, excited to do their first fully legal cannabis shopping.

Peoples crowd the interior of KindPeoples location at 140 Dubois Street in Santa Cruz, excited to do their first fully legal cannabis shopping.

It’s been an incredibly wild ride over the past several weeks at KindPeoples, and we’re so grateful for everyone in the community who came to our “Legalization Day” launch on New Year’s Day at the Dubois store. Ready to make history, people arrived at 6am to secure their spot in line as we prepared to celebrate the implementation of the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA), also known as Prop 64, which makes it legal for any adult age 21 or older to purchase or possess up to one ounce of cannabis, and creates regulations to govern the commercial cultivation, production and sales of cannabis products.

Customers form a line outside of KindPeoples at 140 Dubois Street in Santa Cruz.

Customers form a line outside of KindPeoples at 140 Dubois Street in Santa Cruz.

Members of the media were on hand at 7am to document the first legal cannabis sale in Santa Cruz, as Retail Operations Manager Chelsea Burman assisted our honorary “first customer” UCSC Professor Emeritus Craig Reinarman in selecting an eighth of Nine Pound Hammer, a top-shelf indica.

As a respected expert on the effect of the drug war on society, Reinarman has been a leading advocate for cannabis legalization. After his purchase, Reinarman told the Santa Cruz Sentinel that “This is a long time coming. It’s long overdue. Cannabis prohibition was conceived in fraud, spread by racist fears, full of misinformation and myth, and now the law is finally catching up with the culture — with the people.”

"First customer" UCSC Professor Emeritus Craig Reinarman holds up his cannabis purchase.

"First customer" UCSC Professor Emeritus Craig Reinarman holds up his cannabis purchase.

Hundreds of people from all walks of life gathered to do their first fully legal cannabis shopping, with both of KindPeoples' locations seeing lines all day. Some folks came from as far away as Florida, New York and even Finland to experience the end of cannabis prohibition. Limited-edition free t-shirts were given to the first 420 customers to commemorate this special occasion, and food trucks were on hand to serve lunch and create a festive atmosphere at the Dubois store.

From left to right: KindPeoples Co-Founder Khalil Moutawakkil, UCSC Professor Emeritus Craig Reinarman and Santa Cruz County Supervisor John Leopold gather for the first fully legal cannabis sale early in the morning of January 1st.

From left to right: KindPeoples Co-Founder Khalil Moutawakkil, UCSC Professor Emeritus Craig Reinarman and Santa Cruz County Supervisor John Leopold gather for the first fully legal cannabis sale early in the morning of January 1st.

With the support of local politicians including County Supervisor John Leopold, Santa Cruz was able to create local regulations quickly, enabling KindPeoples to successfully secure some of the very first licenses from the California state Bureau of Cannabis Control.

Free commemorative t-shirts for the first 420 customers in line!

Free commemorative t-shirts for the first 420 customers in line!

Behind the scenes, KindPeoples' dedicated staff worked long hours to secure compliant products, process new inventory, stock the shelves and place the required stickers on every item, tackling the monumental job with professionalism and positive attitudes.

Coverage from The Associated Press focused national attention on KindPeoples' co-founder and CEO Khalil Moutawakkil.

Coverage from The Associated Press focused national attention on KindPeoples' co-founder and CEO Khalil Moutawakkil.

With public interest in cannabis legalization at an all-time high, we’ve had local, national and even international media focus their attention on KindPeoples, with co-founder and CEO Khalil Moutawakkil speaking to the Associated Press, NPR’s Here & Now, ABC News, and the CBC. "It's been incredibly exciting to see our hard work pay off," says Khalil, "I'm so proud of our staff, and we've never been so happy to live in Santa Cruz."

Whether you’re an experienced cannabis connoisseur or just curious, KindPeoples aims to please, with a wide range of flowers, concentrates, edibles and topicals available with THC content varying from low to high. Take some time to educate yourself about California’s new laws, learn the facts about cannabis edibles, and browse our menus before coming in for a visit at either of our two locations. We’ll be open longer hours at 140 Dubois from January 2 - 7, 8am - 7pm, and we’re always open at 3600 Soquel from 8am - 10pm.

Top 10 Bestselling Strains of 2017

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Favorite cannabis strains come and go, with new trendy flavors like Lemon Tree competing for dispensary shelf space with Cali’s classic Kush varieties. Some growers find one strain they love and work to perfect it, while others are always challenging themselves by cultivating something new and different. At KindPeoples, we analyze our data to see what’s most popular with our customers, and this year’s list of the bestselling strains is full of top-shelf varieties that deliver both outstanding flavor and distinctive effects.

Almost all cannabis will deliver a pleasing high, but not all flowers taste and smell amazing. Increasingly, customers seek out the most unique “terps,” following their nose to find the strains with intense flavors and aromas, not necessarily choosing varieties based solely on what has the highest THC potency. This type of connoisseurship parallels the world of fine wine, where sommeliers recommend the best bottles to pair with a meal based on flavor, not alcohol content.

“Terps” are terpenes, the chemical components of cannabis that create distinct aromas. While terpenes are found in all plants, the terps in cannabis also modulate the effects of cannabinoids, providing medicinal benefits of their own and combining to create specific psychoactive effects. Many of the strains on this list are fruity, with aromas reminiscent of strawberries, bananas or citrus making a memorable impression due to their terpene profiles.

With incredible flavors and soaring THC percentages, these perfectly cured flowers brought our customers back to visit again and again. Check out KindPeoples’ favorite cannabis strains, and let us know what you liked best in 2017!

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1. Kosher Kush

Heaviest of the heavy-hitters, the Kosher’s telltale flavor is so full of fuel, it’ll make your eyes water! The growers at Santa Cruz Veteran's Alliance have really perfected this strain, delivering wonderful flowers every time. Completely drenched in crystals, these nugs consistently test at THC levels over 27% for an extremely potent, sedating high. Expect giggle fits plus voracious hunger after smoking the Kosher, with a pain-relieving, muscle-relaxing high that will most definitely have you on the couch.

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2. Red Congolese

A true gem, this African landrace strain originates in the Congo and was brought to Santa Cruz over thirty years ago by the patriarch of a local farming family. Always striving to maintain these unique genetics, Wick Family Farms is proud to steward this particular heirloom strain. Truly an outstanding flower, Red Congolese has large, chunky buds caked in thick, white trichomes with a full-bodied bouquet. with notes of sweet berries, floral perfume, and a burst of pungent, cheesy earth. A rare breed among sativas, the speedy high can be too much for novice smokers, with a high THC content that blasts you into cerebral euphoria and a stony giddiness. Use Red Congolese to promote mental focus and dieting, since it doesn’t give you much of an appetite boost due to the presence of THCV in its chemical makeup.

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3. Blue Dream

Arguably one of the world’s best-known strains, this classic cross of Blueberry x Haze consistently appears with dense, brightly-colored flowers and an extremely sweet, refreshing, and berry-filled aroma. Effects manifest as a joyful, uplifting euphoria, and a tranquilizing, numbing body high. Because of this near-perfect balance, it is an ideal flower for consumers who are new to using cannabis.

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4. Super Sour Diesel

So distinctive that it’s unmistakable, you can smell a gram of Super Sour Diesel from across the room. That’s what the kids mean when they say “that weed is loud,” and Sour Diesel is one of the loudest ever, with strong notes of pungent fuel, fresh cut pine, sour lemons creating an earthy, almost savory aroma. Couple the distinct aroma with high THC percentages, and these perfect nugs deliver spacey, introspective euphoria that transforms into a serene sense of well-being. Great for daytime use and creative work, Super Sour Diesel melts away stress, depression, and pain.

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5. Super Silver Haze

This much-lauded sativa has been delighting users around the world since the early 90s with its sharp, sweet, and cheesy aroma, and its wonderfully uplifting effects. Motivating, energizing, and just the right amount of stony, this classic cross of Haze x Northern Lights x Skunk #1 propels users through the day with a smile on their face, adding a bit of pep to their step!

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6. Pine Tar Kush

Brought to the U.S. directly from Pakistan, this 100% indica is pure Kush genetics, with the characteristic musky perfume a blend of earthy woods and sour fuel that gave this particular variety its name. Grown by Anthony G, this strain is great for informal parties. The Kush high starts off talkative and fun, with the warm, heavy buzz of body relaxation setting you up for a wonderful night’s sleep.

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7. Golden Lemons

Dense, perfectly-cured nuggets arrive covered in delicate, peach-colored hairs and caked in bright, golden trichomes. Refreshingly sharp fresh lemon zest aroma combines with dank, sweet earth to form a truly delicious bouquet. Expect a few puffs to impart focus and motivation, coupled with a warm, buzzing physical relaxation. In larger doses, physical relaxation will lead to a couch-locked sedation. Consistently testing at over 25% THC, this cross of Kosher Kush x Lemon Skunk is very potent, so prepare yourself for a strong smoking experience that’s ideal for counteracting stress and anxiety.

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8. OG Kush

Possibly the world’s most famous weed, this stuff is classic for a good reason. KindPeoples selects from a great many varieties of OG Kush, finding the best from the growers at Hiatus Industries, complete with dense, bright-green flowers, light-orange hairs, an abundance of glistening trichomes, and lot of THC! Sweet and musky, with strong notes of stinky cheese, sour earth, and a bit of piney perfume, OG isn’t always the gassiest flower. After smoking, many users report increased focus, and will use this flower as an antidote for fatigue. As time goes on, the high levels off into deep relaxation, and a body-high that feels like a warm hug.

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9. Banana OG

Absolutely delectable, this OG Kush x Banana cross smells like ripe bananas and sweet honey candy. Just one of these frosty, beautiful nugs will fill a room with its delicious smell. Deeply relaxing, the high is equally enlivening and exhilarating, leaving the body warm and pleasantly numb, while imparting a fun, creative, euphoric buzz to the brain. Share this special strain with close friends.

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10. Golden Strawberries

Sparkling with green, orange, and a bit of gold, each large nugget of Golden Strawberries is accentuated by trichomes caked on each and every bit of this flower. Bright and refreshing, this Strawberry Banana x Kosher Kush cross has a robust terpene profile that will remind you of sweet cream, tangy fruit, and fresh soil. Delivering a very potent high, smokers quickly get overtaken by giggles and a pain-relieving body buzz that immediately cuts through stress, anxiety, and any other discomfort. Don’t overindulge unless you have time for a large meal and a nap!

5 Best Gifts for Cannabis Lovers

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Do you have a cannabis fan on your gift list this year? Maybe your roommate always generously shares their herb and you’d like to return the favor, or your uncle has been asking you about “that dab stuff” he’s heard about. With fine hashes, edibles, topicals and more, there’s something for everyone who likes cannabis to enjoy this holiday season. Much like a bottle of fine wine or basket of gourmet food, cannabis products make a wonderful gifts, spreading the spirit of generosity far and wide!

KindPeoples’ End of the Year Sale also means that you’ll be able to get great deals on a wide variety of cannabis ingestibles and accessories, just when you need them the most!

And in case you’re wondering, the Adult Use of Marijuana Act (AUMA) which legalized cannabis in California, allows for anyone 21 years of age or older to gift up to an ounce of cannabis to any other adult. (Hint hint—ounces of select small nugs are on sale too!)

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5 Best Cannabis Gifts

For the Cannabis Connoisseur: KindExtracts’ Shatter

A pure form of extracted cannabinoids, shatter is a type of cannabis concentrate with a brittle texture that causes it to “shatter” into pieces rather than bending or melting like taffy. A perfect gift for the serious connoisseurs on your list, all of our house-made KindExtracts’ shatter is on sale, with a wide variety to choose from, including Purple Bubba, Emerald OG, Platinum Dream, Super Silver Haze and more! Package several varieties with a shatter wallet for maximum wow factor. Get it while it lasts!

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For the Casual Puffer: Hybrid Pre-Rolled Joints

Everybody loves the convenience of pre-rolled joints, and we’ve got plenty of hybrid strains rolled up and ready to go! Known as “dogwalkers,” these joints are great for stepping out with your pooch and getting a little personal space during hectic holiday gatherings. Pre-rolls make great stocking stuffers, plus a nice bowl of joints on the table enlivens any holiday party.

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For the High Hostess: XTernal Cannabis-Infused Bath Soak

Like a massage in a jar, this cannabis-infused bath soak dissolves in hot water, adding extra relaxation to an essential part of a self-care routine. After 30 minutes in this indulgent bath, people feel intense muscle relaxation and experience incredibly rejuvenating deep sleep. However, there’s no “head high” or overly psychoactive effects, just melty mellowness. Perfect for athletes with sore muscles, busy moms or stressed professionals.

 

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For the Ganja Grandma: Hashman Infused CBD Tincture

Stock up on CBD with these amazing products! One of the many cannabinoids present within the plant, CBD is known for being an effective anti-inflammatory and anti-anxiety aid without any noticeable “high” feeling. When paired with THC, it offers maximum healing relief with some euphoria. The tincture is also a 1:1 ratio product, containing 50 mg of CBD and 50 mg of THC for a balanced high.

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For the Visiting Relative: Santa Cruz Shredder Grinder

Hosting any family from out-of-state? While your couch-surfing cousin can’t bring California’s finest herbs home on the plane, they can bring back a clean grinder. These Santa Cruz Shredders are currently “buy one get one,” so you can get one for yourself and gift one too! Super-durable, these grinders break up even the stickiest of nugs with ease, and they’re also a great Santa Cruz souvenir.

Genetics Department Transplanted to New Location

Unique among dispensaries, the KindPeoples Genetics department provides a valuable service to local growers. Staffed by knowledgeable cultivators who dispense not only clones and seeds but helpful advice, this vital part of the KindPeoples’ family is continuing to spread its roots through the community, and will be better able to flourish at our Dubois Street location.

Providing the very best in seeds from a dozen seed banks including esteemed breeders such as Bodhi, Crockett Family Farms and Southern Humboldt Seed Company, plus healthy clones from Dark Heart Nursery, our commitment to providing top-shelf resources for those who cultivate their own cannabis is unwavering. Growers come to the Genetics Department seeking guidance on the best strains adapted to the many microclimates in Santa Cruz County, as well as help managing pests, fertilizer regimens, and effective harvesting and curing tips.

Tommy at the new Genetics Department located at 140 Dubois Street.

Tommy at the new Genetics Department located at 140 Dubois Street.

The Genetics Department is run by Tommy D’Andrea and Joe Kief, the pair has a combined total of 14 years of experience growing cannabis, with Tommy saying “I’ve made mistakes so you don’t have to!”

“We help people who wouldn’t necessarily grow their medicine and make it less intimidating,” says Joe Kief, a longtime Genetics Manager, “if you can grow tomatoes you can grow good cannabis.”

Advantages to growing your own cannabis include the pride in caring for a beautiful plant and watching it thrive, as well as being able to control the inputs so that you’re assured to produce only the finest eco-friendly flowers. It’s also easier to preserve the THC-laden trichomes through careful handling and processing to retain the most resin possible.

“You cut out the mystery when you grow your own, and you know exactly what’s being put into your medicine," says Joe, "and it's more cost-effective."

As part of our expanded Genetics Department, KindPeoples will be offering more educational offerings for home growers, including a dedicated newsletter with tips to guide you through the outdoor season. Searching for the right type of plants to grow has never been easier, with the Seed Finder system, a touchscreen tool that can sort through various preferences for yield, flowering time, flavor and THC potency.

Start planning your 2018 garden now, and get ready to sprout seeds or bring clones home in March!

Go Low and Slow: What You Need to Know About Cannabis Edibles

When we talk about “edibles,” we mean cannabis-infused foods, available now for any adult over 21 years of age in California.

Cannabis or hash can be added to almost any food or drink, including baked goods like brownies and cookies, chocolates, candies and gummies, granola, mints, and juices. The variety is endless, with new edibles debuting constantly.

When trying these products, it’s important to educate yourself first, since you want to have the best possible experience. Edibles can be intense, and eating too much THC can be very unpleasant and disorienting.

A positive experience with edibles should feel really good. Waves of bliss will comfort you, dissolving pain and leading to deep relaxation, increased sensuality, giggles and restful sleep, with effects lasting for 6 to 8 hours.

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What's the Right Dose for Me?

Finding the right dose is essential to accessing these positive experiences. We recommend starting with no more than 5 milligrams of THC for new users. If 5 milligrams doesn’t result in noticeable effects, slowly increase your dose to 7mg for the next experiment.

California’s new regulations require all edibles to clearly indicate THC content and divide edibles into serving sizes of 10 milligrams, with no more than 100 milligrams in a package.

Onset time for edibles can be up to 2 hours or even more. The most common rookie mistake involves eating an edible, waiting just 30 minutes or so, becoming impatient and eating more, resulting in over-consumption and an unpleasant experience.

Understanding Product Labels

When purchasing edibles, look for the THC content listed in milligrams. Choose items with an appropriate THC dose at a satisfying portion size, for example, a whole cookie with just 10 milligrams of THC would be recommended for a new user of cannabis. Avoid products without lab-tested dosage information, as well as items that list their potency in generic terms such as “Extra Strength.”

Look for information about CBD content listed in milligrams as well. CBD isn't psychoactive, but it aids in relaxation, making products with a high CBD content ideal for new users. Many products will list a ratio, such as 1 to 1, 4 to 1 or 20 to 1; which indicates the ratio of CBD content to THC content. For instance, an edible with a 1:1 ratio contains an equal amount of THC to CBD. Adding CBD to your diet is a great way to enjoy a balanced high!

Top 4 Tips For Edibles Enjoyment:

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  • Start with a low dose of 5mg of THC.

  • Go slow, waiting for at least two hours to feel effects.

  • Walk, don't drive! Never drive or operate machinery after consuming edible cannabis.

  • Avoid alcohol. Don’t mix edible cannabis with alcoholic drinks, since doing so can make you feel very disorientated.

Keep Away from Kids and Pets!

Responsible adults must take action to protect kids and pets from accessing cannabis products. Lock up edibles to prevent underage kids from experimenting with these substances.

If you are a parent with young children, it’s recommended that you choose cannabis products like capsules and tinctures that don't resemble any type of food.

Edibles Are Safe When Used Responsibly

When discussing responsible consumption and the consequences of eating too much THC, it’s important to remember that even if you overdo it and have an unpleasant experience, you are in no danger of permanent harm.

Cannabis is a non-toxic natural product, with an incredible safety record throughout thousands of years of human consumption. No one has ever died directly from ingesting cannabis.

What to Do If You Ate Too Much THC

Symptoms of "overdosing" on THC can include an elevated heart rate, increased anxiety or panicky feelings. If you experience these symptoms, make sure to find a safe place to relax and calm down. Practicing deep, slow breathing can help you relax, and wait for a few hours to pass.

Retreat to a safe place, distract yourself by watching a favorite movie or by listening to music. Allow yourself to get plenty of restful sleep and when you wake up you’ll be feeling much better.

Another cannabinoid present in herb, CBD is known to balance THC and can mitigate the worst parts of a too-intense THC high. A few hits from a CBD-rich vape pen can help calm you down.

Other homemade antidotes include inhaling and/or chewing on black peppercorns, which contain a terpene called carophyllene, known to provide relief for those who are too high.

Drinking juice can help raise blood sugar, which can help you feel less high, along with plenty of regular food and water.

With some common sense education, any responsible adult can enjoy cannabis-infused foods. That's why KindPeoples launched the "Go Low and Slow" campaign to inform our community and encourage the safe use of cannabis products.

Always remember to “Go Low and Slow” and you’ll have an enjoyable edibles experience every time!

 

 
 

Learn How to Medicate Thanksgiving Leftovers

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We all know that the best part of Thanksgiving is leftovers, so coast through the holiday weekend with dark meat and medicated mushroom gravy, guaranteed to create an THC-and-tryptophan synergy that just might lead to hibernating through the winter!

There’s numerous uses for leftover roasted turkey, and adding some ganja gravy into the mix makes it easy for cannabis cooks to be flexible when planning meals as well as simplifying THC dosing.

Using professionally prepared cannabis infusions purchased from a dispensary makes THC dosing easy. Cali Vida Cannabutter contains 300 milligrams of THC in 4 ounces, which equals one stick of butter, or 8 tablespoons. Determining that one tablespoon contains 37.5 mg of THC will enable you to easily add cannabutter to recipes without the complicated, imprecise calculations involved in making your own infusions at home.

So get ready to roll up your sleeves and do some cooking!

Turkey on Toast with Marijuana Mushroom Gravy

A personal favorite of mine, this recipe comes from Peter Berley, a well-known vegetarian chef and author of the book Fresh Food Fast. We’ve adjusted it to include cannabutter as well as turkey, but tempeh is the original protein used here, making this dish perfect for vegetarian friends or family as well. This savory gravy also works well on mashed potatoes.

THC Dosing: Using 2 tablespoons of Cali Vida cannabutter adds 75 mg of THC to this gravy. Divided among 4 servings, that’s approximately 18.75 mg per dish.

Ingredients:

2 tbsp olive oil

2 tbsp Cali Vida cannabutter (optional)

1 lb. of leftover roasted turkey, shredded OR 2 packages of tempeh (8 ounce per package)

1 cup yellow onion, minced

1 cup brown mushrooms, sliced

1 cup Shitake mushrooms, sliced

1 clove of garlic, minced

1 tbsp sage, minced

3 tbsp flour

4 tbsp soy sauce

3 cups of stock (vegetable, turkey or chicken stock)

1/4 cup flat-leaf parsley, chopped

To Serve: 4 thick slabs of nicely toasted rustic bread or mashed potatoes

Warm the olive oil in a saucepan over medium heat for a minute or two, until you begin to smell the oil’s fragrance. Add the cannabutter and melt it, then add the onions, stirring to coat. Saute onions until they begin to turn golden, then add the chopped mushrooms, garlic and sage and cook for 5 minutes.

Add the leftover turkey (or tempeh) and cook for a minute before sprinkling the flour over the pan. Stir to coat all ingredients in the flour, then add the soy sauce and stock. Scrape the bottom of the pan to release all of the browned bits that might have gotten stuck. Raise the heat to medium-high and bring the liquid in the pan to boil.

Reduce the heat and simmer the gravy for 5 to 7 minutes until it has thickened. Pour the gravy over the rustic slices of toast and sprinkle parsley over the top.