A stellar showcase of the sizzling Canadian cannabis industry
This year, for the first time, the opening week of June was declared “Cannabis Week” in coordination with the ever-popular Lift & Co. Expo in Toronto.
Whether an industry insider, a cannabis-loving lifelong consumer, or a canna-curious newbie, Cannabis Week had something to offer everyone.
In keeping with our constant focus on innovation in the cannabis space, the GreenSeal team was first in line for an informative workshop on cannabis marketing and to check out the Expo for the latest in cannabis equipment and technology.
Elevated Marketing: Cannabis in the Age of Regulation
Marketing cannabis in the post-legalization era represents a paradoxical challenge shared by the entire industry.
On the one hand, License Holders like GreenSeal Cannabis Co. have both many amazing stories to tell and top-notch products to share information about.
On the other hand, Health Canada regulations are strict when it comes to regulating our marketing activities (mostly due to the admirable goals of protecting vulnerable young people from exposure to cannabis promotions and the health of Canadians in general).
Based on this challenge, we were excited to hear about “Elevated: Marketing Cannabis in the Age of Regulation,” a Cannabis Week event dedicated entirely to learning about how leading marketers in the cannabis industry are taking on this challenge.
There might be no one better to talk about cannabis branding than the keynote speaker Tiffany Chin (above) the Co-Founder and President of Leafs by Snoop.
Snoop Dogg’s cannabis brand is a juggernaut south of the border and the story of its massive success offered some invaluable insight for Canadian producers looking to establish their own brand identities.
It was also interesting to learn about how this US brand stickhandles around the Canadian regulations: cannabis can’t be promoted using celebrities (or any other human beings) here, so “Leafs by Snoop” is known simply as “LBS”.
The keynote address was followed by a panel of savvy cannabis marketers who generously shared their own tips for promoting cannabis in this age of strict regulations.
The panel discussion was moderated by Rachel Colic (above on left) a true mover ‘n shaker who does everything from hosting the High Friends podcast to strategizing for cannabis brands.
The panel also included (above, left to right) Megan Henderson (Executive Producer of The Growth Op), consultant Angela Smith; marketing strategist Alanna Fonseca; and Lisa Harun of Vapium Inc. (who was recently featured in High Times’ “Top 100 Women in Cannabis”).
The consensus among the panelists was to approach Health Canada as a partner rather than an adversary when developing marketing materials.
For those experiencing confusion around whether their marketing campaigns would pass Health Canada’s approval, moderator Rachel Colic encouraged attendees to run their ideas through this handy flow chart she has created in collaboration with a leading cannabis lawyer:
Lift & Co. Expo: A Veritable Cannabis Disneyland
The Metro Toronto Convention Centre was the venue for the first Toronto edition of the Lift & Co. Cannabis Expo since Canada legalized adult-use recreational cannabis.
The “signature event for cannabis consumers, professionals, and investors” featured over 250 exhibitors and more than 100 speakers.
We were like a duck in water, spending many hours wandering the seemingly endless aisles of all-things-cannabis in search of the latest and greatest innovations.
The main stage was constantly buzzing with workshops, demonstrations, and panel discussions – including a cooking demonstration for people to learn how to make their own edibles.
The Expo included an interactive display where people could smell the different terpenes found in cannabis (the essential oils that give different strains their distinct flavours and fragrances).
One booth offered free genetic testing for people to learn how specific DNA typically interacts with various cannabis experiences.
The rep from Saboten scissors was in full Samurai mode as he demonstrated the Japanese company’s line of high-quality blades for trimming (and we should know they’re high quality, since we use them!).
One booth even offered a VR station for attendees to experience virtual cannabis adventures.
Cannabis innovation comes in all shapes and sizes
Whatever cannabis equipment you were looking for at the Expo, there were a range of options to suit every scale and preference.
Looking for a grow box?
You could start with this cool little unit for growing in soil…
…or upgrade to a home grow tent….
…or go all-in for this climate-controlled unit with horticulture LEDs (although you might want to read the results of our in-house lighting study, which found regular full-spectrum LED floodlights produced higher yields than specialized LEDs).
In the market for a bud sorter?
You could choose from a small R2D2-esque version…
…a medium-sized unit (somewhat resembling a Rube Goldberg machine)…
…or this big-honkin’ machine (complete with a bottling line)…
…all the way up to this massive Plinko-style bud-sorting-and-packaging behemoth!
Extraction machines, you say?
This one removes and isolates just the terpenes (so you can add them back into extracts for full flavour).
If you’re looking to produce pure cannabis distillate, this would be an ideal rig (especially if you have a chemistry degree).
But if you’re looking for the Cadillac of extraction equipment, you needn’t look any further than this massive CO2 extractor.
Prefer rosin? Take your pick of presses!
For those seeking a solvent-free extract experience, there were a range of rosin presses to choose from (all of which use heated plates and pressure rather than chemicals to literally squish out cannabinoids).
This little tabletop unit would be handy for pressing rosin at home.
For those looking to get a little more serious with their rosin pressing, this large automated unit could do the trick.
However, if you’re in the business of industrial-scale rosin extraction, this beast would be hard to beat!
Every week is Cannabis Week at GreenSeal
Cannabis innovation is what we here at GreenSeal are all about, so Cannabis Week was our kind of scene!
It was inspiring to see all the latest and greatest cannabis technologies under one roof at the Expo, and to talk to the passionate entrepreneurs and inventors who created them.
We also appreciated the opportunity to hear about how other cannabis marketers have been creatively promoting their products while adhering to Health Canada’s regulations.
Did you attend the Lift & Co. Expo or any of the other Cannabis Week events or festivities?
Let us know about your experiences in the comments below, we’d love to hear everyone’s stories!
See you all next year at Cannabis Week 2020!