Cannabis Review Quarterly - 2021 - One

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Publisher Not only is cannabis a product whose time has come, it now is an exploding industry that has become essential to “normal” life in Massachusetts. Welcome to the first edition of Cannabis Review Quarterly! CRQ is the newest publication in our 197-year-old publishing history in downtown Springfield. Over a century ago we launched a publication that gave a voice to the abolition movement nationwide, eventually being mailed to the White House to a subscriber named Abraham Lincoln. He made the abolition of slavery “normal.” Let’s hear it for an industry that soon will be normal throughout America, with Massachusetts leading the way on the East Coast. And let us hear from you about our first edition, and ways we can make our content even more compelling moving forward!


George Arwady Publisher and CEO The Republican 1860 Main Street Springfield, MA 01103 Office: 413.788.1312 4



one 2021

STAFF Publisher and CEO George Arwady

Advertising Director Mark A. French

Advertising Sales Manager Fran Smith

Creative Design & Content Curation Michelle Johnson Curtis Panlilio

Content Review Tiera Wright Adam Stern

Cannabis Review Quarterly (CRQ) is published by The Republican. Our offices are at 1860 Main Street, Springfield, MA 01103. All advertising is subject to the terms and conditions of the CRQ rate card, and all advertising submitted is subject to the approval of the Publisher. The Publisher reserves the right to cancel an advertising order or reject or edit any advertising copy or images. The Republican Co. shall not be liable for incorrect ad placement. Liability for failure to publish an ad shall not exceed a refund of or credit for the original price of the ad. Liability for an error will not exceed the cost of space for the section the error occupies. Credit will be allowed for the first insertion only. Advertisers should check ads upon publication. The contents of this publication are copyrighted 2021. The Republican Co. All rights reserved. No portion of CRQ may be reproduced in any form without the consent of the Publisher.



Orders + Questions


Online: Call: 877–500–INSA Chat: look for the chat icon at the bottom right of our website In-store: Our Budtenders are ready to help at all Insa dispensaries



Please consume responsibly. For use only by adults 21 years of age or older. Keep out of reach of children. This product may cause impairment and may be habit-forming. CRQ SPRING 2021



Contents 4 Welcome to

Cannabis Review Quarterly or CRQ as we like to call it.

8 Product Previews

A look at popular and soon-toarrive products in the cannabis market.

14 Weed 101

Cannabis has come a long way from the peace-loving reputation of the ‘70s. Take a peek at ways cannabis and cannabis related products are consumed and the various outcomes.

20 Basic Cannabis Anatomy Parts and functions of the cannabis plant.

22 The Great Delivery Debate

Delivery services are nothing new, even in the cannabis industry, and as health and safety during the pandemic have become a priority for many consumers and businesses delivery services in the cannabis space have come front and center within our state.

28 Find Your Feel Good with Your Five Senses

Look inside Canna Provisions’ new Holyoke location for a cannabis dispensary walk-through like no other!


Satisfy your tastebuds with a recipe from Canna Provisions for Ranch Infused Oyster Crackers.

34 Health & Safety During COVID How dispensaries are making adjustments to keep employees and shoppers safe.

38 Why is this weed different from all other weed? 253 Farmacy showcases their kosher cannabis and cannabis related products.

42 Product Spotlight

Infused topicals can help aid in muscle pain and soreness - just in time for your spring outdoor excursions!

44 Facts vs. Myths Debunking common cannabis myths.



Note to Readers: Please Consume Responsibly. Cannabis and related products may cause impairment and may be habit forming. For use only by adults 21 years of age or older. Keep out of the reach of children. Products shown in this magazine have not been analyzed or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). There is limited information on the side effects of using these products, and there may be associated health risks. Marijuana used during pregnancy and breast-feeding may pose potential harms. It is against the law to drive or operate machinery when under the influence of this product. KEEP THESE PRODUCTS AWAY FROM CHILDREN. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. The effects of Edibles may be delayed by two hours or more. In case of accidental ingestion, contact poison control hotline 1-800-222-1222 or 9-1-1. This product may be illegal outside of MA.

you deserve to

feel good whatever that means to you a good night’s sleep not feeling anxious having energy for the day motivation to exercise patience with your family

relief from tension quieting your mind stimulated intimacy relaxing after a long day enhancing versus escaping taking time to laugh

#betteryourjourney (413) 394-5055 (413) 650-2500

220 Housatonic St. | Lee, MA Open Daily: 8AM-10PM @cannaprovisionsgroup

380 Dwight St. | Holyoke, MA 8AM-8PM Mon-Sat 10AM-6PM Sun @cannaprovisionsholyoke |



Please Consume Responsibly, This product may cause impairment and may be habit forming. For use only by adults 21 years of age or older. Keep out of the reach of children. This product has not been analyzed or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). There is limited information on the side effects of using this product, and there may be associated health risks. Marijuana use during pregnancy and breast-feeding may pose potential harms. It is against the law to drive or operate machinery when under the influence of this product. KEEP THIS PRODUCT AWAY FROM CHILDREN. There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. The effects of Edibles may be delayed by two hours or more. In case of accidental ingestion, contact poison control hotline 1-800-222-1222 or 9-1-1. This product may be illegal outside of MA. | License #: MR281796 & MR281778





n the rapidly expanding industry of cannabis, new and upcoming products are being created to meet consumers wants and needs. Taking a deeper look at what some of the dispensaries offer, locals share their most exciting and/or popular products that are currently or will soon be on the market.


Locations in Easthampton, Salem, and Springfield



Lewis Goldstein from INSA shared, “We just recently launched our four new 100 milligram chocolate bars.” INSA has a master chocolatier that has been brought on to assist in the creation of these chocolate bars. Flavors include milk chocolate, strawberry cheesecake, double caramel sea salt, and dark mint. They launched in the beginning of February and cost about $30.




Goldstein added, “We are coming out with a line of all-natural puree fruit chews.” The chews will have one designed for sleep


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CANNABIS SCIENCE AND COMMERCE The Master of Science in Cannabis Science and Commerce at American International College is designed for students interested in a career in the cannabis industry, and is offered in both fully online and hybrid formats. Graduates will leave AIC with a demonstrated understanding of the business, legal and scientific aspects of the cannabis industry.


Apply today at CRQ SPRING 2021



Locations in Bridgewater, Chicopee, and Great Barrington




Similarly, Theory has a few products that customers can look forward to. Thomas Winstanley of Theory shared, “We are launching chocolate bars which is not necessarily something that we’ve created in-house previously.” The chocolate bars have been created through the assistance and work of a chocolatier along with a professional chef. Winstanley said there are about five or six different types of bars, including crispy mint, standard dark chocolate, chipotle chili, caramel macchiato, and lemon ginger. “We all love chocolate. This allowed us to go into a different area where we have now built out a full chocolate line in our facility,” Winstanley added. Theory will be offering full sized bars and singular, smaller chocolate squares.


Winstanley said, “Probably the most exciting and the biggest project that we have coming out is a new brand inside Theory Wellness called HI-5.” HI-5 is one of the first cannabis infused seltzers on the East Coast. He went on to say, “With standard edibles, you eat an edible and it takes about 45 minutes or longer to feel the effects. This is actually very different. With HI-5, you’re going to actually feel the effects of the drink in about five minutes.” (Hence the name). Theory has partnered with a tech firm, working behind the scenes, discreetly, for about two years now on this project. The drink itself has zero calories, all-natural flavors and 5 mg of THC. HI-5 is now available for purchasing. You can purchase a singular can or a five pack, going for a few bucks per can.

HI-5 is one of the first cannabis infused seltzers on the East Coast. that will include melatonin, while another will be a lower dose THC, but also includes caffeine— “If you’re going out and doing something active like hiking,” said Goldstein. The fruit chews will have all new flavors with a regular 5 mg of THC. Some chews will have a mixture of a certain amount of CBD and THC, assisting those who may not like as much THC, but enjoy the effects of CBD. Chews cost $30 and will be launching the second week of April. 10



Another up-and-coming product to be released by INSA is called the “Dart X”. This is a vaporizing device that will have settings to control the amount of heat, coming in four different colors. Cost is about $20. Goldstein explained, “People use cannabis for different reasons. Some people use it to sleep, for medical, and some use it socially.” With the Dart X, people will be able to consume their cannabis through vaporizing. This is one of the top selling vaporizing products in the country.




“Comes in citrus and sweet orange peel flavors, along with a deep skunky flavor that can be recognized as gas or white pepper.”



Canna Provisions Locations in Holyoke and Lee



Canna Provisions has many exciting products with the first being a flower. The company said, Greg “Chemdog” Krzanowski, Director of Cultivation for Canna Provisions, has launched 3 Dog Giesel. 3 Dog Giesel is part of the launch line of Chemdog flower (who handpicked and grew the strains himself) through the Smash Hits Brand created in partnership with Canna Provisions. “This is an Original Chem Diesel cut from back in the day crossed with a Tres Dawg male,” Canna Provisions explained. Seeds from that Giesel are a cross of Mass Super Skunk and Original Chem D. So, with the formulation of Original Chem Diesel, TresDawg and Giesel, 3 Dog Giesel was created. This product comes in citrus and sweet orange peel flavors, along with a deep skunky flavor that can be recognized as gas or white pepper. Canna Provisions warns consumers, as this product can really pack a punch! Product is sold exclusively at both Canna Provisions locations.

1906 DROPS

The second product offered by Canna Provisions is an edible called 1906 Drops. “Think: six plant-based experiences aimed at thoughtful formulations combining THC and CBD and plant-based adaptogens and herbs. The result? Drops for swallowing that are designed to be discreet and familiar (i.e.: people know pills), but also mobile and fits in your pocket,” said Canna Provisions. 1906 Drops are vegan and gluten-free, as well as zero calories. After taking a drop, it takes about 20 minutes or less to have any effects— making it one of the fastest-acting edibles there is.

Canna Provisions. The drink itself has all-natural ingredients and 5 mg of THC per can. Levia’s effects work fast and result in absolutely no hangover. This is a great social drink!


Locations in Brookline and Northampton



At NETA, there are three new products that are in the works. The first is called Surterra Wellness Dream and CBN. This product will be released around April/May, with no price as of yet.


Recently, an edible known as Heights Mints has released new flavors including Peach, Mango, and Blackberry. For a 40 count of mints, the price is $30.


Finally, a product called “Float Liquid Cannabis” will be released. A two count costs $5. There will be packs of one and ten counts.



Another new product is Levia- same as Canna Provisions. The beverage is zero calories, zero sugars, and costs approximately $7. With an abundance of new releases, the cannabis industry has much to offer their customers and patients. Head into your local dispensary now to avoid missing out on what all the recent buzz is about!


Locations in Northampton and Worcester



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The third and final product introduced by Canna Provisions is a drink called Levia. Levia has been created to be the “best tasting social sizzler ever,” stated CRQ SPRING 2021



WEED 101

Marijuana, pot, grass, Mary Jane, weed, and ganja; regardless of what it is called, Cannabis has come a long way from its peace-loving reputation of the ‘70s and prior, as well as a number of stigmas that have now gone up in smoke.



Cyber Criminals Target the Cannabis Industry Get into the Weeds of Your Insurance Policy to See if You’re Protected

By Aileen S. Berry, Esq., Professional Lines insurance specialist with Amwins Brokerage in West Palm Beach, FL, and Brian Savitch, Professional Lines insurance specialist with Worldwide Facilities (an Amwins company) in San Francisco, CA.

Protecting both patient and consumer data from hackers should be a top priority for companies operating in the cannabis sector. Both recreational and medicinal operations collect and store personally identifiable, protected health and payment information, as well as frequently handled NDA requirements around growing, extracting and other proprietary processes. As this data is subject to Federal regulations, including HIPAA, failure to protect it can lead to hefty fines and reputational harm. Regulatory bodies also require the tracking of cannabis from seed to sale, which creates the potential for a security breach in tracking software or systems for mobile ordering. Over the past year, cyberattacks have become more frequent in all business segments. As experts projected, cannabis is a growing target industry for hackers. Since navigating the cannabis regulatory landscape can be time consuming and costly, many companies have fallen behind in developing a comprehensive IT infrastructure and implementing the proper security controls to protect their systems and networks. This can lead to continued cyber security events.

Additionally, with the increased use of technology and more efficient processes, businesses across the distribution channel will need to address the potential for business interruption and loss of income due to a data breach – especially as the demand for cannabis products continues to increase. Cyber liability insurance is available to safeguard companies against the ongoing web of cyber security threats – from ransomware, phishing scams and social engineering to forensic and legal costs. Cyber insurance policies can also extend coverage to protect content and advertising produced on a company’s digital platforms as well as in print advertising. Trade name and copyright infringement, defamation, invasion of privacy and other intentional torts are prevalent media claims faced in the cannabis sector. Cyber liability coverage is not standardized across the insurance industry; therefore, each policy should be reviewed carefully to identify various exclusions and limitations. As a leading cyber liability wholesale broker, Amwins has the expertise, proprietary products and risk evaluation resources to place cyber coverage that meets your company’s unique needs.

Amwins understands that your business can be complex and evolutionary in nature. As the nation’s leading specialty insurance distributor, we deliver future-focused insurance solutions that keep you a step ahead of risks. Contact your insurance agent to learn how Amwins can help in securing unmatched coverage. Bring on the Future |




n the words of William Shakespeare, “A rose by any other name would smell as sweet”; and in this day in age, Cannabis (now the more commonly used nomenclature), has as many means of ingestion and useful purposes, as it does names. Smoking

Smoking is the most common and well-known form of marijuana consumption. Oftentimes, the marijuana is rolled into a cigarette or joint, with tobacco rolling papers. Similarly, a blunt is a cigar that has replaced tobacco with weed, then smoked. Other methods include smoking out of a pipe, bowl, bubbler, hookah, or a bong. If some people don’t have access to these items, they may even get creative and make their own fixture out of something like an apple.


This method of ingestion has recently grown more popular. A vaporizer serves as a less harmful device, as the active ingredients inside heats the marijuana to a point just before burning. Vaporizers are typically small, hand-held devices that allow for a minimal smoke or marijuana scent.

Oral Ingestion

Edibles are the growing, popular, and “easier” way to get a high. Of course, everyone has heard of baking this drug into your brownies, but now, they are being placed into much

more. In the state of Massachusetts, where marijuana is legal, dispensaries offer cookies, gummy bears, fruit chews, chocolate bars and more; all containing marijuana. More recently, it’s been added into beverages- expanding the market even more.

Topical Methods

A topical method is a unique method, as it includes products such as ointments and salves that are placed directly on the skin. Topical oils are extracted from marijuana plants and are used to relieve muscle pain or soreness. This form of “ingestion” will not create a high, but rather serve as a medical purpose and benefit to your body’s needs.

With the ever-growing cannabis products on the market another great way for people to expand their palette (so to speak), would be for the individual to focus on what their desired outcome would be after consuming a product. These days cannabis and cannabis related products can help replace that morning cup of coffee to start the day or help you wind down at night after a long day at the office – or home schooling. Below are some different ways cannabis and related products may enhance your experience.


CBD has been reported to not only assist with medical conditions, but also serves as a stimulant in providing energy. With a lower dose (less than 15 mg), CBD may give you the energy you need. Some products that can be ingested to assist in this process include CBD capsules, a CBD Essential Oil Roll-on, and even bath bombs.


Cannabis is often used to help people with conditions such as ADD/ ADHD. When performing tasks such



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Cannabis-Infused Mints

Low-dose 2.5 mg of THC each mint Tin contains 40 Mints Comes in a variety of flavors: Winter Mint, Cocoa Mint, Blackberry, Peach Mango and Peppermint. Refreshingly minty and or sweet fruit flavored - these THC-only tablets may help relax your mind and body.



as writing a paper, completing a project, etc., you may feel as if it’s difficult to focus for a long period of time, as the work may be boring. Across dispensaries in Massachusetts, along with more generic products that can be found online, some cannabis products that enhance focus are cannabis flower, gummies, CBD oil, etc. All these products are THC or CBD dominant, and may be what you need to assist you in staying focused.

uct types such as topicals (ointments/ salves) can be rubbed directly on and absorbed in your skin, allowing for a sense of relief. Theory Wellness offers admirable topicals- perfect for the springtime, with the increase of outdoor activities.


Sleep can be achieved with just about any cannabis product. Contradictory of taking a lower dosage to feel energized, a higher dosage creates minimal energy and fatigue. Dispensaries offer sleep specified gummies, capsules, oils, and more.


Anxiety is extremely high in America, especially right now, in the midst of a pandemic. To release some of that unwanted/needed stress, CBD can do the trick! While CBD comes in a variety of forms, some popular ones include capsules, oils, tinctures, and gummies. If you take the proper dosage, anxiety can be released, and proper body functions can be restored.



As there are many methods to relieve pain or soreness within your body, cannabis is a big one. Specific prod-

The cannabis market is growing and expanding daily with new products and means of enhancing anyone’s cannabis experience. Take a trip to your local dispensary today and make a point to talk to the budtender – let them serve as your guide.


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Trichomes Sugar Leaves

Cola Mature Bud

Nodes Stalk


Fan Leaves



Pistil & Stigmas


Anatomy Trichomes

These small crystal like glands are filled with resin. Tricomes contain the highest amounts of THC and also contain CBD and terpenes.

Pistil and Stigma

Pistil is the reproductive part of the plant - Stigmas areoften red, orange or yellow colored hairs. The pistils don’t actually contain any THC - their only purpose is for pollenation.

Sugar Leaves

The sugar leaves are the smaller clusters of leaves where the resin is usually found. Sugar leaves are commonly used in edibles afterbeing processed. They contain higher levels of THC.

Cola / Mature Bud

This is the mature part of the female plant that is harvested for smoking. THC levels in this part of the plant are at the highest. The main bud is located at the top of the plant while smaller ones are found along other nodes down the stalk.


Nodes are the points in the plant where the leaves connect to the stem area. This part of the plant is especially important when determining the sex of a cannabis plant.


The stalk of a cannabis plant is where hemp is derived from. Hemp can be found in many topical products, fabrics, strings/rope and paper products. This part of the plant has very low THC levels.

Now - how to tell if a cannabis plant is female or male?

In order to determine the sex of a cannabis plant - the place to look is at the nodes. If the plant you are viewing is female - you will begin to see signs of stigma growing - typically around week 6. Around the same time frame if instead of seeing stigma at the node site, you see small sacks of pollen - the plant is male.


Stems of a marijuanna plant contain some but low levels of THC. Their main role is carrying nutrients to the rest of the plant. However, on occasion stems can aid in the tincture making process.

Fan Leaves

Likely the most well-known image that comes to mind when someone thinks about cannabis is the fan leaf. These big leaves have the lowest concentration of THC and are typically thrown away. 21



Delivery Debate


he cannabis industry has always been one shrouded in a cloud of misunderstanding, convoluted legal documents spanning thousands of pages, and applications processes that can costs tens of thousands of dollars.




ithin Massachusetts there is a change coming to the adult and medical cannabis industry, the addition of delivery services. Delivery services are nothing new, even in the cannabis industry, and as health and safety during the pandemic have become a priority for many consumers and businesses, delivery services in the cannabis space have come front and center within our state. Within Massachusetts the only business owners currently able to apply for delivery licenses are those who apply under the Social Equity or Economic Empowerment programs (those from communities that have been most affected by the War on Drugs over the years;) and there are two types of licenses delivery companies can apply for a “Warehouse” model and a “Courier” model. The Warehouse model license allows the business to purchase products wholesale from cultivators within Massachusetts and sell them directly to the group’s customers. The Courier license allows the business to make deliveries for licensed dispensaries and retail facilities. Each license has its pros and cons and will take time, just as everything does within the Cannabis space, to fine tune and create a safe and fair delivery model. Having talked with three dispensary presidents, Payton Shubrick of 6 Bricks, Ulysses Youngblood of Major Bloom and Professor at Clark University, and Patrick Jonsson of Curaleaf, all stress the issues of Courier Licensing and the strain of warehouse management for the consumer. “The Courier License alone is not a financially feasible model”, says Ulysses Youngblood, the costs associated with the courier model start immediately because the license holder is at the whim of dispensary pricing and then must add an additional fee to the consumer, which can add up very quickly with taxes and other charges. Another issue with this type of license is the employee cost. Two employees must deliver the products, and for certain SE and EE licensed groups that are already struggling with budgeting, these additional costs can make this type of license not as profitable as we have seen in other states. The Warehouse License model has

“Additionally, because the delivery license does not restrict companies to a specific city or town learning how to effectively scale will be key.”





WELCOME TO THE INTERSECTION OF ARTS & CANNABIS Dispensary visits should stimulate your senses. RISE Amherst supports the natural bond between cannabis, art, and the long tradition of public art in the Pioneer Valley. We encourage every adult to explore their own creativity and enjoy art of every kind. Visit RISE Amherst for your own spark of inspiration. Please consume responsibly. This product has not been analyzed or approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). There is limited information on the side effects of using this product, and there may be associated health risks. Marijuana use during pregnancy and breast-feeding may pose potential harms. It is against the law to drive or operate machinery when under the influence of this product. KEEP THIS PRODUCT AWAY FROM CHILDREN.



VISIT US AT THE INTERSECTION OF MEADOW STREET AND ROUTE 116 | @rise.cannabis There may be health risks associated with consumption of this product. Marijuana can impair concentration, coordination, and judgment. The impairment effects of Edibles may be delayed by two hours or more. In case of accidental ingestion, contact poison control hotline 1-800-222-1222 or 9-1-1. This product may be illegal outside of MA.



“The Courier License alone is not a financially feasible model, the costs associated with the courier model start immediately because the license holder is at the whim of dispensary pricing and then must add an additional fee to the consumer, which can add up very quickly with taxes and other charges.” ULYSSES YOUNGBLOOD PRESIDENT OF MAJOR BLOOM PROFESSOR AT CLARK UNIVERSITY




less downsides as the group can purchase wholesale from growers and sell to their own consumers, but this can be both taxing and expensive. Managing the products, keeping products on shelves for consumers, and managing incoming and outgoing products is a large operation that can require a large amount of expertise and manpower— again driving up costs. However, at the end of the day, the delivery services will provide a much-needed service to the consumers, as well as a safe and legal means to receive products from their favorite stores! The biggest affects we will see in 2021 and beyond is the accessibility of cannabis products, a larger market for groups to target, and potentially a decrease in black market sales due to a wider service range. Payton Shubrick also commented that “due to the pandemic, we have seen the importance of being able to provide

effective and efficient services for customers while being financially feasible”, and I am sure cannabis advocates and users can attest to the importance of safety and health during this time. According to Patrick Johnson, “While some consumers will like the convenience of ordering from home, we believe the majority of the market will still prefer the instore experience where customers can interact with dispensary associates and get a more complete view of the products available.” He also stated that “We (Curaleaf), do not believe there will be a major impact to the price as delivery comes online”. Payton Shubrick of 6 Bricks also brought up an excellent point once delivery licenses are more common within the market; she stated, “From a business aspect, this will require many companies to try and become more vertically integrated so that they are not too dependent on one side of

the spectrum, the delivery/retail side or the manufacturing/ cultivation side of things”. Many companies and businesses within the market will have to obtain a license or an agreement otherwise potentially face a reduction in clients due to the convenience of delivery. Creating a delivery license system is an amazing opportunity for the businesses that acquire a license and for the customers convenience, but it will disrupt the current market and force many companies to change their marketing, branding, distribution, and pricing models.

Adding delivery licensing will have far reaching effects on the consumer and the individual business as it will increase the market value and client range, making the importance for brand recognition and product quality more important.


Depending on your preferences, you’ll want different kinds of cannabis products. As a recreational cannabis boutique, we stay well-stocked with a variety of different options to suit every customer. You can browse our selection of:

• Vapes • Edibles • Cannabis flowers • Cannabis concentrates



3235 Main St, Becket, MA 01223

You must be 21 or older to enter our shop and make purchases.

Medical Marijuana Evaluations Do you qualify?

Our Adult Use Dispensary is located within the heart of downtown Northampton at 110 Pleasant Street.



Affordable • Convenient We are here to help MariMed Consults



We also offer MEDICAL AND ADULT USE store at 1191 Millbury Street, Worcester

Qualified Patients Certified with DPH

Keep product out of reach of children. This product has not been analyzed or approved by the FDA. Marijuana can impair concentraaon, coordinaaon, and judgement. Recreaaonal and medical marijuana is available under MA law, however it is illegal under Federal Law and is not available to individuals under the age of 21. MA License RMD#1345. 3149521-01

1985 Main St. Suite 209 Springfield, MA


You’ll find several Sativa and Indica varieties at our shop—we try to have at least five strains of each type in stock.

Coming from California and seeing firsthand the changes delivery services can bring to the industry, I can attest to the tumult adding delivery services will cause from a safety and security standpoint to distribution of wealth and products, but the most important item that must be remembered is the consumers safety and comfort. Adding delivery licensing will have far reaching effects on the consumer and the individual business as it will increase the market value and client range, making the importance for brand recognition and product quality more important. California, just like Massachusetts, went through a month of learning how to do things right, and Massachusetts will be no different. As consumers and industry leaders we must all remember we are learning and growing the industry together and must support one another to ensure the industry’s success and the customer’s comfort!

le he al th N ow d oi n g te n s ! io at u ev al











here is a lot to explore when you visit a dispensary, while it can be exciting, it can also be an overwhelming experience for first timers. While most dispensaries across the state and even across the country differ from one another, they also have some similarities. Whether or not they broke the mold when it comes to dispensaries; Holyoke’s Canna Provisions, in particular, is a feast for the senses. Before you even walk in, the expansive brick complex with its character and charm welcome you. As your eyes scan the surrounding businesses Canna Provisions’ standing signage, complete with their logo—appropriately a compass, is ready to guide you inside, and as their tagline states: “better your journey”. Once through the doors, the first thing you see is a 150-year-old paper mill. You will then be greeted by security where they will ask to see your ID, to ensure that you’re at least 21 years of age. Illuminating beyond the people are bright orange and green, neon colors, allowing for these light-up signs to stand out. White and charcoal painted bricks make-up the interior, with vast corridors separating the rooms, yet allowing for a more accessible space. Displays are carefully placed throughout the store, with the assistance from some local artists. Each station is different from the next, making you wonder what you’ll see as you meander through in a snake like pattern. Product names, colors, and packaging force your eyes to wander. With so much to filter through and choose from, the decision-making CRQ SPRING 2021


process can be far from easy. Luckily, Canna Provisions has what you’re looking for. Once your eyes have danced across the room taking in the array of colors and textured wood boxes/ displays, your focus soon turns to the melodious chatter of customers that fills the room. While the sounds floating inside of Canna Provisions alter throughout their day-to-day business, the consistent excited chatter of customers soon fade, as your attention turns to your guide/cannabis concierge. At Canna Provisions, it’s crucial for employees to make their customers feel welcomed. They want everyone to take their time within the store and give the impression that they’re on your time. Guides will flood your ears with all the information you

The ambient scent of Canna Provisions is strictly cannabis; the plant that is. Depending on the person, cannabis is a more plant based, light earthy smell. need and all the questions you want answered. No matter the day, no customer will go unnoticed or overlooked at Canna Provisions. Perhaps you think that dispensaries smell like burning marijuana. However, this is not the case! The ambient scent of Canna Provisions is strictly cannabis; the plant that is. Depending on the person, cannabis is a more plant based, light earthy smell. Whereas oth30


ers believe cannabis has a more heavy, distinct smell. If you walk into Canna Provisions today, amid the ongoing pandemic, you will smell cleaning supplies. Or maybe, you will smell nothing at all due to the masks and face coverings that we’re required to wear. Nonetheless, the dispensary is working diligently to keep up with and maintain proper sanitation in all aspects. This allows for a sense of security and safety among not only customers, but Canna Provisions employees as well. In terms of touch during COVID-19, there isn’t much, if anything at all, that can be touched. Canna Provisions holds their customers’ safety as a high priority; while still providing the best experiences possible. In a normal world, where a pandemic no longer exists, customers and consumers looking to purchase items will be able to walk through and “feel out” the different products along with their packaging. Hopefully, we can soon return to a time where human interaction including shaking the hand of your cannabis connoisseur, will be acceptable. Last, but certainly not the least, is the post dispensary experience, when customers can go home and try the products they’ve purchased. Canna Provisions believes this experience is almost better than the in-person dispensary walk-thru. Taste also works together to enhance your olfactory understanding. From chocolate bars to the delicious bite size and freshly baked brownies, blondies, and snickerdoodles (that are enough to rival what grandma used to make.); your tastebuds are sure to undergo a mouthwatering sensation. Additionally, Canna Provisions has gummies, which they’ve dubbed “a dose of decadence”, as well as a drink called Levia and more. Without a doubt, this will lead you back for some more! All in all, Canna Provisions provides their customers with satisfaction that is sure to excite all five senses. It’s an experience, yet an emotion, through your body that one has to feel to believe!

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How to make CEO Meg Sanders of Canna Provisions favorite cannabis dosed snack.

HOW YOU’LL MAKE IT • Measure 1/4 cup of coconut oil. Which you can get at any grocery store and while many oils work Meg loves how coconut oil works with the cannabis oil best for these. • Next, add your THC or CBD distillate. Distillate is a very safe way to take an extraction out of the cannabis plant and use it to simply create this beautiful oil that retains the flavor and effects of its source material. It comes in 1 gram syringes but it’s sticky, so any issues getting it out just run it under hot water to loosen it up. Important: Twist the cap/stopper off first, and if you didn’t want to use the entire thing you can screw back on and preserve your distillate.

• Once the distillate is out, blend into the coconut oil - if it’s not blending right just warm the oil slightly in the microwave but be sure to keep the temperature of the oil under 200 degrees (preserves the cannabinoids). • Once your oil is nice and mixed with your distillate, add your 1 packet of ranch powder dressing or 3 tablespoons out of a large container. Then the garlic salt. Then the tablespoon of fresh dried dill weed. • Stir and whisk until uniform and no chunks. It should be thick to coat the crackers. So whisk well!

INGREDIENTS: 1 - 8oz box of Oyster Crackers (est. 224 individual ranch crackers) 1/4 cup coconut oil 1 tablespoon garlic salt 1 teaspoon dill weed 1 packet or 3 tbs of dried ranch mix 1 one-gram THC or CBD Distillate 90mg total active cannabinoids = roughly 2.5 mg dose per oyster cracker

• Once all that is mixed, add your oyster crackers! Gently fold with a big spoon to get them actively and evenly covered with the mix (tip: scrape from the bottom). • If you want to really lock the flavor in, spread the coated crackers on a baking sheet one layer at a time. Bake in oven at 190 degrees for about 10 mins to soak into the cracker and it’s done! Note: the broken ones hold more of the oil and cover more so careful, those are the big ones and can pack more of a punch! REMINDER: This kind of infusion is not exact science, just kitchen science. So always be careful, hydrate before you medicate, and remember to take one and see how you feel for an hour. You can always have another once you’ve given your body time to let the effects set in.

PRO TIP 1: Get a laser thermometer or just be sure to keep the heat under 200 degrees. Higher than that and THC turns into another cannabinoid CBN, which has sedative effects. Great for sleeping, but not so much for socializing. PRO TIP 2: Keep away from pets, as a couple of them can sometimes pop out of the bowl and fall on the floor! PRO TIP 3: OH NO! Feel like you’ve eaten enough to be in an uncomfortable sensation? Chewing whole peppercorns can reduce the effects of cannabis over-consumption. Keep some on hand!



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Please consume responsibly. For use only by adults 21 years of age or older. Keep out of reach of children. This product may cause impairment and may be habit-forming.

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hile COVID-19 continues to hang over the country, businesses work to stay afloat. In order to remain open, there are many restrictions that need to be followed. Protocols may vary, however, local dispensaries including INSA, NETA, Resinate and Theory are issuing many of the same policies for their staff and customers to follow. INSA, with locations in Easthampton, Salem, and Springfield, have very similar COVID restrictions throughout their stores. Lewis Goldstein, chief marketing officer at INSA said, “At our dispensaries as well as our manufacturing facilities, all employees have to be temperature checked when entering.” Limited capacity is allowed indoors regarding the state limit. Plexiglass dividers have been installed between each area, specifically to divide all retail associates and customers. Goldstein said, this is executed to make sure that everyone is maintaining a six-foot distance, both inside and outside of the store. INSA’s facilities are cleaned regularly throughout the day and night, including counters, doors, and any other touch

points. Goldstein shared that there have been times when employees have tested positive, resulting in the closing of the dispensary for a deep clean. He assured that when this has happened, all proper precautions were taken. Goldstein went on to say, “We encourage online ordering so that we can process people and get them out as quickly as possible.” In both Salem and Easthampton, INSA offers an outdoor kiosk which is strictly weather dependent. Similarly, NETA, along with its parent company Parallel, take all COVID precautions seriously and effectively. NETA has registered marijuana dispensaries in Brookline, Franklin, and Northampton. According to NETA, at the start of COVID-19, they created a task force to provide oversight and implement rigorous safeguards for the sole protection of their staff and customers. Currently, they still practice these strict protocols, including social distancing, mask wearing, and hand washing/sanitation. NETA uses glass partitions to minimize any close contact. At night, a third-party cleaning and sanitization service goes to all CRQ SPRING 2021



three locations, in addition to the rouvice president of marketing, stated, can actually stretch the lines out a little tine daily environmental services clean- “Everything has changed.” He went on bit clearer and a little bit longer,” said ing. NETA abides by the state’s limits to say, everyone at Theory has been Winstanley. In Chicopee, this location on the number of customers allowed ensuring that social distancing is taking has a much larger footprint. The total in at one time. Additionally, they offer a place throughout lines—both indoors density of people allowed in the store reserve ahead model, meaning anyone and outdoors. High contact areas are is a lot higher than in Great Barrington. 21 years or older can purchase cannabeing sanitized, such as doors, and Because of this, Theory has allowed inbis by ordering on their website. When even displays. Winstanley said, it’s not door shopping, along with the encourthe order is ready, they will be given a only important to protect the safety of agement of pre-orders as well. time in which they can come pick it up, his team, but also the consumers and The third Theory store is in Bridgesafely. NETA also offers a delivery serpatients that are coming in to visit. water and is a medical cannabis dispenvice for its medical patients, only at the Currently, each of Theory’s locasary only. While they have the capacity Northampton and Brookline stores. to accommodate patients indoors, They are the only cannabis company this location doesn’t have the same “It’s not only in Massachusetts that offers delivery sort of volume the others do as it’s important to protect service— which has been quite busy solely medical. Winstanley said, the during the pandemic. Curbside pickthe safety of the team, recreational stores require more up is also available for those who thoughtfulness in how they manage but also the consumers their queues. prefer this method. Matt Yee, director of retail oper Pertaining to the day-to-day and patients that are ations at Resinate, explained the prebusiness, COVID has altered coming in to visit.” cautions and safety measures their the usual happenings in a typical dispensaries are taking. Resinate has dispensary. Yee claimed, “Comtwo locations in Northampton and munication has hindered.” With Worcester. Yee said, both locations the wearing of face masks and have a limited capacity of 25 percent. tions are operating a little bit differently. glass barriers, it makes communication They are undergoing sanitation, along Winstanley said their Great Barrington between an employee and a customer with keeping staff and customers at a store which is a smaller store in terms much more difficult. The individual safe distance. Like INSA and NETA, of its footprint, has minimal in-store time and attention that customers typiResinate has glass partitions. Yee said, shopping and visitors are encouraged cally receive, can no longer be done in “Capacity is a hassle. We are cautious to place a pre-order. With pre-ordering its true fashion. of who we have in the stores.” To limit you can choose your pick-up window Goldstein agreed, “The biggest time spent inside, Resinate is offering time. There is also an outdoor tent thing it’s done is not allow us to have pre-orders and curbside pick-up. where folks can pick-up their orders. as much time educating and spending At Theory, Thomas Winstanley, “The reason for us doing so is that we time with customers.” As a result, INSA 36


has created an online resource (, where consumers can email and ask questions that they would have previously done in-person or set up a video conference call with a cannabis expert. NETA claimed their everyday life has certainly changed, like most, but they are pleased to have developed a plan that focuses on safety first. With this approach, it allows for a sense of protection over customers and employees. They stated, “We are so proud of our teams at our three NETA facilities for their work every day to keep our customers and each other safe. At Theory’s dispensaries, Winstanley believes that their business is constantly evolving. “Even before COVID, in the cannabis industry, things change so rapidly, for the most part.” As each location requires different measures to be taken, the staff is responsible for reimagining how the business can operate, with safety being paramount. In fact, Winstanley shared, “In the very near future, we’re going to be rolling out one of the first drive-thru pickup windows in the state.” This idea came from the question of how they

can provide a healthier experience for people who visit. The drive-thru will be in Chicopee. Winstanley said, “What will continue to be interesting going into the spring, is the number of vaccinations; and to see what is a new normal?” Right now, the “normal”, is putting up sneeze guards, plexiglass walls between customers, and sanitation. He believes this is going to stick around for a while, perhaps even to stay. Theory works closely with town officials from all locations, along with relying on state governments and municipalities to make the final call for how a business can truly operate. Goldstein added, when INSA employees feel comfortable, this will define when they go online, in store, and soon, they will be adding phone ordering. “The phone ordering will allow us to have that personal touch without it necessarily being in the store,” he said. They are waiting to see infection rates in the community before making any major decisions. According to the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission’s website, “The Commission’s Amended Administrative Order Allowing Curb-

side Operations requires licensees to monitor and comply with all Commission-issued guidelines and bulletins. Consistent with 935 CMR 500.105(1)(r) and 935 CMR 501.105(1)(r), licensees must have and follow written operating procedures promoting workplace safety, which includes protocols addressing COVID-19 (Coronavirus).” All licensee COVID-19 Standard Operating Procedures must inform the Commission of any case of an employee testing positive for COVID-19. This must be done as soon as possible— no later than 24 hours after verification of illness. While state regulations and mandates are constantly changing, it’s difficult for anyone to know what the future of COVID will look like. All remain hopeful that businesses and even everyday life will go back to normal, but it’s too soon to tell when that will be. Further information regarding COVID-19’s effects on dispensaries can be found at the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission’s website.


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t 253 Farmacy, the cannabis and cannabis products are kosher. The designation is granted by a Texas rabbi who made it his mission to certify cannabis products as fit for consumption by observant Jews following the death of his young son from brain cancer six years ago. Meanwhile, 253 Farmacy co-CEO Seth Rutherford says the kosher certification is a signifier of quality, both in methods and in ingredients. He and his partners — two investors are Jewish — want to differentiate their product by going above and beyond the already exacting regulations of the Massachusetts Cannabis Control Commission. “We felt that it’s just another way to show how 253 does things up here,” he said of the kosher designation. “Quality, quality quality is what we are about.” The shop was first certified as kosher in 2019, and the owners say they’ve been told they are the only such shop between Maine and Florida. 38


The certification is renewed every year. 253 Farmacy is the trade name for parent company 253 Organics, and it boasts on-site production and growing and local management. The shop describes itself as “deli style” in its online marketing. The certification comes from Rabbi Yaakov Cohen of Whole Kosher Services in Houston, Texas. He wanted to dispel some misunderstandings. “Kosher does not mean blessed by the rabbi,” Cohen said in a phone interview. “Kosher basically is a very specific set of laws that are brought down from the

“Kosher gummies are made instead with fruit pectin, a vegetarian product.” five books of Moses covering a huge spectrum of food groups.” That includes familiar prohibitions against mixing meat and dairy, and the use of products from non-kosher animals such as pigs and shellfish. Cohen said kosher certification also includes enforcing the complex CRQ SPRING 2021


livestock slaughtering laws attributed to Moses. But it can be hard for the average consumer to understand how those kosher rules apply to cannabis. Cohen said gummies offer an easy-to-understand example. Kosher gummies can’t be made with gelatin, which is made from collagen — which often comes from pigs. Kosher gummies are made instead with fruit pectin, a vegetarian product. Rutherford said he has to buy kosher ethanol for the lab, a solvent used to prepare extracts, because of rules governing alcohol. He said all the ingredients and products required by kosher rules are more expensive and harder to get. But the kosher designation fits with the organic rules 253 Farmacy also follows. “It’s like a farm-to-table thing,” he said. Rutherford, of Amherst originally, and partner Christopher Gallant of Granby, built 253 Farmacy in the former Hallmark School of Photography building. Their renovations created retail space and indoor growing space and an outdoor ornamental, non-cannabis garden. 40


“We really want to have a nice Zen feeling,” he said. Cohen said 40% to 60% of the products in an average grocery store are kosher. “It says there are another pair of eyes on it,” he said. “People see it as a safer, healthier product.” Companies that get kosher certifications generally see a boost in sales of about 15%, and not all customers buy kosher for religious reasons. But Rabbi Shlomo Yaffe of Congregation B’nai Torah in Springfield might be here to harsh the mellow. He said that while Judaism permits alcohol in moderation, the faith’s teachings frown upon intoxication. “Jewish tradition takes a dim view against altering one’s state of consciousness by chemical means,” he said. Cohen said he focuses on medicinal uses of cannabis. But he doesn’t limit his work to the medicinal side of the legal cannabis industry. He also provides certifications to what the state of Massachusetts calls “adult use,” or recreational products. “I want to make these products more broadly available,” Cohen said. “Not everyone has access to medical

marijuana. I want to take down barriers.” Cohen said he’s not the only rabbi certifying kosher cannabis and cannabis products. He has certified 15 to 20 companies already, mostly in California and on the West Coast. Another rabbi proposed a kosher cannabis project in Lynn in 2019. But that company, Essence Labs, isn’t open yet.

Companies that get kosher certifications generally see a boost in sales of about 15%, and not all customers buy kosher for religious reasons.


Cohen said cannabis oil helped his son during the boy’s illness. He and his wife were able to get it in California, but authorities intercepted a shipment meant for their home in Texas. Without the oil, Cohen said, his boy’s condition worsened. Cohen recently related the story in a “My Turn” column in Newsweek. 253 Farmacy touts the kosher certification in its marketing, Rutherford said. And Yaffe said members of his congregation told him they saw those ads, and have asked him about it. “They thought it was funny,” he said.

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o avoid or eliminate any muscle pain or soreness that one may experience, a variety of salves and ointments can be used. Thomas Winstanley of Theory said they offer a few different types of topicals that are infused to help with these issues. His personal favorite is the

Theory Muscle Creme:

a blend of CBD oil with a cooling and soothing muscle creme. Winstanley explained, “The combination helps with an instant cooling effect while the CBD uses its anti-inflammatory properties to reduce any soreness or tightness in muscle groups.” Other popular products include a Theory Body Oil which is a thinner liquid, along with a Theory Salve that Winstanley said is “more viscous.” However, based on your skin type and sensitivity levels, both of these products can work wonders! There are many benefits that coincide with using these products. For instance, the CBD compound is one of the primary target molecules in the cannabis plant. Winstanley explained, “It’s known to provide medical benefits without the psychoactive effects that are common with its fellow compound, THC. The effects of CBD include reducing pain and inflammation, along with a host of other attributes.” When using an ointment or salve, it’s recommended that customers and patients only use a small amount—dime size and apply to the targeted area. Winstanley said, after about 45 minutes, see how it’s working and apply more as needed. If you’re someone who enjoys running and biking, or even skiing during those cold winter seasons, as does Winstanley, 42



As warmer weather approaches, an

increase in outdoor activities, adventures, and exercise typically coincides.

then these topicals are perfect for you! He shared, “As part of my recovery, I like to use a targeted application of CBD products, either Theory Muscle Creme or Theory Salve, to areas where I expect to be sore.” After completing a high intensity workout or strenuous activity, it’s important to relax those muscles with a good stretch first. Stretching is crucial as it drains the lactic acid that causes soreness. Winstanley said after 45 minutes post exercise, he will then apply the CBD to target areas such as his calves and hamstrings. Following these few simple steps will assist you now and in the future. While other dispensaries may differ in their products, these topicals can be found at Theory Wellness locations in Barrington, Chicopee, and Bridgewater.

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Do you know all there is to know about the

cannabis industry?




erhaps you know a little, a lot or somewhere in between about its use, impacts and effects. However, are you sure that what you know or hear is true? No need to worry, because we will be debunking those myths and sharing some important facts that can benefit you! A common myth that people regularly hear is that cannabis is considered a “gateway drug.” The truth is, for many, cannabis is actually considered a terminus drug. People who use hard drugs such as heroin or LSD, may have used cannabis in the past, however, the correlation between the two does not imply the causation. Also, while comparing cannabis users to those who use hard drugs, the numbers are small, making it difficult to prove that there’s any link between the two (Cannabis: Facts, Myths and Mental Health). Another myth you may have heard or have assumptions about is that cannabis can be and/or is addictive. Not only is this false, but in fact, less than one percent of Americans smoke/ use cannabis more than once a day. There is nothing in cannabis that is addictive, but rather can be considered as more of a habit for some (Cannabis: Facts, Myths and Mental Health). Regarding dispensaries in particular, people assume that when you walk inside the aroma will be a strong, overwhelming wave of marijuana. However, this is not necessarily the case. Of course all dispensaries differ in one way or another, but many of their products (i.e. edibles) have no scent at all.

For those who have never consumed cannabis, they may think that this substance can only be smoked. The truth is, nowadays, there are multiple ways that someone can consume cannabis. In fact, the drug can be smoked, eaten or even drank. When it comes to the duration of how long a high may last, some believe that it only lasts a few hours. Depending on the type of product and how you are consuming that product, the time frame of your high will differ. Dispensaries offer a variety of supplements that allow you to get a quick, shorter lasting high, whereas other products take about 45 minutes to an hour before feeling any effects. A wide spread myth that’s associated with any drug or alcohol use is that it has lasting impacts on your brain’s abilities— specifically memory loss.

The truth is, when using cannabis, your cognitive functions may be impaired, but only while you are intoxicated. Therefore, once the drug wears off, you will not have any long-lasting effects (Cannabis: Facts, Myths and Mental Health). Cannabis just makes you lazy. While other drugs may cause apathy and a lack of motivation, cannabis does not. In studies done on the subjects, participants were given high doses of cannabis over a seven-day period. The results proved that there was no direct impact on their motivation nor their abilities (Cannabis: Facts, Myths and Mental Health). Although there are countless myths and facts regarding cannabis, these are some of the most common and often reported that people hear and/or believe. Before partaking in your own cannabis use, make sure you know the facts— they’re important. References:




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