It’s truly infuriating to wrap your mind around the decades-long War on Drugs, and how it decimated the Black community by arresting and incarcerating so many fathers/brothers, stifling the progress of the community at large for generations, hindering income, employment, and even the right to vote.
So while it might be more convenient to re-up at the nearest pot shop, you—yes, you—can help shape the future of cannabis by supporting Black-owned businesses with your choice of bud or dispensary. Here are a few businesses to seek out.
The men behind the wildly popular Trap Kitchen food trucks and catering in LA and Portland, Malachi “Spank” Jenkins and Roberto Smith also have their own line of #BiscuitBoyz cannabis flower called Trap Private Reserve. Recent strains like Pink Propane, Blueberry Biscuits, and their signature Biscuits & Gravy are available at Portland dispensaries AmeriCanna Rx, Lemonnade, and the Green Remedy. There’s also a bevy of apparel featuring Trap Kitchen and Biscuit Boys branding.
Magic Hour Cannabis is one of the few Black-, Latinx-, and women-owned licensed cannabis producers in the country, let alone the state of Oregon. Owners/growers Adriana Ruiz Carlile and Will Perry are NYC transplants who left their corporate jobs in 2017 and for the past five years have been growing top-shelf organic cannabis flower on the West Coast. They now operate out of their own facility near Portland. Strains such as Purple Punch (Granddaddy Purple x Larry OG) and Duct Tape (Gorilla Glue #4 x Do-Si-Dos) are available for delivery via Green Box, at various Electric Lettuce locations, as well as at Farma, Serra Belmont, and Five Zero Trees dispensaries.
Green Box was founded in 2016 by Adrian Wayman, a Black and gay entrepreneur, and his father-in-law, Bob Wayman, a Vietnam War veteran. The Nuleaf grant recipients became the first licensed cannabis delivery service in the state, and one of the only such subscription services. Angling itself toward those who might not feel comfortable walking into a traditional brick-and-mortar cannabis dispensary, the company meets at the intersection of subscription service, e-commerce, and delivery. Subscription plans include one, two, or three boxes (for $100–270, paid up front) of assorted goods from edibles to beverages, pre-rolls to premium flower. Since customers get something different every time, Green Box is a great way to try a range of products, and scale back on the amount of time you spend inside dispensaries.
Formerly known as Green Hop, this NE Killingsworth shop has changed its name and expanded its theme to the Green Muse: “infusing music and cannabis,” offering a plethora of strains and products named after and inspired by music and pop culture. Co-owned by Nicole Kennedy and Karanja Crews, two teachers from Northeast Portland, the Green Muse also offers an academy program with an apprenticeship component that aims to help more BIPOC workers and entrepreneurs get into the cannabis industry.
ReLeaf Health owner Leona Thomas is a natural-health advocate and veteran IT specialist. As a Black mother who went through several high-risk pregnancies, Thomas seeks to destigmatize cannabis use in motherhood and diversify the cannabis industry. During the pandemic, the Black-owned spot on NE Martin Luther King Jr. Boulevard also offers home delivery and curbside pick-up after you sign up for an account on the ReLeaf website. You’ll find everything from CBD bath confetti to hash oil, pre-rolls, topicals, edibles, kief, and more. One of ReLeaf’s budtenders will discreetly deliver your cannabis to your door. Free shipping on THC orders of $50 or more, and CBD orders of $40 or more.