Week Seven TWB Business Guide – Symptoms and Strains

Welcome to WEEK SEVEN of the 10 week Marijuana Business Training Course!
This week’s course will cover: SYMPTOMS AND STRAINS
Different strains alleviate different symptoms, and hybridization of strains results in specific products tailored to specific needs of patients. Many dispensary owners find it beneficial to align with growers to specialize in providing medicine for patients with specific ailments. Glaucoma patients will have positive results from a strain that has little or less desired effect for patients with spinal injuries. This is not to say that you couldn’t carry strains that benefit different patients, it is just to iterate that you will likely need to employ more than one grower to accommodate the provision of different strains to the variety of potential patients in your collective/collaborative. Bottom line: know your product and market it appropriately.
Marijuana seeds and clones (baby plants that have been propagated as cuttings from a mature plant referred to as a The Mother) are regulated like all other parts of the plant, so you must be a patient or caregiver to acquire them. Once you are registered in your state, you may purchase seeds from a dispensary in that state. In most states, a caregiver cannot purchase seeds only from a dispensary, and not directly from another caregiver. The only gray area for this law are in the states of Oregon and Montana, who honor the cards of caregivers in other states, but bringing the seeds back to your home state might be where you run into complications so be sure to verify that there is not legislation written specifically against the import of the seeds from other states. Unfortunately, purchasing seeds from websites that produce them and distribute them across state borders is too high profile, easily traceable and not at all worth the risk. It goes without saying movement of seeds across country borders is expressly illegal and not worth putting your legitimate operation in jeopardy over. This is the value of caregivers who learn the science of hybridization.
In the “operations” segment of week two, we discussed the value of having large scale growing operations to ensure that patients are not left in a lurch from a crop gone bad due to unforeseeable circumstances. The other major benefit of providing quality facilities for caregivers is providing them with the scale of facilities that allow for experimentation with hybridization.
A caregiver could get a PhD in the techniques and science of crossing strains for the purposes of exacting specific traits in the offspring of two parent plants. We will not attempt to cover all details involved with this amazing scientific art, but we will cover the basics necessary to understand what you will need to know as business owner.

The two basic strains of the Marijuana plant family are Indica and Sativa. These two have distinctly different characteristics in every aspect – from the shape of their leaves to the impacts of their medicine on patients. Your storefront employees need to be trained in these basic concepts, in addition to the more detailed effects of the specific strains they are distributing so they are able to advise patients to find the right combination and method of medical marijuana use to address their specific symptoms. Further, knowledge of each strain’s impacts in relation to dosage and time of day for ingestion are all factors necessary to advise patients in the best use of their medicine.

There are two strains of the plant species Cannabis that have noticeably different effects on the user: Cannabis Indica and Cannabis Sativa. These two strains differ primarily in that Sativa acts the mind and Indica acts on the body. For depression, headaches/migraines, nausea reduction/increased appetite, C. Sativa is the strain to use. It also increases focus/creativity, energizes/stimulates and supports immune system. Alternately, C. Indica reduces pain, muscle spasms, inflammation and is an anti-convulsant. It also aids sleep, relieves headaches/migraines, stimulates appetite and reduces intraocular (eye) pressure. The two strains can and have been hybridized to enhance and combine certain effects, and the regulation of the industry provides opportunity to exact this science. Due to Marijuana’s classification in the Controlled Substances Act, doctors cannot “prescribe” Marijuana for medical use, it can only be “recommended” under the First Amendment.

There are a variety of chemicals that provide these different effects. The most commonly known chemical is THC (tetrahydrocannabinol) because of its capacity to induce a euphoric feeling. There are however seven other reliably producible chemicals that have known effects. CBD (cannabidiol) has antipsychotic effects, acts as a sedative and sleep aid and relieves muscle spasms, but is not known for pain relieving capacities. For this reason it specifically can help dytopic delusions, Huntington’s disease, Parkinson’s disease and neuropathic conditions. CBG (cannabigerol), CBN (cannabinol) and THC are known to reduce intraocular pressure so both are helpful for patients suffering from glaucoma. CBG is a non-psychoactive chemical found primarily in hemp and also found to help inflammatory bowel disease. CBN is a weak psychoactive cannabinoid found only in trace amounts. CBC (cannabichromene) is a cannabinoid that has anti-inflammatory and anti-viral effects, and may contribute to the overall analgesic effects of medical cannabis. CBL (cannabicyclol) has antipsychotic effects.

The major benefit of regulation is the capacity to create metrics and rating systems for establishing valid and repeatable characteristics of specific strains. It is this methodology of quantifying and classifying different strains that reinforces the work of caregivers as hybridization scientists, and provides your storefront staff with the capacity to responsibly and reliably recommend different strains to patients based on their needs. Skilled caretakers starting with purchased seeds and or clones will grow them to maturity to ensure the finished product produces the symptoms that are in line with the strain it was purported to be. This is the exciting scientific frontier of the industry – that the medicinal uses can be exacted, and the multitude of varieties and strains can be documented, quantified and reliably reproduced.

A quick note on progress: This schedule is designed to set a productive pace to encourage people to push trough and attain their goal. By now you should have all of your paperwork, funding sources and rental agreements in order and be working on your storefront setup. If you are not completely through these steps, don’t get discouraged and keep up the pace. You will get there. It is more imperative to do a quality job of ensuring your business plan is written well and everything is in proper order. The schedule is intended primarily to help maintain motivation.
Now onto your next assignment: just as important as understanding the chemistry behind the plant is the understanding of how the dosage and type of deliverable impacts the patients. Continue your research on your sale-able goods to extend to the allowable quantities that individuals can purchase, and the types of deliverables (ways Marijuana can be ingested).

We are here to help and want to see you succeed! If you have questions you can email The Weed Business directly at info@theweedbusiness.com.
Happy Trails!
The Green Ninja, DANKO and the Weed Business Team
The Green Ninja has business experience from owning two companies, has operated The Weed Business since 2009, and follows news providers to stay as current on issues and business laws of Medicinal and Recreational Marijuana use in the United States. DANKO is from a Medical Marijuana state and has many card carrying friends providing first hand insights from patients and caregivers, in addition to researching and writing in-depth articles about the most current issues of the industry. Combined, we have spent hundreds of hours looking into different states’ medical Marijuana laws and the industry to make sure the information included is the most cutting-edge and up to date information there is. The Weed Business has a number of other contributors and a large support network, so if you have a question we can’t answer there’s a good chance we know someone who can.