June 19 has been long celebrated among Black Americans, marking the country’s second Independence Day. Juneteenth commemorates June 19, 1865, the date which enslaved people in Galveston, Texas finally learned that they were free. This occurred two years after President Abraham Lincoln’s Emancipation Proclamation, more than a year after the Senate passed the 13th Amendment abolishing slavery and nearly six months after the House passed the amendment.
Black Americans in Cannabis
The origins of Juneteenth ripple into the modern day, namely the experience of Black Americans whose justice is delayed or simply denied.
We see this in the cannabis space as well. It’s already widespread knowledge that Black people have historically been disproportionately criminalized for cannabis use. Even as cannabis reform continues to spread across the country, we see the same trends at play today. In 2020, Black people
Social equity is regularly on the lips of legislators looking to pass new cannabis policy, looking to right the wrongs caused by the War on Drugs. Unfortunately, these measures simply aren’t doing enough to promote equity in the cannabis space for Black Americans.
According to a
Collectively Forging a New Path
That’s all to say, as it continues to grow, the cannabis industry needs to do better, and consumers can also do their part in being more conscious of where their weed dollars go.
While the continued trends are disheartening, there are still a plethora of amazing, Black-owned cannabis brands and companies to support. Juneteenth is a great time to make an extra supportive effort, though we should all be doing our part to uplift the wide variety of cannabis businesses out there all year long.
Given the lack of federal cannabis legalization, there are also geographic and legal restrictions that keep all Americans from having adequate proximity to Black-owned cannabis businesses or legal cannabis as a whole.
With that in mind, we’ve compiled a handful of stellar cannabis and hemp brands to support no matter where you live. The companies we’ve chosen either deal in CBD, hemp-derived cannabinoids and/or smoking accessories.
Let’s take a closer look at some of our favorite Black-owned cannabis brands to support this Juneteenth and beyond.
Juneteenth: Supporting Black-Owned Cannabis
TOQi was founded by Drew Henson, inspired by his passion for skateboarding and snowboarding along with his mastery of precision engineering and design. Henson himself fostered a relationship with cannabis that allowed him to better focus and relax. While he started working with racing tech and even partnering with NASA through his award-winning Drift Ghost-S design for the International Space Station, Henson soon turned his attention to the cannabis space.
TOQi focuses primarily on vaporizers and related technology, looking to move beyond the standard 510 battery market to create something truly valuable for the future of the cannabis industry. Henson curated a closed-loop system, which checks the output to ensure that it outputs at the correct voltage and features three temperatures at 2.8, 3.2 and 3.6 volts to ensure a positive experience and “a really nice hit,” Henson told High There
TOQi currently offers the
TOQi also approaches advocacy with purpose. The company previously launched its Fellowship Cannabis Amnesty 12-week internship program focused on mentorship and skill-building in the nonprofit sector, particularly when engaging with government and the for-profit cannabis industry.
Regarding the new world of cannabis as a Black cannabis professional, Henson said, “It’s one thing to appreciate it, but then it’s a second thing to come on the market launch, look around and be a Black owner, and just kind of be like, ‘Where’s everybody at?’ And when there’s a lack of people who look like the people who are most affected by a problem, then, typically speaking, nobody’s solving the problem.”
Friends and brothers-in-law Dave DiCosola and Kameron Norwood founded Half Day as a means to share the healing benefits of CBD with more people in need. The company motto is “all farm, no pharma,” and the duo consistently prioritize working with the best quality U.S. hemp growers to create the best products.
Norwood first discovered CBD working in a tech recruiting position in Chicago. There, he saw how his colleagues coped with the stress — largely pharmaceutical medications — so he introduced them to the CBD products he used. Soon enough, even more coworkers began asking him for help. The rest is history.
The Half Day catalog is LOADED with options, including CBD gummies, oils, topicals and flower. The company also makes it easy to shop for the right product for you, with additional website options like extra-strength products and options to focus, relax, relieve and rest.
All Half Day products are made with natural ingredients in the U.S., third-party tested and always push for the highest potency. Half Day also controls its entire supply chain from seed to sale to ensure quality, potency and also keep costs lower for its customers while continuing to offer high-end products.
Krystal Hamlett and Matthew Lovett combined forces to cofound Juice Joint, an incredibly tasty line of infused beverages with wellness at the center. Hamlett is a cannabis expert and holds more than 10 years of experience in biotechnology and pharmaceutical sciences, while Lovett primarily specializes in communications and has worked with a number of Grammy award-winning artists.
The pair’s backgrounds perfectly complemented one another, as Hamlett took the lead on product development while Lovett leads the sales and operations teams.
As you might expect, aside from one CBD tincture, Juice Joint’s inventory is especially drink heavy. The company has a generous offering of flavors and different hemp-derived cannabinoid formulations, including a number of full-spectrum CBD options along with several delta-8 THC varieties.
Juice Joint also posts all
Looking for cannabis accessories with an intentional, classy design? Do the products in head shops feel like they simply don’t fit your home or lifestyle? Consider checking out the gorgeous pieces from Canna Luxe Co.
Tori Owens founded the company, noticing a lack of prominent women of color in the cannabis industry. Canna Luxe Co. is 100% women-and-Black owned, constantly looking to create paths for other minorities to make their way into and thrive within the cannabis industry.
“Our mission is to not only destigmatize what the canna consumer looks like, but to also position other minorities not just consumers but owners within the industry. Canna Luxe Co is a firm believer that you do not have to minimize your enjoyment of the plant nor your belief in its health benefits for the sake of your career or social judgement,” the website states.
The cannabis company has an enviable collection of gorgeous offerings that mix femininity with luxury and some of the prettiest smoking pieces you’ll find. The crystal pipes and bubblers could easily double as home decor to the unsuspecting eye, and Canna Luxe also offers a variety of grinder and ashtrays in a number of colors, and consumers can also save a few bucks through Canna Luxe Co.’s bundle options.
Stuart McClean initially founded Inertia’s Root to be a co-op for Black hemp farmers, but since its debut, the company has grown into its own unique brand. Today, Inertia’s Root offers an array of options for cannabis and hemp connoisseurs, including flower, tincture and balms, with a focus on maintaining only the best cultivation practices.
“Making a difference from the ground up,” Inertia’s Root sells high-CBD flower by the quarter, with a variety of price points making it easily accessible for a range of consumers. The company also offers an
That’s not all — Inertia’s Root maintains its roots in growing and also offers a number of grow-specific products. The catalog includes an array of soil options (bulk and by the bag) and a number of lights to really make your grow pop.
Inertia’s Root also offers solutions for CBD product manufacturing, allowing for full customization to fit any client’s needs. These services include branding, website development, compliant merchant processing, logo and label design, packaging solutions, marketing strategy, drop shipping and product manufacturing.
This one is for the cannabis bakers out there! Ardent Founder and President Shanel Lindsay started the company after struggling to dose accurately with cannabis for years.
“I thought I was doing a good job with my homespun methods until I took my medicine to the lab and realized I could be doing much better,” Lindsay
She ultimately found that conventional appliances often can’t perform a full decarboxylation for at-home edible making, so she created a new solution.
The company also offers the Ardent Mini, made with the same patented technology at a compact, super convenient size. Ardent also offers infusion kits, accessories and bundles.