Mike from Smokers Guide Canada talks with Ras Iyah V, President of the Westmoreland Hemp and Ganja Farmers’ Association and organizer of Rasta Rootzfest.
Who is Ras Iyah V?
Verald Vassell more popularly known as Ras Iyah V, a Rastafarian for over fifty (50) years is highly considered a Ganja Advocate and defender of Human Rights in Jamaica. He is currently the Chair of the Westmoreland Ganja Farmers Association. He is also a Member of the Board of Directors of the Cannabis Licensing Authority , Co-Chair of the Rastafari Nyabinghi Administrative Council, Former Chair and founding member of the National Coalition of Grassroot Ganja Farmers and Producers Association, as well as a Former Chair of the Rastafari Coral Gardens Committee. In 2016 Ras Iyah V was invited to the United Nation General Assembly Special Session (UNGASS) where he addressed three (3) different sessions of the UN. Ras Iyah V is the founder of Rastafar i RootzFest Jamaica’s first Ganja exempt event under the Dangerous Drugs Act Amendment 2015.
A partner at Harris Bricken in Los Angeles, Hilary V. Bricken has been rightfully titled a Super Lawyer.
In 2013, based on her work in the industry, The Puget Sound Business Journal named Ms. Bricken one of seven Deal Makers of the Year. From 2014 through 2017, she was named a “Rising Star” by Super Lawyers Magazine. Also in 2015, the Puget Sound Business Journal named Hilary to its Top 40 Under 40 list for business and leadership, and in 2017 the American Bar Association named Hilary a Top 40 Under 40 “On the Rise” attorney in the United States.
In this interview, Hilary discusses her thoughts on advocacy, entrepreneurship, and more.
When did you first realize that specialized legal advocacy was needed in the cannabis market?
May 2010—there was a severe need for legitimate business and regulatory guidance that just wasn’t being met; mostly because lawyers were afraid of what the bar our or federal government would do/could do.
What would you say are the top two challenges that cannabis startups face?
Lack of access to banking services and the federal government’s treatment of cannabis income (third runner up is lack of access to traditional fundraising).
What effects could full legalization have on other local, community-based businesses?
It can drive tourism. It also can increase tax revenue for various improvements around the community. In some circumstances, it’s even gentrified some communities. It can also cause serious backlash and community uproar over lowered property values, perceived increases in criminality, nuisance, and overall polarized attitudes about legalization.
Can you summarize the concept of “big marijuana?”
According to prohibitionists, big marijuana consists of private money interests driving legalization for their own personal gain at the cost of consumers’ health and safety.
What are you most looking forward to at the CanEx Jamaica Business Conference and Expo?
Touring a cannabis farm there. I’ve been in many of my clients’ operations (in the states and abroad), but never one in Jamaica. I very much want to see how they compare on a regulatory level.
In your opinion, why are networking events for ganjaprenuers critical to success?
It’s important to know your business community, and it helps build and support professionalism and valuable relationships. It also helps to promote education over various industry issues that would otherwise go unnoticed or undiscussed.
Damon Michaels was a featured speaker for our CanEx Seminar Series. He is amongst the higher-ups working with innovative cannabis technology as the lead of business development for Ebbu.
What is Ebbu?
As explained on the company’s website, Ebbu is “where cannabis culture meets cannabis science.”
Ebbu takes the optimism surrounding the ever-growing cannabis industry to heart, representing cannabis culture as a unified people in search of contentment and looking towards the future of the herb as a welcome conduit for the betterment of society.
Countless studies and continuing research have yet to falter when proving the many advantages of cannabis and its abilities to improve health, stress levels, and overall wellbeing. Combine these good vibes with scientific examination and you’ve got a beautiful recipe that highlights the power of cannabis and the importance of positive experiences relating to the herb.
What makes the Ebbu brand especially unique?
Whether you’re consuming cannabis for your health or personal reasons, your relationship with ganja should remain consistently pleasurable and effective without the concerns of dangerous risks. Ebbu acknowledges that each individual’s journey with cannabis is personal and no two experiences will ever be alike. Regardless of this fact, enjoyment and safety should be the common threads within the cannabis community.
Ebbu raises the bar for cannabis users, giving you a better idea of how you will feel previous to your cannabis session, aiding in the elimination of users being overwhelmed, or possibly disappointed, by the results of cannabis consumption. As cannabis technology continues to advance, Ebbu knows that the expectations for your cannabis experience should be just as high.