Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

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Cannabis entrepreneurs and a former NBA athlete are joining together to launch Ginger Commerce, a brand-new platform for the cannabis community. Buy cannabis online illinois

Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

Eaze and a former NBA athlete are joining together to launch Ginger Commerce, a brand-new platform. 

Two Eaze co-founders and a former NBA athlete are partnering together to create a direct-to-consumer (DTC) service called Ginger Commerce.

Ginger Commerce seeks to change the usual way consumers purchase cannabis products by allowing brands to be able to directly communicate with consumers. The company’s thought behind this approach is to “disrupt” the reigning loyalty of certain popular brands and give other brands a chance to grow and connect with customers. Any brand on Ginger Commerce is given complete control over “customer experience, customer engagement, sales promotions, pricing and more.”

CEO and Founder of Ginger Commerce Roie Edery is a cannabis tech pioneer with years of experience in the industry. He’s the co-founder of well-known cannabis delivery company Eaze, where he held a position as the lead of product and operations. 

“Our purpose-built solution with Ginger is a disruptive approach for both consumers and brands alike,” he said in a press release. “Ginger opens the door to better pricing, better offers, and more convenient ways for consumers to engage and receive their cannabis. With us, brands have the ability to directly communicate with and market to their customers. Buy cannabis online illinois. What does that mean? Unearthing their brand loyalists and creating new ones.”

Edery is working alongside longtime partner Aleksey Klempner, the co-founder, and CTO of Ginger Commerce. Together, they’ve worked on a total of four companies in the last 10 years. Aside from Ginger Commerce, the duo has partnered up with Eaze (Klempner was also a co-founder of the company, as well as former head of engineering), Wayv (an online B2B service), and CLICK, an oral cannabis spray.

 

Klempner has high hopes that Ginger Commerce will help diversify cannabis products in California and give up-and-coming products the attention they deserve from consumers. “What I love about the technology we’ve built is its ability to democratize cannabis, in a sense,” he said in a press statement. “Our API, JavaScript SDK, and Shopping Cart plug-in allows entrepreneurs, content creators, and developers, from inside and outside of the industry, to build cannabis delivery solutions, launch DTC brands, provide services, and essentially push the industry forward.”

Edery and Klempner welcome former NBA athlete Omri Casspi into the fold as well, both as a co-founder as well as an investor. Casspi is most well-known for his career as a forward for the Sacramento Kings, although he has played on many teams over the course of his career. Casspi is also a co-founder of the oral cannabis spray company CLICK.

Edery, Klempner and Casspi all believe that Ginger Commerce has the potential to change the way consumers discover new cannabis products in California. Brands such as Big Pete’s Treats, a cannabis-infused cookie company based out of Santa Cruz, California, are getting on board. Edibles are a competitive industry, especially in the realm of cookies. 

Big Pete’s Treats CEO Pete Furtado, Jr. is enthusiastic about working with Ginger Commerce. “We’re super excited to partner up with Ginger,” he said. “Being able to offer our fans a top-notch delivery experience straight from our brand is what we’ve been waiting for. Especially for our long-time loyal customers, this makes it easy, and we’re looking forward to engaging with and growing our newfound Cookie Club.”

The cannabis industry has been operating the same way for many years, but Ginger Commerce has the potential to mix things up. Edery is an ardent believer that the company will be able to help new brands get the spotlight they deserve. Buy cannabis online illinois

“Especially for new and up and coming brands, or brands that require education, it is extremely difficult to penetrate and get on store shelves or listed on marketplace platforms in California,” he said. “They are very selective and it’s competitive to get carried by those channels. Our DTC levels the playing field, giving brands a chance to acquire customers online, tell their brand story with their own voice, and control the entire experience without having to be beholden to retail or marketplace channel decision-makers.”

Legal Pot Delivery Sales Launch in Denver, Colorado

Strawberry Fields and Doobba are kicking off delivery sales for the public today in Denver, much to the joy of stoners.

Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

Denver, Colorado-based dispensary Strawberry Fields and the doobba delivery service announced pot deliveries will be open to the public today, August 23. The companies completed their first six legal pot deliveries on August 19 during a soft launch test round.

Strawberry Fields is Denver’s first dispensary that received a permit for delivery, while doobba was Denver’s first delivery service to receive a license, and several other companies are in the process of nearing operation. 

In order for a dispensary to offer delivery, it is required to either qualify under a social equity designation intended to benefit communities negatively impacted by the War on Drugs, or partner with a social equity delivery company—Doobba, in this case. Strawberry Fields chose the latter route, partnering with Doobba to meet the city’s requirements. 

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Per city code, dispensaries cannot operate delivery themselves; instead, they must go through third party transporter businesses. The city has issued four transporter licenses, according to Denver city-data.

Doobba’s owners, the husband-and-wife team Ari and Karina Cohen—plan on expanding into more dispensaries in the future. Ari qualified for social equity status because he has previously been arrested for cannabis “lifetimes ago.” The company was close to an agreement to deliver for L’Eagle, according to doobba co-founder Ari, and is in talks with other companies such as Seed & Smith.

“We are thrilled to be able to deliver cannabis to customers in Denver and Aurora,” doobba co-founder and CEO Karina Cohen told High Times. “It’s a first step in helping doobba in ending cannabis prohibition. Customers who live in Denver and Aurora can also sign up for unlimited delivery membership on doobba.com

Both of the Cohens have a long history of working in the cannabis industry, and together, they are excited to take on these new challenges. 

How Cannabis Delivery Works

Ordering cannabis delivery works in a similar manner to ordering food or alcohol delivered to your door. Think DoorDash for weed. Customers go to the doobba or Strawberry Fields websites, or they can go through one of several online dispensary menu services, such as I Heart Jane, for delivery. They then choose a time frame for the delivery and receive updates via text message about their order’s progress. 

Doobba is currently giving customers a two-hour time frame for deliveries.

Denver allows people ages 21 and older to order cannabis for delivery between the hours of 8 a.m. to 12 a.m. Deliveries can cross into other jurisdictions that also allow delivery, such as nearby in Aurora.

Last July, doobba handed in the first application for a license to deliver cannabis. Strawberry Fields will rely on doobba for the time being to carry out deliveries across Denver city proper during the early stages of the rollout.

Currently only five other dispensaries are permitted for delivery in Denver: Cookies, Denver Kush Club, Diego Pellicer, L’Eagle and Star Buds. But Strawberry Fields and dooba are the first to become operational, as none of the others launched delivery services yet. A small number of stores and transporter services are currently awaiting approval from the city. Buy cannabis online illinois

It appears as though several other companies are positioning to get involved in cannabis delivery as well. “Most people still don’t know this is available,” Cohen told Westword. “Like anything that’s new, normally it would take a year for everyone in Denver to realize they can do this. We’re going to try our darnedest to get to that point within three months.” Delivery sales are poised to become a convenient way to order cannabis in the area.

Instagram Targets Cannabis-Related Social Media Accounts

Instagram is targeting and taking down cannabis-specific content, something that hurts industry brands and influencers across the board.
Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

Photo-based social media giant Instagram regularly takes action against cannabis-related accounts for violating the terms of service (TOS). Often enough, the reason behind a ban is often unclear to the accounts that are affected—which leads to a detrimental loss in engagement for up-and-coming cannabis businesses. 

Instagram has had an estimated 1 billion monthly active users since its initial release back in 2010. Any disruption to a thriving Instagram account, especially for cannabis-related accounts, can have devastating effects from a marketing perspective. In most cases, a violation of the TOS can be walked back through a series of steps, as detailed by marketing expert Colin Bambury. Bambury has encountered Instagram suspensions numerous times and wrote up a guide on his website Adcann to help others get their accounts reinstated.

“Social media is an important tool for marketers in any space. It allows brands to create connections and communicate with current and potential consumers anytime, anywhere,” Bambury writes. “With COVID-era lockdowns, consumers are staying inside and scrolling through social platforms more than ever, increasing the importance of digital advertising and native content creation. The cannabis industry is no exception—with many brands, retailers, producers, and accessory purveyors utilizing platforms including Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, LinkedIn, and Snapchat.”

Bambury lists that Instagram and Facebook’s policies around “drugs and drug-related products” include ads that don’t promote the sale or use of “illegal, prescription or recreational drugs,” avoiding the use of images related images such as bongs or rolling papers, avoiding any use of images of a recreational drug itself, and avoiding images specifically showcasing recreational or medical cannabis. 

“Although Facebook acknowledges that cannabis can be both ‘recreational’ and ‘medical,’ implying that the substance is regulated and has medicinal value, their official website continues to communicate a zero-tolerance policy on ‘marijuana,’” he wrote in regard to the company’s image policies. “This poses a large problem for cannabis producers, brands, retailers, accessory producers, and marketing agencies looking to connect with consumers.”

On Instagram specifically, same-topic competition can also prove to be a nuisance. “Instagram will frequently prioritize removing content that is reported—which means that ‘haters’ and unethical competitors can, unfortunately, conspire to potentially have your page taken down,” he added.

“Up until recently, that was the main cause of content and account removal. However, in late 2020, Instagram and Facebook made an observable change to their AI-restricted content detection, as cannabis accounts and photos were targeted to the extreme. If you rack up enough posts that violate IG’s community guidelines, your account will likely be disabled,” Bambury concluded.

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Unfortunately, even adhering to these rules and policies has resulted in banned accounts on Instagram and Facebook. In June, Cannaclusive’s Instagram account was banned for the first time since the creation of those accounts in 2017—with Director of National Projects and Social Media Kassia Graham expressing her confusion about why the account was banned in the first place. She told Yahoo! Finance that it might have been because of a post that garnered a large amount of popularity, or that maybe it was because they tagged other Instagram accounts that had recently run into issues with Instagram violations.

Maria Brasco, social media manager at MATTIO Communications shared that even implementing her own strict rules on what to avoid posting, there doesn’t seem to be any logic behind Instagram’s banning rules. “Accounts that err on the side of caution are being penalized, while their industry colleagues are blatantly ignoring the rules, and nothing happens,” she told High Times

There isn’t a clear solution in how to 100 percent protect a cannabis-related Instagram account right now. Until federal legalization opens up new doors for issues like this, bans will remain commonplace—but in the meantime, those who manage cannabis accounts will benefit from becoming familiar with the account recovery process.

Judge Rules Texas Ban on Smokable Hemp Unconstitutional

In regards to a lawsuit, Judge Lora Livingston tossed out Texas’ ban on smokable hemp products.
Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

Texans will have the ability to legally manufacture smokable hemp products after all. A judge in the Travis County District Court in Texas ruled that a ban on smokable hemp in the state is unconstitutional—siding with several hemp companies that filed a lawsuit, challenging the 2019 ban on smokable hemp products passed by Texas lawmakers.

Last year, four hemp businesses filed a lawsuit in a Travis County District Court against the Texas Department of State Health Services and its commissioner—John Hellerstedt. In the end, they prevailed. This follows a ruling last week that allows smokable hemp to be sold in Texas. With the latest ruling, smokable hemp products can also be manufactured in the state. Buy cannabis online illinois

Judge Lora Livingston of the 261st District Court sent a letter dated August 23 with her ruling to toss out the ban in the case Crown Distributing LLC, et al. v. Texas Department of State Health Services, et al. The judge indicated in the letter that a final judgment should be prepared and submitted for her signature soon.

In the ruling, Judge Livingston ruled that Section 443.204(4) of the Texas Health and Safety Code and Section 122.301(b) of the Texas Agriculture Code violate the Texas Constitution.

Section 443.204(4) of the Health and Safety code reads “the processing or manufacturing of a consumable hemp product for smoking is prohibited.” Section 122.301(b) of the Agriculture Code clarifies that a state agency “may not authorize a person to manufacture a product containing hemp for smoking.”

Judge Livingston ruled that “25 Texas Administrative Code Section 300.104 is invalid in its entirety.” Section 300.104 regards the manufacturing and sale of hemp, specifically.

The judge also granted a permanent injunction against the Texas Department of State Health Services from enforcing the ban via the sections above.

According to locals, the ban didn’t apply to using smokable hemp—only manufacturing it—so Texas residents were routinely crossing state lines or going online to buy it.

Several months ago, the Dallas Observer reported that Texas law enforcement officers keep confiscated hemp-derived products in general, which are legal at the federal level under the 2018 Farm Bill. 

The Hemp Industry Rejoices Ban Lift on Smokable Hemp

Hemp industry insiders across the board were thrilled with the latest legal curveball—considering the vast potential of hemp cigarettes and similar products. As more people become interested in smoking cannabis during the day without it impacting workflow and motor skills, hemp cigarette products are booming.

Smokable hemp products are frequently a hot topic among opponents to cannabis reform because they are almost indistinguishable from cannabis products. They are favored by some consumers because they offer fast delivery of hemp-derived CBD. Due to their popularity, smokable hemp-derived CBD products represent a significant share of the overall CBD market. Buy cannabis online illinois

“Today’s ruling is a major win for Texas’ hemp industry, and may set a new standard in similar cases across the country,” President of Texas Hemp Growers Zachary Maxwell said in a release. “The attorneys behind the Texas Hemp Legal Defense Fund fought hard, brought fact-based arguments to the courtroom and proved the undeniable financial harm caused by this cavalier ban.”

Hemp Industry Daily called it a “watershed decision” that unlocks Texas to a hemp market that could potentially generate $400 million in annual sales by 2025.

Several other states are moving in the same direction. A few years ago, a judge in Indiana also ruled that banning smokable hemp was unconstitutional. Earlier this year, a similar bill passed in Louisiana, allowing smokable forms of cannabis.

Illinois Cannabis License Lottery Winners Questioned by Applicants

Illinois continues to face issues with its cannabis license lottery system, as recently denied licensees are questioning the latest winners.
Cannabis Business Leaders and Former NBA Launch Ginger Commerce

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