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White Fox Medicinals: Where Spirit Meets Medicine

Scarlet Ravin from White Fox Medicinals is offering a new way to discover wellness with holistic healing and Ayurvedic extraction.

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White Fox Medicinals
PHOTOS | White Fox Medicinals

White Fox Medicinals produces strain specific topicals and tinctures that blends CBD and THC with other healing herbs. Reaching into the heart of alchemy, their approach to cannabis and wellness is through preventative medicine and overall health and vitality. Scarlet Ravin is the maven behind the spirit-driven medicine company. We caught up with her ahead of their new product launch party to talk cultivation, holistic healing and Ayurvedic extraction.

Cannabis Aficionado: When did you get the idea for White Fox Medicinals? When did you start that journey?

Scarlet Ravin: I started White Fox Medicinals about maybe ten years ago, twelve years ago, as a holistic health practice. It was called White Fox Holistic and the White Fox is a shapeshifter to me so it’s able to be hidden or seen and as a medicine person then I can shapeshift into what my client needs as medicine that day. So I saw that as that symbolism.

When I moved into cultivating cannabis I transferred that into my topicals and tinctures that I was making for my clients. Which was the birth of White Fox Medicinals, the first cannabis topical tincture line for White Fox.

When you say that it started as a holistic medicine company…?

Oh, holistic health practice. I’m a certified CMT, certified in Shiatzu, acupressure, yoga teacher, Kundalini teacher and I would facilitate massages, but they were also more spirit driven. Physical touch, yes. Psychic stuff too, also, was present. And then tuning into people and making specific herbal remedies for them and then blending that into an oil and then applying that oil during their treatment and then making custom tinctures for their internal situation.

When I found the profound, incredible ability that cannabis has to touch on the mental and spiritual levels where other herbs focus more on the physical. So, when I started adding cannabis I saw a change happen in my clients a lot quicker and a lot more profound than without the cannabis herb inside.

So it was sort of by accident?

Yeah, it was definitely an experiment. I had a couple of patients that were using me consistently and I had always been using herbs and the ones that were open to cannabis. I offered that to them and they received it. Their transformations happened in a completely different manner with their mind being affected and their spirits being affected, having the issues that they’re facing turn around so much more quickly.

And then when the cannabis laws went into legal then I knew I needed another way to pay my income other than growing because that was going to be a null and void option due to legalities. So I created a brand and started promoting the brand to enter into the legal market.

You’re going to come out on the legal market. It seems like you have an expanded idea of these lines, like, there’s more coming, more Ayurvedic formulas. What’s next for White Fox Medicinals?

There’s an amazing famous artist that I’m collaborating with right now who advocates for plant spirit awareness and honoring plants in that realm — him and his wife. I am working directly with Jason Edwards currently and I’m telling him what I want in this blend — all the herbs are to be from India directly and native and my awareness is mostly around native herb in this area. He’s helping me formulate a blend specifically for creativity and mind stamina. So there will be a nice piece of artwork that you can hold in your vape battery and then the formulation will be to boost and enhance creativity with the packaging being designed by him as well. So there will be a really cool artistic pen coming out that’s going to blow peoples’ minds for sure.

That’s awesome. When do you think that’s going to happen?

I think we will have the design prepared and the formulations prepared by end of March which is probably looking at June/July launch into the market.

When you launch your products where are you going to be available initially?

Every dispensary in California! Haha! I don’t know. So my work right now is to gain those preorders.

In general, are you going to be all over California?

I’m working closely to get into MenMen. I’d like to license the brand in New York. I’d like to have it be a national thing and follow the MenMen trail of Las Vegas. So I’m working with a PR guy for that. We’re definitely going to start in the hub. San Francisco will get hit pretty hard. Los Angeles will get hit pretty hard and then we’ll slowly expand out. This area for sure, the Sonoma County area, they’ll all be carrying the product lines.

We have a big launch party [planned]. White Fox is working with Jason [Edwards] has an ancient Ayurvedic extraction facility in India and he’s got a, his business platform is that he goes into these really desolate locations in India where people don’t have jobs or food or money and he gives them the herbs to grow for him and then they grow that and then he pays them to buy that back and extracts them. The formulations for these specific effects in the new vape pen line are directly from ancient Ayruvedic traditions.

I purchase that organic, CO2-extracted oil from him, I bring it back here and add CBD and THC, and then that’s what birthed the vape line which is going to be released on the market at the end of November. And then we’re going to have a White Fox Medicinals launch into legal celebration November 18th at the Great Northern in San Francisco and we’re going to screen a music video that we built as a marketing campaign for the vape line.

The vape lines are for dreams. So, you can smoke the dream pen before bed or actually any time in the day. It will relax you because the THC-to-CBD ratio is for relaxation.  And then the herbs, once you fall asleep, the herbs will give you multiple dreams and you’ll be able to remember them when you wake which has been something that people speak to with cannabis, when smoking cannabis before bed is that they don’t dream anymore. So this was the remedy to be able to maintain that insight from those realms, still satiate yourself with the cannabis spirit and then have that come into your waking life

And then we have two sex pens, one formulated for men specifically, enhance stamina, increase sexual desire and increase sensitivity, both for men and women. Sidecar Tommy who’s a friend – he’s the drummer and producer of beats antique – he wrote a song called White Fox and we filmed a music video to it smoking the pens, and we showed you our dream world and our sexy nightlife world and we’re showing that for the first time at that party.

I’m interested in this nexus point between the spiritual and the medicine and the way that you talk about this word medicine that is not the normal Western way of using the word ‘medicine’. I want to know where that comes from and what, for you, that nexus point really is, besides the fact that you saw it in other people and were able to practice it. What is your personal experience and what are you trying to share?

My goal, my end goal for this life is to be the medicine. So, me showing up in a room is that vibrational medicine that people need to change their life or to have a healing shift. That is my goal. What I see when I say medicine – and I’m talking about the cannabis topical tincture line or the vape line – to me, those are external tools that can bring us to those points in awareness where we see deeper layers of ourselves. We can release past traumas, we can step into our greater power. Through utilizing that practice over and over again, going deeper and deeper and deeper into our own layers the more know ourselves truly and enter into love, truly, and enter into happy thoughts truly then we are the medicine ourselves. Our actions are benefiting in healing the planet.

I honor and love all of these external processes of “let’s heal the planet, let’s clean the ocean”. Yeah, let’s all do that but I believe it starts inside of our own bodies. If you’re truly in love with yourself, and you truly know yourself and know your heart and your soul, you’re not going to litter. You’re not going to not recycle. You’re going to treat the planet with respect because you treat yourself with respect. To me, that’s the healing of absolutely everything in this world, is that we all strive to become medicine.

Working with cannabis and the spirit of cannabis to me, her inside and all the different perspectives she shares with me has led me deeper into knowing myself and deeper into feeling that greater pull to be the medicine myself. I feel that all kinds of external herbal spirits have that ability. Psilocybin, Ibogaine, and Iboga, ayahuasca and peyote – they all have these psychoactive remedies that go into our brain and will actually change thought patterns.

My understanding of life and reality is that our thought patterns are the trajectory of our external life and what we’re seeing and living. So the core seed of how to change your life is in your mind. If we’re having perpetual negative thoughts we’re in a depressed, sad state. If we’re having perpetual happy positive thoughts, we’re in a happy, elated, high spiritual vibration state. It’s rewriting those click-click-click, over and over monkey mind thoughts stopping the negative thoughts because you’re starting to understand how powerful you are. You’re starting to understand nothing external can touch you. You can be whatever you want to be at any moment.

Once you have that realization in your awareness, it’s in your awareness and it’s you. And then you live from that space. That awareness can come from reading a book, it can come from smoking a joint with a friend by the ocean where you get an insight into what that feels like – then you can anchor that insight into your system and it’s a part of you. That’s it, that’s the shift, that’s the healing: you just became a deeper sense of the medicine.

For me, it’s a daily practice of honoring cannabis because I’ve definitely been initiated by her where I’ve over-used her for numbing out and used her to be away from myself.

There are two ways to approach it. We can say we’re using this medicine to go deeper into ourselves. But to get to that space where we are obtaining the insight and the awareness, it’s how we enter into working with the medicine: why are we smoking it today, why are we eating an edible today? Are we numbing out? Then be conscious and aware and real with yourself. I choose to numb out today – that’s OK. It’s here for that, it’s not a negative thing if you’re aware of it.

But if you’re in an unconscious cycle of using and using, then you’re abusing the spirit of the medicine and that’s when she’ll have a backlash in your life. That’s when you’ll have over-eating, that’s when you’ll have laziness, that’s when you’ll have a foggy mind and you’ll get these things because that’s how you’re showing up. She’s going to be that mirror of how you’re showing up to her. If you show up aware and awake and asking for insight and you’re truly honoring her.

Not only that, you’re showing up how you want to be treated I’m guessing in your heart of hearts, you want people to show up in your life where they honor you, they’re not just taking from you. They’re seeing you for your own greatness, they’re not just asking you to do things for them. There’s an energy exchange with everything.

Talk about how the expression of art integrates with that medicine and why music and art are such an important part of this brand for you and why that expression matters.

My packaging is coded with animal symbolism. To me, the powers of the animals that I’m working with are powerful portals into different vibrational places. When I’m sitting with the spirit of the owl it’s a very powerful, poignant, deep psychic spirit that can go in and grab stuff and take it away.

As humans, we have pain, we have ailments we have these things going on that we don’t necessarily like. If we focus on what we don’t like we’re amplifying that. If we focus on the medicine we’re bringing that in. For me, animals came in because I was trying to learn how to – if I have an ailment that’s hurting me and I want to heal that, I didn’t understand how to not focus on that.

Having a spirit animal come in and me focusing on that vibration and knowing that that is coming into my system to cleanse or bring me awareness around that, I’m able to go through the process of sitting with what’s going on and then have a new vibration come in and have that be the shift. They became these portals to me where I could sit in what I wasn’t comfortable with and then feel like I was being supported by spirit.

As a child, I had a really intense father and kind of a mentally absent mom and I was very sensitive. They didn’t understand my sensitivities. When I was a child, sounds physically hurt my body. If something was too loud or a voice or certain tones, I had a lot of physical pain in my head and my body and that was hard to relate to parents. They were like, “Stop being so sensitive, shut up! Stop crying.” So I turned to nature and animals. I had a horse, I connected with my horse. I started talking to the animals. The animals would share love and compassion with me and held space for me, so that when it became time for me to do packaging and thinking about how I wanted to present this to the world my greatest teachers and space holders were animals, my whole life. They always hold this really pure cosmic intuitive knowledge to me that’s so untainted in any facet that it like a fail-proof portal.

Each package will have that on there to resonate with you and for you to sit with while you’re looking at it – sit with the medicine. I give you a presentation of what that animal means to me and why I put it on the package but for me, it’s totally up to creative interpretation. Sit with that animal spirit, sit with that vibration of what that means to you. Close your eyes and then feel what your body feels like when you’re being held by them and you’ll know. You’ll create a knowing that that’s a real thing. Just because you can’t see the animal in front of you with your eyes the symbol is enough, it’s an imprint.

The way I move through the company is by setting a goal and then following my heart. The connection with Sidecar Tommy was that. Siobhan Danger Darwish is a good friend of mine. She invited me to a festival. I had never been to a festival. I was going through a lot of emotional trauma at the time and so a weekend with a girlfriend felt like an amazing idea. I went to the Enchanted Forest festival. Her guide Sidecar Tommy was the headliner and so we got to go backstage before they went on. I met him and I felt who he was and I felt what he was doing with his music and it was totally in alignment with our message. He is here to create a new world with his music and to free peoples’ spirits with the beats. I feel that when I listen to his albums.

Ideas? I don’t know where they’re coming from, I call them Universe. Universe is shooting me an idea and the universe says, “Here’s your collaboration for the vape line”, and so I just asked him, “Hey, you want to sit with me, you want to make a song with me for White Fox Medicinals, for the vape line?” At that point, I didn’t know it was going to be a music video but that was the first step. I went down to his recording studio in Oakland, and we sit and started formulating the song and I started getting visions of how we’re going to use the song.

I didn’t even have the foresight when I initiated the song creation but when I started thinking about how we could use the song I started seeing it would be a portal for people to be able to see our world: how are we using the pens, what does it feel like, what does it look like, what happens to you? Music and vibrations from tunes can go in and take you from any state into another state. I know people feel it. They have their upbeat mix and then they have their calm-down mix.

Vibrations – we’re all energy. Music is focused energy. Effect-driven energy. The vape pens are effect-driven energy. We’re amplifying that.

With White Fox Medicinals, you’re taking the essence of the ancient tradition of true medicine, defining it as a spirit and a state being rather than a thing, like, you take or a thing that you do even. It’s a thing that you be. And then you stack all of the layers of what that is all together and it’s really cohesive and thought out.

Yeah. I want to create multiple pathways for people to get to that place within themselves.

White Fox Medicinals is available online.

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Yes, You Can Buy & Consume Weed at Outside Lands Festival

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Grass Lands Festival
PHOTOS | Courtesy of Outside Lands

Outside Lands festival is making history for the second year in a row with confirmation that consumption will be allowed at Grass Lands, the event’s cultivated cannabis experience.

It gets better.

Not only is on-site consumption allowed, you will also be able to buy cannabis products.

According to the L.A. Times, California’s Bureau of Cannabis Control approved on-site sale and consumption to people 21 years and older. The city of San Francisco had already granted its own permit for cannabis use at the event and has suggested other events in the city may also be granted such licenses.

“I think Outside Lands is unique in that it’s a large outdoor music festival in the park — not typically where cannabis events have been licensed,” said bureau spokesman Alex Traverso

“Permitting Grass Lands as the inaugural event is the first step in creating a safe cannabis event space for those aged 21 years and older,” said Marisa Rodriguez, director of the San Francisco Office of Cannabis to the L.A. Times. “Attendees will be able to purchase and consume lab-tested products away from the rest of the venue’s attendees.”

Democratic state Sen. Scott Wiener also voiced his approval.

“Cannabis is part of our culture — particularly at music festivals — and it makes sense to allow people to obtain it legally,” Wiener said. “We need to move past prohibition, which doesn’t work.”

According to the Outside Lands website, as long as you have a valid Government-issued photo ID, everything from pre-rolls, flower, edibles, cartridges, and more will be available.

And while there may be designated consumption areas if you’re smoking or vaping in Grass Lands, edibles or beverages can be consumed anywhere within the event’s grounds.

The Grass is Greener at Grass Lands Festival

Outside Lands made history last year with the inaugural Grass Lands event, becoming the first curated cannabis experience at a major American music festival. Held South of the Polo Field (SoPo), Grass Lands was embraced by the extended Bay Area cannabis community as the perfect place to educate, elevate and celebrate cannabis.

“Much the way that Wine Lands celebrates Napa and Sonoma as the leaders in U.S. wine production, Grass Lands will shine a light on the area’s importance as pioneers in the cannabis world,” said Outside Lands co-producer Rick Farman.

This year, presented with Eaze, Grass Lands promises you even higher experience at America’s first legal cannabis consumption music event.

Grass Lands is part of Outside Lands, this weekend 9-11 August in San Fransisco’s Golden Gate Park. Headliners include Paul Simon, Childish Gambino and Twenty One Pilots. Be part of history. Get your tickets here.

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A Frank Conversation with Mowgli Holmes, CEO of Phylos Bioscience

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Phylos Bioscience
PHOTO | Supplied

Earlier this year, Phylos Bioscience announced its plan to launch an in-house breeding program. The news prompted outrage within the community, sparking conversations about intellectual property and genetics research across the cannabis industry.

Many cultivators felt betrayed by the idea that the Portland-based cannabis science company would use data they submitted to the Phylos Galaxy — a comprehensive database that documents the cannabis genome — to steal vital cultivar information and use it against them.

Phylos released a statement assuring growers not to worry, that their fears were unfounded. They insisted they weren’t going to use their submitted data to create super strains to put craft cannabis growers out of business. None of that data can be used for breeding, and the breeding work they do will be primarily for large-scale biomass producers. The varieties they do develop for the craft flower market will be released under open-source licenses and should help to keep craft growers in business.

Now, a couple of months have passed. For the most part, Phylos has kept out of the media spotlight. Cannabis Aficionado spoke to CEO Mowgli Holmes to learn more about their approach to large-scale agriculture, plant patents and IP rights, and the future of cannabis.

Growers submitted their genomic data to you with the understanding that it would not be used to enhance any breeding programs. How did you not foresee this backlash from the industry following the announcement of your breeding program?

We didn’t foresee this reaction because this data isn’t useful for plant breeding. It’s just genetic sequence data, with no information on the plants themselves. The purpose of the galaxy has always been to empower everyone to learn from their plant’s data by comparing it to everything else. We made the galaxy and the raw data publicly available so that everyone could have full access to it.

I don’t think this question has really been about the data. It’s about having a company in the cannabis industry that is working with people from big ag. The science we’re using comes from those companies, and we’re hiring scientists who understand it. We’re also a company that is focused on environmental and social impact, and on moving agriculture toward sustainable practices. Cannabis growers don’t trust big ag and they don’t see how we could be working with people from those companies and still have these progressive goals. But we do.

You claim that your new breeding program will focus on large-scale agriculture. Why then do you think there is such a negative response to your breeding announcement from cannabis growers and craft cultivators?

Phylos concentrates on the global market because that’s where the plant needs the most work. I think that a lot of small growers assume that large-scale ag means lousy cannabis, so they don’t respect it. But it matters how the large growers operate. Phylos believes large-scale cannabis and hemp agriculture can actually operate sustainably and we’re committed to doing our part to move it in that direction. We also want to see the craft flower market thrive. We won’t be doing a lot of work there, but when we do it’s going to have a positive impact. The flower plants we release will be good for growers, and breeders will get to keep working with them.

Your presentation to investors at Benzinga seemed to confirm that you will use the submitted data to breed new strains. Why did you tell that to investors if it isn’t your intention? Why do you think your words were misconstrued?

That is not what I said to investors. But when I said that our testing business was a valuable data collection tool, I meant it. Having a high-throughput molecular genetics lab allowed us to generate lots of valuable data, but all of that work has been independent of the customer data we collected. As I said, the data we collected from customers cannot be used for breeding, period.

The data collected from customers was very limited and was made public via the Phylos Galaxy in order to prevent patent infringement and support greater transparency within the cannabis industry’s supply chain. It’s a tool for the industry, including our competitors, to use in understanding varieties and the evolution of cannabis. It’s not a tool that can help with breeding except in a very general way by letting people see relationships — and it’s available to everyone to use in that way.

Have you kept any of the genetic data so you could replicate any of the submitted material via plant tissue propagation?

No, we wouldn’t do that and it’s not possible. You can’t create a living plant from data and you can’t create a living plant from a dead tissue sample. We are not using any of our customer’s plants in our breeding program. The Galaxy is evidence that our customer’s plants belong to them.

We do have a large collection of living cannabis varieties, which we’ve acquired through fair and generous contracts with breeders, and we’re continuing to in-license new varieties.

Phylos scientists in the lab. PHOTO | Supplied

Was patenting genetics, or your plans to use the data to create your own breeding program, in any fine print that people may have missed?

We’ve never had any plans to use that data for breeding because we always knew it wouldn’t be robust enough to breed with. But we were very openly and publicly building a breeding program meant to support other people’s plant work with our scientific tools. We just weren’t originally intending to do the actual plant work ourselves.

The largest part of a modern plant breeding program is the data infrastructure and we were clear very early on that we were developing genetic markers for breeding. As we’ve said, the customer data had no information on the physical characteristics of the plants themselves and couldn’t be used for breeding. We believed that this simple scientific fact would keep people from making the mistake of thinking we were using it for breeding.

As far as patenting goes, our position has always been that plant patents are fine, as long as they’re responsibly narrow and don’t cover entire categories of plants. Overly broad patents are bad for innovation and bad for the cannabis industry.

The Open Cannabis Project (OCP) closed at the end of May in response to your announcement, citing “deception” as the one reason. What are your thoughts on this situation?

We helped start the OCP to create a transparent and open-source repository of cannabis data that could enlarge the public domain and help to preserve genetic diversity in cannabis. I resigned from the board in order to ensure there was no connection between OCP and Phylos, but the board was already planning to dissolve the organization in December 2018 based on difficulty fundraising.

The OCP knew we were doing breeding work, they knew the science we were using was from big ag and they knew we were going to be willing to apply for limited patents. The OCP themselves have always supported limited patents. They also know how strong my personal commitment is to doing things differently than they’re done in traditional agriculture.

Nothing illustrates the intense emotion around this issue better than this does. Despite knowing all of that, I think they were genuinely shocked to see that we’re working with and hiring people from big ag companies. Progressives see those companies as truly evil, and they don’t have a framework for understanding how good people could possibly be working with them.

Unfortunately, nobody on the OCP board contacted us before they issued their statement. The idea that you could have one foot in both worlds and still be committed to being an ethical company — that’s impossible for many people to accept. But that stance is a decision to leave all of this scientific power in the hands of people you don’t trust.

How can growers trust you when you say you are not using their genomics and data to advance your own breeding program?

Anyone who looks at the science comes to see that you can’t use this data for breeding new plants.

But we are seeing that trust doesn’t come from scientific facts alone. We’re a mission-driven company and eventually people will see the benefits of the work we’re doing. The dust will clear and we’ll be working away, and then people will see.

Why do you think people were so quick to jump to the conclusion that you are using your position and power to harm the very people that you have spent so many years trying to protect?

This is the part that’s hard for me. Phylos has always been clear in our mission to bring science to cannabis and new approaches to agriculture, to preserve genetic diversity, and to help small farmers. It’s pretty crazy to find out that people can overnight decide you don’t mean the things you say. But again, I think the assumption is that if we had good intentions we wouldn’t be hiring scientists and advisors from the major ag companies. We need these people because they understand the complexities of the large-scale agricultural system better than anyone and they are uniquely positioned to help us change it for the better. The team of scientists that have joined Phylos is building an agricultural model that is profitable and sustainable for farmers. We always meant it when we said we cared about the craft flower community. But we also care about agriculture as a whole.

What is your desired achievement with your breeding program?

I got a lot of shit for saying this, but I’m just going to say it again: Phylos is going to create outrageous new plants. They’re going to work better for farmers and for consumers and they’re going to be constantly evolving.

We also believe that it’s important for us and the industry to give both fair credit and fair compensation to the breeders who have created amazing plants already and those that continue to do so. We are already signing agreements to make sure those breeders get paid as they should, and we hope it becomes the standard way of acquiring plants in the industry.

Phylos has built its mission around preserving the genetic diversity we’ve inherited. At the same time, we’re going to drive forward into the future of what this plant can do, which really will be incredible. We need to do both of those things.

We’re combining advanced science with sustainability principles. We’re using traditional breeding driven by genomic knowledge. We’re studying methods that let farmers minimize inputs costs at the same time as they’re building healthier soil. We’re going to help farmers profit from sustainability — and we’re going to make sustainability work better because it’s driven by hard data.

Where does Phylos Bioscience go from here?

We have to accept that some people see big ag companies as the enemy and they don’t trust anyone who’s working with them. But we need to have companies who can use the science from big ag in ways that are driven by a sense of social responsibility. We need to have companies who can figure out how to support environmentally sustainable approaches as they use this science. We need to have companies that are a bridge between these two worlds.

Phylos has one foot in the cannabis world and one foot in the world of large-scale agriculture. The role of our company is to be a bridge between these two worlds that don’t trust each other. To make it work, we’re going to have to be really committed to maintaining our values and measuring our success based on them. We’re going to have to be a little bit like Switzerland and work with everyone.  We have to accept that we’re not going to make everyone happy, but we’re going to make damn sure the farms that work with us are successful.

To us, that means that they’re sustainably successful in ways that work long-term for them, and their workers, and the environment. For most of these larger farms the first step is simple: start growing hemp.

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Why Jay-Z’s Stand on Social Justice Makes His Move Into Weed Important

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jay-z
PHOTO | @JayZ

Rap superstar Jay-Z has announced his partnership with California-based cannabis company Caliva, serving as their Chief Brand Strategist on a multi-year deal.

Per a statement released to detail the partnership, Jay-Z’s duties on the job will include outreach efforts, brand strategy and creative decisions, giving him a further outlet to focus his efforts in “advocacy, job training and overall employee and workforce development.”

In his new role, Jay-Z plans to shine a spotlight on social injustices when it comes to cannabis, particularly in the realm of criminal justice, cannabis use and legalization.

“Anything I do, I want to do correctly and at the highest level,” said Jay-Z in the statement. “With all the potential in the cannabis industry, Caliva’s expertise and ethos make them the best partners for this endeavor. We want to create something amazing, have fun in the process, do good and bring people along the way.”

Jay-Z’s Push for Justice

While it’s clear that the billionaire musician has always been about good business and making money, this is more than just a financial choice for Jay-Z.

Having long been dedicated to social justice initiatives before entering the cannabis business, this is another outlet for him to advocate for and boost the black community in an area they’ve suffered disproportionately, the criminal justice system.

This isn’t his first foray into addressing such issues either.

Jay-Z was named as an executive producer on a series about Kalief Browder, a young black man from the Bronx who died via suicide after three years of imprisonment without a trial, has been outspoken in his support for fellow rapper Meek Mill during his legal troubles and partnered will Meek Mill to launch the Reform Alliance, a group dedicated to criminal justice reform.

When it comes to social justice, this isn’t the rapper’s first rodeo.

A Closer Look at Caliva

Already big fish in the ever-growing legal cannabis pond, the San Jose-based company has a tight grip on the Bay Area’s legal cannabis industry. Carried in over 250 retailers in California and in charge of about 150,000 square feet of space between their cultivation, manufacturing and retail facilities, it’s no wonder the company is Jay-Z’s pick when it came time to ink a deal.

Caliva was all for the opportunity to bring the rap mogul onboard, with CEO Dennis O’Malley heaping praise on the rap superstar in a statement.

“For Jay-Z to seek out Caliva as a partner is humbling and confirms our mission of being the most trusted name in cannabis,” said O’Malley. “To find that we were in complete alignment around our values and ethos was just a home run. We believe this partnership is unparalleled in this or any business and we could not be more pleased to be working with him and have him as our Chief Brand Strategist.”

Celebrities and Cannabis: A Likely Match

While this deal is huge for Caliva, Jay-Z isn’t the only high-profile celebrity to play ball with them. Earlier this year, Hall of Fame NFL quarterback Joe Montana was among a group of investors who locked in an impressive $75 million in fundraising for Caliva.

Montana said at the time that he hoped “Caliva’s strong management team will successfully develop and bring to market quality products that can provide relief to many people and make a serious impact on opioid use and addiction.”

Jay-Z is also one of the many rappers that have jumped on board the legal cannabis money train, joining the likes of Snoop Dogg, Wiz Khalifa, Juicy J and Cypress Hill. Smart investors all have their money in the legal cannabis market, and Hov seems to be no exception.

After all, the guy who rapped “I’m not a businessman, I’m a business, man,” seems like the type of guy who knows a good deal when he sees one.

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