Social equity is an ongoing concern in the cannabis industry, and although encouraging regulations have rolled out in support of the idea, much of it is yet to come to fruition.
In the meantime, the cannabis industry can take things into their own hands by supporting Black-owned brands and uplifting minority operators who’ve been held back from the legal game – and there are plenty of amazing companies to take a look at.
15 Black-Owned Cannabis Businesses We’re Highlighting This Month
In honor of Black History Month, legacy operators, and the organizations working hard to provide an even playing field for cannabis workers everywhere, The Bluntness has curated a list of some of the best Black-owned cannabis businesses in the industry today.
From cannabis manufacturing companies to nonprofit organizations and lifestyle brands, this list – far from exhaustive – features a wide variety of Black-owned magic to look out for when deciding which sect of the industry you want to support.
Founded by husband-and-wife team Wanda James and Scott Durrah in 2014, Simply Pure went down in history as the first Black-owned and female-owned cannabis company in the entire country.
Both James and Durrah are military veterans, and after witnessing how much cannabis helps veterans suffering from PTSD, chronic pain, and other illnesses, they decided to open a dispensary of their own.
Based in Denver, Colorado, the company sells cannabis products manufactured from its farm, all with the intent of helping their surrounding community and spreading the healing power of cannabis.
Yet another cannabis company run by a Black female veteran is Supernova Women, a cannabis collective that aims to empower People of Color to become “self-sufficient shareholders in the cannabis economy.”
Founded and run by Amber Senter, a U.S. Coast Guard veteran and marketing expert, the company educates People of Color on how to get involved with legislative efforts for cannabis legalization, and how those regulations might affect your business.
Based in Boston, Ardent is a biotech and medical cannabis device company intent on improving the industry’s administration and overall effectiveness. Ardent was founded by Shanel Lindsay in 2013, who has done nothing but innovate since she got her start in cannabis.
Ardent produced NOVA, a laboratory-grade precision decarboxylator unlike any other on the market, and they also sell infusion kits, molds, and other edible-making accessories for the curious, DIY consumer.
Cannaclusive is pretty much exactly what it sounds like: a proposed solution to cannabis’s inclusivity issue. Founded by media expert and cannabis mogul Mary Pryor, the company was created as a way to facilitate equal representation of minority cannabis consumers and operators.
“We were inspired by the growing opportunities yet disappointed by the diversity issues taking root in mainstream cannabis culture,” their website reads. Cannaclusive celebrates the oppressed subcultures of cannabis by sharing experiences, insights, thoughtful content, and dynamic visuals.
Founded by Oakland native Terryn Niles Buxton, Oakland Extracts is a concentrate-focused brand that supplies local consumers with high-quality, small-batch products.
Coined “Terps From the Town,” the brand offers live resin, vapes, badders, and sugars, but their most sought-after product is Cookie crumble, a signature small-batch concentrate hand-formed into individual cookies for maximum terpene retention.
Founded by 2017 San Francisco Human Rights Commission “Hero of the Year” Liz Jackson-Simpson, Success Centers is an organization centered on empowerment.
In an industry that still hasn’t seen the social equity justice it continues to promise, Success Centers offers marginalized communities a leg up by helping them obtain employment, complete their cannabis education, and tap into their unique creativity.
Kimberly Dillon is the founder of Frigg Wellness, a cannabis beauty brand that prioritizes finding plant-based solutions for women, inside and out.
The brand’s functional formulas help support consumers’ emotional wellbeing and combat common problems like dry skin and scalps, thinning hair, and premature signs of aging.
Dillon, who was part of the founding team at Papa & Barkley, brings a lot of credibility and experience to any cannabis project.
Founded by social equity license holder and CEO Timeka Drew, Biko is one of the most sought-after cannabis brands on the market today. Offering elite pre-rolls and flower, the brand aims to celebrate the old-school ritualistic way of approaching cannabis.
Biko also aims to build lasting partnerships with other social equity entrepreneurs, supporting a network powered by mutual respect and solidarity in a highly competitive industry.
Founded in 2013 in Washington state, Hollingsworth Cannabis Company is a family-run and Black-owned operation.
The company is the only Black-owned cannabis farm in the state, and they pride themselves on top genetics, clean harvests, nutrient-dense soil, and sustainability.
Juice Joint was co-founded by Krystal Hamlett, a cannabis expert with over 10 years of experience in biotechnology and pharmaceutical sciences, and Matthew Lovett, a communications expert who’s worked with Grammy award-winning artists.
Together, the duo fleshed out Juice Joint, a delicious line of infused beverages that encourage wellness every step of the way.
This cannabis brand speaks to sports lovers, as it was co-founded by four-time NBA champion John Salley and his daughter Tyla.
The premium brand is dedicated to bringing consumers the best products for their needs, from pre-rolls to topicals. They’re also adamant about consumer education, which is readily available with all of their products.
This cannabis lifestyle brand offers full circle lifestyle programming that highlights holistic care in every sense: cannabis, fitness, food, mental health, and wellness.
Founded by Brooklyn native Thai Richards, the brand is setting the tone for New York’s legal industry, allowing the East Coast fast-paced approach to the plant to shine through.
Bouqé was founded by CK Dunson and is based in Washington, D.C. A graduate of the University of Georgia, Dunson was first introduced to the benefits of cannabis after suffering a series of sports injuries.
From there, he became passionate about the plant, determined to work in the industry and develop a brand of his own. Bouqé’s main appeal is their elite rolling papers, but they offer a variety of sophisticated accessories and apparel that go along with the brand’s clean aesthetic.
Founded by Stuart McClean and based in Nashville, Inertia’s Root was originally intended to be a co-op for Black hemp farmers.
It has since transformed into its own brand, offering flower, tinctures, and balms, all while providing education to farmers on best practices for cultivation.
Mary and Main, a Maryland-based cannabis dispensary, went down in history when it was founded by Hope Wiseman, the youngest Black woman to own a cannabis company in the entire country.
With the key mission of cannabis education, the dispensary is unique in that beyond its product offerings, it provides consumers with Cannabis 101 classes who want to learn more about how the plant can work for them.
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