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11 reasons why real New Yorkers love Leafly

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We hit the streets to see what New York City is smoking in 2022, plus how real New Yorkers feel about legalization and the Leafly app


After ringing the NASDAQ bell to celebrate 420 last month, Leafly hit the streets of New York City to see what The Big Apple is smoking. We asked New Yorkers what they really think about cannabis legalization on the East Coast, what strains they love, and how they use the Leafly app to learn more about what they’re smoking.

From the financial district to Washington Square Park, we found tons of love for Leafly’s strain database as the city celebrated its final 420 under prohibition with a bang.

1. She takes notes on strains from Leafly

What are you smoking right now?

“I think Mob Boss is gonna be a favorite of mine. It’s a sativa-dominant hybrid, very cerebral. But a lot of medical consumers use it for quick relief of muscle tension, which is something I think is really interesting. Mood relief, appetite stimulation, keeps you energetic, talkative, happy: All this info got from Leafly.”

“Leafly is super informative. I like that it has all the effects of weed. A really cool thing about weed is if you know what you’re smoking, you can help what you’re trying to help. Or you can just enjoy being high and relaxed. I like that Leafly has those top effects (and) negative effects for people. Like if you’re aware that, ‘Okay, I do tend to get a little paranoid when smoking, so maybe I’ll avoid this one,’ it’s a really great resource.”

2. He ‘g-checks’ his dealers using the Leafly app

New York man says he uses the Leafly app to
New York man says he uses the Leafly app to “g-check” dealers who claim they have Zaza, but don’t. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

Are you familiar with the Leafly app?

“So me and my oldest bro, we’ve been smoking weed together probably since like fourth grade. And Leafly was the first website we used. Cause we be g-checking (dealers) in the city. (They) say they have ‘Za shit.’ So you gotta type in what they say on Leafly. If that shit don’t come up in Leafly, I’m popping on him. Dead ass, bro.”

“Leafly is a great resource to just educate yourself more on the cannabis and know what you’re smoking. A lot of people out here on the East Coast, they just cop some (weed) and they be satisfied with what a (dealer) gives them. They don’t tell them the names. They don’t even know. But if you (use) Leafly, you’re gonna have a more thorough info session. You’ll be a real certified smoker. Have some smoker’s etiquette. So do your studying, do your homework.”

3. She says legal weed in NY was ‘a long time coming’

New York woman shows pre-rolls when asked
New York woman shows pre-roll collection when asked “What are you smoking?” (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“I love it. And it it’s really a long time coming. Definitely a long time coming and I’m glad it’s here. And the fact that we can smoke on the street is phenomenal. I love that aspect of our law here. So I’m really psyched… I use Leafly a lot when I wanna know about a strain. I definitely look you guys up… I had so many things that I was smoking on (today). Let’s see if I remember. I had a flower and rosin. If I remember correctly, this is Purple Haze. And these, these little guys (pre-rolls) are Zkittlez. The last of my Zkittles.”

4. He loves that he can smoke while on the clock

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“Man, I’m grateful. I spent all of high school running, ducking from truancy. Everybody was trying to stop me from smoking. But we here now, I’m an adult. I can do what I want.”

“I feel I’m free. I’m on the clock, we chilling! It’s a beautiful time. And it’s 420 today? I don’t even know. Wow. Happy 420!”

5. They say the illicit market will always thrive

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“Legalization is great and all, but the black market will always thrive,” said our friend in red after rolling up some RS11 (aka Rainbow Sherbert #11).

“I think he’s absolutely right,” said his buddy in blue. “At the same time, legalization affords us the luxury to do things like bring crazy ass bongs outside the house and smoke them on the street, which I honestly fucking love as well, because before I could not bring this anywhere with me, you feel me? Now, I can smoke this shit in front of the arch in Washington Square Park!”

6. He’s smoking original Gorilla Glue

New York man says he and co-workers had lives changed by petty marijuana charges. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
“Right now I’m actually smoking on some Gorilla Glue. It’s not GG 12, the original. But it is some good ass Gorilla Glue, so shoutout to hop NYC. They’re providing free spliffs in Washington Square Park for 420.” (Jon Bain / Leafly)

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“It’s about time. A lot of my peers, a lot of my coworkers, we all got misdemeanors for getting locked up for smoking weed… I (saw) that it said Leafly on this mic, and I was like, ‘Yo, before anybody knew what, what Zaza was, we was all checking on Leafly to see if the strain existed. That’s facts.”

“Leafly was one of the first to (show us) what the hybrid does, what the percentage of the THC should be, the coloration of the weed. And you have some of the best pictures… I used to go to my budman like, ‘What is this?’ Check right on Leafly, then look at it. ‘OK, It matches up, I can buy this.’”

7. They’re thrilled they can smoke in public

New Yorkers celebrate April 20, 2022, by smoking in Washington Square Park. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New Yorkers celebrate April 20, 2022, by smoking in Washington Square Park. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“I love it. It’s a fucking amazing, let’s do it. We’ve been waiting for this,” said our friend on the far right, who was smoking on Doja Exclusive buds.

“It’s been incredible,” said the man in white, who shouted out Darwin Farms products as well as Doja. “Legalization is a long time coming. Many years, a lot of people got in trouble for it, but it’s time to legalize it. It’s definitely a step in the right direction,” he added.

“Hey, I’m from New Jersey, but I’m happy about it all,” admitted the man pictured on the far left, who was repping Talking Terps products, a brand founded by Flatbush Zombie’s Jewice, Hope Lord and PTA Haiti 3000.”

8. He smokes to relieve NYC-induced stress

New York man says weed helps him cope with stress. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New York man says weed helps him cope with stress. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“It should have been like this a long time ago. It’s too much fucking pressure over here in New York. Too much stress. We needed this shit. Like right now, I’m stress-free. I’m at work. Work is going slow, but I ain’t bitching. Why? ‘Cause I got my damn blunt.”

9. He says the medical program has big problems

New York medical cannabis patient says state program needs to improve. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New York medical cannabis patient says state program needs to improve. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“They need to do better. They need to lower the prices of the ganja, and put it on Medicaid. I’ve been a medical marijuana licensed patient since 2018, and they’re charging me to buy the weed, so Medicaid needs to (add) marijuana.”

10. After 35 weed arrests, he wants social equity

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“As long social equity is involved and the people that created this whole movement, which is us, the pioneers, we (can’t) be taken advantage of by the big companies. Like, you know, Big Pharma and bigger companies that have the equity and money to push us out.”

“New York and New Jersey are gonna be the flagship states to push out social equity. So if it don’t work here, it ain’t gonna work nowhere.”

Related

New Jersey’s recreational weed stores open to long lines, cheering customers

“We’re gonna give them the opportunity to make it right for the people that have really been arrested. I’ve been arrested 35 times. We gotta make sure the legalization is pushed for the ones that (were) affected through the War on Drugs, the ones that (were) arrested, shook down.”

“I’m buying packs for $40. I used to sell that, but they stopped me. So I could have been a major company by now.”

“I’m straight from Brooklyn. If it’s not social equity, it’s not gonna happen. That’s for everybody that’s dealing with marijuana.”

“We gotta stand up for social equity. That’s gonna protect us where we don’t have to pay for the license, they’re gonna pay for us. Imagine if everybody that got locked up in New York just sued the sate. We could bankrupt the whole state.”

11. His brand is taking over NYC

We were lucky to catch the team behind Doja Exclusive brands, which kept popping up when we asked New Yorkers what strains they were smoking.

From what we heard downtown, Doja could soon become one of the hottest homegrown bud brands in New York, along with GUMBO, a collaboration between Harlem’s own Luca Brasi, and Runtz’ founder Yung LB’s Joke’s Up umbrella with confidential genetics.

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“I think it’s just finally a beautiful thing that it’s like, it’s actually gonna be that’s gonna happen. Look, how many people out here! Like there’s only a few people from California. Everybody else is from the East Coast, man. Like we got DC out here. People from VA, the DMV. We got people from Florida. We got people up from Massachusetts.”

“I think it’s a beautiful thing. I’m gonna be honest with you. The market for cannabis has always been out here in New York and New Jersey. I mean, you got great cannabis films that can document that. You got Half Baked by Dave Chappelle to represent New York. Then you also have Jay and Silent Bob as an example of the New Jersey scene.

Look out for more New York cannabis coverage on Leafly, including videos from 420 in The Big Apple.

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Mikhail Harrison

Trinidad-born, New Jersey-raised content producer Mikhail Harrison has been a cannabis advocate and influencer for over a decade, working both on camera and behind the scenes to normalize the plant for all.

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Mass Layoffs Continue in Cannabis Industry – Globally

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What’s one great way to tell if an industry is doing well? More jobs open up, and salaries improve. What’s a great way to know there are problems? When more and more jobs get cut. That’s where we are today, as mass layoffs continue in the cannabis industry, signaling a host of problems, with no solution in sight.

Industry issues

When the industry first started it was a true free-for-all. The predictions for market growth were off-the-charts, and it seemed like every big international company wanted to swoop into newly legalized locations to take advantage of this new reported cash cow of an industry. Everyone wanted in. Lots of people made investments. We all waited with baited breath to see who among us would become the new weed industry millionaires.

Now, we’re a few years in, and the landscape has changed, along with expectations. CBD has faded out into almost nothing, medical markets are getting eclipsed by recreational markets, which themselves are still often eclipsed by black markets. Prices remain high in many places due to insane taxing, and governments have been slow to pick up on this as an issue. Overproduction has (let’s be honest, predictably) come into play, causing prices to plummet in every venue. And the once thriving industry, is now showing its cracks, with sales plummeting in many places.

Last year the reports started really rolling in about industry closures and layoffs. Smaller names were already having a hard time making it in due to expensive regulation, extreme competition, and extra costs like slotting fees at dispensaries; making it seem like a game for the big dogs only. But even they’re having issues. And now as 2023 gets underway, the mass layoffs continue, both in the US, and around the world.


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Mass layoffs in the cannabis industry – global

Clever Leaves Holdings is a Colombian cannabis company with operations in Portugal. On January 23rd of this year, the company announced restructuring plans that include cutting nearly ¼ of its staff. Clever Leaves is in the medical space, creating pharmaceutical-grade products. This restructuring means winding down all operations in the Portugal location. In fact, the company wants to move everything back home to cut costs, saying:

“By exclusively cultivating and producing our cannabinoid products in Colombia, we aim to leverage our existing cost efficiencies in the country as we ramp our dry flower offering,” said Andres Fajardo, CEO of Clever Leaves. “We believe this transition will allow us to optimize our production infrastructure and drive increased cost savings, positioning us to compete more effectively in the global medicinal cannabis market.”

As of the end of September, the company had $12.1 million in assets in Portugal. The facility included cultivation, post-harvesting, and manufacturing activities; though it sounds like all of this will eventually end. It’s also not the only company operating out of Portugal that wants to cut back. On January 17th, cannabis giant Tilray Brands announced it too was looking to cut about a quarter of its staff. The facility in Cantanhede is also a medical cannabis products facility. Said a Tilray spokesperson to MJBizDaily:

“A total of 49 jobs will be affected in the production, manufacturing, quality, quality control (laboratory), cultivation, supply chain, facilities, warehousing, logistics, procurement, and IT. These changes, which are in line with Tilray’s rightsizing to meet the needs of the current economy and the state of legalization across medical and adult-use cannabis, will take place over the next three months.”

To give an idea why this is happening, consider that in the quarter ending November 30th, 2022, the company posted a $61.6 million net loss. Tilray is a public company and can be found on the NASDAQ and Toronto Stock Exchange under TLRY. Clever Leaves also had huge losses of $37.3 million, in the first three quarters of last year. It only earned $13.2 million in the same time frame. Clever Leaves is publicly traded under CLVR on NASDAQ.

In Canada, Delta 9 announced that it would temporarily lay off 40 people. This is interesting wording as it implies the company does believe it will be able to reverse these layoffs. Realistically, maybe it will, but a stronger reality might be that none of these jobs are coming back for any of these companies. This cut in the company’s Winnipeg facilities accounts for 40% of its staff.

Fellow Canadian company The Flowr Corporation (OTC:FLWPF) a cultivation services enterprise with locations in several countries, made some big changes last year to keep from bankruptcy. It cut employees to the tune of $4 million in savings, accounting for 40% of its workforce. Along with this, it made a deal to sell off its subsidiary Flowr Forests, a 16 acre property for cultivation. This is considered a non-core asset, and makes the company $3.4 million in revenue.

Mass layoffs in the cannabis industry – US

The US might not have federally legal weed, but it is home to the biggest cannabis industries. However, things aren’t doing better within the borders of the US, than they’re doing outside them. One of the big ones to announce major cuts of late? Columbia Care, Inc., which operates in several states, and owns Green Leaf Medical LLC, which is about to make a bunch of people jobless. How many? 73. As of February 28th.

According to the company: “In order to meet the appropriate supply and demand levels of the market, it was necessary for us to reduce the workforce at our cultivation and production facility.” It continued, “We are hopeful that with adult use on the horizon, this facility will be back up to full capacity in the future.” It’s pretty clear this cut is indeed due to a lack of business.

Leaflink, a wholesale tech platform out of New York, is also cutting jobs. Late last year it was reported that 80 employees were sent looking for new work. Much like the other companies to make cuts, the company explained: “Unfortunately, as the cannabis industry continues to face headwinds and the current macroeconomic environment, we needed to take the next step in our evolution to continue supporting the industry.”

Truelieve, a company offering medical cannabis products and services out of Tallahassee Florida, and which operates in many states, also made a similar announcement at the end of last year. Workers were cut from its McKeesport Pennsylvania cultivation facility, numbering approximately 36. This is technically small potatoes considering the company employs in the neighborhood of 8,000, but its also not the first cut. The company laid off workers in three Florida locations: Midway, Monticello, and Quincy, as well.

While the cut was blamed on “Trulieve’s $2.1 billion acquisition of Arizona-based multistate operator Harvest Health & Recreation in 2021,” it also came on the heels of the company posting a quarterly loss of $115 million.

Yet another Florida company, Springbig, a technology company for weed-specific marketing software, cut 23% of its workforce (37 employees) late last year. The company is trying hard to turn a profit amid an industry that seems harder and harder to turn a profit in. These cuts were meant to save $200,000 in the short term, and 21% in the first three quarters of 2023.

Springbig had just merged with Tuatara Capital Acquisition, in order to get on NASDAQ; trading under SBIG. The company’s shares have plummeted from $4.50 last June, to 82 cents at the end of 2022. Prior to the drop it had reported $24 million in yearly revenue, with a $275 million valuation, as per Green Market Report.

If you’re a big reader of cannabis news, then the publication Leafly is likely familiar to you. Well, even Leafly Holdings is having problems. In October of last year, it was reported that the cannabis resource and marketplace, would cut 56 jobs, or 21% of its staff. Leafly, traded under LFLY on NASDAQ, is looking to save approximately $16 million a year, saying, “These reductions will help preserve our ability to respond to opportunities as this industry continues to mature and expand, and allow us to more effectively manage our capital.”

Previously mentioned layoffs in the cannabis industry

This is unfortunately not the first time I’ve reported on cannabis industry layoffs. Last year made one thing very clear: the market is not as sound as many wanted to believe; and the overall market predictions in place, are falling short of reality.

Some of the big layoffs already reported on, include Weedmaps, which cut about 25% of its staff; Curaleaf Holdings, which just got rid of 220 employees; Akerna, which released 1/3 of its staff, or 59 workers; Dutchie, which removed 8% of its workforce, amounting to 67 jobs lost; Canopy Growth which sold all its retail locations, and cut 245 jobs last year; and Aurora Cannabis which cut 12% of its workforce as a part of corporate restructuring to save money.

With the biggest names in cannabis faltering, it brings up the question of who can survive. More companies to let employees go recently, include California’s Eaze, which laid off around 25 employees last year; Lume, a cannabis company out of Michigan closed four out of 30 of its stores; and Nature AZ Medicine, an Arizona medical cannabis company, cut up to 100 employees as a result of medical sales falling.

There’s nothing saying that 2023 won’t turn into a banner year for cannabis sales, and there’s nothing saying that all of these companies won’t recoup their losses, or hire back the numbers they lost. But right now, things aren’t looking fantastic for cannabis industry growth, and these layoffs are a good indication that more bad news might be coming.

Conclusion

Will the cannabis industry rebound? Or are these mass layoffs an indication that the weed industry has hit a wall? And maybe most important to ask, if it can be saved, what kind of changes are necessary in order to facilitate this?

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Some Cities Are Inadvertently Supporting Illicit Cannabis Sales, According To New Report

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By Joana Scopel

Leafly released a first-of-its-kind report detailing the unintended and harmful consequences that occur when local municipalities choose to opt out of legal and regulated cannabis sales.

The report, developed in partnership with Whitney Economics, a global leader in cannabis and hemp business consulting, data, and economic research, reveals the adverse consequences of opting out and explores why local regulation, not local prohibition is the right way to handle cannabis.

Opting In To Legalized Sales Would Benefit The Entire Community

After legal cannabis is approved in a state, numerous legalization laws enable local municipalities to establish specific regulations within cities and counties. That is, they can choose to sell cannabis or not to sell cannabis.

According to the Leafly report, “instead of reasonably regulating legal sales, it is increasingly common for leaders to opt out of legalized sales entirely, with unintended consequences that effectively create an economic protection zone for illegal street sellers to continue the business.”

Leafly’s Opt-Out Report found that local leaders who choose to opt out of cannabis sales are hurting their communities by:

  • Indirectly encouraging adult consumers to purchase illegal products
  • Putting public health at risk by allowing the circulation of untested products
  • Sustaining illegal sales to local teens
  • Turning away local jobs and tax revenue
  • Continuing the losing War on Drugs

Bruce Barcott, the report’s lead author and Leafly’s senior editor, said “this report demonstrates that legal, regulated cannabis stores put illicit marijuana dealers out of business.

RELATED: Why Are So Many Municipalities Opting Out Of Their State’s Adult-Use Cannabis Marketplace?

“Fears surrounding local cannabis stores may prompt elected officials to prohibit cannabis companies in their towns. But adults in every community already purchase and enjoy cannabis, legal or not,” he said. “The cities and counties that skip out on cannabis are essentially voting to keep their local illegal marijuana markets in business.”

rolling a marijuana joint
Photo by Ozge Yagmur / EyeEm/Getty Images

The Opt-Out Cannabis Sales Situation In Some U.S. States

After four years of legal cannabis in California, illegal street sellers still satisfy more than 50% of the state’s adult consumer marijuana demand, and it’s no coincidence that 62% of the state’s municipalities have opted out of regulated retail sales.

More recently in New Jersey, which launched legal cannabis sales this past April, 71% of local municipalities have prohibited the sale of legal, state-regulated cannabis. “That has left the state’s adult consumers with few legal options. With only one store for every 358,000 residents, illegal street sellers still command more than 80% of the marijuana market,” according to Leafly.

In New York, which will begin legal recreational cannabis sales soon, 50% of all municipalities have chosen to opt out. New York’s Cannabis Control Board (CCB) recently adopted regulations allowing home cultivation for card-carrying MMJ patients and caregivers.

RELATED: NYC Mayor Says He Won’t Crack Down On Illicit Weed Sales, Tells Big Apple To Light Up & Enjoy

“Today, nearly 45% of Americans live in a legal, adult-use state. If pending legalization measures gain approval on the November ballot, half of all Americans could live in a legal cannabis state by 2023,” continued the Leafly report. “In every newly legal state, local officials will be called upon to regulate cannabis in ways appropriate for their community. Opting out isn’t a vote against marijuana—it’s a vote in favor of illegal dealers.”

cannabis sales
Photo by OlegMalyshev/Getty Images

Report Methodology

The data in Leafly’s 2022 Opt-In Report “derives from a variety of public and private sources. Unless otherwise noted, data cited by Leafly and Whitney Economics represents market conditions as of July 1, 2022. Cannabis sales figures and active license numbers are dynamic. We chose July 1, 2022, as a firm point-in-time mark to ensure data completeness from all states under review.”

According to the report:

  • The number of legal cannabis stores per capita was derived using public licensing data released by state cannabis regulatory agencies. The state population is current as of the 2020 US Census.
  • The percentage of cannabis sales captured by the legal market “was derived by comparing each legal state’s annual cannabis sales with that state’s Total Market Estimation,” the authors said.
  • TME is defined as the value of total cannabis sales in a calendar year, regardless of the legal status of the product.

Finally, Beau Whitney, co-author of the report and founder of Whitney Economics said: “Access and taxes, those are the keys to customer migration to the legal market (…) And right now we’re seeing illegal cannabis sales propped up by opt-out cities and counties.”

This article originally appeared on Benzinga and has been reposted with permission.



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11 reasons why real New Yorkers love Leafly

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We hit the streets to see what New York City is smoking in 2022, plus how real New Yorkers feel about legalization and the Leafly app


After ringing the NASDAQ bell to celebrate 420 last month, Leafly hit the streets of New York City to see what The Big Apple is smoking. We asked New Yorkers what they really think about cannabis legalization on the East Coast, what strains they love, and how they use the Leafly app to learn more about what they’re smoking.

From the financial district to Washington Square Park, we found tons of love for Leafly’s strain database as the city celebrated its final 420 under prohibition with a bang.

1. She takes notes on strains from Leafly

What are you smoking right now?

“I think Mob Boss is gonna be a favorite of mine. It’s a sativa-dominant hybrid, very cerebral. But a lot of medical consumers use it for quick relief of muscle tension, which is something I think is really interesting. Mood relief, appetite stimulation, keeps you energetic, talkative, happy: All this info got from Leafly.”

“Leafly is super informative. I like that it has all the effects of weed. A really cool thing about weed is if you know what you’re smoking, you can help what you’re trying to help. Or you can just enjoy being high and relaxed. I like that Leafly has those top effects (and) negative effects for people. Like if you’re aware that, ‘Okay, I do tend to get a little paranoid when smoking, so maybe I’ll avoid this one,’ it’s a really great resource.”

2. He ‘g-checks’ his dealers using the Leafly app

New York man says he uses the Leafly app to
New York man says he uses the Leafly app to “g-check” dealers who claim they have Zaza, but don’t. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

Are you familiar with the Leafly app?

“So me and my oldest bro, we’ve been smoking weed together probably since like fourth grade. And Leafly was the first website we used. Cause we be g-checking (dealers) in the city. (They) say they have ‘Za shit.’ So you gotta type in what they say on Leafly. If that shit don’t come up in Leafly, I’m popping on him. Dead ass, bro.”

“Leafly is a great resource to just educate yourself more on the cannabis and know what you’re smoking. A lot of people out here on the East Coast, they just cop some (weed) and they be satisfied with what a (dealer) gives them. They don’t tell them the names. They don’t even know. But if you (use) Leafly, you’re gonna have a more thorough info session. You’ll be a real certified smoker. Have some smoker’s etiquette. So do your studying, do your homework.”

3. She says legal weed in NY was ‘a long time coming’

New York woman shows pre-rolls when asked
New York woman shows pre-roll collection when asked “What are you smoking?” (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“I love it. And it it’s really a long time coming. Definitely a long time coming and I’m glad it’s here. And the fact that we can smoke on the street is phenomenal. I love that aspect of our law here. So I’m really psyched… I use Leafly a lot when I wanna know about a strain. I definitely look you guys up… I had so many things that I was smoking on (today). Let’s see if I remember. I had a flower and rosin. If I remember correctly, this is Purple Haze. And these, these little guys (pre-rolls) are Zkittlez. The last of my Zkittles.”

4. He loves that he can smoke while on the clock

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“Man, I’m grateful. I spent all of high school running, ducking from truancy. Everybody was trying to stop me from smoking. But we here now, I’m an adult. I can do what I want.”

“I feel I’m free. I’m on the clock, we chilling! It’s a beautiful time. And it’s 420 today? I don’t even know. Wow. Happy 420!”

5. They say the illicit market will always thrive

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“Legalization is great and all, but the black market will always thrive,” said our friend in red after rolling up some RS11 (aka Rainbow Sherbert #11).

“I think he’s absolutely right,” said his buddy in blue. “At the same time, legalization affords us the luxury to do things like bring crazy ass bongs outside the house and smoke them on the street, which I honestly fucking love as well, because before I could not bring this anywhere with me, you feel me? Now, I can smoke this shit in front of the arch in Washington Square Park!”

6. He’s smoking original Gorilla Glue

New York man says he and co-workers had lives changed by petty marijuana charges. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
“Right now I’m actually smoking on some Gorilla Glue. It’s not GG 12, the original. But it is some good ass Gorilla Glue, so shoutout to hop NYC. They’re providing free spliffs in Washington Square Park for 420.” (Jon Bain / Leafly)

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“It’s about time. A lot of my peers, a lot of my coworkers, we all got misdemeanors for getting locked up for smoking weed… I (saw) that it said Leafly on this mic, and I was like, ‘Yo, before anybody knew what, what Zaza was, we was all checking on Leafly to see if the strain existed. That’s facts.”

“Leafly was one of the first to (show us) what the hybrid does, what the percentage of the THC should be, the coloration of the weed. And you have some of the best pictures… I used to go to my budman like, ‘What is this?’ Check right on Leafly, then look at it. ‘OK, It matches up, I can buy this.’”

7. They’re happy they can smoke in public

New Yorkers celebrate April 20, 2022, by smoking in Washington Square Park. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New Yorkers celebrate April 20, 2022, by smoking in Washington Square Park. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“I love it. It’s a fucking amazing, let’s do it. We’ve been waiting for this,” said our friend on the far right, who was smoking on Doja Exclusive buds.

“It’s been incredible,” said the man in white, who shouted out Darwin Farms products as well as Doja. “Legalization is a long time coming. Many years, a lot of people got in trouble for it, but it’s time to legalize it. It’s definitely a step in the right direction,” he added.

“Hey, I’m from New Jersey, but I’m happy about it all,” admitted the man pictured on the far left, who was repping Talking Terps products, a brand founded by Flatbush Zombie’s Jewice, Hope Lord and PTA Haiti 3000.”

8. He smokes to relieve NYC-induced stress

New York man says weed helps him cope with stress. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New York man says weed helps him cope with stress. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“It should have been like this a long time ago. It’s too much fucking pressure over here in New York. Too much stress. We needed this shit. Like right now, I’m stress-free. I’m at work. Work is going slow, but I ain’t bitching. Why? ‘Cause I got my damn blunt.”

9. He says the medical program has big problems

New York medical cannabis patient says state program needs to improve. (Jon Bain / Leafly)
New York medical cannabis patient says state program needs to improve. (Jon Bain / Leafly)

How do you feel about legalization in New York?

“They need to do better. They need to lower the prices of the ganja, and put it on Medicaid. I’ve been a medical marijuana licensed patient since 2018, and they’re charging me to buy the weed, so Medicaid needs to (add) marijuana.”

10. After 35 weed arrests, he wants social equity

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“As long social equity is involved and the people that created this whole movement, which is us, the pioneers, we (can’t) be taken advantage of by the big companies. Like, you know, Big Pharma bigger companies that have the equity and money to push us out.”

“New York and New Jersey are gonna be the flagship states to push out social equity. So if it don’t work here, it ain’t gonna work nowhere.”

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“We’re gonna give them the opportunity to make it right for the people that have really been arrested. I’ve been arrested 35 times. We gotta make sure the legalization is pushed for the ones that (were) affected through the War on Drugs, the ones that (were) arrested, shook down.”

“I’m buying packs for $40. I used to sell that, but they stopped me. So I could have been a major company by now.”

“I’m straight from Brooklyn, and we are advocating for all social equity. If it’s not social equity, it’s not gonna happen. That’s for everybody that’s dealing with marijuana.

“We gotta stand up for social equity. That’s gonna protect us where we don’t have to pay for the license, they’re gonna pay for us. Imagine if everybody that got locked up in New York state just sue the sate. We could bankrupt the whole state.”

11. His brand is taking over NYC

We were lucky to catch the team behind Doja Exclusive brands, which kept popping up when we asked New Yorkers what strains they were smoking.

From what we heard downtown, Doja could soon become one of the hottest homegrown bud brands in New York, along with GUMBO, a collaboration between Harlem’s own Luca Brasi, and Runtz’ founder Yung LB’s Joke’s Up umbrella with confidential genetics.

What do you think of legalization in New York?

“I think it’s just finally a beautiful thing that it’s like, it’s actually gonna be that’s gonna happen. Look, how many people out here! Like there’s only a few people from California. Everybody else is from the East Coast, man. Like we got DC out here. People from VA, the DMV. We got people from Florida. We got people up from Massachusetts.”

“I think it’s a beautiful thing. I’m gonna be honest with you. The market for cannabis has always been out here in New York and New Jersey. I mean, you got great cannabis films that can document that. You got Half Baked by Dave Chappelle to represent New York. Then you also have Jay and Silent Bob as an example of the New Jersey scene.

Look out for more New York cannabis coverage on Leafly, including videos from Day 1 in The Big Apple.

Mikhail Harrison's Bio Image

Mikhail Harrison

Trinidad-born, New Jersey-raised content producer Mikhail Harrison has been a cannabis advocate and influencer for over a decade, working both on camera and behind the scenes to normalize the plant for all.

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