High Recommendations

written and photographed by Kimberly Harris

Passing a drug test for cannabis can be an essential part of getting a job or being on a team. Even though I’m of age and live in a cannabis-legal state, companies still have the right to deny hiring me if I test positive for THC in a drug test. That uncertainty and restriction about having to pass a drug test for cannabis is conflicting. Cannabis had become a part of my lifestyle for years and kicking it was just like trying to get rid of any habit—difficult. So, for this High Recommendations, we’re going to learn how to detox. 

Stop Cannabis intake. 

As soon as possible, I stopped my cannabis intake to begin detoxing. The first week was the hardest. I felt no physical symptoms of withdrawing, but I did have a mental battle with myself to stop. I had to constantly remind myself of how important detoxing was. I also want to be stronger than a substance. 

If smoking is a part of a daily routine it’s more difficult of a habit to kick. I’ve had to pick something else to replace that time like making a cup of coffee, taking an extra-long shower or stretching. I choose things that help me relax and start my day with a positive attitude.

Stay occupied and focus on hobbies. 

To not be tempted to smoke in my off time, I learned to keep myself busy throughout the day. I attached myself to school, work or another hobby if I found myself with extra time. Keeping busy helped with my cravings and desires. I loved to come home after a long day and wind down with a bowl. That habit has been replaced with working out. I can hold a lot of anxiety and stress that builds up inside of me, especially after a day of work, school and completing assignments. Doing cardio, yoga and lifting weights helps to release that build of stress instead. 

2 to 4 weeks is how long it takes for THC to leave the body, supposedly. 

Various articles online told me that how quickly THC flushes through my system would depend on how much I weighed and how often I smoked. After intake, THC is stored in fat so the more fat someone has the easier it is for THC to linger in the body. As a 120lb girl, I wasn’t worried about THC storing in my fat cells. I was more worried about being a daily smoker for the past 4 years. Just to be safe, I gave myself a month and a few weeks of zero intake to let the THC naturally detox out of my system.

Drink lots and lots of water. 

Drinking water is a way for people to detox their body and flush out their systems naturally. I started to increase my water intake. I made it a goal of mine to fill up and finish my 32 oz water bottle twice a day. I knew I was doing it right by how many times I was going to the bathroom throughout the day. 

Detox drinks help but aren’t always reliable. 

If a test is urgent or soon, using a detox drink is a method of cleansing your system quickly. Detoxes are uncertain because it’s hard to know if a detox drink will flush 100% of the THC in your system. Friends who have drank a detox to pass a drug test guided me to purchase one at a smoke shop or a dispensary. They also told me to drink a lot of water with a detox. I feel comfortable with drinking 32 oz of water before and after taking the detox. 

Important tips 

-Pee before going to the drug test, so that it’s not the first pee of the day in the cup. The first pee of the day can hold a lot of what your body processes overnight, so it can have a higher level of THC than pees that happen later in the day. 

CBD products can have traces of THC in them. THC helps promote CBD’s benefits for the body, so finding straight CBD products might not be as helpful or worth it. 

– Detoxing is a practice rather than a quick remedy. It’s more efficient to use the tips I provided consistently and over a long period of time to get a full THC detox. 

– Abstaining from intaking cannabis for a long period of time is the only way to be certain about passing a drug test. Sometimes drug tests come up with little to no warning, so a detox drink can be helpful in urgent situations but aren’t always reliable. 

COVID-19 and Cannabis

written by Alexandra Arnett

The novel coronavirus, or COVID-19, has got the entire globe on its toes. COVID-19 is a strain of the coronavirus that humans have no natural immunity to or vaccines for. The spread of this virus is airborne, through droplets from talking, sneezing, coughing, etc. and it can live up to 3 days on hard surfaces. 

It is important to take note of what the cannabis industry is doing to help slow and prevent the spread of COVID-19, for their employees and customers. As in many states, dispensaries in Oregon have been deemed an “essential” service, but they have to operate within guidelines provided by the Oregon Health Authority and OLCC. The first thing the OLCC enacted was the ability for dispensaries to conduct curbside pick up orders within 150 feet of their shop. The employee must take down the order, customer name and date of birth. When the customer has arrived the employee must verify it is the same person who ordered. In addition, for medical patients, the OLCC increased daily limits for flower purchases to 24 ounces per day but still no more than 32 ounces in a month.

On top of these new OLCC rules, dispensaries must follow the social distancing guidelines, maintaining 6 feet between employees and customers and limiting the number of people on the sales floor. Employees are also instructed to no longer allow smells of any product and to change gloves frequently, as well as maintaining frequent proper handwashing procedures.

When you are making your trips to dispensaries, please be mindful that these are stressful times for everyone, especially those in an “essential” service. Many dispensaries have been overwhelmed with customers and short-staffed, so please be kind to your neighborhood budtender and leave a tip if you can! 

Cannabis Consultants: The Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee

words by Julio Jaquez

The passing of Oregon’s Legalized Marijuana Initiative, more commonly referred to as Measure 91, has produced a massive economic boom that has left many questioning its adolescent regulatory practices. Approved by Oregon voters on November 4, 2014, Measure 91 legalized the sale and usage of recreational marijuana for those ages 21 and older. With this massive responsibility of transforming Oregon’s historically illicit cannabis market into a legal and regulated one, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission, the OLCC, was tasked with regulation: introducing the Oregon Liquor and Cannabis Commission.

Alongside the five governor-appointed citizen commissioners who set the policies for the OLCC,  the Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee (RAC) was required to be established if Measure 91 was enacted. As of 2014, the RAC was birthed out of legalization of cannabis  that tasked the committee with responsibilities such as assisting and advising the commission on how to properly regulate and develop Measure 91 as the industry continues to blossom. With a total of 16 members, half of the committee are dispensary owners, cannabis growers, manufactures, and processors, while the other half are state commissioners, law enforcement and members working within the state government. Members are invited to be a part of the RAC, and the range of work fields within the committee are deliberate in order to gather a diverse set of perspectives. Appointed in 2015, Ryan JD Christensen, a then small-business owner with no skin in the cannabis game, was invited on to offer a neutral standpoint on the committee.

Ryan JD Christensen, now Vice President of FORTUNE, a company based out of Portland, partners with the cannabis industry to strategically market and creatively package consumer goods out to the legal cannabis market. Ryan began as a creative consultant, working with brands like Red Bull, Nike, Adidas and Whole Foods with no real involvement with the cannabis industry. Ryan’s involvement with the cannabis industry initiated once the legalization of recreational marijuana was passed in Colorado and Washington. “I started freelancing and advising or just seeing if I could sit down with more cannabis companies to talk about branding and their marketing needs if and when Oregon would become a recreational state,” says Christensen, explaining how his career focus was positioned within the cannabis industry.

From February to October 2018, Ryan worked with HiFi Farms, nicknamed the “The Coolest Cannabis Farm in Oregon” by Esquire Magazine. He strategically began to introduce a variety of new products like shatter, pre-rolls and other forms of cannabis infused products to the consumer market. With a stable four year membership within the committee, Ryan explains that the committee connects frequently via email, phone call or even in-person at the OLCC office and offers advice about a plethora of subjects pertaining to cannabis. Another part of being on the committee is being an advocate and allowing yourself to be tapped on the shoulder to help inform those interested about the cannabis industry. “Our answers are not gold. Our answers do not represent the state of Oregon. Our answers are not representative of the OLCC,” expressing that his role within the committee is simply to advise and inform. Considering the committee meets about four times a year, his interaction with others on the committee is limited, but Ryan explains that his willingness to connect members within the cannabis community to previous members of the RAC helps dry the cement within the industry in Oregon.

A previous member on the RAC, Mowgli Holmes, CEO and co-founder of Phylos Bioscience created an agricultural genomics company whose mission is to map out the evolutionary process of the cannabis plant. Alongside his team, Mowgli is focused on extracting and sequencing DNA from every cannabis sample collected. These findings have been placed into visualization by using the 3D map identified as the “Phylos Galaxy” that illustrates the cannabis family tree in order to create a better understanding of traits of each individual strain. With reports from 2016 indicating that Mowgli and his team have documented a total of 1,000 strains, Mowgli claims that currently his team at Phylos Bioscience have now mapped out a total of 3,000 strains, which the company shares on their website. Although Holmes is no longer on the committee, his role as a plant scientist is to continue educating and developing the cannabis industry using big data collection, technology and expertise in order to properly categorize and evaluate various strains.

With members like Mowgli and Ryan, who come from diverse fields of work, the OLCC utilizes the committee’s wide array of perspectives to review and offer advice on proposed regulations. The committee’s advice generally adds significant weight in rule making, but the overall mission of the Marijuana Rules Advisory Committee is to keep the Oregon cannabis industry thriving.

For more information regarding the OLCC and everything else that entailed with the passing of Measure 91, visit www.oregon.gov/olcc