Opening Statement



Wednesday, 18 September 2019

Oh Cannabis: Karma Cup 2019 Review!

The 2019 Karma Cup Results are in. See below and @ RESULTS!



Karma Cup 2019 was a totally smoking celebration! Our top Canadian indie, craft weed growers and producers brought along their very best bud, shatter, concentrates, edibles, topicals and CBD's ... well, you name it! 

Once again, they set up shop in the Church St village, downtown Toronto. With mad pot parties at our cannabis lounges. Plus lotsa other weed festivities and the like, throughout the city core.

Truly, A splendid time was guaranteed for all!



It was my third consecutive time, as a Karma Cup judge. I again somehow managed to complete all the blind taste tests, this time for about 115 of their fine products. Over an extended three week period. Carefully assigning a mark of between 1 to 9 for each, in 9 different categories!

9 marks X 115 samples = 1235 blind taste tests! So many numbers! All floating about my head! In-between countless, endless tokes, tastes and rubs.

Whew! It doesn't get much better than this! Puff, puff passing away the daze at my summer home, in the Land o' Lakes Ontario! In-between kayaking, camping and dancing around the campfire, with all my stoner family and friends! 

The price of the judges pack? The early bird special cost $650. Cheap and well worth it, for a hardcore, medical and recreational cannabis enthusiast like myself. 



Get this -you personally can sample most every type of weed product possible. See what you like. Mark it by preference. Then find out what each is afterwards. While enjoying the leftovers. Now able to buy and use them as an informed, knowledgable consumer! 

Forget our uptight, legal, licensed government dispensaries! At Karma Cup, everyone of legal age can smell, ouch and taste everything first before making a purchase. Just like the big boys and girls that we are. Very much reminding me of Toronto's great, green market market scene before legalization. Before the new reefer madness of prohibition 2.0, made that all but impossible to do!




Remo Brand Remo!

This year, I even noticed two Licensed Producers [LP] in attendance. To his credit Mr. Remo Brand showed up in person, with his camera, flying his cannabis colours. Scoring tons of accolades from the different winners for his fine line of plant nutrients. Ditto LP 7 Acres. They sponsored a kool, outdoor "Session Garden Lounge". Signing up tokers online. Actively promoting their "Respect The Plant" brand!  Both at our pot party deluxe! 

Yup! We actually smoke weed here! Screw that!

But it was the Unlicensed Producers whom were the true heroes! Winning handfuls of trophies! Setting up over 50 plus sponsor and vendor booths at the jam packed 412 Church St. Market. Providing a rich bounty of free tokes, dabs, edibles, and swag. With plenty of great bargains! Their business cards! And lotsa invaluable, product information. While the DJ's blasted the stoner tunes! And we partied away like there's no tomorrow!




High 4 or 5'ing It At The Cup!


My good buds and I began making the rounds Friday night at the High 5 Karma Cup Kick Off Party in Toronto's west end. Think of a warehouse party! With lotsa free dabs. A THC/CBD cocktail bar. A comedian. Pole dancers. Not what you'd think! Nothing sexist or demeaning. All in all? Plenty of great laffs. With lots of cheap goodies to buy! 

Next we headed across town, to the east end, for the Planet Paradise Karma Cup Kick Off Party. Planet Paradise is a converted bar where one can smoke weed and safely party in peace. We enjoyed the great tunes. Tokes! Dabs! Edibles! The tons of other giveaways. No end to all the good cheer!



On Saturday afternoon we attended the Karma Cup Speaker Series at Yonge Street's Vapor Central, a vape only toking space. This year's excellent panel discussions addressed everything from growing, licensing, and cooking with cannabis, to pets, weed and youth. There was also a heartfelt, special tribute to local cannabis activist Tracey Curley, who passed away this year. 

My two personal favourite sesh's were:




Legacy 420 Rocks The Cup!

Cannabis as Sacrament, Indigenous Medicine and Each Healing: The speakers included Legacy 420 alchemist Seaira Maracle and marketing/ training director Jordan Brant from the Tyendinage Mohawk Territory, outside Belleville Ontario

We leant a lot more about our favourite herbal medicine from a very enlightening,  indigenous perspective. Also about the First Nations' homegrown, community challenge to Canada's "Prohibition 2.0" cannabis laws. 

Sadly, the First Nations' weren't consulted about legalization. Nor have the various levels of government in Canada show any respect for their legal jurisdiction on Treaty Lands! 

Jordan was quick to emphasize that in the broader sense, we are all allies within the Canadian cannabis community. The government has shown complete disregard in so many, different ways towards each and everyone us, with it's highly flawed legalization "model", if you will. This is not just a First Nation issue! 

Hardly! Oh Cannabis looks forward to further following up with our indigenous counterparts in the legalization struggle, during the daze ahead. One quite respects the strong, activist and indigenous thrust that Jordan has voiced. And suspect that we'll see quite the shit storm, when push comes to shove on Treaty Lands. Like Tyendinaga. No bars hold. Remember Oka!



Cannabis Advocacy -Past Present and Future: 420 Toronto's Erin Goodwin, "Cannabis Amnesty's Reena Rampersaad, along with Justin Loizos Just Compassion and CFAMM's Sarah Coleco updated us on their cannabis activism efforts, past and present. Some of the names and initiatives will be quite familiar to readers on my blogsite. I'm glad to report that our movement remains alive and well. It's in great hands. There was a great mix of old and new faces in attendance. With our political novices in the audience eagerly asking about how to get more involved!

Sunday afternoon found me at the Karma Cup Awards ceremony. Much good vibes! Fanfare!  And more free giveaways! Craft cannabis growers and producers Phatpharms, LD Extracts, and Sofa King Bakery were among my own favourites, winning a handful of trophies. But there were many more @ RESULTS!



Over my last three years judging the cup, I've noticed that the number of entries in each category, quite accurately seems to reflect our changing consumer interests and preferences, in both the larger under and above ground market.

This year the number of Hybrid buds [15] was up. The number of Sativa ones [7] down. The Indicas [11] held their own. So too with Pre-rolls [4]. Sadly, Solvents [11] and Solvent less [4] seem to be in steady decline. Including hashish too. Boo hoo hoo!



Edibles [22] and Terps [14] held their own. More Topicals [15] Pens [8] and CBD products [8] were readily apparent. This should come as no surprise! Hopefully, the second wave of legalization will finally bring them to Canada's licensed dispensary shelves, just in time for Christmas this year. 

Harder to explain: Glassware was dropped altogether! Hmmmm. There also seems to be a drop in the THC percentages of Edibles. Generally to well within the 25 to 100 mg range. Perhaps that's a tip of the hat to the government's legal 10 mg limit, without going all the way? 

Some of the weed and Solvent/Less samples also seem to be getting smaller, and therefore harder to more fairly re-evaluate, as I continued to judge the different entries. 



Fortunately, a lot more attention was paid to properly wrapping the individual samples. However, the Topical, Term and CBD directions remain scant. The buds sometimes rather flat and squished. 

There's was far too much sugar, chemicals, preservatives and processed flour in many of the Edibles for my own liking. Not very healthy. But no doubt very popular and convenient.

All in all? For my money, despite these reservations, it's still a top notch judges package, which I thoroughly enjoyed! Without doubt, Sarah Sunshine has performed a Herculean task in getting the Karma Cup together for us, despite the many challenges, legal and otherwise. 



Retired and laid off teachers please take note: At the awards show, Sarah noted her concern over finding people whom can actually do the marking! Provide grades. 

Hey! It comes natural to us! And believe me, grading cannabis samples is a helluva lot more fun, than school projects, papers and activities ever were! 

So rah-rah! Let's help Sarah out! Be sure to apply next year!

Another word for the wise. If you have an entry, have somebody there at the awards ceremony in case you win. Prepare a little speech. Plug your wares. Encourage the shoppers to visit your booth. Makes $en$e -No?




Sarah y Craig Show Us How It's Done!

In conclusion, as Expert Joint's co-host Craig Ex pointed out, Karma Cup is what legalization should really look like! So true! The products are high quality! Carefully crafted! Very innovative! The growers and producers true aficionados! Bonafide originals with some real skin in the game! A lot of love and attention goes into each and every cannabis product, unlike far too much of the legal shit that you'll find on the licensed store shelves! 

As medical and recreational consumers, we can taste, touch and smell the goods. The samples allow to actually check them out and do some real comparison shopping. The actual growers and producers are there to answer our questions. Educate us about their wares. 

Just add lots of good times! Love. Peace. Lotsa great vibes! 

Hey! It isn't like we gathering together to take poison! Far from it! 

Karma Cup 2019 was a total blast. Come Sunday at 420, endless joints were freely being passed around. It's was a giant pot party! The pot party to end all pot parties! Culminating after the roaring countdown with a crowd sized super joint! []

Next year, come to Karma Cup! Don't trust the government! Or be fooled by it's rip off legalization scam. And Prohibition 2.0. The bullshit reefer madness. The endless lies.

Instead, learn how legalization can actually work, for growers, producers and consumers alike. See for yourself what our cannabis community is really like. And what we are all about! 

Pax!

David C



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