Kirk: So I just walked into a garden variety and. Please introduce yourself.
Sheilagh: Hi I'm Sheila dohie I'm the regional manager for garden variety.
Kirk: Well thank you for inviting us here. So yeah here I am. So I'm going to get a visitor's pass.
Sheilagh: We're gonna set you up with a visitor pass Okay so we can bring in the store and give you a little bit of a tour right. And then we'll sit down and chat with Ari one of our top bartenders and get a little bit of a lay of the land. Wonderful to tour.
Kirk: Great. Can you give me a quick update. What about just an overview of the company now.
Sheilagh: Yes we have two locations in Winnipeg. This location here on Ellis Avenue and then we have one on Sterling Lion parkway in the new seasons of tuxedo development. That's that's opened up their excellent locations because we don't have anybody too too close to us so our competition has sort of secured the south and the east a little bit. So I'm really happy that we're independently here for close the airport. That's right. Nice. Yes we definitely draw from our travelers. We have the industrial area and then we're border on residential as well. And Tuxedo are a nice place to this right be on its way to the airport to Keningston Boulevard is only a route towards the airport that's also a professional mall isn't. Yes. Yeah. So we've got the ultimate collection mall and you've got some car dealerships opening up in there and then you've got a neighborhood that isn't serviced by cannabis at the moment other than my garden variety. Our next two locations that we're opening are Brandon and Thompson which is gonna be late this summer or nice. Cool.
Kirk: And you have an Aboriginal connection.
Sheilagh: We do one of our partners this Fisher River Cree Nation. OK. Yeah. Very cool. And as well we have the Chippewa of the Thames in Ontario. We do have two first nation partners with us. One is based in Manitoba one is based in Ontario.
Kirk: And how are you connected to Colorado.
Sheilagh: Colorado. Is that really the visionaries of this particular design. And they worked with the three three other partners that I haven't mentioned so Mediphrarm, Avana and Maple Star there are the other three partners that have put the application together to to really create Garden Variety and and win a license in Manitoba and then native roots Colorado is really the visionaries of the design. We've got the retail backbone behind us to do in the design and the vision work and then they hired the team and we get to take it from here
Sheilagh: Okay well let's grab your visitor badge set up and a welcome package for you. So everyone that comes in as a visitor, meeting or regarding advertising or if it's one of the regulators or maybe one of our license producers sign in getting a little more access to a few more spots in the store. You know you're here and we that you're important to us. So, in this particular end of the store. And. Maybe I'll preframe a little bit to that our store on Sterling Lion mirrors this location It's just the reverse. So you come into the store and so that's part of your branding I guess I forgot. Okay you got it. So we start off with a little bit of merchandise. Nice and wholesome accessible to the door. And I should say merchandise being apparel. Kirk: Well the first thing the first thing I saw I walked in I see the T-shirts.
Sheilagh: That's right. And it's an appropriate amount of inventory in the sense that if the consumer would like to wear our brands there's something here for them right. Something appealing and yet it's not it's not overstated in the sense of what it is. It's hard to distinguish our clothing store or cannabis store.
Kirk: No I like I like to say the Garden Variety. So you're not promoting cannabis at all.
Sheilagh: That's our Sparwolf which is our mascot and then we have some fun messages to play on over the year to come this way come into our accessories cabinet where we have the fun items and on each end you will notice these kiosks these monitors.. Currently what we're we're running some messages of different uses for cannabis. Some of our fun messaging from our Web sites, our Web site. I shouldn't say I should say singular. And then any time that we might do a feature like right now we have a we're calling a Bundle for Pride and we did one for me long weekend we also did one for Mother's Day where we bundle a series of products together to try and create a nice value for the consumer. We'll also put that on our kiosks as well and how about running through the days to some really beautiful imagery and over time. What this will change to is for In-store ordering and picking up in the windows so if you didn't really want to engage with one of the budtenders we call the Mood makers by the way. Garden variety Mood Makers. And you could use the touch screen and place your order. Oh and then one of the team would pack the order up and have it ready for you particularly. That's right. I'll show you another another section just on the outside of the reception area. It could have an actual window area where you can come and pick up your order. OK. So basically order ahead just like McDonald's as you said. Starbucks is one of the first that did that. Order. Ahead. So we see that as another way that our consumer can you. Can benefit from the. Like from an access standpoint we can deliver to your home. You can shop great in-store with our mood makers where you have the ability to eventually order ahead for pick order. So you have three means you.
Kirk: Puff puff love that your outcome.
Sheilagh: One of our messages. Soon we'll have a T-shirt that will say Puff Puff Love. Lets very Instagram hashtag puff puff love definitely cool. Some kind of move around seeing. More apparel and then we come to the back here. And this is basically today what exists in here is we will have. Some pre-rows as well as our capsules are sprays and or oils will contain them all in this beautiful cabinet. And over time it changes just based on stock levels as well as any of the material that's provided to us from the producers. To signify and help their products stand out. And as you can see we've got the little Bundle here for Pride. Is a shoe box a shoe box and now so it's a ready made it's ready made gift. You got it. So this box is what we use when we ship somebodies home. Right. Beautiful beautiful package. Yes. And then we've colored it with some pride the pride flag with some tissue paper and put product in there that we felt would be really great for this. This week. It's all about you know attending events being with friends is a pleasure. So you'll notice we like it's a very spacious store which saves me about this is the future of Phase 2 cannabis recreation. Right. Yeah. So we've designed the store with the ability to be ready for that. Now take out the refrigeration or be it in space. We've got an ability to flex that too for beverages or whatever that's really going to look like there's so much yet to to to be known. But that's one of the beautiful features of the design in this location. Yeah. Every kind of past the center of the store to here where we have a consultation table right in the center. OK. And that is just for you know for customers to sit in and have a conversation with their Mood Makers. It's for the staff to have meetings that you know maybe aren't private in nature and they can have you know in store meetings. Sure. It's a great stopping point. We've had some of our consumers ask us if we after they've made the purchase if we just maybe roll something they're the product for them or teach them how. So that's a beautiful area right in the center and then the two ends they really do mirror each other but we call these are island tables and we change them periodically as to what we're showcasing in there. These dupe tubes. These are Terpenes. So you can smell them You betcha. All we won't let Ari do that right. He's really our expert on our area.
Kirk: You made a comment that if I buy if I buy my cannabis from you I can go over here and roll it. So I have a store of course out to purchase his first right. Because the laws you can't have it outright but you can have it. Once you purchase it can be open.
Sheilagh: Yes right. That's right. And. We can assist with that.
Kirk: So that's where a person can look at the menu. And then you go to talk to budtender for what you want.
Sheilagh: That's one of your options for sure. In addition to that depending. It really depends on the consumer because you know as they are greeting at the door they make know right away you know what they're after or they want that immediate assistance and they all walk together talk about bar. You see all sorts of customers do different different things. They might be guided right there they might want to to one of the cabinets repeat customers are very familiar with it there. They look forward to coming over and engaging with the budtenders. .
Kirk: And you've got your flower in those jars are obviously just for display.
Sheilagh: yes very top shelf here indeed is just display. OK. So a really phenomenal investment that we made in this signature feature as you can tell we really want the consumer to feel close to the product or to be very you know can touch these friendly you but The Mood Maker budtender will not release the jar. But this is our signature. This is this is our stamp on cannabis in Winnipeg and Manitoba. And the investment was every bit a bit part of that. So cool that's display at the top. And then these these jars we call them are small jars are our role as aroma jars and for each each of the mood makers we'll just hold it open the jar and let consumer. They're quite full. Yeah I think the supply and them were very very particular about them holding the aroma and the team must be very aware of them. You know if this is the signature if the sensor gone we have to change the cell because obviously we're not fulfilling the objective of the signature feature. Right. But it's so yeah it's been really the talk of the town for sure.
Kirk: How long you been open now?
Sheilagh: We opened this location on March 14th. And our store in Sterling Lion open on March 24th just 10 days later.
Ari: We refer to ourselves as mood makers around here. Yeah.
Kirk: How did you become a Mood maker.?
Ari: I went to the Red River College. They had a booth at the Red River college job fair for cannabis.
Kirk: Yeah. And I went there and Dr. Shelley Turner's course. That's the one.
Ari: No not it wasn't the course it was. They had like a job fair for cannabis. Right. And I guess I was attached to that course. Yeah I got and. And I went there and met Jason and give my resume. OK.
Kirk: But how did you get. How did you get your fundamental foundational learning. How did you learn to be a cannabis guy.
Ari: I come from like I went to University of Toronto. OK. And at the time I wanted to become a doctor. So I come from a science background and just like the general curiosity background I read lots of philosophy. So yeah. That's awesome. And like it's awesome that this world can kind of collide with us like there's almost no research in Canada especially about so much of cannabis and yet everyday we're learning things that we had no idea. And like the big one that we always tell people is it's a Sativa and Indica it's just a placebo. You know all the newest research suggests that it has nothing to do with the way it's gonna make you feel based on how tall the short plant is and like and then you always get people who kind of push back on you but every single reason that they have to push back is different from another person's reason.
Kirk: So so it tells you it's not so an Indica being a couch thing is their stuff. So really it comes down to the terpenes right. Yeah.
Ari: All right. It just I just like saying like because like I'm taller than you I am a better singer like it just doesn't make sense. If you have an idea of understanding genetics like you mean tomatoes like you look at the variety of tomatoes. It's not their height that determines what's going to make the different qualities of the tomato. OK.
Kirk: All right. So I guess if I came to you I was thinking that I really would like to have something that's up. That's something I want I want to enjoy my summer time cutting-the-lawn-kind of cannabis.
Ari: That's what I mean. Yeah. So you're going to I would say you've looked for something be like Limonene in primary so and that's another thing I hope that we stop seeing sativa/indica in because it doesn't make any sense. But then also move into like what is the primary terpene in this cannabis. And then once you have all these are all your primary you know beta caryophyllene ones you figure OK well what secondary there what's another terpene that I like that's in there that you can find that really works for you guys.
Kirk: Limonene is up and myrcene is down.
Ari: Myrcene is also it's down but so it's Beta caryophyllene and so is Linalool. So it's it gets into like they're all slightly different. Whereas like and also like the cool thing about myrcene isn't even that it goes down it's not that it's ums. There is proof to suggest that when you take myrcene into your body your receptors can then take a more THC so that if you take a strain that's you know maybe 20 percent THC what's really high in Myrcene is probably gonna get you higher than something that's gonna be higher in THC but has no Myrcene really and Myrcene is the most common primary terpene. So it's about 40 percent of cannabis is myrcene. I didn't know I did not know that I learned something new from Ari every time I'm with them. But then even like we were talking before about Beta Caryophyllene and Linalool, they also have kind of like a sedating effect beta caryophyllene is the only terpene that we've found so far we have proof that it actually interacts with our endocannabinoid system. So it actually is an agonist for your CB1 and which is. Pretty much how we started the whole like idea of like Entourage effect possibly being real.
Kirk: OK to as CB1 is that's the THC THC right. so which one was that. Now that was the beta caryophyllene. That's the one. OK. It's actually bonds to the CB1 faster so if you have a high beta caryophyllene you kind of if you have a high one then then you THC will bind better.
Ari: That's what Myrcene that's the Myrcene. The THC will bind better to the receptor with beta caryophyllene in is the only terpene we know so far that binds to our receptor itself. So the whole the whole proposed action of other terpene we don't really know yet is that they won't modulate the THC experience in some way shape or form but beta caryophyllene the only one that we actually have proof that it actually binds CB1. And myrcene makes it so CB1 receptors can takes in more THC. So this one binds to it. Yeah then. OK. Super interesting isn't it.
Kirk: There's a whole new science whole new system. All right. So, I'm looking for the cutting-the-lawn cannabis.
Ari: I would definitely say something with limonene and maybe someone with pinene to cause create this alertness. Yeah. So I would say anything like the ones I would point out for that Jean Guy for sure. Very very stimulating. You put your nose in and you smell the citrus.
Kirk: I was looking at your web page yesterday. And that's the one I took jobs. Yeah. So let's have a look. I haven't looked at it in that.
Ari: Also seven acres is just a really good company. You can hold it. I can hold this. I just can't. Not really.
Kirk: OK cool. So that's the very dense heads.
Ari: And also like to hear the legend of jean guy. So. Much. Your Montreal compassion club. Was the first dispensary in Montreal. I think it might be the first one in Quebec and there's this. The legend goes out some dude who looks like a wizard walks into the store and imagines somebody walking to the store like this one right now and just has a big bag of weed in one hand and big bag of seeds in the other. He says I want to sell my weed here and you can imagine someone came in here and that would be like old man now. Not the way to go about it. So they kind of laugh at him and he's just like oh you'll see leaves the bag in the leaves. So they kind of like and get under the table. And then at the end of the day they try it out and they realize this is very good cannabis. So they start growing it out selling it. I know I can when he comes back and I get my cut like. Whatever guy never comes back. So they call it Jean Guy because that's the French version of John Doe.
Kirk: He never came back never came back. He just showed up. Gandalf was Gandalf walks in
Ari: gave them some weed and left. Never came back. Wow. And that's why it's called Jean Guy.
Kirk: Okay so what else can you show me sir. That was that's the one..
Ari: But this is by far my favorite. Liberty Hazes.
Kirk: That's nice.
Ari: The 2011 cannabis cup winner has it like. This earthy on top and citrius underneath.
Kirk: Yeah not just. Right. Yes very much so very much so
Ari: my favorite. It creates a bit like. Big time daytime. Stimulation and that's my preference. I like really being mentally stimulated really lifted up.
Kirk: Well that's what I'm looking for. That'll do it. Do it. Okay. Okay so now I guess. I'm old school. And so that is it's a sativa. It's a 50 50 hybrid I've right. Yeah. Okay. I didn't even know I don't even know that
Ari: Okay this is the best part. So, we get the whole thing within sativa. Also is that. You don't know what a lot of these like classic genetics are made up of. They just can theorize all this is some sort of Pakistani land race mixed with whatever. That's point one. Point two is that when you got to the point where people started renaming things breeds based off of the effect. So, you maybe have something that was super short super bushy but oh no, it makes me feel really stimulated it’s a sativa, even though the whole rule of Indica and Sativa means short or tall. Right. So we also have an industry just renaming things based off the effect rather than you know what the actual what it looks like. So then when you go with that misinformation, then you begin the first part of made about it not knowing what genetics are. So nobody really ever knew. They're kind of just being that’s a sativa that’s an Indica. So, no one really knows. 99 percent of weed is highbred.
Kirk: They're all hybrids anyways. But Dr. Guppy used he's developed now you can get into the genome of it you know. Right. So can you not. Because this is sativa and Indicas are from different regions of the world.
Ari: That's what they say. Yes but the problem with that is that we've only ever discovered that cannabis came from like China and India and we don't have another space to go to and feel like this is the other spot. Looks like it grew up if appeared in Africa by itself as humans bringing it over after it was cultivated and so far away from the land.
Kirk: Do you know Chris Bennett, Chris Bennett speaks to the origins of cannabis actually came from Ukraine.
Ari: The Scythians were the first person is people smoking. Yeah. They would get tents and then you get huge piles of weed and burn it while we're sitting in a tent and
Kirk: Moses. Moses was there and we would tents of meetings Moses was breathing in cannabis.
Ari: And if you if you can look into the old testament like when they talk about the anointing oil for the priest or in the first temple of Judaism the first temple era they the oils called cannabosum and they've always had all kinds of plants are proposed to be part of this cannabosum but none of them match up to what the aromatic and sticky and like all the things happened in the Bible the one that does and it's very close to the name is cannabis.
Kirk: Okay so I have seen two now. Jean Guy and Liberty haze.
Ari: Super Lemon Haze this one is Delta9. This is a blend we have called schnitzel fritz it's all super super citrusy.
Kirk: No way. Yeah. So that's so. They have a lot of limonene in and then
Ari: you can smell it. The citrus is really strong. You can smell it. But no, I mean I have not tried it yet, a lot of people just get turned off because it’s a blend. Yeah. Some people just don't like it because it’s not in bud form. Yeah, I had a friend years ago who says, I means, like as soon as you grind it loses a street value and
Kirk: People want to see the Buds.
Ari: Yeah exactly. You don't know how well this was growing, most blends end up as pre-rows.
Kirk: Yeah that's right. All right. This is this is lovely. I'll take I'll take a picture for you.
Ari: I show you this one too just because it's so unique. Chocolate Fondue. A lot of people think it smells coffee.
Kirk: Yes. I smoked that one as well. Who's that. That's.
Ari: This one's DNA genetics. And it's also a test to the whole Sativa Indica thing. This guy is the most Sativa Sativa bread thing up here. For me I don’t get as much of a mental lift as a Super Lemon Haze or Liberty Haze or even the fact that you can go online and be like read someone say it's an Indica leading dominant yet it produces effects like sativa but that shouldn't be possible. That sentence should be a thought if it's really a real thing.
Kirk: What would you like people to know. What question did I not ask you?
Ari: I would like to see, you always hear about the THC and endocannabinoid system and terpenes and stuff but I don't think it's talked about enough that the opioid system plays a huge part cannabis effect. Like mice that you you cut off their CB1 receptor where they don't have a CB1 receptor. They literally can't get enjoyment out of opiates. It's crazy. Yeah. And then when you affect the CB1 receptor it kind of makes the opioid system start to work that's part of why we get enjoyment and analgesic stuff out of cannabis. And they both of them work on each other so if you take if you take an opiate it's gonna kind of start work on your CB1 and vice versa. And you don’t see it being talked about and it kind of starts it it keeps on appearing in a weird way. So another example is there's a reason there was research done on people who don't like cannabis. And one of the big things that they found is that there's three different receptors for opiates in your body. The two main ones that you kind of focus on are your mu receptor like a micro like a “U” receptor and then also your cappa receptor. Your mu receptor is the one that is known for all your classic opiates heroin and fentanyl etc. They bind to that your cappa receptor. There's a few other drugs that are used that are made that bind to that for pain purposes but not that much because it's really dysphoric and it'll create hallucinations. Salvia actually works. Salvia actually works by binding to the captors receptors and that's why you often hear people have wild hallucinations and not exactly dysphoric. People who don't like cannabis tend to have more cappa receptors near the CB1 rather than people who do like it tend to have more mu-receptors so people enjoy it. The CB1 right there and it starts to affect their opioid system in a positive way more. And if you don't like it tend to get that dysphoria.
Kirk: But also it also goes to say why they're having such success using cannabis in the whole opiate issue and trying to get people off opiates using cannabis.
Ari: Goes out on tests where they give someone enough cannabis that it's. It's they can't feel it. And they also give them enough opiates that they can't feel it. But when you give them both that same amount together it works more effective in certain opiates by themselves.
Kirk: So you talk with the entourage effect. So you also sell gels. Or capsules include so. The capsule is just straight THC there's no entourage effect.
Ari: All the capsules and stuff are actually made from whole plant oils and stuff. So, none of them are like synthetically made in the lab to be just isolated THC. OK. And part of the reason is that all the research available suggests that full plants is better. And the entourage affect isn't proven but I'm confident that it'll
Kirk: Many of the scientists and doctors we've talked speak to the entourage affect.
Ari: Yeah yeah. Like it's not 100 percent yet. But I think we're on our way to that. Yeah. Even just the fact that that CBD counteracts the CB1 receptor is kind of proving it the whole beta caryophyllene thing. And that's kind of where we really start to see like there must be more.