Seeing how the cannabis industry is on the rise, it’s no surprise that Cannabusiness got upgraded from a trend to its own track for SXSW 2019. With this rapid growth, entrepreneurs in the industry have a responsibility to move forward in a sustainable and equitable way as cannabis transitions from being an underground market to a new above-board sector.
Explore sessions in this new track during the second half of the SXSW Conference, from March 14–16. Here we’ll look at sessions highlighting the responsibilities in wait for entrepreneurs who move into this new space, including creating equity for those already inhabiting the space, creating and designing sustainable business, and how to cater products and messaging to all customers — including women.
Please be aware that cannabis and related laws vary. Programming in this track is designed to inform attendees about this fast-changing industry, and does not promote the use or sale of illegal drugs.
Cannabusiness Session Highlights
The Evolution of the Pot Dealer
As cannabis policies are being rewritten throughout the U.S. and around the world — has anyone considered what happens to the players in the underground market? The War on Drugs disproportionately targeted communities of color so the question is: how can these individuals who were once criminalized for selling cannabis now profit from this new aboveground industry? And if they do find a way, how will communities that have been devastated by criminalization compete with well-funded cannabis corporations? Sonia Erika, Co-Founder of Massachusetts Recreational Consumer Council, Lanese Martin, Co-Founder and Co-Executive Director of The Hood Incubator, Adam Vine, Co-Founder of Cage-Free Cannabis, and Monica Zhang, Founder of Word on the Tree, will try to answer these questions and more in order to create equity in cannabis policies, educate communities, and hopefully encourage new entrepreneurs to move into this emerging space.
Cannabis: The Sustainability Challenge
For decades, the growing of cannabis has happened largely underground in basements leading to a collective reputation as energy hogs. As global policy starts to change and legalization spreads, so does private research and development — providing data leading to advancements in the technology used in the industry. Energy efficiency and sustainability are not just well-intentioned dreams in the cannabis industry – the realization of these dreams is right around the corner and Derek Smith, Executive Director of Resource Innovation Institute will talk about how to get there.
Sex, Health, and Cannabis
Here we’re talking about two taboos: sexual health and cannabis. This panel will explore where these two intersect, as well as the vital need for inclusion in marketing as the space where sexual health and cannabis cross over expands. Lauren Bille, Co-Founder of CYCLES+SEX, Mathew Gerson, Creator of Foria, Mary Pryor, Co-Founder of Cannaclusive, and Jillian Tuchman, Nutritionist, Dietitian, and Reiki Healer at Work Your Genes, will share examples of sexual health issues that can be addressed with CBD and/or THC dosages as well as addressing the difficulties of marketing “taboos” to the mainstream. They will focus on the necessity of diversity and inclusion, both social and economic, in the growing cannabis industry.
Exploring the Future of Dispensaries
As the cannabis industry continues to grow, retailers are challenged with finding new ways to set themselves apart in an increasingly competitive market. This panel will look at the importance of the design, sustainability, and consumer experience when it comes to dispensaries. Join Chelsea Bernardo, Senior Creative Designer at Point Seven Group, Anne Forkutza, VP of Strategic Programs for Cova, Ashley Picillo, Founder and CEO of Point Seven Group, and Megan Stone, Owner and CEO of Royal Highness Cannabis Boutique as they discuss how a well thought out design of retail space can set businesses ahead of their competitors and lead to higher profits with increase customer loyalty.
The New Cannabis Consumers
The stereotype of grungy pot-smoking twenty-year-olds is fading away. Women are the new customers on the scene – and as consumers, they are redefining the demand. This session will look at how to cater to this new demographic of customers who are looking to serve mainly health and wellness needs. Join Whitney Beatty, CEO of Apothecarry, Diana Eberlein, Founder and CEO of STILETTO, Dr. Robb Flannery, CEO of Dr. Robb Farms, and Aliza Sherman, Co-Founder and CEO of Ellementa as they share exclusive data from a new survey looking at cannabis usage among women.
Check out other Cannabusiness sessions below – enjoy primary access to all Conference sessions with a Platinum or Interactive Badge, and secondary access to most other events:
More Cannabusiness Recommendations
Unlock your badge’s full potential when you enjoy Keynotes and Featured Speakers. We've pulled out some Featured Speakers and Featured Sessions highlighted below that relate to the cannabis industry – check them out:
- Dr. Michele Ross, Jess Dugan & John Salley with Ricky Williams
- Troy Dayton
- Amy Margolis
- Steve DeAngelo
Attend SXSW 2019
Get your SXSW Badge and reserve your hotel today to attend SXSW 2019 and experience these Conference sessions along with 10 days of screenings, showcases, exhibitions, networking, and more this March 8-17 in Austin, TX.
Featured Image by Amanda Stronza