Topic: April 19, 2020

Bud-trimming machines may trim jobs

Those long chatty hours of well-paying bud-trimming work may be slipping away, thanks to (surprise!) machines. On the upside, these machines seem to do wonders for growers, with a device called the Buckmaster Pro able buck and trim many pounds an hour. At a big launch party demonstration in November at their White City shop, OM Extracts showed off their Oregon Education Center for automated bucking and trimming, promoting the Triminator XL Dry Bud Trimmer, which they call the fastest in the world. Triminator, which has been manufacturing the machines in Grass Valley, California, starting a decade ago, says the

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Ethics of hemp

Ethics are a big part of what hempsters talk about when they get together. Ethics of using plastic sheeting in hemp fields. Ethics of GMOs and synthetic chemicals. Ethics in business dealings. And many of those discussions were front and center in Ashland last September when 300 hemp growers, business people and others attended the third-annual Hemp University at Southern Oregon University’s Stevenson Union. There’s a lot of work to be done and money to be made in cannabis and hemp, but Misty Burris of the Grange and Oregon Institute for a Better Way emphasized that we mustn’t forget to

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Learn as you grow

Despite growing pains in 2019 that saw harvesting and production setbacks for many hemp growers, the industry in Oregon continues to soar in the number of operations registered for 2020 with the Oregon Department of Agriculture and the amount of farm acreage set aside for hemp crops. Meanwhile, hemp growers in Southern Oregon say they are applying lessons they learned last year to the upcoming growing season. As of early March, ODA had already processed more than four times the number of growers who had registered by the same time in 2019. “We’ve got about 1,200 people in the queue

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Farmer talks about his award-winning hemp flower

Alex Bizeau might have the perfect personality and work ethic for a hemp farmer. He strolls the fields of his smartly named Victory Banner Farm in Talent, looking over the cover crop of winter — vetch, rye, clover — talking about how he’s in the first generation of farmers of a newly legalized crop, and all the growers are basically laying down the rules and strategies for doing it right and making it pay. They’re still getting the bugs out of the system, literally. Cucumber beetles, russet mites and (the worst) aphids. They didn’t come the first couple years but,

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Boutique buds

Tetra Organics, a two-acre, organic, family hemp farm across the freeway from Ashland, won first place for Top CBD entry in the 2020 Golden Grow competition in January for its Lifter strain. Winning that honor in the contest — put on by Hemp Inc. and Hemp University’s New Leaf Symposium — will help Tetra gain consumer credibility, as will the “organically grown in Oregon” cachet, say Spencer and Morgan Pierce, a duo of late-20s brothers who grew up on the scenic family farm where they started some years ago by growing hops, using two vertical wind generators. Spencer describes their

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Chemistry test

Imagine the following scenario: You walk into your favorite dispensary, and you’re immediately bowled over by the sights and mingled smells of cannabis grown throughout Oregon. It all looks tantalizing, but you’re on a mission for a specific kind of locally grown cannabis so you tell the budtender: “I’m looking for something organically sungrown from the Applegate Valley that has lower THC and dominant limonene terpenes with floral notes.” Rather than looking at you strangely, the friendly staff person responds enthusiastically, “We’ve got just what you’re looking for!” She takes you to a cannabis selection that is labeled as certifiably

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Tips for making sure CBD products deliver what they promise

You only have to look at the vast hemp fields of the rural Rogue Valley to know that America has a love affair with CBD and its health-enhancing properties — but all relationships soon run into trust issues, right? With CBD, it’s knowing you can trust the amount promised on the label. After all, it’s a new industry, medical research is sparse, and there are few regulators enforcing labeling laws. So CBD users are forced to try many brands and judge by results — learning what works for them. “The industry is unregulated, and that’s why the FDA is starting

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Cannabis tech

Drying cannabis can be tricky. Dampness can trigger mold. Too much heat can wipe out terpenes. It needs good air circulation. It’s a relatively new science, and lots of new farmers are trying to master it — or find where to farm the job out. Showing off her new drying room last fall, Mitra Sticklen, chief operating officer at OM Extracts in White City, reports they’ve developed software that allows them (and the farmer using their drying room) to set the drying temp and humidity, then an app flags the team (OM workers and the farmers) on their phone or

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Straight Dope: Remain calm, all is well!?

There’s a classic moment in the movie “Animal House” I’ll never forget. It features Kevin Bacon as an ROTC dickwad trying to keep the lid on the chaotic parade run amok at the end of the film. In it, KB repeatedly screams: “Remain calm! All is well!” By the end of the sequence Kevin is pancaked into an alley by the marching band. Alarmingly, in 2020, KB’s cry has become our worldwide mantra. A few weeks before the shit hit the fan, I decided it was high-time to renew an old Xanax prescription. (I rarely use it, but I figured

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How green is your bud?

Organic certification can differentiate an agricultural commodity, bringing higher market prices and increased margins to the producer. When the 2018 Farm Bill designated hemp as a federally regulated commodity crop, savvy Oregon growers jumped at the opportunity to certify organic. The label means a lot in today’s consumer-driven, health-conscious market. Organic certification is regulated by the United States Department of Agriculture and cannot be applied to an agricultural product without registration and a lengthy, standards-based inspection. In fact, the word “organic” cannot be used with reference to an agricultural product without USDA organic certification. In Oregon, the Oregon Department of

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Summer 2020 TOC:

  • Cannabis Entrepreneurs: The women behind ‘Ladies of Paradise’
  • Terroir: Inside the science of tasty bud
  • Cannabis Cooking: Canna-balls styled after Alice’s ‘Brownies’
  • Retail: Home delivery gets a boost
  • Profile: River City Retail has a winning formula
  • Retail: Pandemic fuels pot-buying explosion
  • Religion: Cannabis for churchgoers
  • Growing: Hardy Seeds in Ashland shares why hemp loves company
  • COVID-19: Hemp farming – ‘It’s a lot safer than working at McDonalds’
  • Retail: Drive-thru bud at La Mota

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Murphy Hemp and Wellness in Grants Pass is serving up an alternative form of medicine. Here they break down some variants in CBD – isolates, broad-spectrum, and full-spectrum (also know as whole plant extract).