Women In Cannabis Meetup: Commitment To Collaboration
Heady Vermont is planning a Women In Cannabis Summit for April 2020 – an event about which we’re extremely excited. To gather ideas, build momentum, and nurture investment, we’re holding a series of meetups around the state, and just had our first one at Clover Gift Shop in Woodstock.
We had a women’s meetup at Clover Gift Shop last year, and it’s exciting to see how owner, P.J. Eames, has expanded her own relationship to cannabis since then. She’s gone from carrying some local CBD tinctures and salves in the back of the store to offering up her own product line, and serving as a hub of cannabis information for her community.
After a half hour or so of snacks and networking, we opened up the floor (P.J.’s back porch) for conversation. Following a moment of gratitude for the plant which has changed all our lives, we framed the conversation by talking about the ideals we want to see shape the industry, including equity, justice, and sustainability, and acknowledged the larger contextual issues we’re facing such as a significant impending election and the challenge of the climate crisis.
Then we asked the gathering what they want to learn about, what challenges they’re currently facing, and who they might like to hear speak.
The women talked about the difficulties of payment processing, getting financing and insurance, learning to market a small business, and how to maximize the value of a small crop – including finding a broad range of uses for biomass.
They also expressed a great desire to collaborate with each other more, find ways for small businesses to support each other, and develop practices for ethical cultivation and ethical packaging.
Lack of consistency in state regulations and access to consistent testing was also of great concern, as was getting zoned out or banned by an anti-cannabis town.
In the long run, this group was quite clear on the economic, environmental, medicinal, and social value of cannabis, and is committed to public advocacy and education to help unhook decades of stigma and prohibition, grow the Vermont cannabis brand, and elevate as many women as they can along the way.
If you have interest in helping organize or participating in the Women In Cannabis Summit (not limited to just women – everyone is welcome), check out the event page. If you have ideas for topics or speakers, reach out to [email protected]. We look forward to hearing your thoughts!