Business

How Dispensaries Jump From "Green Wednesday" to Christmas

A look inside the nursery at Seed & Smith's Denver location.
A look inside the nursery at Seed & Smith's Denver location. Jacqueline Collins
Most retail employees must deal with long lines, big sales and demanding customers during the holiday season, and that holds for the cannabis industry, as well. In some ways, budtenders get hit even harder: Dispensaries don't just take part in Black Friday; they also promote Green Wednesday.

And what is Green Wednesday, you ask? Green Wednesday, aka the day before Thanksgiving, was created five or six years ago by California dispensaries to entice more cannabis shopping before America stuffs its gullet. The burgeoning day of sales quickly went national and had its biggest year yet in 2020. Although the numbers are still coming in, Green Wednesday experienced similar traction this year, according to consumer research.

Pre- and post-Thanksgiving shopping isn't the only way that legal cannabis plays a role in holidays, however. Stoner stocking stuffers, seasonal edibles and infused beverages have emerged as an extra way to celebrate during the winter. To learn more about the holiday impact on cannabis and how to have the most fun with it, we caught up with Sam Arellano, spokesman for Colorado cannabis producer and retailer Seed & Smith.

Westword: How does the marijuana industry experience the holiday season? Does Black Friday affect business much?

Sam Arellano: The holiday season is an important time of year for the cannabis industry. It’s one of a handful of annual inflection points when we’re able to engage mainstream consumers about cannabis gift giving. It’s also when family and friends come together for celebration and remembrance. Considering the mood-enhancing effects that cannabis can bring to social gatherings, or as a creative giftable for the hard-to-shop-for person on your list, these are opportunities for the industry to create win-win scenarios. As for Black Friday, Seed & Smith welcomes the opportunity to provide a little self-care for those brave enough to endure the stress that comes with long lines and jammed parking lots.

What about Green Wednesday? Is that still a thing in Colorado?

Absolutely! Many people, if faced with spending consecutive days with the family, look to cannabis for its mood-enhancing effects. That makes the Wednesday before Thanksgiving the perfect time to stock up. At Seed & Smith, we’ve taken it a step further: At both our Denver and Louisville dispensaries, we're offering Black Friday deals all week long.

Any fun dispensary items that make good holiday gifts or stocking stuffers? What about some seasonally inspired cannabis products?

Seed & Smith Louisville is the go-to destination shopping location for the “cannoisseur” and “canna-curious” on your list. Shop craft cannabis across a wide selection of strains and product types, as well as hard-to-find cannabis-related books, candles and bags, and so much more. New this season is cannabis-infused hot chocolate and hot apple cider. Both come with a Seed & Smith mug at a price that’s hard to pass up!

For gift givers looking to make this season unforgettable, Seed & Smith is offering a unique assortment of holiday-themed product bundles at prices to suit everyone’s wallet. Beginning at $25 for four 1-gram pre-rolls, lighter and glass tip, all the way up to the $100 Vape bundle, which comes with two 1-gram live resin cartridges with battery and two half-gram Dart Pods with holiday-themed battery for $100.

Feasting, snacking and desserts are all part of the winter holidays. What are some strains that your customers seek out for help with their appetites?

If a case of the munchies is what you’re looking for, choose sativa strains or sativa-leaning hybrids. Our Chem de la Chem is the perfect go-to strain to help stimulate appetites!

What are some New Year's resolutions that you'd like to see cannabis undergo?

Expungement and re-entry programs for those convicted and still incarcerated for nonviolent cannabis — this is HUGE. We want these people released so we can put them to work in our industry. And, of course, [federal] legalization!
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Thomas Mitchell has written about all things cannabis for Westword since 2014, covering sports, real estate and general news along the way for publications such as the Arizona Republic, Inman and Fox Sports. He's currently the cannabis editor for westword.com.
Contact: Thomas Mitchell