From Outlaw to Industry Leader
Dennis Hunter was born ahead of his time, and it cost him roughly a decade of his life, either underground and on the run, or behind bars.
He co-founded CannaCraft, Inc., the highly successful Santa Rosa-based marijuana production company that makes edibles, cartridges, soft gels, sublingual drops and other products. The company employs 240 people and has its products in 500 dispensaries. CannaCraft is privately held and its brands, ABX, Care by Design and Satori Chocolates are arguably the most widely recognized in the state. Hunter doesn’t disclose an exact number, except to say that CannaCraft’s revenues “rivals and/or exceeds that of the billion-dollar, publicly-traded cannabis companies on the U.S. and Canadian exchanges.”
The Evolving Face of Cannabis
Welcome to NorthBay biz magazine’s inaugural Business of Cannabis issue. When I started working for the magazine as a freelance writer eight years ago, I would never have guessed I’d be writing about cannabis within the pages of a business-to-business magazine. But California is a state that always makes a grand entrance, often leading the way in the nation. It was the first state to approve the medical use of cannabis in 1996 through Proposition 215, which was then considered a significant victory for medical marijuana. And the legalization of recreational cannabis through Prop 64 in 2018 underscores the trailblazing ways of our Golden State.
Wine and Weed Tours
Whether you’ve heard of them or not, been on one, or know someone who has, wine and weed tours are a growing trend in Wine Country, drawing visitors from around the world to experience not just wine sipping, but weed smoking, too. With the excitement over California’s recreational cannabis laws, the cannabis culture is evolving, with several entrepreneurs jumping on the opportunity to start a tour business. But strict regulations and many gray areas to work within can make for a confusing day of tasting.
Are We There Yet
Picture this: You arrive at your home after a hard day at work. You gather your things, get out of the car and watch it drive off—by itself. It navigates solo to a lot somewhere on the outskirts of town, parks and waits for morning, leaving you with a clear street and, if you have one, lots of space in your garage. Futuristic fantasy? To practical techies in Silicon Valley and automotive makers worldwide, the answer is no, not at all.
The State Of Cannabis
The North Bay’s cannabis industry is becoming more stable as operators have largely recovered from the stark changes imposed by last July’s regulations. Businesses across the tri-county area are teaming up to form partnerships. With Sonoma County gaining ground as the area with the most activity, Santa Rosa is developing as Northern California’s distribution hub. The change will mean more jobs and a rise in demand for energy-efficient vehicles, distribution permits, and commercial leases.
Not In My Backyard
Sonoma County has changed, and not in a good way for some residents of unincorporated agricultural areas. The issue is cannabis, and although some of them supported legalization of marijuana for recreational use, cultivation of the plant close to their homes has impacted them in ways they never expected, intruding on a peaceful lifestyle and forcing them to fight battles they didn’t anticipate. The problems began to emerge soon after California voters approved legalization in November 2016. Sonoma County’s cannabis ordinance didn’t go into effect until November 2018, and in the interim, a Penalty Relief Program allowed existing growers to continue cultivation while they went through the process of applying for permits. New operations also sprang up, however, often with owners from outside the county who had no consideration for either their neighbors or the environment. Many of those growers were unable to comply with the Sonoma County Cannabis Ordinance and are gone now, but the memories and impact of their foray into rural neighborhoods remain.
In addition to our 12 monthly issues, NorthBay biz produces four special bonus issues during the year. A annual perspective on the North bay county by county, The NorthBay biz 500, a compilation of the top 500 revenue producing companies is published in February. In May our annual readers' poll of the best companies doing business in the North Bay hits the newsstands. And Finally our special NorthBay biz Wine/Harvest Fair issue is published in October.
Dennis Hunter was born ahead of his time, and it cost him roughly a decade of his life, either underground and on the run, or behind bars. He co-founded CannaCraft, Inc., the highly successful S...
Welcome to NorthBay biz magazine’s inaugural Business of Cannabis issue. When I started working for the magazine as a freelance writer eight years ago, I would never have guessed I’d be ...
The North Bay’s cannabis industry is becoming more stable as operators have largely recovered from the stark changes imposed by last July’s regulations. Businesses across the tri...