Exclusive Interview with Medically Correct
Here in the United Kingdom, the use of medibles is rare amongst cannabis users. Some of us have memories of hash brownies, often with varying levels of THC. But getting the right dosage can be difficult, and the predominant method of consuming marijuana is by combustion.
In Colorado, this is not the case. 50% of marijauna sales come in the form of medibles; cookies, cakes, chocolate bars…even lollipops.
More frequently than ever, we hear of patients turning to medibles and oils over smoking and vaping. The longer lasting effect of cannabis passing through the liver can increase bio-availability and pain relief.
The market in the USA is fairly regulated but there have been some scare stories in the media about the safety and consistency of products. We head stateside to interview Bob Eschino, founder of Medically Correct, the largest Cannabis Edibles Company in Colorado, to find out what all the fuss is about:
Your holding company is called Medically Correct. Do you see all the products you sell as holding true to this value?
Definitely! We have always treated our edibles and extracts as medical products. The items we sell on the adult use market are benefiting from the fact we take so much pride in our medical products. We came out with our e-portion marketing system last year. Each of our servings is marked with the active milligrams of THC, so the patient and customer knows exactly how much activated THC they are ingesting with each square.
Do you fund any research into the medicinal benefits of cannabis either in relation to the products you sell or in general?
There is very little research being done in the US due to federal regulations. We are anxiously waiting for the day when it will be legal to conduct real research on the plant. We see anecdotal evidence every day of the positive effects.
Are you legally able to make medical claims about your products without full medical trials? Do some of your products work better with some illnesses that others?
We are not allowed to make any medical claims about our products. We do however hear stories every week from patients about how the plant is transforming their lives. We are not allowed to sell directly to the public, so our access is very limited. The dispensaries gather data on what strains and products work best for their patients. We hear from patients often about the positive effects, but we cannot narrow that down to a particular product. As we control more of the cannabis we use in our products, that will change. We have started growing strains that we use now and we should be able to get some better feedback.
The edible market seems to have exploded in places like Colorado. Is this both with recreational consumers and medical ones in your experience?
Edibles and concentrated have become almost half the sales in Colorado. I believe that is in large part to how ‘incredibles’ and the entire industry has improved in quality and consistency. Five years ago, customers were afraid of the inconsistency with edibles. We have worked very hard to fix that and we feel that edibles are now the most consistent way to consume cannabis. You can now take one serving of 10mg of activated THC and we have test results to prove it. In my mind there is very little difference between medical and recreational use. Even if you are not buying the product with a doctor’s recommendation, you are still using the plant therapeutically.
You state that you work very closely with CannLabs to ensure that customers know exactly what is in their purchased product. Do you test the oil as well as the final product?
We feel testing is one of the most important things we do. We were one of the first companies to test every batch of oil. This allowed us to know exactly how much THC we added to our products. As food people, this just made sense. We were shocked it wasn’t being done more. The entire industry is now required to test for potency. We test all of our oil and our finished product as well. Colorado has set a hard cap on 100mg edibles, so our goal is to come as close to that number without going over. If you have a 101mg edible, you have to destroy the product. If you look at the back of our labels, we provide the customers with the potency numbers. We are typically between 95-100mg of THC in our 100mg bars, more consistent than the pharmaceutical industry.
When testing your extracts, do you look for terpenes?
We do test for terpenes on our extracts. Most of the terpenes are degraded during activation for our edible products. We manufacture closed loop extraction systems for ourselves and the industry. With our IP, we have been able to extract some of the highest terpene percentages our labs have ever seen. This provides for an incredible extract experience.
Which strains do you use to make your hash oil? Do you prefer indicas or sativas?
Our BHO for edibles ends up being a hybrid that is a little heavier on the sativa side usually. Due to the fact that we are processing about 1000 pounds per month, it’s difficult for us to use the same strains. We have a large variety of trim we process. Our Black Label extracts however are made from our pesticide free plants that we control form start to finish. They sell out so quickly, it’s hard to see a trend towards indica or sativa. Our customers love them all!
Do you have any plans for high-CBD products?
Yes! We have finally sourced a great CBD supplier! There has not been a lot of options for high quality CBD in the past. That is changing now. There are a number of amazing CBD suppliers and we have started incorporating them into our products. We have come out with our Mikiba bar, which is 50mg THC/50mg CBD. Sprouted seeds, vegan and gluten free! We are working on an entire line of wellness products for the Colorado market and we are also going to start a line we can provide to other states and countries.
Do the cannabinoids make a large difference to the flavour of your products?
Cannabinoids do effect the flavour, but we do an incredible job to mitigate that. We have some of the best tasting products on the market. The different carriers do have different effects. High sugar content will typically hit harder and faster.
How does the effect differ when consuming one of your high THC edibles? Does this have any medical benefits?
It provides a stronger, longer lasting effect. We find for patients, this is a desirable outcome. It is beneficial for sleep, pain relief and most lingering ailments. The duration is the biggest difference between edibles and smoking. It does take up to 2 hours to kick in though, so you need to be patient when eating edibles. We also recommend you start with 5-10m of activated THC for your first time, so you get a feel for how they will affect you.
There have been a number of incidents in the news concerning children eating infused edibles. How do you ensure your products are childproof?
There have not been a large number of incidence of children ingesting edibles. The few cases that were reported last year prompted changes in the industry that have almost eliminated this. We are trying to find the data, but we haven’t heard of an accidental ingestion for almost a year now. Statistically speaking, these occurrence are minimal compared to other products on the market. We do have all of our products in opaque, child resistant packaging. We have also been using our e-portion system for a year now. Every square is marked with the activated THC levels, so is easily identifiable outside of the packaging.
You have won countless awards for your Edible products. Which product are you most proud of?
My favourite award is the people’s choice award from Westword. This is one of the most prestigious awards for any Colorado company. We were chosen by the people of Colorado as their favourite edible. This speaks volumes to us and has pushed us to become even better.
Do you believe Colorado has adopted a sensible, sustainable regulatory framework for businesses such as Incredibles? Do you get involved in lobbying or the regulatory process at all?
I have spent the last 18 months lobbying and getting involved in the regulation process. I could talk for hours. Colorado has the most robust market around. I believe the rules and regulations are working, but we are approaching over regulation with the last round of changes the state has proposed. We are in the middle of the process now and hopefully we can make some changes to improve the language.