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Brand Spotlight: Moon Made Farms

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“I’ve always been somebody who was a minority among minorities, being marginalized and also being attracted to marginalized subcultures. Rock ‘n’ roll is where I found my family, and in cannabis, I found another family.” Inspired by the “female expression of the most powerful plant on Earth,” her words, Tina Gordon of Moon Made Farms carved out a cannabis brand, and a name for herself, in Humboldt County, California. But it hasn’t always been this way.

“I was living in San Francisco for most of my adult life, and during that time, I was living a very underground lifestyle with art, music and playing in bands, releasing records, van touring, that kind of thing, for about 20 years,” Gordon said. “I was in a bunch of different punk and metal bands; I did a mobile soundstage, that kind of thing. And I used to do art shows, photography, video. I really dedicated myself to having a full, creative life, to live lean, and to live life to the fullest.”

However, after two decades living that lifestyle, things began to transition. After going through a band break-up and a career shift, she was looking for where to go next. Suddenly, Gordon found herself spending more and more time in Humboldt County instead of the Bay Area, first filming a documentary, then even dating someone in the area and realizing she wanted to spend all of her time there. She also fell in love with growing the cannabis plant, something she never would have tried in her previous life.

“Moon Made Farms acknowledges the feminine in this plant, the moon being a symbol of femininity. The moon has a regular schedule with subtle changes every, single night. So, sun-grown isn’t just about the sun; it’s about the moon and the night cycle as well.”

“I didn’t even have houseplants in San Francisco,” she admitted. “I was really urban. And then when I went through my first season in Humboldt, and I saw this plant grow from seed to full expression, I was completely captivated, and it shifted my awareness to the natural world and how incredible it is. The sensory experience of growing this plant changed my life.”

As she began listening to the earth and the plants she was growing, she started to realize how sacred the relationship between cannabis and grower truly is. Seeing how cannabis thrives when given rain-caught water, fresh air, full sunlight and all the other natural elements that can be granted through outdoor growing in the Emerald Triangle, Gordon knew she had a new obsession. Now, instead of making music and art, she’s all about growing the juiciest, most gorgeous buds. But she never left the social justice element behind.

Gordon started learning permaculture regenerative techniques and working them into her growing to develop more sustainable practices around producing cannabis. As an advocate for outdoor growing, she is always trying to learn more. And as a social justice advocate, she always tries to pull in queer folks, women and other marginalized people to work on her farm.

Photo Credit: Matthew Brightman

“I’ve always been somebody who was a minority among minorities, being marginalized and also being attracted to marginalized subcultures,” Gordon said. “Rock ‘n’ roll is where I found my family, and in cannabis, I found another family. And when something changes your life as much as cannabis, there is a responsibility to pay it forward, a responsibility to do activism work and social justice work and to help educate people about the true value of this plant.

Through education, she wants to make sure that the focus is on sun-grown and natural cannabis, a personal passion.

“Misconceptions about outdoor-grown flower are based on the industry standard,” she said.

“That started because of prohibition, when all the outdoor farmers were forced inside, so indoor farming became the industry standard. Now that we’re emerging out of prohibition, it just feels like the plant should go back outside. Now, during that time, some incredible advancements have happened. A lot has happened in the way of genetics and techniques around this plant, but I would love to see this plant go back outside, and for there to be extensive research done on the properties and potential of what this plant has to offer.

Photo Credit: Debra Keith

Now, Moon Made Farms is known on the market for producing quality, sungrown, sustainable cannabis that stands out from the rest, but it wouldn’t have been possible without the hard work and ethos that Gordon puts into her work. She’s also thrilled that she gets to revisit her musician days and sell merch for her farm, and she loves studying the growth cycle of the plant. As for the moon, to her, it’s a celebration of the feminine within the cannabis plant, the dark within the light.

“Moon Made Farms acknowledges the feminine in this plant, the moon being a symbol of femininity. The moon has a regular schedule with subtle changes every, single night. So, sun-grown isn’t just about the sun; it’s about the moon and the night cycle as well. This is a photosensitive plant. It’s sensitive to light. And that quality of light will affect the plant in every way, so one of the most important things about the plant being grown outside is that exposure to the night sky. And so, Moon Made Farms is acknowledging lunar farming techniques, an ancient way of cultivating all plants, as well as the symbol of the feminine that the moon represents.”

Read this story originally published in High Times July 2021 Issue in our archive.

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New York Expands Medical Marijuana Eligibility

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This week, New York expanded eligibility for the state’s medical cannabis program to include more patients, according to an announcement from state regulators. New York’s Office of Cannabis Management said on Monday that the state had launched a new medical marijuana certification and registration system that is “easier to use and expands the eligibility criteria for patients who can benefit from medical cannabis.”

Under the new eligibility criteria, practitioners will be allowed to issue medical marijuana certifications to any patient they believe may benefit from the medicinal use of cannabis. Previously, the use of medical cannabis was restricted to patients with one or more qualifying medical conditions. The Office of Cannabis Management (OCM) noted that the change is consistent with the Marijuana Regulation and Taxation Act (MRTA) passed by lawmakers last year.

In addition to legalizing the recreational use of marijuana and establishing a framework for adult-use cannabis sales, the MRTA shifted the regulation of New York’s medical marijuana program from the state Department of Health to the OCM. Tremaine Wright, the chair of the state Cannabis Control Board, applauded the progress made by state marijuana regulators.

“It is terrific to see the Medical Cannabis Program expand so vastly with the launch of the new certification and registration program and the ability of practitioners to determine qualifying conditions as included in the MRTA,” Wright said in a statement from the OCM. 

Previously, the OCM announced additional changes to the state’s medical marijuana program, including allowing the sale of cannabis flower and a permanent waiver of registration fees for patients and caregivers. Regulators also expanded the list of caregivers qualified to certify patients for medical marijuana to include any practitioner who is licensed to prescribe controlled substances in New York, such as dentists, podiatrists and midwives. 

Other changes to New York’s medical marijuana program made by the OCM include increasing the amount of cannabis that may be dispensed at one time from a 30-day supply to a 60-day supply and streamlining the approval for institutions such as hospitals, residential facilities and schools to become designated caregiver facilities to hold and dispense products for patients. Additionally, the state Cannabis Control Board has accepted public comments on proposed regulations to govern the home cultivation of cannabis by medical cannabis patients and is currently completing an assessment of the comments submitted for publication in the state register.

“The new cannabis industry is taking shape as we continue to implement the MRTA and provide greater access for New Yorkers to a medicine that we’re learning more about every day,” Wright said. “We’re continuing to move forward swiftly and today’s system launch follows our achievements that already include adding whole flower medical product sales, permanently waiving $50 patient fees, and advancing home cultivation regulations, among others.”

Patients certified through the new certification and registration system will be issued their certification from the OCM. Certifications previously issued by the Department of Health will continue to remain valid through their expiration date, when new certifications will be issued by the OCM.

Cannabis Community Applauds Expansion of Medical Marijuana Program

Dr. Rebecca Siegel, a clinical psychiatrist and the author of The Brain on Cannabis: What You Should Know About Recreational and Medical Marijuana, said that expanding access to medical cannabis is appropriate, because cannabis can be beneficial for a wide range of medical conditions.

“I think this gives practitioners in all types of medicine just one more tool to add to their belt in order to effectively treat patients,” Siegal wrote in an email to High Times. “Most importantly, I think this broadens the opportunity for more patients to have access to cannabis from their own personal trusted physicians who can better monitor their conditions and use of marijuana. This is way better than patients trying to manage it on their own.”

Sharon Ali, the Mid-Atlantic regional general manager for cannabis multi-state operator Acreage Holdings, said that expanding access to medical marijuana is a significant advancement for New York, where the company operates four The Botanist retail locations.

“New York has the opportunity to implement lessons learned from earlier adopters of legalization, and we’ve seen from other states that one of the most important foundations for a successful adult-use program is a robust medical program,” Ali wrote in an email, adding that it is “an exciting time for New York as the cannabis program continues to evolve in a positive direction.”


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A.J. Herrington is a San Diego-based freelance writer covering cannabis news, business, and culture.


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Mississippi Lawmakers Finally Agree on Medical Cannabis Bill

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After more than a year of disagreement, back-and-forth and false dawns, Mississippi lawmakers may have finally produced a medical cannabis bill that will become law.

The Clarion Ledger reported that “members of the Mississippi House and Senate on Tuesday announced a final agreement on a bill to create a medical marijuana program in the state.”

Crucially, versions of the bill that passed out of both chambers did so with veto-proof majorities. 

As expected, the central area of compromise centered “around how often and how much cannabis a medical marijuana patient can purchase,” according to the Clarion Ledger.

Under the bill that passed Tuesday, patients would be allowed “to purchase 3.5 grams of cannabis up to six times a week, or about 3 ounces a month,” the Clarion Ledger reported, which represents a “a decrease from the 3.5 ounces a month the Senate originally passed and the 5 ounces a month voters approved in November 2020.”

The purchasing limits represented the primary area of dispute between Mississippi lawmakers and the state’s Republican governor, Tate Reeves, who had said that his preference was for the limit to be set at 2.7 grams.

Reeves has threatened to veto a bill he deems unsatisfactory, but he may have been dealt a checkmate by members of the GOP-dominated legislature.

As Misssissippi Today explained, should the bill be passed on to Reeves, he “could sign the bill into law, veto it, or let it become law without his signature—a symbolic move governors sometimes do to show they disagree with a measure but will not block it.”

“I think the governor is going to sign it,” Ken Newburger, director of the Mississippi Medical Marijuana Association, told Mississippi Today, adding that the bill will provide patients with a “better quality of life” and that the program will serve as an economic boon for the state as well.

The announcement of the agreement came from the two lawmakers who have taken the lead on the effort to get medical cannabis over the line in Mississippi, who are state Senator Kevin Blackwell and state House Representative Lee Yancey, both Republicans.

“This has been a long journey,” Yancey said at a Tuesday press conference, as quoted by Mississippi Today. “It looks like we will finally be able to provide relief for the chronically ill patients who suffer so badly and need this alternative. I congratulate Sen. Blackwell—he’s carried this bill most of the way by himself.”

Yancey’s bill easily passed the state House last week, a week after the state Senate passed its own version, setting the stage for lawmakers from both chambers to negotiate a compromise.

An overwhelming majority of Mississippi voters approved a ballot initiative in 2020 to legalize medical cannabis, but that triumph quickly gave way to a long series of setbacks for advocates in the state.

The Mississippi Supreme Court struck down the ballot initiative last year, citing a technicality that rendered it in violation of the state constitution. The decision by the court prompted lawmakers to begin work on drafting a bill to replace the defunct law. 

They offered up a bill in the fall, when the legislature was out of session, but Reeves continually balked at calling a special session. 

“I am confident we will have a special session of the Legislature if we get the specifics of a couple of items that are left outstanding,” Reeves said at a press conference in October. “Again, we have made great progress working with our legislative leaders.”

Reeves was against the ballot initiative, but he said last year that he supports “the will of voters” and encouraged lawmakers to produce a bill to replace the one struck down by the Supreme Court.

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Colorado Springs Group Launches Bid to Legalize Recreational Pot Sales

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A group of business and community leaders in Colorado Springs, Colorado has launched a bid to legalize sales of recreational cannabis in the city, arguing that tax revenue generated by purchases of legal cannabis by local residents should stay in the community.

Colorado voters legalized sales of recreational cannabis with the passage of Amendment 64 in 2012, and regulated sales began in the state two years later. But Colorado Springs banned recreational cannabis sales in 2013, although the city is home to more than 100 medical cannabis dispensaries. 

Colorado Springs Ballot Measure Filed

On Monday, the group Your Choice Colorado Springs filed ballot language for a proposed voter initiative that would allow the city’s existing medical marijuana dispensaries to apply for licenses to sell adult-use cannabis. In a statement from the group, the coalition of community and business leaders said that Colorado Springs residents are forced to travel to nearby cities that allow recreational sales. As a result, the city is leaving millions of dollars in potential sales tax revenue on the table, according to Your Choice Colorado Springs.

“It’s hard to believe just how much tax revenue politicians have robbed our city of over the past decade,” said Cliff Black, an attorney and the lead elector petitioning the city for adult-use cannabis sales. “Recreational marijuana is 100 percent legal for every single adult living in the city. Yet the city gets none of the benefits. Instead, residents drive and spend their hard-earned money in Manitou, Pueblo, and even Denver, and then bring their marijuana right back home to Colorado Springs. With this initiative, we are asking voters if they want to keep their tax dollars local.”

The group noted that Manitou Springs is the only city in El Paso County that permits recreational cannabis sales. Thanks to limited competition and high local demand, the two dispensaries in Manitou Springs are among the most profitable in the state.

Voters in Colorado Springs approved Amendment 64 by a margin of about 3,000 votes, according to Westword. Activists have made previous bids to legalize recreational cannabis sales, but have failed to gain the support of a majority of the city council. Additionally, Colorado Springs Mayor Mayor John Suthers, who once served as state attorney general, has been a vocal opponent of recreational marijuana sales since taking office in 2015.

“When Colorado began adult-use sales of cannabis in 2014, we anticipated that our local officials would respect the will of the voters and craft a regulatory structure allowing recreational sales,” said Karlie Van Arnam, a mother, small business owner and former candidate for city council. “But instead, year after year, politicians have declined to provide a regulatory structure to collect precious tax revenue for our city. Today, Colorado Springs residents are taking this decision back into our own hands to finally give ourselves the choice to vote on allowing recreational sales in our community.”

Organizers Hope for November 2022 Vote

If the proposed ballot language submitted this week by Your Choice Colorado Springs is approved by the City Initiative Review Committee, the group will have 90 days to collect the approximately 33,000 signatures needed to place the initiative on the ballot for the November 2022 general election.

To comply with the city’s cap on retailers, the ballot measure would only permit existing medical marijuana dispensaries to sell recreational cannabis with state approval. The proposal would not allow new cannabis dispensaries to open in Colorado Springs.

Sales tax revenue generated by recreational cannabis sales in Colorado Springs would help fund public safety improvements, an expansion of mental health services and support for military veterans, according to the Your Choice Colorado Springs website. Recreational cannabis revenue would be subject to an annual audit by a citizen committee “to ensure that money is being spent where voters approved,” according to the group.

“It’s time for Colorado Springs to catch up with the times and make sure we’re keeping the tax revenues that rightfully belong to the people of Colorado Springs,” Jimmy Garrison, a veteran and founder of a PTSD retreat and camp for veterans Lost Creek Ranch said in a statement for Your Choice Colorado Springs. “As a veteran, I’m thrilled to see that a portion of these tax revenues will support our American heroes and my fellow veterans who paid a price for their service and now struggle with PTSD.”

An informal survey conducted by a local television news station last year found that a majority of respondents favored legalizing recreational marijuana sales in Colorado Springs. And Black said that organizers of the ballot initiative have also collected data that shows support for the issue.

“We’ve done the polling, and believe the voters are in favor of allowing recreational sales in Colorado Springs,” he said.


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A.J. Herrington is a San Diego-based freelance writer covering cannabis news, business, and culture.


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