Redefining the Value of Cannabis

It wasn’t always easy to buy cannabis. Until recently, there wasn’t a wide selection. My goal had always been to get something that would get me as high as possible, period. The smell, the look, or the specific effect it would have on me was never as important as its potency. “This is good shit,” some sketchy-ass seller would tell me, and I’d buy it hoping he was right.

Nowadays, cannabis is more accessible than it used to be and I find myself looking for more in my weed than just the high-value.


During Prohibition on alcohol in the US from 1920 to 1933, people still wanted to drink. There wasn’t much variety when it came to quality. The liquor that was available was usually terrible and stank of ethanol, hence the invention of cocktails. A concoction of sugar, bitters, and the likes were needed just to cover up the awful flavor. With choices limited, most people just wanted the strongest stuff that was out there.

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As soon as alcohol became legal, people stopped looking at the alcohol content as the only deciding factor of what they wanted. They looked for taste, smell, body, etc. When was the last time you saw someone basing their wine selection on alcohol content?  

Cannabis is going through a similar evolution. While it was illegal, consumers sought potency, and growers would attempt to breed cannabis with as much THC as possible. By doing so for decades, other important cannabinoids and terpenes were bred out, producing the current selections of cannabis we see today - very high THC, and relatively little else.

Now that cannabis is legal in some states, we’re already getting access to the largest variety of cannabis products we’ve had in our lifetimes. Growers are actively seeking out landrace strains (unadulterated strains), and breeding products with cannabinoid and terpene profiles rarely seen in the US. Our cannabis options will keep increasing as we continue to request the products we want - with the smell, taste, and specific effects we desire.

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What do you think - will the cannabis market resemble the wine and liquor market?

Will we have the highly sought after microbreweries of the cannabis world?

Will the potency of THC take a back seat to the specific effects that different combinations of cannabinoids and terpenes can supply?


Terpenes are compounds that greatly attribute to the taste and smell of cannabis, and have been shown to interact synergistically with cannabinoids.

On March 30th, 2016 we hosted an event dedicated to terpenes, "Exploring terpenes at MCR Labs" where experts discussed the science of terpenes and what cannabis consumers should know about them.

Dr. Uma Dhanabalan talking to a full room about medical marijuana and terpenes
Dr. Uma Dhanabalan talking to a full room about medical marijuana and terpenes

Experts included:

Dr. Uma Dhanabalan - Medical Doctor, Masters Public Health, Fellow of the American Academy Family Physicians, and Medical Review Officer.
Jon Wani - Resident Expert on Cannabis, MCR Labs
Scott Churchill - Director of Methodology and Compliance, MCR Labs

Scott Churchill's presentation can be found here.

Jon Wani referred to the following chart, when talking about esters:

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