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Marketing >  EVERCANNABIS

No more sweet stuff: Edible makers, buyers find options with savory treats

By John Nelson EVERCANNABIS Correspondent

It all started with a potato chip.

I was searching for a different kind of cannabis edible, and I came across Lori’s Potato Chips in Sea Salt and Cracked Pepper, made by Craft Elixers in Seattle, and I was immediately hooked.

The single-serving bag, dosed with 10 mg of THC, was filled with crunchy, delicious chips that also did an excellent job of getting me high. Who wouldn’t love potato chips like these?

That led me on a path to try Lori’s other flavors – Roasted Garlic and Sweet Potato – all of which are surprisingly tasty and surprisingly potent. These munchies pack a punch.

In the world of cannabis edibles, hundreds of sticky-sweet products are on the shelves at your local cannabis store, a seemingly ever-growing list of chocolates, sodas, cookies, chewables, and hard candies.

Savory items? Not so much.

It’s all about price point. Some cannabis-infused sweet drinks or hard candies can deliver 100 mg of THC for as little as $13, while a 10 mg THC bag of Lori’s chips in a 4.2 oz. bag typically goes for about $6.

But price isn’t everything. Many sweet edibles have an off-taste that doesn’t mask their skunky cannabis qualities.

Meanwhile, the fatty-oil infused chips have no off-flavor and deliver a slightly different high, said Jamie Hoffman, president of Craft Elixirs.

“When the THC is contained in a fat molecule, it hits you harder and so much longer,” she said.

Lori’s Potato Chips were originally launched in 2018 and didn’t immediately gain a following, Hoffman said. The original chips were not deep-fried (aka “healthy”), she said, and that might have been the problem.

“People just don’t want a healthy potato chip,” Hoffman said.

So in 2019, Craft Elixirs revamped production to deep fry the chips, still using organic ingredients. The product is growing in popularity as a result.

“In the beginning, (Lori’s Potato Chips) weren’t selling,” said Josilyn Peterson, public and industry liaison for retailer Trove Cannabis in Bellingham. “But now they’re doing really well. People come in asking for them.”

While you can find Craft Elixirs’ other products in Eastern Washington, you’ll have to search hard to find them in Spokane. During your next visit to your favorite retailer, Hoffman suggests that you request them from the budtender; retailers have great control over what products are on their shelves, she said.

Other savory edible options

While savory edibles are a niche market, a few other notable items can be found in stores.

Khush Kush, a high-end craft grower in Whatcom County, is expanding its edible line to offer more savory items. The company already produces a not-too-sweet granola bar (available in a 20 mg package at locations in Spokane) and is introducing a pesto-flavored “Pot Tart” this fall, according to Sunny Saini, CEO of Khush Kush.

“Everybody’s doing sweet things,” Saini said. “We want to do something different.”

Part of the reason Khush Kush is expanding its edible offerings is strategic, Saini said. By offering more items, the company aims to control more shelf space in retail stores around the state and thereby help with branding for its other cannabis products.

Khush Kush is also testing a cannabis-infused salsa, and so far, “everybody’s really liking it,” Saini said. If all goes well, you can look for the salsa later this year, he said.

Another savory-spicy sauce to consider is the Fairwinds Sriracha Tincture, complete with packaging that looks like a mini-bottle of the popular sauce with a strutting rooster on the label. Each tincture (retailing at about $25) comes with 100 mg of THC, made with avocado oil and the spicy hot chili sauce.

“The full effects can be expected within 10-30 minutes after the initial serving is administered,” according to the Fairwinds product description. “Capsaicin (the component of peppers that provide heat/spice) dilates the blood vessels, thereby allowing the THC in each serving to enter the bloodstream more quickly.”

Also high on the spice meter is Spokane’s Yield Farms’ Fire Crackers, a zesty cheesy cracker dosed with 50 mg of THC per bag, which go for about $13.

And how about something warm for these brisk fall days? Katie Baked Goods of Yakima offers the ApothoKatie Chicken Bone Broth, a powdered drink with 5 mg of THC and 5 mg of CBD per serving.

John Nelson is a longtime journalist, having worked at major news operations in Spokane, Memphis and Seattle. He now works as a freelance journalist, writing about outdoors recreation, marijuana and recreational vehicles.
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