Meet Christine Smith, Former Architect Turned Top Cannabis Edibles CEO

February 24, 2023 · Forbes

When Christine Smith began making and packaging chocolate cannabis edibles, it was only a hobby as she was a architect in Oregon. But with the state then being on the cusp of legalizing adult-use cannabis, Smith sought a creative outlet, one that mined her love of food. Little did she know that her basement tinkerings would lead to a career that would establish her company Grön as one of the largest and most recognized edible makers in the Northwest.

However, it hasn’t been smooth sailing for Grön, which was founded by Smith in 2015, the year Oregon legalized adult-use. Like other cannabis businesses, Smith has had to deal with the banking ban. This was a headache, for sure, but one she was able to alleviate early on. Right now, she said her company, a multistate operator, works with three banks and a credit union.

Another obstacle she struggled with when she began was the industry’s lack of regulation and policy. As an architect used to dealing with compliance issues, Smith found this especially frustrating. “[It] was challenging to navigate the grey areas,” she conceded. “It still is, but we’ve gotten better.”

Then there’s the current state of the industry, which has been in a slump since last year thanks to inflation and ebbing post-pandemic demand. Though Smith has prided herself on leading a self-funded company, avoiding outside investments, even her company is not immune to the financial gyrations rocking the sector. For the first time since Grön’s inception, she is seriously exploring the idea of securing capital from investors.

“Quite honestly, we haven’t needed it over the years,” she explained. “We were focused on our internal growth and our team so we didn’t need the money and didn’t take it.”

Since then, the company has expanded to a number of states that include Nevada, Arizona and Oklahoma. “There’s a small window to come in to be able to dominate market share in those markets,” added Smith, who has a degree in architectural design from the University of Texas at Austin. “In order for us to accelerate growth, we will need outside capital to make that happen.” (Full Story)

In category:Edibles
Next Post

If You Like Chocolate, You'll Love Grön: Cannabis Edibles Made By An Architect-Turned-Confectioner

After the overwhelming success of previous business events, the Benzinga Cannabis Capital Conference is returning to Miami beach April 11-12, 2023 with events taking place simultaneously on two stages at the historic Fontainebleau Hotel. As part of celebrating individuals, entrepreneurs, and organizations who do amazing things…
Previous Post

Eighty Six Enters the Legal Psychedelics Market With Launch of Fun Guy Amanita Mushroom Gummies

Oklahoma based alternative cannabinoid brand Eighty Six jumps on the burgeoning psychedelics market with the launch of Fun Guy, an edibles series dedicated to helping you experience a lighter, brighter, psychedelic trip. Fun Guy enters the market with three classic flavors – BlueRazz, Strawberry,…
Random Post

Hundreds of Vendors to Set Up at New England Cannabis Convention in Boston

The cannabis industry is evolving in Massachusetts, with competition eating away profits and prices plummeting per ounce as more dispensaries enter the market. "Everybody's looking at that newest technology to maximize yield," said Marc Shepard, founder of the New England…
Random Post

Opinion: Residency requirements for marijuana licenses at odds with US Constitution

As states navigate the distribution of marijuana business licenses, a number of markets have implemented state residency as a condition to apply for or receive a license. However, as three recent court cases have addressed, residency requirements might be in…
Random Post

Ohio GOP Governor Pushes Lawmakers To Allow Marijuana Sales ‘Very Quickly’ And Ban Intoxicating Hemp Products

Ohio’s Republican governor is adamant that lawmakers must pass legislation as soon as possible to expedite regulated recreational marijuana sales and also ban purchases of intoxicating hemp products. With the legislature coming back into session for the new year, Gov.…
Random Post

New Hampshire Marijuana Legalization Commission Takes Shape, With First Meeting To Consider State-Run Reform Model Set For Next Week

A New Hampshire commission tasked with preparing legislation to legalize marijuana sales through a system of state-run stores has officially been established, with members being appointed to the panel and a first meeting scheduled for next week. The governor signed a…