We’ve heard the terms “top-shelf” and “premium” flower in terms of cannabis, but what about the “craft” and “artisanal” flower? What makes flower with these monikers different than the flower other cultivators are growing and producing for patients? Much like craft beer or craft spirits, the true differentiator in craft cannabis lies in the specialized and deliberate attention to not only each plant, but to the technology in lighting, humidity, temperature, even the nutrients each plant receives. Facilities growing such high-touch flower have cultivation ninjas who approach growing with a thoughtful and highly maintained attention to the “girls” they’re growing. Fewer harvests in the duration of a year mean less product, but helps to ensure that the quality is unsurpassed.
Craft growers often tout exclusive genetics and their strains might be rare heirlooms, or even new exotics that haven’t yet been popularized in mass market flower available in dispensaries across the nation. Generally, a cultivator branding its flower as craft or artisanal intends to show the consumer that the flower was grown with mindfulness and close attention paid to each plant. While their methods may differ, craft growers agree that for flower to be called artisanal cannabis, it should smell “clean,” like the terpenes that the strain ought to contain, not like the nutrients or media it was grown in. The crystals on the flower that generate terpenes, known as trichomes, should be intact after the harvest is completed.
Even packaging for craft cannabis is typically different – craft cannabis brands produce sleek branding and packaging. Consumers can find aesthetically-pleasing logos and high-quality containers, jars, and packages housing their product. For example, cannabis enthusiasts are likely to find craft cannabis flower in UV-protected containers in an effort to ensure the consumer is able to preserve the results of the excruciating detail during cultivation and curing in order to make the most of the plant’s rich output. As evidenced in the image courtesy of Burnwell here, companies like Burnwell focus their emphasis on the very detailed visual capture of the plants.