Ben Kaplan: Your award was chosen by Canada's budtenders from around the country. What does that mean to you and what role do the budtenders play in our industry?
Vinay Tolia: It’s humbling to be chosen by the budtenders who play such an important role in the industry—if they like us, we know we’re doing something right. They’re often the ones connecting consumers with brands, not to mention many are consumers themselves who have a lot of pride in the products they associate with, and think critically about what they consume. We have a lot of pride in our BC Pink Kush and seeing that resonate through not only sales but also through this budtender endorsement is really promising.
BK: You won Indica Dried Flower of the Year, what is it about your brand that's resonating so well, especially when so many brands are having a tough time connecting?
VT: A lot of early brands have fallen into typical weed cliches, but that wasn’t for us. We believe that cannabis can be a tool in consumer’s everyday lives. I think that is something that people can connect with and because of that Flowr is a brand that they can see as a part of their lives. We talk a lot about being coffee table comfortable and want Flowr to be the brand that enables that for people.
BK: We've seen the Cannabis Act pass and we've seen Cannabis 2.0 products introduced in our legal marketplace. What's new on your horizon for 2021?
VT: Right now we are focused on delivering high quality dried flower to the market and looking forward to launching a couple of new cultivars in early 2021. But what gets me just as excited as these new products is Flowr’s new packaging rolling into market early in the new year. We’re transitioning into a cobalt blue glass jar and tin preroll case, which not only are going to be a key component in further preserving quality from production to consumption, but also a much more sustainable option.
BK: Lastly, 2020 was obviously hard on lots of us, in and out of the cannabis community. What's one random act of kindness that restores your faith in humanity both for this holiday and for the year to come? Who, or what, makes you feel good?
VT: Hands down it is the support we see from the cannabis community. The industry has been posed with further restrictions throughout 2020 and seeing the community come together is something unique and special to cannabis. The relationships between brands and retailers, particularly on social, continues to be a reason I am proud to be a part of this industry and as we head into the holiday season I would ask everyone to support small and support local however you can and that includes cannabis.
I wouldn’t consider this just one random act of kindness, but this year has been so wild that seeing how the first responders and healthcare workers have adapted to life with COVID has been inspiring and gives me hope in humanity.
Isabelle Smith, budtender at Tokyo Smoke in Toronto
“I voted Flowr for the simple fact that their product is yet to let me down. Fantastic flavour, beautiful buds and an awesome buzz.”