CanadaRetailOntario Cannabis Store launches craft category

Brands with the highly anticipated new distinction include Msiku, Tenzo and Royal City Cannabis Co.
Nick Laba Nick LabaApril 29, 20216 min

Ontario’s province-owned cannabis wholesaler and online retailer has launched its highly anticipated craft category.

On Thursday, the homepage of the Crown corporation’s website became dedicated to the new designation, with the store’s definition of what craft means and links to craft products.

“We’ve created a new craft designation to help you find the hand-crafted, small-batch flower you’re looking for,” the website reads.

“All the dried flower and pre-rolls in this collection are hand-trimmed, hang-dried, hand-packaged, and grown in a facility that produces less than 10,000 kg of dried cannabis (or equivalent) a year.”

The new category comes alongside a shift at the provincial store to bring a more focused product assortment to consumers. In January, it announced a “core assortment” program to keep high-demand product in stock while culling around 200 less-popular listings.

Read more: Ontario Cannabis Store details ‘core assortment’ and craft programs

The OCS has developed a craft badge to highlight products from smaller-scale production sites that employ artisanal, handcrafted processes when producing dried cannabis and pre-roll products, says Daffyd Roderick, senior communications director.

“The craft badge helps to combat the illegal market by offering consumers more products that reflect artisanal legacy production methods,” he tells Mugglehead in an email. “It also maximizes product diversity in OCS’s dried flower and pre-roll assortment, and provides small-scale production sites a platform to tell their story.”

 To be considered craft, products must be:

  • exclusively hang-dried: cut at the base of of the stalk, hung in a temperature and humidity-controlled room for 10 or more days to maintain aroma and flavour;
  • exclusively hand-trimmed: each bud receives a custom manicure so that the strain’s visual characteristics are best presented; and
  • exclusively hand-packaged to minimize damage from overhandling and maximize product integrity.

As of now, only dried flower and pre-rolls can qualify. And it’s individual products, not the facility, that are designated.

Craft pre-rolls have to be made with craft flower, but don’t have to be hand-rolled, the OCS says.

Ontario Cannabis Store launches craft category - craft badge
Screenshot via OCS.ca

Products with the craft distinction will be marked with a yellow craft badge.

Brands included in the new category include Msiku, Royal City Cannabis Co., Carmel Cannabis, Ogen and Tenzo.

The designation was first teased in a Reddit ask-me-anything with chief commercial officer Cheri Mara last April.

Read more: OCS commercial chief teases craft designation, dodges pricing question in Reddit AMA

Update (2021-4-29 5:20 p.m.): This article has been updated with additional clarification on pre-rolls.

Top image: screenshot via OCS.ca

 

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