Aphria is a medical and recreational cannabis company that wants to educate people about not only the benefits and safety of cannabis, but also their different strains for different feelings.
The Solei Discovery Centre, hosted by Aphria, is a cannabis education pop-up booth at the popular Boots and Hearts Country Music Festival.
It has been open all weekend and will be open today from 1:30 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Based out of Leamington, Aphria is a licensed producer of recreational and medical cannabis; Solei is the name of one of their brands.
Megan McCrae, the vice president of marketing, said being at one of the biggest music festivals in the province just makes sense.
“We’re here ... because the demographic and the nature of the event is very in line with the brand and we wanted to use the opportunity to showcase Solei and educate as many people as possible about cannabis,” said McCrae.
“Being that many are new to trying cannabis with the new freedom there is to buying it, we want those people and even anyone who has years of experience, to understand how to do it safely and responsibly," she explained.
The booth uses the slogan “there’s a moment for that” in reference to the different strains of cannabis that Aphria produces.
Visitors to the booth can read some facts and information as well as try their hand at a trivia section.
“There are different cannabis strains that are associated with types of experiences,” said McCrae. “A lot of people don’t know there are different strains for different situations, but we do have a lot of folks leaving with a better understanding."
Renew, Unplug, Free, Balance, Sense and Gather are six strains that stir different reactions in people, she explained.
But McCrae assures anyone coming to the booth that you will not be able to find out first-hand what strain you like the best.
“There is absolutely no product sampling at the booth and we don’t have any for sale,” said McCrae. “You can’t even tell from the outside of the booth what we are and that is planned as this is not a 19+ event, so we made sure our section was appropriately accessible.”
Surrounded by booths that sell and promote alcohol, McCrae was asked how long she feels it will be before cannabis is on sale at music festivals in the province.
“I wish I had a crystal ball ... I have no idea,” said McCrae. “I truly believe that given the nature of the product we should be in the same position to be able to activate, market and educate like alcohol companies but I cam appreciate that we’re on the global stage right now as one of the only countries to legalize cannabis and the government wants to do it in a responsible fashion and I can appreciate that.
"As time goes on and the product becomes less stigmatized and we can prove we can operate like a legitimate company, then I feel it will only be a matter of time," she said.