Hempcon San Francisco, 2014

Hempcon San Francisco, 2014

In the dusk of early Friday evening, the Cow Palace appeared closed, bunker-like and uninviting, but the people who waited in the ticket line were colorful and alive by contrast. We each paid $25.00 to get in, and a seamless plume of burned and vaporized cannabis products flowed over the many security guards and ticket takers at the door, and once inside I homed in on the source of the cloud, past a couple vendors to a huge sectioned off area and a pair of guards at a gate. The sign read: “Prop 215 area.” The lady explained I needed a medical marijuana endorsement and a stamp to get in, so fear that I may suffer a debilitating episode of the gout gripped me, and I joined the line of folks waiting for medical assessment and subsequent treatment. I filled out the forms and paid $60.00 and had a good conversation with the doctor about Hyperuricemia and the associated benefits of cannabis. He told me to stay hydrated and signed my recommendation.
I shuffled along the crowded rows of eager capitalists: jars and jars of buds, hash oil, an amazing array of edibles and paraphernalia of every description … every aspect of the cannabis business; and vendors talked about their products with varying degrees of personal connection. A woman I met very obviously put her soul into infused coconut butter, for instance, while another vendor sold marijuana leaf socks made in China. But no large corporations were in evidence. The place was mobbed and intensely loud and chaotic and fun. I finally found a quiet corner in the spacious Cow Palace where I recorded the following exhibitor profiles.

Isaac Lappert is President of Cannabis Creamery Ice Cream Company. Working with Cali Labs, Lappert crafts premium quality medicated ice cream.

Mark Sicola is President of Cannabis Merchants, a service that enables dispensaries and marijuana businesses to accept Visa and Mastercard check cards, despite the fact that banks will not process cannabis transaction, which helps diminish the risk of keeping large amounts of cash on hand and other marijuana merchant transaction problems.

Lynda Cook is the proprietor and pastry chef at the Tucson-based, Feed Your Head Edibles.