In the Weeds: A Q&A with Canna Provisions CEO Meg Sanders | Branded Content | Dispensaries | Hudson Valley | Chronogram Magazine

For Meg Sanders, the co-founder and CEO of Canna Provisions, riding the wave that is the rapidly evolving cannabis industry has become something of an art form.

When Colorado’s legalization efforts were just taking off, Sanders left her career in compliance for financial services to jump head first into cannabis compliance. She worked directly with the governor of Colorado to develop its updated cannabis laws, then personally led the charge by opening one of the state’s first dispensaries. Since the 2019 opening of Canna Provisions dispensary in Lee, Massachusetts, Sanders and her partner Erik Williams have been setting the bar for the state of cannabis in the Berkshires.

Here, Sanders talks to us about everything from the new products she’s loving to a series of Canna Provisions workshops rolling out in 2023.

Q: What are the cannabis products that are resonating with you right now? Anything up-and-coming that consumers should be paying attention to?

Meg: For me, it’s all about where I am on my life journey right now. At 56 years old, I’m definitely starting to tip-toe into this menopause journey. And the fact is that there’s no crazy awesome resource for it. Even though half the population goes through this, each person’s journey is so individualized. So many women I talk to are excited to talk about it and they all say that no one is leading the charge.

So this has really got me thinking about treating those various symptoms, many of which are related to loss of estrogen. There’s this whole package of symptoms to deal with—lack of energy, sleep loss, joint aches, weight gain. I use cannabis to help me sleep and I’m a fairly active person so I use topicals for my wrists and elbows.

THCV, a cannabinoid short for tetrahydrocannabivarin, is also a real game-changer as far as suppressing appetite and gaining energy. And there’s zero psychoactive effects.

At our dispensaries, our guides are getting training about how to talk to people about the symptoms of menopause. Curating a bundle pack is definitely on the radar for 2023, and in the meantime our guides will be able to tell you what will work for you.

Q: With so many brands on the legal cannabis market now, what do you see as Canna Provisions’ role for the customer?

Meg: High-touch, experiential shopping has been our goal since day one. Educating our guides is critical to making people feel comfortable with the products they walk out the door with. It’s about asking what the person standing in front of me needs. What are their fears? Their needs? Their hopes? And how can we find what they need to help them?

Some customers want to pre-order and pick-up at the store with no interactions, and other people want to come in and have a full conversation to discover the products that are going to be right for them. Both styles are great. We’re there to meet the customer where they are on their cannabis journey.

To that end, we curate a thoughtful but hefty menu. We have always been of the mindset that we will provide the best products to our customers, period. Whether that comes from our own garden, whether it’s from partners we’re co-labbing with, or another vendor that we trust like one of the little guys working in social equity that we want to lift up.

If it’s our product that they’re loving, then we’ve nailed it completely and we’re psyched about that. It’s important that we have the right things on our menu for our customers.

Q: What should New York fans of Canna Provisions look forward to for 2023?

Meg: There are a lot of new changes coming to the northeast in cannabis. We're going to continue to be the trusted voice in the region and we’re putting our money where our mouth is.

We have new Smash Hits sessions coming up where we sponsor small bands at local venues in the Berkshires and Pioneer Valley. At our Holyoke dispensary, we’ve been having local artists come in on a monthly basis to display and sell their art.

We also have a lot of educational opportunities in the works, from a two-hour-long session to weekend workshops. We’re putting together a workshop for women over 50. We feel very strongly that this plant should be free, so we have a session coming up where we’re teaching home gardeners how to grow their own cannabis.

There are so many little segments and interests that we’re going to be diving into. If you’re brand new to cannabis and want to know how it works, come on in for a visit and we’ll show you something you’ll love.

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