Cannabis has always paired well with Thanksgiving, both as a way to enjoy the holidays with the people we love, or a way to help increase our tolerance for certain skeptical, judgmental, or opinionated family members. In recent years Green Wednesday (the day before Thanksgiving), has become the cannabis industry’s second-highest grossing day of sales.
While the holidays are a great time to reflect on everything we have, it’s also an opportunity to look outside ourselves to help others. Some cannabis businesses have no shortage of altruism as they have created initiatives to aid those in need. Many businesses have made arrangements to give out free turkeys this year or reward customers who donate canned food for a good cause. This list is just a glimpse at the contributions that the cannabis industry brings year after year, but be sure to check out dispensaries near you to see what kind of efforts are underway.
In Michigan, there are a few cannabis businesses pulling out all the stops this year. Puff Cannabis will be giving out 1,700 birds on Nov. 18, and Nov. 21-22 at specific locations. Owner Nick Hannawa told CBS News how important it is to give back. “These things are tough, you know, with prices and inflation and all the things that are going on. Maybe people, you know, are lacking on jobs and different things, you know, might not do this,” Hannawa said. “It’s that feeling that you get, knowing that you did a good deed, that you put a smile on somebody’s face.”
Light’N Up Cannabis Company invited former Detroit Red Wings athlete Darren McCarty to help hand out 1,000 turkeys on Nov. 19. According to owner Kyle Cohee, who is also a veteran, he began this initiative in 2021 when he found out that he served 100 patients who were in need. “We’re just doing the right thing and taking care of people,” Cohee said. “Alpine Market in Linden said they will hook us up and got us the turkeys from Spartan Brand for cost.” Eighty of the turkeys will specifically be reserved for veteran patients, through a partnership with Genesee County Veterans Services.
Multiple Michigan dispensaries are working with Common Citizen and High Life Farms for the “Bring a Can, Get a Gram” campaign. The initiative is striving to collect 2,000 cans to donate to local food pantries, and any customer that brings in at least one can of food will receive one pre-roll. “We want to show people that cannabis isn’t just about consuming. It’s far more than just being a big name company that wants to make money or kind of things like that. We want to show people that as much as we love growing and producing and sharing our love for the product with other people, we want to show other people we care more about helping the community and helping others in need especially around the holidays,” said High Life Farms’s Marketing Manager Laura Bywalec.
MariMed (who you might remember as the company who made the world’s largest infused brownie in December 2021) is offering hundreds of turkeys in a giveaway at its locations in Massachusetts, Maryland, Illinois, and Delaware. “MariMed is proud to do our part and help others in the communities where we operate. Helping to ease a bit of the financial burden on Thanksgiving and doing what we can to improve people’s lives through our actions, products, and values is core to our mission as a leading cannabis company,” said MariMed CEO Bob Fireman.
In Massachusetts, Terps Cannabis is working with Chip-in-Food-Pantry, asking customers to donate canned food. It’s also celebrating the opening of its third location in Charlton with an event Nov. 18-20, featuring free food from local food trucks.
In Thousand Palms, California, local dispensary Bulldog Cannabis is partnering with Riverside County to provide 100 turkeys to residents (1 per household). “We really appreciate Bulldog Cannabis for providing this generous donation to the community of Thousand Palms,” said Riverside County Supervisor Manuel Perez. “I look forward to helping in this distribution and thanking this local business for assisting the community with food for the Thanksgiving holiday.”
Oakland, California-based savory edibles company TSUMo is not only offering two new flavors of its savory chips (Turkey Dinner and Churro) but it’s partnering with Wunder (a local cannabis beverage company) and Nugg Club (a cannabis subscription service) to donate $2 for every bundle purchased, which will be given to the San Francisco-Marin Food Bank.