Pop culture and cannabis go hand-in-hand. From references in every genre of music to mentions in films and books, cannabis and Seth Rogen are rolled into it all. As the Reefer Madness stigma slowly falls away, more faces have joined the industry. As of recently, however, those faces have belonged to celebrities. Just as they have popularized certain aspects of cannabis culture, they are joining the business side of the industry causing a frenzy of what may come and what already is. With two new celebrity-cannabis breakups in the past few months -and both with the same company- maybe there is more to these multimillion-dollar deals than meets the eye.
Just a few weeks ago, the Canadian cannabis company, Canopy Growth, announced the ending of their collaboration with stoner-icon Seth Rogen and his brand, Houseplant. A partnership with the actor and filmmaker was inevitable as he is tied to almost every pop culture reference to cannabis in the last decade. The mutual separation with Canopy Growth is something peculiar, however. In Canada, Canopy Growth was set to be the source of Houseplant’s products. This would not be the case in the U.S. as the company does not currently operate here. Now, Houseplant seeks to relaunch with more consistency with their U.S. products. As rapper Drake’s brand, More Life, also exited a partnership with the company, citing that it ‘has not been progressing as originally intended’.
Ever since the rise of cannabis moguls like Berner, the involvement of high-profile people has been close to the community’s coattails, trying to emulate his success. When it comes to the quality behind a name, however, it doesn’t always hold up the same when you don’t handle the product from start to finish.
Both Drake and Seth Rogen’s exit from Canopy Growth raises the same concerns, as well as the partnership and endorsements with celebs such as Kylie Jenner and Gene Simmons. A few endorse products, a few collaborate on a brand, and others handle the production, packaging and sale of their product. The commitment to quality can vary with the involvement of an outside party. With the news, Seth Rogen notes that his brand Houseplant is not going away or exiting the Canadian market rather than evolving the brand. More details on the More Life cannabis brand have yet to come out.
Furthermore this week, the internet is in a frenzy over Beyonce’s mention of growing cannabis. She told Harper’s Bazaar about her discovery of CBD on tour. She went on to explain that she was building a hemp and honey farm after she went from “overindulgence to creating positive rituals drawing from past generations and putting my own spin on things.” At the moment she is simply enjoying using the blends to decompress. There will most likely be no further news of Beyonce pursuing a cannabis venture but, regardless of no heavy effect on cannabis sales, celebrity endorsements actually help break down the stigma.
As I said, cannabis and pop culture go hand-in-hand; legality will more than likely strengthen that bond. In Canada, that star-studded avenue of advertising isn’t always an option. With Canada’s strict health guidelines unfortunately, cannabis brands are tricky to collaborate on. Even with the celebrities that Canopy Growth has worked with so far there have been struggles. As internal tensions toward Canada’s health guidelines grow, we can only hope something will change for green efforts up north.