Celebrities & Cannabis: License To Nug

 Cannabis is a growing market and everyone wants their share of the multi-billion-dollar industry that is exploding across the United States. There’s really no surprise that some of the most well-known, pot-smoking celebs are stepping into the arena in an attempt to cash in on their share of the purse. From legendary country music artists, to gangster rap stars, and famous comedians, celebrity pot investors come from wildly diverse backgrounds.

   Whether these celebrities have always been cannabis outlaws or they have recently stepped into the world of marijuana. These celebrities know the benefits of marijuana and have risked their reputations and their careers to show their support for legalization of the healing herb.

Willie Nelson – the original outlaw. At 83 years old, Willie Nelson is still going strong, and in every interview, he attributes his good health to cannabis stating for a writer with the Cannabist:

    “I had emphysema, had all kinds of different health problems caused by drinking and smoking,” he says. “So I decided I wasn’t getting high from smoking cigarettes, and I had a pack of Chesterfields, so I took them all out, threw them away, rolled up 20 big, fat numbers, stuck them into the Chesterfield pack and I haven’t smoked a cigarette since. And that’s been 30, 40 years ago.”

   Willie’s company, “Willie’s Reserve” takes a different approach to growing and selling marijuana. Similar to how Nelson stepped in during the eighties with FarmAid, he didn’t want to get into the industry just to pad his own pocket. Rather than building a big warehouse grow operation, Willie reaches out to smaller, local farmers in the states where his products are sold and helps the little guys get a bigger piece of the market by growing for Willie’s Reserve.

   Plus, Willie’s wife, Anni, is getting in on the company with her own line of gluten-free, vegan edibles in Annie’s Edibles, a division of Willie’s Reserve.

Snoop Dogg – of course. There is not a soul in this world who knows who Snoop Dogg is who didn’t expect to see him get into the legal cannabis market. His line, “Leafs by Snoop,” marketing a full line of cannabis products including flower, edibles, and vaporizers. Snoop is also involved in the cannabis industry through his recent media venture, “Merry Jane.”

   Plus, with his VH1 show with Martha Stewart, could there be potential for a partnership in the future. Since, Snoop and Martha have made “special brownies” together on their cooking show, “Martha & Snoop’s Potluck Dinner Party,” could the potential for a line of edibles from Martha Stewart be more than a pipe dream? Although it would be entertaining to imagine Snoop and Martha sharing a blunt, Snoop told People Magazine,

“I ain’t never smoked with Martha. I’ve smoked around her, but she don’t partake.”

Whoopi Goldberg – speaking of women in the industry. Whoopi and Maya Elisabeth have partnered together to bring a line of cannabis products specifically aimed towards women. These products are designed to help women deal with menstrual pain in a healthier and more natural way than over the counter medications. Whoopi states on their website:

“I am thrilled to partner with the amazing Maya Elisabeth to provide women an alternative for relieving the pain and discomfort associated with menstruation. This was all inspired by my own experience from a lifetime of difficult periods and the fact that cannabis was literally the only thing that gave me relief,” says Goldberg, the Chairwoman of Whoopi & Maya.

Tommy Chong – like this is a surprise. Of course, we can’t imagine a world of legal weed without expecting at least one member of Cheech & Chong being involved. Chong, and his son, Paris, have started “Chong’s Choice.” Similar to Willie’s business plan, they partner with local growers in each state to label as Tommy Chong’s preferred brand. Although Chong has had his own run-ins with the legal system, even spending time in prison for the sale of paraphernalia, cannabis is also attributed to helping him treat cancer. He was quoted by Rolling Stone a couple of years ago saying,

   I'm a big believer in the medical benefits of marijuana, which helped me with the cancer, which I got in prison. The prison was built over a toxic waste dump and when I went in there I was totally healthy and when I came out, I had prostate cancer. I treated it with hash oil.

Melissa Etheridge – another cancer survivor. Etheridge used cannabis to help combat the side effects of chemotherapy when she was diagnosed with breast cancer. She told Fortune magazine,

    I experienced breast cancer and the [chemotherapy] treatment. When one goes through general cancer treatment, one of the side effects is loss of appetite… depression, gastrointestinal effects… By the time I left my first chemo treatment, I had the choice of five pills or cannabis. I chose cannabis. Now, Melissa has her own line of cannabis wine tinctures through her new company, “Etheridge Farms.” Her products just started hitting the shelves in the fall of 2016.

Bob Marley – or at least his estate. The children of Bob Marley have decided to take advantage of the ganja-loving legacy their father left behind by launching “Marley’s Natural” topicals, flower, and accessories. Inspired by Jamaica and powered by advocacy, Marley’s products can be found along the west coast in California, Washington, and Oregon. Marley was always a powerful advocate for legalization, so it is only reasonable to see the name make into the legal market even though he didn’t live long enough to see it happen.

   As time progresses, who knows who else might step into the world of cannabis. Maybe Martha and Snoop will partner up for that savory line of edibles based of their new cooking show. Barring any set backs from the current political administration, legalization is plowing forward, and as it does, will more celebrities start putting their mark on their favorite strains? Who else won’t be able to resist putting their hand in the multi-billion-dollar cookie jar of the booming industry of cannabis?