Writers for the Emerald Magazine are occasionally sent out on missions to complete assignments based off firsthand experience from one of our editors. Occasionally, we (in this case, I) may do a cold call to a potential interviewee, in this case, it was to Campfire Cannabis based out of Portland, Oregon — my home turf. I’ve always enjoyed seeing how our neighbors to the north are setting the example for the inevitable legalized landscape that will befall California in the next few years. So, as with many businesses before, I’ve been more curious about the community, process, and the efforts towards normalization. We know it’s not a drug, but the title persists. However, as with any community, cultivation of harmony begins with understanding. I spoke with Adrian Godby, Campfire Cannabis’ owner, to know more about the company’s way of fulfilling their role in the brave new world of legalized cannabis in Oregon:
Q: What do you feel sets your business apart from others in the industry?
A: Now that the cannabis industry has bloomed in size due to legalization, the flow of information between growers is also seeing an exciting jump in movement. Campfire Cannabis is extremely excited about that exchange and the beginning of long overdue research. The collaboration we are beginning to see within the industry and the comfort people are having sharing cannabis information is awesome. In similar industries, people usually do not openly share their unique genetics, especially when we are talking about medicine and farm crops. Most industries usually guard this information behind the disguise of patents and intellectual property. Campfire Cannabis will strive to work closely with all farms and share as much practical information as possible to help move the cannabis industry forward, creating the best possible, pesticide free, organic product for all cannabis consumers.
On the other hand, because of cannabis’ illegal history, a culture around cannabis consumption that is well rooted in years of stigma surrounding the product has evolved. It is unfortunate that The War on Drugs and the cultures of previous generations has demonized cannabis. However, as legalization begins to spread across the country, this stigma begins to break down and new groups of people are accepting and trying cannabis for the first time every day. Though stoner culture still exists, many people are searching for a cannabis brand that fits their lifestyle. We hope that Campfire Cannabis can be that brand. We also want Campfire Cannabis to prove that anyone, from any background, can successfully and professionally run a cannabis company.
Q: Tell us about your business.
A: What excites me the most about starting a cannabis company is two fold: Research and Sustainability. Having started another farm business previously, I learned to love the responsibility of entrepreneurship. More importantly, I learned the power and fulfillment of growing things. Most people in school learn something about energy, mostly the theory that it cannot be created nor destroyed, only change forms. From the perspective of growing things, whether it is cannabis, vegetables or flowers — throughout the life cycle of the plant you are putting in a lot of time — in the form of energy.
When you begin to harvest the plant, you reap the reward of all that energy you put into it. Growing plants that others will benefit from is a powerful feeling all should enjoy sooner rather than later.
Our business has been around for about a year in the Portland, Oregon area. We are currently in two dispensaries, Panacea and Human Collective. Currently, we are working under the Oregon Medical Marijuana Program until we complete our recreational application to become licensed. Under the OMMP you are restricted in how many plants you may grow and how many people you may grow for. Under these rules, it dictates how we will grow our plants. However, under the recreational model, it is based on canopy size, and that will allow us to grow a lot more plants that will yield a lot more bud.
Our branding and image focuses on nature and the outdoors. When you think of a campfire, most people think about friends and family and good times most people have had around a campfire. The principles of togetherness, good vibes and the outdoors are what we want people to think about when they think about Campfire Cannabis.
Q: What are some Campfire Cannabis specialities?
A: We are currently most passionate about focusing and learning as much as we can about how to create strains that will help with depression, anxiety, PTSD and stress. Specifically, what type of high is best for all of these different situations? That is not to say we do not care about recreational users, but even some recreational users use cannabis for medical reasons without even realizing it. We hope to find and refine the best medicine out there and work with up and coming research facilities to cultivate the best product for our customers.
Another area we hope to specialize in is creating our product with no artificial or unsustainable external inputs. This means that from seed-to-sale, we will grow our seeds in soil made from our own compost, plant directly into the ground, generate our total electrical needs from solar cells, and water our plants from the glorious Oregon rainfall. We’re currently working towards this goal by investing in a light deprivation greenhouse, which allows us to insure quality while minimizing electrical resources.
Q: Can you share some of your prefered growing methods?
A: We use Botanicare nutrients for now and flush about two-to-three weeks before we harvest. In our indoor shop, we grow under 1000 watt HPS 8” vented lights with CO2. One of our finishing touches is adding a little bit of food grade molasses to the mix to bump up the sugars and add weight to the final buds.
Q: What can we expect in the near future from Campfire Cannabis? What are your goals?
A: We are in the process of filling out the recreational cannabis application in the State of Oregon. Our mission is to be a 100% light deprivation grow operation, cultivating the best medical and recreational strains while retaining potent terpene levels. We want to bring a friendly professional face to the industry while maintaining its heritage.
Q: What is your idealized vision of the cannabis industry?
A: What […] continues to interest me is the research of cannabis. I always seem to find myself talking with friends and industry members about terpenes and what exact role they play. We know they play a significant role in taste and smell, but is it possible that terpenes can enhance or generate a particular type of high depending on what terpenes are present in a particular strain?
As far as the industry goes, we hope it parallels the craft beer industry. In craft beer, a lot of information is exchanged and collaboration is a key ingredient. We hope testing requirements continue to elevate the industry, as a quality product with truly organic inputs will be extremely important to the craft cannabis movement.
I also hope to see the industry continue to educate the public and amplify a positive image of cannabis, in effect allowing the industry to grow and medical research to flourish. Once the walls come down around cannabis they will also come down around hemp. Hemp and cannabis have the power to revolutionize the world in our lifetime, and we are more than excited to be apart of it.
Written by Sam Greenspan