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Like all industries, cannabis relies on robust supply chains to manufacture and distribute products consumers love. Ryan Ansin is not only co-founder of Revolutionary Clinics, a medicinal cannabis company in eastern Massachusetts and Azuca partner, but also a philanthropist and early investor in multiple fields. Rolling these passions into one, he has become a pioneer in medicinal cannabis, and also a staunch advocate for ethical manufacturing practices across the industry’s supply chain. Find out why he says it’s crucial for the cannabis industry to get things right when it comes to ethical manufacturing, and how he is working every day to make that a reality. Plus, learn the latest from Azuca’s partners as well as an update on legalization across the nation as we head into 2022.
Q: Tell us about your career path to cannabis. What led to you becoming a co-founder of Revolutionary Clinics?
A: I’ve had a very odd career, all of which has revolved around investing in industries that can do a lot of good. I’m a believer in social entrepreneurship, and I’ve been involved in many impactful ventures throughout my career, including ethical fashion, which aims to reduce the negative impacts of the fashion industry. My involvement in cannabis and Revolutionary Clinics came about unconventionally, when I toured an old shoe factory that was in my family for generations and thought it would be great for growing microgreens, basil, and strawberries, but was told instead that it could be perfect for growing cannabis. Working in cannabis hit all of my personal targets for how to invest my time and capital, so I purchased the factory along with some partners and after some planning, we founded Revolutionary Clinics.
Q: With cannabis-related storefronts and offices still relatively new additions to our local main streets, how have you forged relationships within the communities that Revolutionary Clinics serves?
A: With decades of misguidance in cannabis, you’re bound to encounter complexity that can foment frustration between groups, and with anything new there’s a period of reform. While we are working to contribute to the creation of an inclusive industry, I don’t think many cities realize the magnitude of their efforts. This is an example of the road to hell being paved with good intentions. City officials have a ton they need to be expert in, and this is simply a spiderweb of overlapping interests. First, it’s up to us to show communities that cannabis does not bring more crime, and in fact, security in and around stores discourages nearby crime. Second, our collective goal should always be to share in victories and minimize risk. Instead, cities and states have often pinned stakeholders against each other, which has ultimately negative impacts. This is an industry that if properly managed can generate great returns for all parties. We want to be both good stewards of capital but also good stewards in each community and help other companies in other cities and states do this as well.
Q: You are part of a multi-industry effort to reform supply chains and eliminate ethics problems, and are currently focusing on cannabis. What are some of the specific supply chain issues you have encountered?
A: The world is waking up to the fact that when you take shortcuts and buy cheap products, you are usually experiencing a subsidizing factor by mistreating humans somewhere. In the cannabis industry, the goods that are impacted by this the most are chocolate, sugar and vanilla, as they typically come from less regulated nations. When you dig into modern day cheap goods, it gets ugly fast. My goal is not to take jobs away from hard working people, but instead to make sure that our products come from a place of positivity, love and shared prosperity. For this reason, we decided to source our chocolate from a company in Ecuador who has their cacao manufactured into chocolate in their own country, creating as much prosperity as close to the ground as possible. When it comes to chocolate supply chains as a whole, the pivotal elements worthy of attention and awareness are: labor practices, deforestation, and distribution of profits. When you start to look at supply chains more carefully, it becomes clear that to fight against unfair practices, it becomes a full lifestyle. Cannabis is unique in that it is a new industry where we can do things right almost from the beginning, and that’s what we are working to do.
Q: You mentioned that Revolutionary Clinics undertakes its own extensive process to inspect every good you produce. Why do you think this degree of internal oversight is important in the industry?
A: There is no industry group at this point who is regulating the quality of goods, where they come from, or establishing any sort of protocol. It’s on us as industry professionals to put our money where our mouth is and do things the right way. I hope that consumers also care about positivity in their purchases and act on it. Thankfully, consumer trends show that to be the case, and it’s my prediction that we will continue to see our consumer base ‘buy better,’ meaning they care more about where their purchases are coming from, whether it’s cannabis, clothing, or food. In cannabis, until there is a larger regulatory framework in place, we have to step up as individual companies, and we are proud to do so.
Q: How do you hope your experience with solving these supply chain and inspection issues can help transform the industry’s manufacturing and distribution procedures as a whole?
A: A philosophy of mine throughout my career has been that in anything philanthropic, if I can put myself out of a job I’m thrilled. I want Revolutionary Clinics to succeed in an outsized way, but I’m not going to keep these solutions that we come up with a secret to the detriment of individuals around the world who are creating these raw products. I’m working on an initiative called FareFixing, which we’ll be rolling out soon, so other companies have access to resources, tools and transparency when it comes to creating a clean supply chain. Systemizing the education process will allow companies to prosper through our research and make thoughtful sourcing more approachable. You can’t change what you’re not aware of, so it’s going to be about education, making the information available, and then spreading the word. We have the power to be a force for good.
Q: Revolutionary Clinics carries several edible products powered by AZUCA TiME INFUSION™. How did your partnership with Azuca come about and what’s next?
A: I learned about Azuca while I was trying to understand NANO, and if there was an investment to be made there. I wanted to learn about how patients and customers could better rely on what is going into their bodies. As part of that effort, I met with Azuca, learned about the product, and, happy with what I discovered, brought it back to our team to determine if it did what it was supposed to do. The research team determined that it did, and we were off and running from there. Since our partnership began, there are increasingly more opportunities for us to expand and create new products for customers to enjoy a new edibles experience, including Azuca’s new Chocolate Activator.
Ryan Ansin is co-founder of Massachusetts based Revolutionary Clinics. He is an entrepreneur, early-stage investor, and philanthropist focused on using the holistic combination to generate returns and positive impact for those in the targeted communities wherein he works.
To add a quick burst of sunshine to your taste buds, try these Tangerine Fast-Acting Fruit Chew packs from Revolutionary Clinics, powered by AZUCA TiME INFUSION™. These sweet, citrusy and tangy edibles are a perfect choice for a rapid onset of effects when you don’t want to wait the hour or more that traditional edibles often require. We all have things to do, skip the wait with these Tangerine fruit chews! Find out more here.
The Green Solution, one of the largest vertically-integrated cannabis operators in Colorado, is introducing four new premium additions to the NectarBee sour gummies lineup. Available now across TGS’ 20 dispensary locations, the gummies are powered by AZUCA TiME INFUSION™ technology to provide a quick-onset and controllable edible experience and take effect in as few as 15 minutes. Available in four fun flavors, NectarBee’s sour gummies are gelatin-free and vegetarian. Find out more here.
Our friends in Colorado can now channel their inner Carrie Bradshaw with Wana Brands’ new Cosmopolitan fast-acting gummies! Powered by AZUCA TiME INFUSION™ technology and infused with equal parts CBD and terpene-enhanced THC, the newest addition to the Wana Quick line of cocktail inspired gummies offers a 5-15 minute onset and a relaxing, well-rounded high.
Everest is continuing to expand their fast-acting edible line with this new Spiced Pear syrup, designed to mix effortlessly into your favorite drinks and recipes. Powered by AZUCA TiME INFUSION™, Spiced Pear is the latest addition to Everest’s collection of syrup flavors, which also includes lime, pomegranate, and unflavored simple syrup. Available in New Mexico, you can check out the menus for dispensary locations here.
Federal: Long awaited progress on federal legalization continues to make its way through Congress in the form of Democrat-led initiatives aimed at decriminalizing cannabis, establishing banking services for the industry, and expunging the criminal records of thousands with cannabis-related convictions. Another bill would confirm the legality of state cannabis programs and include protections for federal workers. At least some of the proposed bills have bipartisan support, including one initiative that would remove restrictions on federal cannabis research, and multiple Republican Representatives have urged President Biden to change the scheduling of cannabis, distinguishing it from Fentanyl, morphine, methadone and cocaine.
New York: New York Governor Kathy Hochul says her administration is creating a $200 million public-private fund to help promote social equity in the state’s cannabis market. Governor Hochul announced the move as part of a list of priorities to be outlined in her State of the State address. The document also discusses support for additional harm reduction drug policies, as well as the state’s hemp market. Hochul stressed that while business licenses have yet to be approved, it’s important to lay the groundwork now for an inclusive market.
Iowa: A group of Iowa Democrats are pushing to allow the public to decide if cannabis should be legalized in the state. The lawmakers are pushing to put a proposition on the statewide ballot in November of 2024, giving residents the option to legalize cannabis and regulate it similarly to alcohol, restricting use to individuals over the age of 21. State Senator Joe Bolkcom says he is unsure what degree of resistance the measure will receive from Republican colleagues, but notes that GOP leaders plan to put issues of gun control and reproductive rights on the ballot, so cannabis could have a place there as well. Past efforts to legalize cannabis in the state have experienced significant GOP opposition.
Ohio: Activists in Ohio last week submitted nearly 30,000 additional signatures as part of an effort to get a marijuana legalization proposal before state lawmakers. A proposal to legalize cannabis in Ohio hit a snag earlier this month when advocates learned they failed to get enough valid signatures to initiate the bill. The Coalition to Regulate Marijuana like Alcohol submitted 119,825 signatures, 13,062 short of the 132,887 required to trigger action on the bill. They feel the 29,918 additional signatures give them room to spare in their effort to force lawmakers to take up the issue. The Ohio General Assembly now has four months to pass, reject, or amend the draft. If it is rejected, advocates can gather another 132,887 signatures to put the proposal on a statewide ballot in November.