California has long been a trailblazer in the cannabis industry. The first state to legalize marijuana for medicinal purposes in 1996, the state also began allowing recreational sales in 2018. Over the last 22 years, California has generated $2.75 billion in cannabis sales — a feat no other state has yet to accomplish.
Edibles — from chocolates and gummies to protein bars — make up a large portion of those sales. Buyers in the U.S. alone spent almost $1 billion on various forms of edibles in 2017. Arcview market research estimates that that value will rise to $4.1 billion over the next four years.
Read on as we explore four California-based edibles companies with inventive products, top-notch ingredients, and incredible company values that place them a step above the rest.
1. Atlas Edibles
For those in search of a heartier snack, Atlas Edibles is the California company to follow. Atlas was founded by Ezra Malmuth in 2016 and has since won several Cannabis Cup awards. Their granola clusters contain 10 mg of THC per serving and are made with fresh, whole ingredients that come in a variety of flavors. But it’s the origin of their story that really stands out — Malmuth developed the product after his best friend’s father had been diagnosed with cancer and was having difficulty keeping food down. The cannabis-infused granola helped manage his pain and stress levels while fueling his body with the nutrients it needed. As a result, all of Atlas’ granola clusters target specific needs, whether it’s healing, relaxation, mindfulness, or functionality.
2. PLUS Gummies
In 2015, when marijuana was first legalized for recreational use in Colorado, Jake Heimark quit his job in tech at Facebook to begin working in cannabis. From a garage in Palo Alto, Calif., an early iteration of PLUS Gummies was born. Eventually, Jake and his partners realized they needed to open their own manufacturing plant in order to produce the best version of their product, and today their Adelanto plant employs numerous chemists and food scientists. Their four staple varieties (sour blueberry, pineapple & coconut, sour watermelon, and blackberry & lemon) and their limited edition varieties all contain various levels of CBD and THC.
Défoncé Chocolatier produces some of the finest cannabis-infused chocolates. Their artisanal confections have been setting the bar high for premium edibles since their California birth, using only responsibly and sustainably sourced ingredients. Each bar contains 90 mg of THC and comes in a range of flavors from vanilla, to matcha, to classic milk and dark chocolate. The Défoncé team is made up of passionate employees from companies like Apple and TCHO, who fully embrace California’s culinary bounty and give the team a well-rounded, multifaceted approach to the industry and product. The company also proudly donates a portion of their proceeds to St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital, bringing joy not only in the form of cannabis-infused sweets but also in their good deeds and community involvement.
4. KIVA Confections
KIVA Confections founders Scott Palmer and Kristi Knoblich saw a hole in the market for an edible product that was potent, consistent, and enjoyable to consume, so they began producing KIVA chocolates. Today, the company produces mints and gummies as well as several varieties of chocolate, distributing them through hundreds of dispensaries around the country. KIVA is as equally dedicated to efficacy, food safety, and business integrity as they are to producing great edibles, making this one of the top-rated cannabis company’s to work at.
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