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Marley Natural and Harborside Health Center: A Philanthropic Cannabis Partnership

This article is sponsored by Marley Natural, the official Bob Marley cannabis brand, which is crafted with deep respect for Bob’s legacy and belief in the positive potential of the herb to heal and inspire us. Marley Natural offers a premium line of cannabis flower, oil, accessories, and body care products that are all responsibly sourced and integrity-driven.

Companies around the country and around the world are pioneering new partnerships to help bring cannabis to the masses. These partnerships are business oriented, but more than ever before cannabis businesses are also forging unions to literally and figuratively cultivate charitable works in their communities and beyond.

Giving Back to the Bay Area Through Cannabis

Marley Natural Red, Green, Gold and Black Cannabis Strains

Marley Natural, a company whose genetic lineage is planted deep in social change and cannabis, partnered with Harborside Health Center, one of the oldest and largest cannabis dispensaries in the country, to spread the message of clean, quality cannabis with an eye on sustainability and the powerful social potential of this versatile flower. This initiative pegs 5% of all Marley Natural sales at Harborside to return to their Rise Up project which is aptly described as:

“. . .a philanthropic initiative created by Marley Natural with the intention of expanding on Bob Marley’s ethos, ideals, and core values. His vision for an inclusive and compassionate global community in which we take care of each other and our environment is at the root of our quest.”

This expression of gratitude harnessed by the rising acceptance of cannabis as commercial and social good speaks volumes for Marley Natural, Harborside, and the cannabis industry, whose philanthropic bent is more apparent with every handcrafted flower sold.

At its Oakland dispensary, Harborside has stocked Marley Natural’s unique Bay Area cannabis strains, based on a desire for quality, environmentally conscious growing practices, and variety. Each strain offers a unique terpene profile, flavor, and range of effects. Marley Natural’s boutique strains were sourced from local cannabis growers in the Bay Area and speak to the long, cooperative history of cannabis in and near the Emerald Triangle.

Marley Natural’s color-coded packaging (green for hybrid strains, gold for sativa, red for high-CBD, and black for indica) helps customers navigate the Marley catalog with ease and cherry-pick the herb best suited to their needs at a glance. It is this attention to detail that characterizes the Marley Natural experience, giving the brand a strong footing in a market that is rich with quality cannabis. The flower is also sun-grown using all-natural and sustainable growing methods, ensuring a high-quality product that dispensaries love to keep in stock.

Marley Natural Cannabis at Harborside Health Center

Marley Natural gear at Harborside Health Center in Oakland, California

We had the opportunity to chat with Timothy Anderson, purchasing and procurement manager at Harborside, about their blossoming initiative with Marley Natural and the locally-sourced strains that made the menu.

Leafly: Hey Tim! Tell me a little about the relationship Harborside Health Center and Marley Natural are creating?

Anderson: Bob Marley, and by extension, the Marley Natural brand, have identified with cannabis and cannabis culture from the beginning, specifically in terms of the impetus within the movement.

L: Agreed. How does this impetus extend to the Marley genetics you’ve put on the menu?

A: Marley is sun-grown, which offers specific horticultural benefits, making this herb clean and green. I also enjoy the age-old comparison of digital versus analog. While digital (or indoor cannabis) might polish the flaws from a track, analog (sun-grown cannabis) has warmth and nuance that remains unaltered. Other benefits with sun-grown cannabis include sustainable practices that lower overall environmental impact, which subsequently gets translated to consumers as a lower cost. No lights, no need for electricity, smaller carbon footprint.

L: And the flowers?

A: Wonderful! I think we’ve sold out of [Marley Natural Gold]. It was a favorite for staff and customers. The quality is comparable to flowers at and above the cost to other growers. Also, the Marley name is a recognizable access point for new and seasoned cannabis smokers.

L: What do you see in the future for the Marley Natural brand?

A: It’s Marley’s first year, so the genetics that have come out are the first offering of a growing brand. I imagine a solid and dedicated line of products that will continue to emblemize Jamaica’s traditional cannabis culture.

Bob Marley is an icon in the cannabis movement, and his timeless presence and good intentions are galvanized in the Marley Natural brand and the ethos that continues to guide them forward. This company is young, but already SFGate named Marley Natural’s Red (Ringo’s Gift) CBD strain one of the Top 10 Strains of April 2016. This nod to the Marley estate and their beautiful cannabis is a precursor to the bright future ahead of the brand. Marley Natural continues to innovate new products that go beyond cannabis and extend to social responsibility of a plant Bob Marley truly believed could change the world.

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