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Cannabis and the Empire State: 3 takeaways from a weekend in Buffalo

By
Jay Rosenthal
June 6, 2022

This past Saturday, a team from Dutchie—led by Anne Forkutza and Jalen Jones—helped produce a Western New York watch party for On the Revel, an education and events series in New York City. The Buffalo watch party was hosted by Canna-House, cannabis-inspired organization helping entrepreneurs pave the way as New York’s legalization rolls out.

From left to right: Jalen Jones, Dutchie; Anne Forkutza, Dutchie; Valentino Shine Jr., Canna-House; Reggie Keith, Canna-House; Rich Keith, Canna-House; Jason Staff, On the Revel
"Lots of people say they'll come to Buffalo, but when the team at Dutchie says they'll do something—they show up! It was great working with the Dutchie team and we're so excited to continue building our partnership." — Reggie Keith, Founder and President of Canna-House

While there, the team from Dutchie learned three core things:

1. Tons of attention in NYC, but areas like Western NY are ready

New York City is undeniably one the world's most important cities. From culture to finance, so much runs directly through The City's streets. But all of New York deserves detailed and careful attention when it comes to cannabis legalization. One of the most unique aspects of cannabis legalization in New York is the door it aims to open for legacy operators and those that are justice-impacted. Anne Forkutza, Dutchie’s Head of Strategic Growth told attendees, “Whether a legacy operator, a justice-impacted entrepreneur, or someone who sees the tremendous opportunity from legalization, Dutchie is helping would-be dispensary owners throughout the state get ready to make their mark.”

2. Tourism is a core opportunity

When in Western New York, it is hard not to see the incredible tourism industry—which could, and should, embrace the future of cannabis-enhanced tourism. Western New York is already a tourism mecca. Tens of millions of people are drawn to Niagara Falls, the professional sports teams, the food (wings and beef on weck!) and the culture. Imagine how unique these experiences will be when enhanced with easy and safe access to legal cannabis. Entrepreneurs are seeing this opportunity and gearing up throughout Western New York.

3. Strong local community with a deep entrepreneurial spirit

There is a local community of legacy operators, justice-impacted business people, and entrepreneurs that are tight-knit, supportive, and ready to put Western New York on the cannabis map. From would-be edibles makers, to hemp farmers plying their knowledge into cannabis production, to current CBD-shop operators—the Western New York community was out in full force this past weekend. We cannot wait to help them succeed in their respective missions.

“We want to help the passionate and committed leaders in Western New York achieve their cannabis industry goals,” said Jalen Jones, Senior Account Executive at Dutchie. “That’s why we can’t wait to get back this summer for more education, training, and connecting.”

If you would like to know more about how Dutchie can help your Western New York cannabis business, contact Jalen Jones directly.

About the author
Jay Rosenthal
Lead Content Producer @ Dutchie