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California State Fair Announces Cannabis Awards Winners in First-Ever Competition

The first-ever cannabis tournament officially sanctioned by the state of California announced its first lineup of winners ahead of this year’s festivities at the California State Fair.

California State Fair Cannabis Awards released the names of top California cultivars on June 23rd. Over 300 entries were whittled down to 60 trophies and medals, with gold and silver medals, as well as the coveted Golden Bear Award for the “Best of California” overall winners.

Cal Expo Fairgrounds houses the California State Fair. This independent agency was established under state statutes. This year’s State Fair runs from July 15 through July 31, however consumption won’t be allowed.

This science-based contest divided cannabis flower entries into three categories: outdoor, indoor and mixed light. The categories were also separated by cannabinoids and terpenes, instead of traditional divisions such as sativa or indica.

Lab testing was provided by SC Labs to determine the winners in 10 categories: Cannabinoids consisting of CBDa, CBGa, and THCa, as well as Terpenes including Myrcene, beta-Caryophyllene, Limonene, Ocimene, Terpinolene, Pinene, and a “co-dominant” category. Each entry was subject to California compliance testing to ensure safety and accurately identify genetics. Each winner receives a PhytoFact document.

MOCA Humboldt Head Cultivator Sarah Wright. Photo by CEO Matt Engel

At first glance, MOCA Humboldt, Esensia, and Greenshock Farms took home the most wins at this year’s competition. MOCA Humboldt won gold for Wookies (2x), Grape Cookies (2x), ZOG, and ZOG, in different categories, according to terpenes or cannabinoids. Ridgeline Farms also took home three silver wins for Apples & Bananas, Green Lantern, and Ridgeline Runtz.

Emerald Spirit Botanicals was one of the more interesting find. They won the unique category for outdoor Pink Boost Goddess. It is also rich in THCV. Joseph Haggard, who is also the Emerald Spirit Botanicals Farm Manager and Public Relations Officer, was bred Pink Boost Goddess by his mother Katie Jeane.

“It is with deep gratitude and honor that we are recognized as a winner in the inaugural year of the California State Fair Cannabis Awards,” Jeane told Chronic News. “Pink Boost Goddess represents patient, meticulous, and prayerful breeding work to bring forward new medicine for humanity.”

Jeane continues, “Six years ago, I asked the spirit of cannabis how I could support its evolution forward and was guided to focus on THCV. Through scientific, spiritual and intentional breeding, I was able identify and enhance THCV in Pink Boost Goddess. THCV is a symbol of joy, focus and a shift in perspective. It also represents a chance to reflect about how we eat. THCV can help with appetite control, focus and blood sugar regulation for diabetics. It may also reduce neuropathic discomfort in certain situations. I think it’s important to recognize that cannabis has so much more to offer than THC, and THCV is an example of that.”

It’s through these lesser known cannabinoids that consumers can truly reach better healing. “By understanding minor cannabinoids we can better understand the healing powers of the cannabis plant. It’s amazing to see Pink Boost Goddess receive seven major awards over the last two years including two 1st Place Emerald Cup Awards, a most unique cannabinoid profile award, an exotic terpene profile award, the highest THCV flower in California award and now this award for most unique flower in California.”

Pink Boost Goddess is a uplifting and joyful experience that includes smooth floral notes with hints of peppery gas. The flower can be purchased at Farm Cut locations in California as well as through other brands.

Many others shared what makes cannabis a winner and how it is contributing to the overall improvement of the cannabis experience. “Adding cannabis cultivation, alongside wine, craft beer, cheese and olive oil, was a perfect fit with the CA State Fair’s history of celebrating California’s rich agriculture history,” said California Exposition and State Fair Board of Director Chair Jess Durfee. “We are excited for our inaugural winners.”

KOLAS Technology SBM will award each recipient a registered digital certificate using blockchain technology. It is a subsidiary to KOLAS.

“We love the science-based lab testing involved with this competition and are honored to be a part of the legendary CA State Fair,” said MOCA Humboldt Vice President of Marketing and Sales Aaron Salles. “This relationship lends legitimacy to our industry and provides us an opportunity to educate people about the many benefits of the cannabis plant.”

There will be a non-consumption ceremony for winners at the upcoming fair’s CA Cannabis Exhibit at the Cal Expo Fairgrounds in Sacramento, California.

Marley Lovell, Ben Blake and Ben Blake are co-founders of Esensia / Photo taken by Syra McCarthy (@syranara).

“We are honored and humbled to be recognized for our craft, amongst top notch California cultivators and alongside the best agricultural products the state has to offer,” said Esensia Co-founder Ben Blake. “It takes three-to four years of meticulous work for us to develop a strain from scratch to sale, akin to winemaking, it is truly a craft process.”

For a complete list of winners, click here