We chatted with the Cannabiotix team about their recent podium finish at The Emerald Cup with French Alps taking third in the hyper-competitive indoor category. 

That third-place finish was also the top spot for a SoCal flower brand in the indoor category with Oakland’s Fig Farms taking first and San Francisco’s Sense taking second. The only other local flower brand in the Top 5 was Maven Genetics. We chatted with them last week. French Alps Open Jar Nug

Cannabiotix’s cofounder Neema Samari explained the company had been a little wary of the cup scene in the past. 

“It was our first time doing The Emerald Cup. In general, I think we’ve been a little cynical about competition for the last four years. So it was good to get back out there and give it a whirl,” Samari told L.A. Weekly. 

He estimated it has been at least five years since they entered any kind of contest. Attitudes started to change when they saw they now had a chance at The Emerald Cup once the indoor category was added.

“And that’s obviously more of a forte for us because of being born and raised in SoCal,” Samari said. “So once we kind of saw that, and then you know, the pandemic cooled off and everything like that, we wanted to challenge ourselves again, I thought it would be a good idea to put our ticket in that.”

Back in 2016, the Cannabiotix team saw the writing on the wall that there was going to be an expiration date on how much fun they were having in the Prop 215 marketplace. Samari said that was the moment they began to transition their cloak-and-dagger craft to the next level with the proper kinds of infrastructure, standard operating procedures, and training.

The lessons they brought into their first legal California facility were learned in Las Vegas. Back in 2015, a bunch of the team headed out to Vegas to set that up. They started to figure out the legal cannabis game. 

“So that was kind of like our firsthand experience where we’re duffel bag boys and all of a sudden we have all this stuff broken down into eighths of branded product,” Amari said. 

Amari was quick to not judge those folks still taking part in the traditional market. He just thinks Cannabiotix has moved on to bigger-picture plays. One of their big hopes with the in-house breeding program is to avoid the homogenization of genetics happening across the industry, 

“We’ve been doing this since 1999. So we have an in-house breeding program that’s obviously built on top of a foundation of having this library of a bunch of different strains, some of them from decades ago, some of them from not that much long ago, newer hybrid and combining all the things in the stable to create new unique flavors that you can buy. And not just in like a medium scale 7,8,9 strains in the lineup, we’re talking about 20 in-house flavors in the cycle now.”

Currently, the Cannabiotix team has about 640 lights of production space. That number will double soon as they prepare to open another 700-light facility. They’re hoping to open the doors and get plants inside there in about six weeks, if all goes to plan. 

They’ll need the flower to keep feeding the beast, as they continue to scale up. Cannabiotix is in 460 dispensaries around the state, but about 280 of them are where most of the product actually pumps through. They’ve done their best to keep the people that have been messing with them the longest stocked. 

“We do want to get around to the rest of the pack,” Samari said. 

Keep an eye out for Cannabiotix flowers all over California. 

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