While the world awaits the fate of our planet’s most healing plant, a few notable companies forge ahead on their own by developing items of need.
Patients bow down to those who are brave enough to bring them the food that brings them back to life—the edible. Not willing to wait nor take no for an answer, they do not bend the rules, navigating around them legally while constructing the path for others to follow.
Auntie Dolores fulfills a connoisseur’s checklist. Delicious, organic, tested, reliable and available. The name makes sense, with dolore being the Latin word for “pain.” But it all starts with Founder Julianna Carella, who brings gourmet ingredients to the table that the palate praises.
Most of the products are infused with coconut oil, cacao or Dutch cocoa. Vegan, protein-rich and sugar-free options abound. The cannabis used is high-quality CO2 extracted from organic, outdoor hybrid strains. Each treat is uniquely designed and enriched with CBD, THC or both—many patients combine products to reach their desired effect. Products are currently available in California, and in the near future, Arizona.
The Auntie Dolores menu is vast and includes CBD Super Truffles, energizing Morning Truffles, Savory Pretzels, CBD Chocolate Brownies and Glazed Pecans to name a few. While many are enriched with THC, other CBD treats will soon be released with higher terpenes and fine-tuned to provide the patient with various effects, such as calming for nighttime.
Auntie Dolores was born and developed in sunny San Francisco’s Dolores Park in 2008 and currently resides in Oakland, where they develop and test their products. The company is always striving to reach the apex of excellence by assuring patients of pure products through testing, as per Carella:
We were one of the first edible companies to successfully test our products because when we started, labs did not even know how to test edibles. It wasn’t until 2010 that the labs had a handle on how to do that. They are still working out the kinks and trying to standardize it. It is still a pretty new science.
Keeping on top of current laws, regulations and news is also a top priority for Carella. She stays heavily involved in the industry and is on the board of the CCIA, California Cannabis Industry Association, which she finds to be helpful and influential. Through her involvement, Carella is able to invest time in furthering cannabis research and resources by actively participating in legislative practices in California. The board of CCIA created various subcommittees, including one on manufacturing:
The manufacturing subcommittee that I am on has allowed us to craft some of the laws and work with the Department of Health on various things, giving us the opportunity to be influential in that way. That has been great. It is specific to California only, so we also look at other states like Colorado to see what works and what doesn’t, and what we think will work for California.
Carella explained that it’s a good thing that California has had some time to look at what works in other states. The next goal is to find innovative ways to address the many other issues that are specific to California alone. Regarding the world of edibles, Carella shared with us her concerns and next steps:
We have had such a large amount of time to get our industry here in California going. It’s been going on so many years already that our manufacturers have been operating in this gray zone where we aren’t licensed. Up until MMRSA (California Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act) passed, there was no way for a manufacturer or a cultivator to obtain a permit or license, which made doing business really challenging. With regard to how that is going be relevant to when we are writing these laws for the state, we need to take a close look at the manufacturing side of things so that they, and our patients, are protected.
Regarding regulation and the lack of laws, Carella has done some self-regulating of her own:
“The Compassionate Use Act wasn’t written to support a so-called industry, it was written with a very different perspective in mind and it achieved some very great things for some very sick people; but what happened is, the industry grew out of it because of the demand by many people, not just very sick people. I think that because of that, our industry grew pretty far, pretty fast without the regulatory framework in place. That is like trying to build a house without a foundation. Without any statewide regulations in California, all of the producers have had to self-regulate, while also being regulated by various counties.
Auntie Dolores is also furthering cannabis research. The company works closely with doctors and veterinarians, and is interested in working with the professional medical community to understand their products and better assist patients. They look forward to the future of cannabis research.
To learn more about Auntie Dolores, or read their menu and testimonials, visit AuntieDolores.com.