Just across the street from the bustling Barclays Center subway stop in Brooklyn, a new kind of store has opened its doors. And though it may resemble an Apple Store from a quick glance (the Apple store is actually just up the block), this fresh establishment offers up something danker than the next iPhone: cannabis.

“It’s not your typical dispensary,” notes Citiva president Michael Quattrone as he breaks from his busy day for an interview. “The first reaction I get most often is ‘I kind of feel like I’m in a spa.’… It kinda has a modern-day apothecary vibe.” But though this new Brooklyn Citiva location may offer all the sheen and comfort of a massage studio, it still keeps its cool. Created by a local Brooklyn artist, a mosaic spans the entire back wall, Citiva’s logo sharply in focus. Potted succulents and candles set an ambiance. Cannabis powders, vape cartridges, and capsules sit in well-organized drawers amongst giant interactive table top screens.

Since December 30, the doors to this Citiva location have opened, welcoming Brooklyn’s 2.6 million residents (and any other medical card-carrying New Yorkers who pass through, for that matter). And that is what Citiva truly wants to be: welcoming. The dispensary not only hopes to serve its medical customers, but also to educate, enrich, and give back to the community which has welcomed them.

Citiva’s Bite of the Big Apple

Courtesy of Citiva

Calling All Artists and Influencers

Not only do they call upon the borough’s extensive amount of creative talent to line their walls, Citiva of Brooklyn has begun to roll out a new sort of “contest”. “Basically, I want to create a line of packaging created by local artists,” Quattrone says, “If your art is chosen, you’re on the packaging.”

What’s most important continues to be in the inclusion of the community where they’ve secured their new roots. For Citiva, it goes beyond helping out their suffering artist friends. Quattrone goes on to define more of the packaging art contest, stating that he likely could only promise the artist the recognition and glory of being seen by a large public. However, he does state, “But from the proceeds, we’ll donate X amount of money towards an organization or charity decided by survey of what our customers want that money to go to, what is most important to them.”  Might that be cannabis research? Something more specific to the community itself? That, he says, will be decided by the people they service.

And while this contest idea still requires some time before Brooklynites everywhere grab their felt tip pens and doodle their best cannabis leaf, it shows the determination and mission of Citiva to involve their customers and community in the store. They don’t stop at polling their customers. They also have plans to host events to educate or just talk about cannabis and how it affects the community.

Yes We Cannabis— Citiva’s Mission for Social Justice

Currently, the company’s facilities have begun expanding; they are in the midst of building a much larger grow house. As these plans unfold, an interim grow house supplies Citiva’s customers. But once the new grow house is up and running, Citiva hopes to turn the interim grow house into an education center.

With this new center, Citiva wants to lift up those burdened by social justice issues or who have been convicted of charges— charges which will hopefully be expunged or pardoned with a new shift in marijuana policy in New York state. Unfortunately, that shift has yet to happen to allow those with prior convictions to work in a NY dispensary. But Quattrone explains the conception of a new program for that foreseeable day on the horizon: “We’re trying to come up with a program where they can actually learn from seed to sale— the whole process.”

With this sort of course, an individual will then have the training and education necessary to be offered a job either with Citiva or in the cannabis industry. Quattrone sees even bigger dreams for the “graduates” of this possible program: “Maybe they’ll go out and start their own company and do their own thing, which couldn’t make me happier.”

Quattrone wants Citiva to be involved in that conversation about social justice. “We go to so many events where the loudest voices in the room are about justice,” he says. But more than being involved, Quattrone prizes the ability to listen in these spaces, especially to the voices of the people who have been in this industry or incarcerated because of it. They attend meetings across the entirety of New York City discussing the themes of social justice and the cannabis industry, attended by investors and residents alike. “There’s so much wrong in the world, you know? And if we can just be conscious about where we’re going with this stuff— that’s a big deal… And I want to help, you know? Invite mentors in— whatever ‘help’ looks like.”

Not only do they interact personally with this New York community to understand how to give back to the marginalized and disenfranchised populations it serves, but Citiva seeks to actively employ a diverse staff. Conscious of racial and gender disparities in the industry, Citiva hires women and people of color at various levels of the company. In this effort, they hope to maintain a wide perspective in the industry.

In the end, Citiva is more than just some patchouli head shop or swanky dispensary set up on Flatbush Ave. Rather, it is a community builder. In this way, Citiva unites and underlines the best things about cannabis itself: its ability to help someone medically alongside its power to build and foster community and connection.

Citiva’s Bite of the Big Apple

Courtesy of Citiva

Open Door Policy

Everyone 21 years or older is welcome in the Citiva dispensary in Brooklyn. However, only NY state medical card carriers can purchase any of the diverse products the store offers. Nonetheless, one of the helpful patient care representatives would still be happy to show and potential customer around the place, maybe even with a consultation on one of the giant screens embedded into a tabletop. From here, the screen will lead the customer through an array of questions pertaining to any issues they may be experiencing. Based on the responses one gives, the questionnaire provides options for what may help to solve the issue. But they aren’t only maintaining screen-time for their customer service.

According to Quattrone, this is when the patient care representative steps in and “explains even more than what the screen is already doing—just about the products we offer, what it means to them dosing, potential side effects, or other interactions with the drugs they may or may not be taking.” And to top of the customer experience, the pharmacist oversees that entire purchase, ensuring the customer is aware of those interactions and side effects.

For those without a medical card, the experience of visiting Citiva may be more like visiting a dope museum where you want all the items on display. But considering the imprint the store has left and will continue to leave on this corner of Brooklyn, it may be worth the visit.

Get The Goods

Citiva sells a wide range of cannabis products for its medical consumers. Unfortunately, New York state law still seeks to limit cannabis consumption in many forms. As a result, cannabis flower does not grace their product line. Dispensaries in the state are prohibited from selling edibles or flower and are restricted to selling vape cartridges, powders, and capsules. Nevertheless, the products for sale are cultivated to suit a medical patient’s specific needs.

While the strains themselves can also not be legally listed on the label, the ratios of THC to CBD do receive mention. And while these products range in price, they do come with the obligatory NYC price-tag. But that, Quattrone assures, is confirmation of quality.

Citiva’s Bite of the Big Apple

Courtesy of Citiva

Home is Where the High Is—Citiva’s Future in Brooklyn

As New York state works to establish recreational sales of cannabis, Citiva readies itself too. It is in this context of preparing and understanding for that future landscape that Michael Quattrone assures me, “There’s a lot that has to happen regulation-wise… The official bill needs to be reconciled before it becomes an actual law. But we’re ready. Let’s just say that.”

Because at the heart of this company is simply the motive to bring cannabis to the people. “Cannabis has helped in so many ways,” Quattrone proclaims, “and so many people look at recreational versus medical. I think so many people using it for recreational purposes only don’t realize the medical benefits that are happening to them.” But until that future recreational cannabis is legal, Citiva wants to help New Yorkers feel that relief, whether in Brooklyn or its 5 other New York locations.

In fact, the dispensary offers next-day delivery to its customers, servicing even the other NYC boroughs. Soon, they hope to offer delivery down to the same-hour, but unfortunately for New Yorkers hooked on a food delivery app model, that sort of convenience is not launched yet. Nonetheless, Citiva’s Brooklyn dispensary hopes to meld cannabis into that Empire State of mind and keeps its customers happy, no matter their borough. Because, as Quattrone simply put it, “We really want to bring cannabis to everyone that’s legally able to get it.”

New York City couldn’t be more welcoming to that idea.

The post Citiva’s Bite of the Big Apple appeared first on High Times.

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1. What is CBD? What is CBD Oil?

Cannabidiol (CBD) is a naturally occurring constituent of industrial hemp/cannabis. Its formula is C21H30O2 and it has a molecular mass of 314.4636. It is the most abundant non-psychoactive cannabinoid found in cannabis, and is being scientifically investigated for various reasons.

CBD oil is a cannabis oil (whether derived from marijuana or industrial hemp, as the word cannabis is the latin genus name for both) that has significant amounts of cannabidiol (CBD) contained within it. Our CBD products and extracts are derived from industrial hemp, so they could be considered CBD-rich hemp oil, hemp derived CBD oil, CBD-rich cannabis oil, or plainly “hemp extracts” since they typically contain much more than just CBD. Again, cannabis doesn’t mean marijuana, but is the genus name, and general umbrella term which all forms of marijuana and hemp fall under. The form of cannabis we use for our CBD and hemp extracts is industrial hemp; we do not sell marijuana.

2. If a hemp extract is 40% cannabinoids, what’s the other 60%? What’s in your hemp extracts besides the naturally occurring cannabinoids?

Our Kentucky hemp extracts contain over 80 different phyto-cannabinoids such as cannabidiol (CBD), CBC, CBG, CBN, etc.. In addition to the cannabinoids naturally present in our agricultural hemp extracts, there are also many other types of natural molecules and phyto-chemical compounds such as amino acids, carbohydrates, vitamins (including B1, B2, B6, D), fatty acids (including omega 3 & 6), trace minerals (including iron, zinc, calcium, magnesium, potassium), beta-carotene, chlorophyll, flavanoids, ketones, nitrogenous compounds, alkanes, glycosides, pigments, water, and terpenes. The most common terpenes in our hemp extracts are Myrcene, Beta-caryophyllene, Terpinolene, Linalool, alpha-Pinene, beta-Pinene, Nerolidol og Phytol, trans-alpha-Bergamotene, Limonene/ beta-Phellandrene (Co-elution), and alpha-Humulene.

3. What’s the difference between Hemp and Marijuana?

Scientifically, industrial Hemp and Marijuana are the same plant, with a genus and species name of Cannabis Sativa. They have a drastically different genetic profile though. Industrial Hemp is always a strain of Cannabis sativa, while marijuana can be Cannabis sativa, Cannabis indica, or Cannabis ruderalis. The major difference is how industrial hemp has been bred compared to a marijuana form of Cannabis sativa. organic hemp seedsTypically speaking, industrial hemp is very fibrous, with long strong stalks, and barely has any flowering buds, while a marijuana strain of Cannabis sativa will be smaller, bushier, and full of flowering buds. However, newer industrial hemp varieties in the USA are being bred to have more flowers and higher yields of cannabinoids and terpenes, such as our Kentucky hemp we’re now using!

99% of the time marijuana has a high amount of THC and only a very low amount of CBD. Hemp, on the other hand, naturally has a very high amount of CBD in most instances, and only a trace amount of THC. Fortunately, the cannabinoid profile of hemp is ideal for people looking for benefits from cannabis without the ‘high.’ Hemp is used for making herbal supplements, food, fiber, rope, paper, bricks, oil, natural plastic, and so much more, whereas marijuana is usually used just recreationally, spiritually, and medicinally. The term cannabis oil can refer to either a marijuana or hemp derived oil, since marijuana and hemp are two different forms of cannabis.

In the USA the legal definition of “industrial hemp,” per Section 7606 of the Agricultural Appropriations Act of 2014, is “INDUSTRIAL HEMP — The term ‘‘industrial hemp’’ means the plant Cannabis sativa L. and any part of such plant, whether growing or not, with a delta-9 tetrahydrocannabinol concentration of not more than 0.3 percent on a dry weight basis.”

4. Are hemp derived cannabinoids such as CBD as good as CBD from marijuana?

The short answer is yes. CBD is CBD, whether from marijuana or hemp. Most marijuana has a very low non-psychoactive cannabinoid profile (like CBD, CBC, CBG), so most of the time hemp would be much more preferable for anything besides THC. Marijuana is usually very high in THC (gives people the high) but usually very low in other non-psychoactive cannabinoids.

Nowadays in the USA, many farmers are growing industrial hemp flowers that are just as beautiful, odor-producing, and terpene rich as the best marijuana strains, such as our partnered farmers in Kentucky.

5. Why don’t you source your Hemp and CBD from within Colorado?

colorado growing operationWe feel that the hemp program in Kentucky is more well suited for our company in regards to growing hemp, and that because it’s 100% compliant with Section 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill (and the 2016 Agricultural Appropriations Act), procuring it from there is perfectly legal at the federal level. Kentucky’s ecology is perfect for hemp just as it is for tobacco. The growing season is longer than in Colorado, and the soil is richer, so the quality of the hemp and the yields are better.

6. What’s the percentage of cannabinoids and CBD in your product?

Our raw extracts have varying percentages of cannabinoid and cannabidiol (CBD) content, the range being 10%-99%. Each product has a unique formulation and uses varying ratios of our extract types. Our CBD Isolate is over 99% pure CBD.

7. What is the best method of use?

For our dietary supplements we can only recommend them for internal consumption. Our CBD isolate is for research purposes only. If you don’t like the flavor of the oil supplements, you can mix with something sweet like apple sauce or honey to cut through the flavor.

8. What’s the ideal serving size for me, and how often should I take it?

There is no easy answer to this. Our starting recommended serving size is 15 drops but we generally recommend experimenting to see what feels best to you. Some prefer 5 drops, some prefer over 50 drops per day.

9. What is the safety of your hemp extracts? Are there negative side effects?

Hemp is considered by many to be generally safe. We’ve never seen or heard of any significant or negative CBD Oil Extractside effects in our years in the industry. That said, we can’t rule them out. Please consult with your physician before using any dietary supplement including Hemp extract supplements.

10. Which of your CBD and hemp products should I get?

As a company who sells various dietary and food supplements, we can’t suggest any of our products for the prevention, treatment or cure of any disease or ailment.

When considering our different dietary hemp products, know that they all come in two strengths. Our Original Hemp blends (Classic Hemp Blend, Hemp Complete, Brainpower oil, & Signature Blend) all have 250+mg of cannabinoids per fluid ounce, and our concentrated blends have 1,500+mg per fluid ounce, six times the potency of our traditional oils. We’ve found that sometimes less is more, but nevertheless, some people like to take very large serving sizes of our hemp extracts.

The main difference between the four Original Blends is the additional herbal ingredients besides hemp. We suggest you research the separate components of each blend to determine which product may be most appealing to add to your dietary regimen. If you know it’s solely the hemp extract that you are looking for, with no additional ingredients, then Classic Hemp Blend or Classic Hemp 6x is what you’re looking for.

For dabbing and vaporizing or for research you can try our CBD Isolate.


11. Why do people use Hemp Extracts and CBD? What are the benefits and uses of CBD?

In accordance with federal regulations we cannot make health claims regarding our dietary supplement products. We can only recommend our products for general wellness.

12. Is a standard hemp seed oil the same as a high-CBD hemp extract?

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Absolutely not. Standard hemp oil, which can be found very cheaply at a grocery store, is a much different product than our CO2 hemp extracts (not from seed). Standard hemp oil is produced by cold pressing the seeds, whereas our hemp extract is a supercritical CO2 extraction of the hemp plant itself, not the seeds. Hemp seed oil is considered to be a great nutritive food, but it doesn’t have the naturally occurring terpenes, cannabinoids and other components that our extracts do have.

13. Do I need to move to Colorado to get your Hemp Extracts and CBD? Where do you ship?

No. We actually source our hemp from Kentucky, as it’s legal to ship across state lines. Many people are under the impression that the only way to acquire hemp extracts and CBD for themselves or a loved one is to move to Colorado or another cannabis-friendly state. Many major news outlets are misinformed and are unfortunately spreading the idea that you can only get CBD oil in the states where medical marijuana has been legalized. This is simply not the case though. Because our extracts comes from hemp instead of marijuana, we can and do ship to all fifty states, and no medical marijuana card is needed. There are some exceptions, like with Indiana, Missouri and South Dakota we can’t sell our concentrated products due to state legislation.

We also ship to Japan, Australia, the EU, Switzerland, and Brazil. For all EU orders contact our exclusive distributor thereCannawell.

14. Is your Hemp Extract Oil similar to Rick Simpson Hemp Oil?

Not quite. Ours are from hemp and RSHO is usually using marijuana, a different form of cannabis than industrial hemp. Our industrial hemp extracts are more standardized and will usually have a much higher content of non-psychoactive cannabinoids like CBD than one produced through the Rick Simpson method. And oils produced through his method will usually have a much higher THC content, as it’s typically marijuana that is used for RSHO.†

Generally speaking, most marijuana producers and sellers (especially on the black market) don’t test for contaminants (metals, pesticides, bacteria, etc.). Rick Simpson Hemp Oil is actually more a method of extraction than it is a specific product. People use the Rick Simpson method with hundreds of different strains of marijuana, so the THC, CBD and other cannabinoid content of the final oil is always varying greatly, depending on the cannabis the consumers are acquiring. Usually what’s used for Rick Simpson oil is a strain with an inferior CBD content (and high THC), because that’s what the vast amount of marijuana is nowadays.

15. Where do you source your hemp and CBD from?

We have partners in Kentucky who grew a dedicated plot for us this year (2016) which is being used in our products now. mjna message boardWe also currently source from Europe but we’ll be changing that soon.

16. What kind of testing/analysis is performed on your products?

We have an industry leading quality control system, and we have third party laboratories analyze all of our hemp extracts and our final products for cannabinoid potency, heavy metals, bacterial and microbial life, mycotoxins (fungus), and pesticides.

17. What is CO2 extraction? What’s the difference between subcritical and supercritical CO2 extractions?

CO2 extraction is an extraction process that uses pressurized carbon dioxide to extract phyto-chemicals (such as CBD, CBG, or terpenes, flavonoids, etc.) from a plant. CO2 at certain temperatures and pressures acts like a solvent, without the dangers of actually being one. It is the most expensive extraction method, and is widely considered the most effective and safest plant extraction method in the world.

Many hemp and CBD companies boast about their supercritical CO2 extractions, but that’s actually only one (and perhaps an inferior) method of using a CO2 extraction machine. There are also subcritical CO2 extractions, and ‘mid-critical’, a general range between subcritical and supercritical. Subcritical (low temp, low pressure) CO2 extractions take more time and produce smaller yields than super-critical, but they retain the essential oils, terpenes, and other sensitive chemicals within the plant. Supercritical, on the other hand, is a high pressure and high temperature process that damages most terpenes and heat sensitive chemicals, but can extract much larger molecules such as lipids (omega 3 and 6), chlorophyll, and waxes. A truly full-spectrum CO2 extract includes first performing a subcritical extraction, separating the extracted oil, and then extracting the same plant material using supercritical pressure, and then homogenizing both oil extracts into one. In the essential oil industry, an extract made using this specific process is referred to as a CO2 Total.

18. What is the endocannabinoid system (ECS)?

“The endocannabinoid system (ECS) is a group of endogenous cannabinoid receptors located in the mammalian brain and throughout the central and peripheral nervous systems, consisting of neuromodulatory lipids and their receptors.” Wikipedia

There are two main types of receptors in the ECS, CB1 and CB2. CB1 receptors are primarily located in the central nervous system and brains of mammals, and CB2 are generally found in the peripheral nervous system. There are two main cannabinoids mammals produce- 2AG and Anandamide (named after the Sanskrit term “ananda” which translates to “peace”).

For hundreds of millions of years every vertebrate on Earth has been equipped with this ECS, a crucial system in the body, and it has been known about in the scientific and medical communities since the 1980’s. However, it’s still not taught about in most medical schools.