WEED AND BEES: TWO VERY STICKY BUSINESSES

Why is all the fun stuff sticky? Honey and weed are both natural products that taste great and boast many beneficial properties. But perhaps the most valuable trait they have in common is the global demand for these commodities. That’s not the shocking part. While cannabis remains an illegal Schedule 1 controlled substance, it’s hardly surprising that there’s still a pretty big black market.

The shocking truth is, a black market honey baron sits so high up on the pyramid of power, they’re above the law. That’s right, the black market honey business is the real business of the “Mr Sosa’s” of this world (Tony Montana’s Supplier, the guy who sent the South American death squad to take him out).

CAN BEES GET HIGH ON CANNABIS?

Insects, unlike humans and other mammals, don’t have an ECS or endocannabinoid system. This means they have no cannabinoid receptors. So it’s a definitive no; bees can’t get high from cannabis because they can’t access the THC. In nature, wild honey bees are drawn to colourful, nectar-producing plants. Sticky green weed trees are not a first choice destination. Also, worker bees are effectively 24/7 slaves to the Queen and have little time for recreational drug use.

CAN BEES FEED ON CANNABIS PLANTS?

It looks like yes, bees can feed on cannabis. Nick French and his company Colorado Hemp Honey have made some fascinating discoveries. Bees also might be able to convert some of the resin into propolis. This is kind of like a two-in-one poly-filler and steriliser that bees use to repair and clean the hive. There are theories that the bees are somehow processing the trichomes into honey, but so far we’ve seen nothing that will stick.

What seems more likely is that apiarists can train a colony of bees to forage from a ganja field if they have nothing else, rewarding them with a treat like sugar water afterwards. It’s a great YouTube video, but doesn’t prove anything. So let’s stick with the facts. We know cannabis is not a nectar-producing plant. If the cannabis oils offer any sustenance to the bees, they will only go for it as a last resort or if rewarded for doing so. Furthermore, cannabis is a wind-pollinated plant, so bees play no role in pollination either.

Bees Honey Cannabis

THE GOLDEN STATE

At this point, you might be a little puzzled by how bees and cannabis could be so closely connected when it appears in nature they are not exactly drawn to each other. The glue that holds this unlikely partnership together is us, humans. California creates the most crystal clear picture of this coalition every summer.

The vast 1 million+ acre almond orchards of the Golden State need millions of bees to be trucked into the state by beekeepers from all over the US to pollinate the trees. If you thought the West Coast farmland only had a worldwide reputation as weed country, you were wrong. Outdoor Cannabis cultivation is concentrated in the Emerald Triangle and a few pockets further south, but almond trees are everywhere.

So to thread this connection together succinctly, the economy of California would crash without bees and cannabis. The Golden State wouldn’t glitter without either one. We can also follow this logic to formulate an alternative trends forecast. Perhaps the seasonal spike in economic activity and employment has more to do with the numbers of bees and cannabis plants in the state than anything else. Seriously, we might have scooped Gerald Celente and the Trends Research Institute on this one.

CANNABIS-INFUSED HONEY

The bees might not be able to make psychoactive honey, but we can certainly infuse it with cannabinoids later. It need not be get-you-high-honey, as you could always add CBD and create a non-psychoactive healthy honey. With a little experimentation, you can blend custom cannabis-infused honey in your own kitchen. It’s best to prepare a cannabis tincture first and then add this to the honey. Mixing raw reefer with honey is just a sticky mess.

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