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Ep 202 – How to Make Edibles Cheaper, Faster, and Stronger with Shanel Lindsay

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In this episode of the Wake + Bake Podcast, your favorite weed nerds sit down with Shanel Lindsay – inventor, cannabis researcher and educator, social equity advocate, and attorney to talk about how she solved the biggest problem in edibles and Cannabis DIY

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In this conversation, we cover:

  • Why you’re probably making edibles wrong (even if you already decarboxylate)
  • The edibles and hemp products that are worth making and the ones that science says don’t work
  • How a cannabis possession arrest turned into a career as a researcher, advocate, and inventor 
  • How Shanel invented the best cannabutter maker and decarboxylator that can save you 30%-50% every time you make edibles (and why she got the lab tests to prove it)
  • what the most surprising lab test result has been after 8 years of research

If you make more than one batch of special brownies a year, this episode is for you. 

Show Resource Links:

WIN AN ARDENT and a Scholarship to the Certified Cannabis Educator Program in November 2023: https://wakeandbake.co/cannabis-wellness-giveaway/

Become a Certified Cannabis Educator in as little as 12 Weeks and get paid to talk and write about cannabis: cannabiscoachinginstitute.com/ccep

Use the code WAKEANDBAKE for $30 off at Ardent Cannabis: https://wakeandbake.co/ardent-cannabis

Visit Andrea at Reveal Cannabis: www.revealcannabis.com

Visit Corinne at Wake + Bake: www.wakeandbake.co 

Email us with questions and requests at [email protected] 

Episode 202 Transcript

Corinne Tobias:    

Andrea, that was the most insane conversation.

And I think one of the reasons it was so insane is because I thought I already knew about Shanel. I have loved what Ardent Cannabis has been doing for years now. They’ve been around for eight years and they’re a company that produces this little purple device, right? And it’s, it’s the Ardent FX. If you can’t see it, cause you’re listening to this cause it’s a podcast. It’s just a cylindrical purple device with two buttons on it. It’s very simple. And it decarboxylates and it infuses, and it does a whole host of other things that we talk about on the podcast. And I knew that Shanel had produced this thing and then solved all these problems with homemade edibles.

But then to hear her story of how it came about and to hear why she’s so passionate about lab testing . It just blew my mind. 

Andrea Meharg: Yeah, for me, that was the thing too. I’ve always loved her devices and didn’t know too much about her, but then to hear why she’s doing this work and why it’s so important was amazing.

I kind of felt like I have to start getting up like much, much earlier in the morning so I can try to be more like Shanel, you know, like she’s just doing all of the things all of the time.

So I think people are just going to be wowed by this episode. 

Corinne Tobias: Yeah, if you have one of these and it’s like probably on in your kitchen right now, if you have one, cause it just seems like you always can find a reason to use it, then you’re going to be like, Oh my gosh, this is the story behind the purple gadget.

And if you don’t have a purple gadget, there’s going to be some really interesting math on why one might be a very good idea, a very good addition to your cannabis kitchen. I’m so excited to share it with you. 

Corinne Tobias: Oh, and before we get started, I want to let you know that if you are listening to this in November of 2023, I have something very exciting for you. We are actually going to be giving away one of the purple gadgets. So stay into the end, find out how you can win an Arden FX. Thank you so much for being here. Let’s get started.

But before we get started today, I want to share some messages with you from the people and the companies who have made this episode possible. Here’s a word from our sponsors. 

This episode of the wake and bake podcast is brought to you by the Cannabis Coaching Institute. 

The Cannabis Coaching Institute is currently enrolling for the certified cannabis educator program, a 12 week program that gives you everything you need to start helping others understand this powerful plant. 

The program includes an eight week cannabis educator program that is focused on science and taught to you by our very own lead cannabis science educator, Andrea Maharg 

Not only will you learn everything that you need to learn in order to start helping others with cannabis, you’ll also get our comprehensive business training so you can turn it into a side hustle or a full blown career move. 

In as little as 12 weeks, you’ll be able to step into the world as a confident cannabis educator, delivering workshops, hosting retreats, putting on podcasts, writing blog posts, or books and more. 

If you’re interested and want to know more about starting this type of business, take our free class today. Three steps to launching a cannabis wellness business. It is super fun and you can comment it’s interactive and you also get a free gift at the end. Check out the link below or visit www.cannabiscoachinginstitute.com/3steps

We’ll see you inside.

Corinne Tobias: I’m so excited about this conversation today because we’re sitting down with Shanel Lindsay, the founder of Ardent Cannabis and the inventor of my favorite cannabis kitchen device. I’ve been cooking with cannabis for over 10 years publicly and sharing recipes on the internet.

And when you guys came on the scene, it completely changed the game. And since people have been using the Ardent, I constantly get emails and messages from people saying this changed my life. This allowed me to make so many things. So I’m really excited to talk about how the FX and how the Mini and how these Ardent devices came to be. But I also am so excited to learn more about you and your story and how you came to be in this industry. 

So Shanel, can you just take a minute and introduce yourself and let us know a little bit more about how you got here? 

Shanel Lindsay: Awesome. Thanks so much, Corinne. I appreciate the intro. And I know, man, it’s been many, many years that we’ve been collaborating and working together now. So it’s so, it’s always amazing to come on and talk.

And like we were saying before we got started, there’s so many different like facets to to Ardent what I’ve been doing. And now, you know, being in this for over a decade, right? Bringing cannabis science to people. And for me, my passion is bringing and inventing technology that helps cannabis consumers, whether they are They’ve been in this for 20 plus years, you know, like we have making this stuff or they’re brand new to the scene and need to have a reliable way to understand this amazing plant, access its properties, think about and make it really simple for them to, to use any therapy.

And so my background is I’m an attorney. And I’ve been an attorney for over 15 years and I’ve also been a cannabis activists advocate and cannabis user for over 25 years now. And so my journey with cannabis, you know, as a medicine and as a therapy started after my son was born. He is in college now.

He’s 22 years old. And back then I would call it kind of the dark ages of cannabis science, meaning that. Um, there really wasn’t a lot of information or lab testing around some of the most important processes in making cannabis products. And, uh, for me, I was just, you know, a young lawyer, young mom trying to, um, um, treat a really serious ovarian cyst that I got.

It was causing me a lot of pain and inflammation and through that process ended up really honing in on the cannabis science, making these different products and then essentially, um, going and doing a lot of testing around my medicine 10 years later in order to, um, find out all of these different nuances around this process that was making it really hard for people, right?

And then I was able to streamline that process and then amazing little purple device that now over the last eight years has been helping people all over the world. Um, again, whether they are caregivers and professionals that have been doing this and making products for many, many years and making that process really easy and affordable for them, or whether it’s new people and guiding them through this process.

And along the way, as you know, in these last eight years, a lot has changed in the world of cannabis and we’ve been really on the forefront of it. I’ve been um, so blessed and grateful to have been really a I guess poster child, you know, for the cannabis industry when it comes to advocacy, um, as well, because in addition to inventing and making this technology, um, being an attorney, I was also able to be on the front lines of legalization, um, in Massachusetts first, um, to be one of the lawyers who helped write the law to legalize in Massachusetts.

 And we were able to fight for that. And I was, uh, you know, on TV and one of the spokespeople for the campaign talking about how this is important from a medical standpoint, but also, you know, from a standpoint, you know, when I was a young lawyer, I was actually arrested for having my cannabis and that was my medicine that I was using, you know, to treat myself.

And so that trauma turned into a great story. Story of one of the reasons why we needed to legalize. And now, over these last eight years, as I’ve been growing Ardent internationally, I’ve also been doing a lot of international cannabis policy work, um, trying to push forward, you know, the freedoms that we’re starting to see here in the U.

S., um, starting to talk about that in other countries and continue to free the plant here in the U. S. as well, too, because as you know, there are a lot of people that are still living under prohibition, still fearful that they’re getting arrested. And as women, right? I’m fearful that their children are getting taken away and all of these.

So really holistically, my whole life is about cannabis and this plant and, uh, making sure that people have easy access to it. And once they have the freedom to use it, or even if they are using it under prohibition, that they’re able to do that discreetly. And they’re able to do that, you know, with comfort and confidence at the end of the day.

Corinne Tobias: Just to everyone who’s listening, um, just watch out because you start using cannabis as medicine and then you’re a global advocate for legalization. It’s a slippery slope. Your whole life can become cannabis in a way that you’d never expected.

Thank you so much for sharing that. 

Shanel Lindsay: One of the things I love about the cannabis industry is the ability of the individual voice to have so much power, and I think that because it’s a new industry because it’s something that people don’t know about and there’s a lot of stigma around it, people that have a passion for it and have their own experience and voice around it tend to be able to really create an amazing community and lifestyle, you know, business for themselves, right? Look at us what we’ve been able to do just by being true to ourselves being curious about the plant, curious about sharing that knowledge with other people. And so it’s a really cool space to be in right? It’s like it’s a movement. It’s an industry. It’s this powerful tool that we can use to like bring additional health and wellness and happiness. I think people kind of underestimate that piece of it as well as like how important joy is in life and that like cannabis brings joy. And you’re not just talking about THC, right?

We’re talking about it. CBG and CBD and how that can help and elevate mood and all of these different things. So it’s a really very cool space to be in, especially for people that have a passion and a creativity and kind of like to think outside of the box a little bit. 

Andrea Meharg: Thank you for that. I actually came to your device because I was experiencing a huge dearth of joy in my life.

I was experiencing a deep depression. I came across Corinne’s Wake and Bake blog. I heard about the Ardent from there. And for me, my impetus to buy it was that it was going to save me so much money. At the time we were just about to legalize cannabis here in Canada. And so it cost a lot of money.

I used to tell people like “It costs us 150 for an ounce up here.” And then when I started teaching at CCI, the students were like, “Oh, you can get weed that cheap?”

So I thought it was like so expensive, but the reason I bought the little purple device was because it was going to save me about 30 percent on every infusion I made.

I knew I would make my money back from it immediately. And when I started sharing about it, “Hey, did you know you could get like an almost perfect decarb?” people would constantly come back at me and say, “Oh, I just like throw my butter and my weed together in my brownies and they are fire. They’re amazing.”

And I was like, “But you’re missing so much.” What’s the pushback been for you? The person who invented the almost perfect decarb. 

Shanel Lindsay: So it’s so funny that you say that, um, because I remember when I first came on the scene with this decarb machine. Okay. And I’m 42. Now, people tend to think I’m much younger than that.

So now roll it back 8 plus years. I’m coming on the scene. I’m like, “Hey, guys, you’ve all been doing it wrong.” Right? And. People are looking like, uh, okay. And I’m just like, and like you said, the answer is like, well, I’ve always made it this way and it always worked. And I’m like, cool. If I told you, you always paid a hundred dollars for something, but you could pay 10 dollars for it, would you keep paying a hundred if you could get the same thing? Right. So the biggest backlash was like, is this even needed? Right? And I think that what ends up happening is um, you mentioned this on like the 150. I was just in London, right? And out there the weed, it’s amazing.

It’s the same weed from California. It’s just in London. And instead of 100 an ounce, it’s 700 bucks an ounce. Okay, not kidding you. Okay, for some like Skittles out there. Okay, 700 an ounce. A lot of times people that have access to cannabis they get into this mode of feeling like, um, well, I have enough. I have plenty. 

And they don’t realize that there are folks out there that, you know, the difference between them getting 30 or 40 or 50 percent more is a huge amount, right? There are people that are growing at home and they have a ton of weed and they never think about it. Yeah. You know, that may be a different story for them, but your average person is spending quite a bit on cannabis, even in a legal market, right and would love to be able to know that they’re doing it right. And they’re getting the most out of it. So I think in the beginning, it was really number one, a question of does this thing even work right? And then again, the product speaks for itself. I think when you start to use it and you realize, oh, wow, I can get the same results that I was getting, um, and I can save a lot that’s for people that actually have like experience with infusion as well, because you have other folks that if they try it out, they’re actually going to burn off all their cannabinoids underneath, right? Like they don’t have the experience to actually run through it the right way. And that’s something that we saw in the laboratory when I was, um, first, um, testing things out was that a really awesome guy, Jack came in, he had made butter on the stove top butter for his wife who had epilepsy.

And we tested the medicine and there was no THC in it, like nothing. And he went through the process. But again, not being familiar with it. Um, there’s kind of like a delta between doing it okay and then like doing it in a way where you’re actually really messing up that process. And so I think once people started to see the testing results, like for for for folks that were very experienced in it, once they saw the testing results and saw that, hey, wow, even though I’m an expert, there is room for improvement because it’s not me. It’s the tools that I’m using. Right? So I think a lot of times people don’t want to think like, Oh, I’m not doing it wrong. I’ve been doing this for 20 years. And we’re like, cool.

 You’re doing it the best you possibly can. But if you don’t have a precision tool how are you going to be able to do that? It’s kind of like, um, being a barber, right? And having like mom’s home cut, like, cool. Mom cuts your hair at home. It’s going to be a haircut, right?

Like, but is it going to be the best haircut it could be? Is it going to be really like that professional level of product where you know, where you can actually dial in on what that dose is? Um, or is it going to be a little bit, you know, homegrown? And then again, some moms, you wouldn’t even let near your head with some clippers.

And so again, similarly, some people just, they’re never going to be able to, to get a good result there. So I think that that was, um, you know, really some of the interesting pushback in the beginning. And then from that point, we really haven’t gotten a lot of pushback other than, like you mentioned, it is a, it is a lab grade device.

So it costs a couple hundred dollars and people are like, Oh, do I really need that? But once you kind of show them number one, that cost savings number two, that really flexibility and ability to make anything that you want and how little you need to use in order to make these things. I think that often, and Corinne and I’ve talked about this before, we get kind of conditioned to think like, Oh, I need seven grams to do this, right? But if you really knew that you could do that with three grams or four grams, wow, what other things could you be making with that extra stuff? So I think it’s about, you know, conservation and being able to stretch your stash. And especially with the kind of economy that we’re in, people are starting to think again about how they can, you know, stretch their material and, you know, get more for less.

Corinne Tobias: Yeah. Thank you so much for that. Shanel. I’ll say that when I first heard of what you did, and when I first saw the Decarb Myth Report, I was like, f*** yes. Finally, someone did a test because when I came onto the scene and I started making recipes, it was like, You know, you’re going on to forums. You’re it’s still that way to a certain degree, you’re going on forums, you’re just doing what other people are doing.

And you were the first person to say, if you do it in oven, this is how much you get, if you do it in this, this is how much you get. And it was really beautiful to see those things. I was so excited. 

But I want to take a step back because we kind of blew past. What these devices actually do, we were talking like a bunch of nerds, you know, we love talking about dearb, infusion and like almost perfect decarb but what does that mean?

And what does it do? And how does a machine like this save you 30 to 50 percent on your $700 ounce? Yes. 

Shanel Lindsay: So the name of the game is decarboxylation, and we call it decarb for short. Really, it’s understanding that there’s a lot that you can’t see with your eyes when it comes to T And the most important thing is that the CBD, CBG, all of these active molecules that you’re looking for, and primarily, these are the things that if you’re looking at clinical studies or trials or things like that, they’re usually using the active form of like or CBD in these. And what what people don’t realize is that in the raw plant in the plant or in your kief or your concentrate when you first get it that, um, those cannabinoids are actually stuck under an acid layer. And so they have this extra molecule kind of hooked on the top of them, this acid molecule. What that does is it means when your endocannabinoids system.

When those cannabinoids are trying to connect with that endocannabinoid system, they’re having a harder time connecting into that key and lock system. That’s why when people are using traditionally, there’s always a heating element included, like when people are smoking or when they’re putting it in brownies in the oven, there’s always some warming or heating element and and in that warming and in that heating, that’s where the molecule is removed. But it’s not as simple as that because it is a very um, sensitive chemical and molecule and compound underneath. When that heat is coming on and removing it, it can very easily destroy the underlying cannabinoid that you’re looking for or fail to properly take off the acid and the acid is still there.

And so that was the challenge. Um, and I actually, when I went and first started developing Ardent, first, I was actually going to just be teaching, you know, people how to make edibles, topicals and these kinds of things. But just like you, Corinne, there was not a lot of information out on, um, the internet about this kind of thing. And there was one testing result that everybody kept pushing towards, and it said that you could never get more than 70% activation before you started to destroy. And it was like everybody pointed to this thing as the Holy Grail. You would think it was the only test that had ever been done.

And I do want to give out a shout out to Bad Kat’s Canna Pharm because she is a woman who was at the forefront of pushing decarboxylation conversation and information. Um, and I found her to be a reliable source of that. But again, when it came down to testing the actual plant after it came out of the oven, the toaster oven, that kind of thing.

That was the information that I really wanted. With it being a sensitive process, the difference between getting 70 percent or 100%, that’s a 30 percent waste. And so just going into a process thinking, Hey, I’m going to waste 30 percent of it. That didn’t really sit right for me.

Especially again, being expensive. When I was younger, um, when I was a young lawyer, I got arrested for having my, for having cannabis. And at that moment, after that happened, my son was young at the time. I was actually growing plants up in my, in my, um, spare bedroom and I was very afraid of, um, them coming and raiding my house.

And so I had to cut down all of my plants. And when I cut down those plants, I really cut off my own supply of good, high quality medicine. And I had to go back from buying from my weed guy, not knowing what the hell it was, it being expensive and really needing to. So I went through that thing that we just talked about of having a ton and not really being worried about it and then being put into a situation where now I actually, I need my medicine and how am I going to get what I actually need here, um, and do it the right way.

 And so decarboxylation, you know, that process of, of removing this acid molecule, it really comes down to incredibly tight time and temperature. And when I say incredibly tight, I mean the difference between a couple of minutes and a couple of degrees making that difference. And that’s what we were able to show in the laboratory.

So I remember taking my medicine to the laboratory and I was the fourth client of this laboratory that opened up in Massachusetts. Massachusetts because medical marijuana had just come to Massachusetts. We didn’t have dispensaries for years, but this laboratory opened up and I went and I brought my little, you know, samples of weed in there and was, was floored to see that I was only getting about 65% activation. And then I went back to the kitchen and I did it, man, I decarb every which way I could . I took everything that they said on the internet about how you could get a good d card and I tried every single way. Toaster oven, crock pot, regular oven, different temperatures, different cycles, could never break above the 70 percent and there was a certain point where I was like is it me? Is it this?

And, and what I found was there was these weird fluctuations that would happen. Sometimes it was higher, sometimes it was lower. And I thought, you know what? It seems like I’m not able to dial in on this temperature, even though the oven is saying it’s this temperature, it’s really not. So another challenge is having oxygen present because that will degrade the THC, right? And that’s what we found as well.

So what we started to do in the lab was actually forget about the kitchen appliances. Let’s just see in the laboratory, in those conditions, in these very tight autoclave conditions where we’re controlling the temperature down to the degree and half a degree, and we’re controlling the oxygen and we’re controlling the time really, really tight and what we were able to find is we were able to get 97, 98, 99 percent activation. And I’m like, okay, this is really awesome. And then that’s when the light bulb went off. Wait a minute. If I can make a device that can replicate these really tight lab conditions and that could be done at home, then I think we really have a winner here, you know, and purely on my own selfish reasons, I’m like, I need to be able to do this at home.

And so I went and I started, um, thinking about how do I take this idea and actually make it into a product, right? And I remember I went to Dollar Tree and I got a little purple koozie and I was like, this is really, you know, when you think about a heating element going all the way around, you know, not just being on the bottom. Like when you think about your oven or your toaster oven. The heating elements. They’re up on the bottom on the crockpot. They’re only down at the bottom. And really what you need is something that is totally encapsulating everything that’s in there. And so that’s why, you know, with FX and the Mini and the Nova, you have a heating element that wraps all the way around the entire cavity.

It’s not at the bottom or the top. It’s wrapped entirely around. So you really have this entire shaft of heat. And then there are two sensors, one sensors on the heating element itself. And then one sensor is all the way in the middle, like where there is no heat. And there’s an algorithm that is controlling the heating cycles to make sure that the outside doesn’t get too hot, right?

 And that doesn’t exist in your oven, right? So your oven is just firing off until it gets as hot as it can in the middle. And that can be very damaging to the cannabinoids, right? And so what we’re doing is creating this incredibly precise, incredibly gentle zone of heating that’s getting everything heated up, everything all the, even everything all the way in the middle to this really nice, um, precise temperature to remove that acid molecule and expose that THC or CBD or CBG underneath. And all of the cannabinoids have that process that acidic compound into the active compound into sometimes a degraded form of that compound. And so, um, whether people are looking for the acid form, right, which they can get in the raw plant, and then they can mix it with the activated form, really, it’s about providing people the customization and the choice there. And that’s what I’m most excited about, because as much as I love dispensaries, they often, they cater often only to the high THC crowd. Or it’s very difficult to get that really customized blend of cannabinoids that we’re learning more and more about, you know, new and amazing cannabinoids every single day.

Corinne Tobias: Holy shit. 

Holy shit. That’s incredible. Oh my God. Andrea, are you exploding as much as I am? Because I didn’t know. I had no idea the origin story of the Ardent is so fascinating because like, I think it mirrors a lot of our, you know, everyone who’s ever tried to make edibles and just like trying to figure it out.

But then you’re like. I’m going to take this in a lab. I can’t handle not knowing. And I just love that about you is that you’re like, I need to figure this out. I need to crack this because that 70 percent was out there. It was like, this is the max you’re going to get. And because you didn’t know, dosage math was impossible.

Like you’re like, did I get 50 or 70? Okay. Well, I can guess maybe it’s going to be between five and 10 milligrams a dose here. And so it was just so difficult. And then when the Ardent came out, it made that math so much easier. So I want to say thank you for going through this process of solving this, not just to get complete decarb, but to also like know what’s in our medicine on every level, right?

I can, I can control the ingredients. I can control the cannabinoids. I know how much it is. I can confidently say, you know, within a margin of error that this is going to be this, and I can expect that to be consistent. That’s an incredible problem to solve in this industry where we don’t want to be reliant on dispensaries because edibles are full of shit and garbage and like, yeah, you have limited cannabinoids, but also you have these isolated compounds and stuff.

You get to make full spectrum, super heady medicine, whatever works for you at home and save money doing it. Like, thank you. Fucking kudos. 

Shanel Lindsay: Thanks for that. And it’s funny that you mentioned dosing because when we started pushing for legalization in Massachusetts, especially, um, and when art first came out, that was one of my biggest missions was, um, was normalizing cannabis and the fact that you could quantify what was in it because one of the biggest backlashes to legalization and everything is you don’t know what’s in it.

You never know the dose You don’t know what you’re taking on it. And that was something I remember the first article I ever wrote from Ardent was called Accuracy and Dosing, Can it Help Cannabis Go Mainstream? And the whole premise of it was that this idea that you cannot quantify what’s in the natural plant is not true.

Um, that you actually can know what that dose is. And that as we know the dosing of the natural plant, that it will make it much easier for people to think about cannabis as a replacement for over the counter and other things like that, because it takes away the fear around what am I putting into my body?

Like you mentioned, obviously, lab testing is great when people are getting it from the dispensary, it’s often lab tested, which does help with the dosing. But generally, um, we can know that most cannabis falls between, you know, somewhere between, you know, 10 and 25 percent THC, um, if it’s a THC strain, and then you can just add a zero to that and whatever the percentage is, the amount of THC, a, you know, per gram, and that there’s actually an easy way of course, we’ll have a dosing calculator in our app and whatnot, but generally that it’s really not that hard to think about what the dose is. And then when you have reliable tools for activating it, you absolutely can dial in. And that’s one of the things that I’ve loved about Ardent because, man, sometimes people will go, they’ll make product and they will test it and they will send it to us and it is scary how accurate it is. Like if they went to make 10 milligram gummies or something they will send me something and it will say like 10 milligrams on the test and I’ll be like wow you know. It really is it’s really cool and people can really get that reliability there and I think that that’s that’s so important for individual people.

But it’s very important when people are sharing and educating about cannabis, right? You don’t want to dose anybody. You don’t want people to, um, you know, you want people to be able to test whether or not it works for them based on an accurate baseline of what they’re trying. And I think that that can be a challenge in cannabis, especially when people aren’t using reliable tools. And it works both ways, right, if you’re giving somebody too high of a dose, then all of a sudden, you know, they’re not going to know how to properly medicate themselves going forward. If you don’t give them enough of a dose, then all of a sudden they think cannabis doesn’t work for them when it really, it wasn’t that it was really the product that you gave them wasn’t up to muster.

And so being able to at least, you know, um, for educators, for caregivers to get rid of that doubt and understand that they can focus on teaching about the different modalities and ways, you know, to administer and all of those things. And they don’t have to worry, Hey, is the person that I’m educating, even gonna, you know, get, get what they’re expecting out of that, um, that was really, you know, a cool piece of it as well.

Corinne Tobias: That’s awesome. Yeah. A dose is not a cookie, right? Like, you know, that was like such a hard barrier to break until we had this more reliable way of knowing exactly what was in our stuff. Like, Oh, try half a cookie. That’s not a fucking dose. Like there’s dosage math. Now that we have your tool, it really empowers the consumer to make their own medicine, to know what’s in it and to share it with others, which Andrea and I’ve seen, I know you’ve seen like when people get their hands on this medicine, and it helps them , they want to share and they don’t want to give people too much or too little. That’s like the biggest fear for a lot of people who start sharing. And so again, thank you for solving that problem. Now I will say that, you know, a lot of this conversation has been centered around lab testing.

It’s again, one of my favorite things that you guys do. And it’s one of the reasons that I gravitated towards Ardent in the first place. You are the only gadget that I know of that actually lab tests that we actually know your stuff is working.

So like, I know what I’m getting with you. And also I know that you are such a responsive member in the community that we’ve had conversations, and then sometimes a few months later, you’re like, Oh yeah, there’s a lab test now for that. I tested that thing. 

Can you tell us about a time when a lab test has come back and you’re like, no, what? Like it’s completely floored you. It’s, it’s thrown you for a loop. Like, is there been a piece of testing that you’re like, this is not what I expected? 

Shanel Lindsay: Yeah, definitely. So I think that the testing around, um, infusing with non decarbed flower, um, I think that that was very interesting because that was a big hump.

Like people often conflate the idea of decarboxylation and then infusion because there wasn’t like testing around it. And so you often have people who are like, I’m just gonna throw my bud inside my oil and it’s going to decarb when I heat it up to infuse. It is. And I’m, and we were like, no, it’s definitely not, you know, like you’re not going to get the same results, you know, there, but not we weren’t really, really sure about that. Right. And so that was some early testing that we did. Um, and I was really surprised to see that even with my infusion, that if you don’t decarb before, afterwards you’re only going to end up with about like 15 percent decarb . That wasn’t as surprising to me, but what was surprising to me is even after like a 24 hour decarb, you really weren’t getting more than like 40 percent activation, but you’re really starting to degrade the THC that’s in there as well. And so it was an interesting mix and the results are up on our website as still for that decarb.

This goes back to if people do want acidic cannabinoids, like there’s a way to do that, which is you can infuse without decarbing, and you will get something that is about 80 percent acidic cannabinoids, and you’ll have a little bit of active THC in there.

Um, but even when we pushed that many, many, many hours and re in there, what what we were trying to do was replicate when people do like a 24 hour infusion like in a, in a crockpot, um, is that we were kind of expecting, you know, maybe after the 24 hours we would be at like 80% decarb. Um, but we really weren’t considering that there is some degradation that comes even after, even on a low temperature, when you have it heating up for that amount of time.

So that one was, that one was interesting in its nuance to me. 

And then the other one that I thought was just surprising, um, was about vegetable glycerin. Um, because vegetable glycerin, it’s water soluble, um, and it’s sweet.

So people tend to like to infuse with it because again, it’s not an oil, it’s water soluble. Um, and a lot of people swear by it. But when we went to go and do the testing on vegetable glycerin, what we found was that it really didn’t infuse well um, compared to something like propylene glycol that will infuse like 80%, right?

And propylene glycol is alcohol based. That wasn’t too surprising that it didn’t take up. Um, and vegetable glycerin, you know, when you look at its chemical composition, it is almost all sugar and starch. It doesn’t have any oil in it. So, you would expect that it wouldn’t be good. The testing results show that it isn’t good.

And yet people love it for some reason. And so it could be one of those things where because, you know, it is 10 percent uptake that there is something that goes into it. And people like the medium so much that they’re able to get over the fact that it’s not great. From what people anecdotally, um, suggest about it, it is, it is much stronger than it seems in test results.

So that’s a mystery. And maybe we’ll have to dig in with some additional testing results on there. Um, but it’s always good, even again, if people choose to infuse in a medium that isn’t, you know, the highest level of uptake like an oil or other things like that, they may have different reasons for wanting to do that.

But we feel like at least people should be informed of, okay, maybe I need to little use a little bit more here in order to make up for the fact that it’s not going to be, you know, the best infusion medium. 

Corinne Tobias: Yeah, you ruined my day with that because I remember doing endless amounts of research to find a vegetable glycerin that was like not made out of bullshit.

And I went down the whole rabbit hole because people were asking for that recipe. And I was like, okay, I’ll make it. And I was in that fortunate, like living on a cannabis farm, like there’s more cannabis than I know what to do with. And I made it and I’m like, I like it. It’s nice. This is cool. And then you’re like 10%.

And I was like, Oh, okay. Well, I guess we’ll do something else. 

Shanel Lindsay: We’re going to have to revisit it, but again, like, um, you know, what works for people, um, and what gets them going, you know, it’s science, science leads us, but it doesn’t have all the answers. Right. Cause we are humans. And, and again, I think that that’s the beauty of it, of like, we’re here to kind of uncover the science and then let people do what they want with it.

And to just give people obviously the general building blocks of how do we think about and how can we approach, you know, cannabis differently. And, and I think that that’s something folks are really excited about, especially as like CBD and CBG coming on the scene and some of these non psychoactive cannabinoids that people can use for, you know, mood elevation and other, you know, really interesting, um, customized mixes that people can integrate into their day.

I have our FX here and earlier I was, um, well, earlier this week, I decarbed this kief. So this is some CBGA kief that I decarbed and again, non psychoactive. So I can really feel free to use this whenever I feel like it. So I just made a couple of little, um, breakfast cakes, uh, little snacks, um, and these have CBG in them 

And that’s what I really love about the flexibility of the device. It really is, um, this very focused, specific cannabis device, but at the same time is also, um, a utilitarian device for you to bake, make your stuff, um, really an all in one device so that people can either make things on the go or feel like they don’t have to necessarily make their kitchen a cannabis kitchen, right?

They can do it in their office or in their bedroom or in their hotel room or whatever the case is. And I use the FX all the time to heat up my leftovers as well too when I’m traveling. Um, That’s my little like pro tip for the travelers. It’s like, you know, you ever go on vacation or you’re at a conference, I’m at these conferences all the time and I have this extra food and then I’m hungry in the middle of the night, but I don’t want to eat it cold.

So I’ll stick it in the FX and I’ll heat it up. But these are little snack cakes that I made and you can see just, um, the batter in there. And I just mixed in some of the keef and you’ll never taste it. Um, but it will be in there as you know, a natural pick me up as I’m having this snack and, um, and that’s really, you know, my goal is to just make it so that people really don’t have to change their lifestyle in order to incorporate cannabis, right? And think about these ways where it can just be a part of this natural health and wellness routine that you’re just doing and being able to test out these different cannabinoids, different methods of using it, um, whether that is edibles or topicals or suppositories or whatever, um, you know, somebody might be interested in.

Andrea Meharg: That’s one of my favorite parts is that you do the science and then you share it with us so that we all feel so much more informed by it. So yeah, we just love you so much over here. We love your devices, but I want to move away from the devices a little bit. 

This podcast focuses on the science and the stories of of cannabis. I’m so curious about your story, your journey as a black woman in the cannabis industry. You’ve shared a little bit, what your journey has been like. Is there any kind of lessons that you could share with our audience? Many of whom are hoping to be in this industry and go out there and do great things like you.

Shanel Lindsay: Yeah, amazing. And it’s so it’s really interesting being a black person in cannabis because obviously, um, you know, the long, um, torrid history in this country around cannabis prohibition has really been race based, right? And it’s interesting because, um, with my history of being arrested in cannabis and all these other things, it’s been in many ways kind of like a classic tale of something happening and then you being able to use that experience to shine a light on the fact that, um, Hey, this is a movement.

And as we’re moving this movement into an industry, we need to kind of be aware of the fact that all of this damage has been done especially to particular communities. And, um, and as we are creating this new industry around it, we should be doing a lot of different things. Number one, making sure that people have access to it from the medical side.

Number two, making sure the communities that have been, you know, decimated and people who have lost opportunities around this or you know, have the ability to participate in this new industry because, as we know, when money’s involved, all the wrong characters come to the forefront to have their hand in it.

Right? And so I think that cannabis has been a really interesting and different kind of movement because. Um, because of that fact and that that there are so many people black and white and working to change that and make sure that there is a different narrative when it comes down to, um, cannabis, right?

And that’s a narrative around, um, racial equality. That’s a narrative around small businesses being active because another thing that often happens in the industry is that big companies come and they monopolize and there is really no space for a small business person, right? And so I see these kind of issues as inextricably linked in the cannabis community and that when we come together as a community around all of these issues that we’ve actually had a lot of success making sure that those things don’t happen.

So for example, in Massachusetts, um, when we were fighting, one of the things that we fought for was like prioritize licensing for social equity folks. And those are people that can show either that they’ve been arrested or that they’re, you know, children or their parents. Like basically there’s like a rubric to determine like who fits into that.

And also to make sure that there were limits on who can own dispensaries. Like as far as how many people can own to stop big companies from coming in and owning all of them. And prioritizing small businesses and craft cultivators and micro businesses. And so that has been really interesting because I feel like that kind of sums up me.

I’m all of those things, right? Like I’m a black person. I’m a small business. I have been arrested. all those different things. Um, but I think we have a unique opportunity to have a voice because the cannabis industry is small businesses and we’re not making a new industry, right?

We’re laying an industry over an industry that’s existed for decades and decades. And that’s an interesting thing as well too, because it’s like there is a cannabis culture and a marketplace that exists in every part of this country, right? It’s thriving. It may be legal. It might not be legal, but those are some of the very interesting challenges that I’m up to tackle to be a spokesperson for and I feel like I’m out here between Ardent and then also, um, um, the entrepreneurship director of a group called the Parabola Center. And we are a think tank of a policy activists that come together for to make sure both locally, nationally and internationally that we have policy that is for people, not for corporations.

Right. And, and for small businesses. Right. And we have a cohort of small businesses from around the country. And we come together and use our collective voice in order to push for policy for people and for small business. And I think that that’s something very, very unique about the cannabis industry that we actually, it’s not just business for us.

It is our lifestyle. And so we are in very much protecting this lifestyle. We’re protecting this plant as well, because when we know when people come in and they don’t care, they only care about profits. They don’t care about the product either, and they don’t care about the type of product, and they don’t care about exploring the healing nature of it.

They don’t care about anything but profits. And so I think that, um, that makes it very unique. And again, being a Black person in it may, has that additional nuance on it, but I, I wouldn’t be any other place. And I think that all of my experiences have in a very eerie way like, Lined up to have me be exactly here.

And so I’m I’m super grateful for it. I can’t wait to see what happens. And again, not only being a champion of small business, equity in the space, but also natural plant and the natural cannabinoids. And we were talking about this earlier, there’s like a big push for like Delta eight and synthetics. And we are so against that.

And we are so about like the natural plant and what’s happening there and protecting against big pharma. It’s like, when you look at us as a cannabis community, we’re like, when you talk about like David and Goliath, we have all these different Goliaths like the tobacco industry, the pharmaceutical industry, the suits, all of you know the synthetics like they’re all sitting up here and we’re here, but what we have that they don’t have is this amazing plant like and that it speaks for itself. And I always said that about legalization is like listen, if this plant there is so much stigma around it, so much illegality against it, that if it wasn’t so incredibly powerful, we wouldn’t be here right now. And, and again, it’s the medical patients that do that because once it starts working for somebody, they are not going back on that lifestyle, you know? They will sing it from the mountaintops because it is their life, it is their health.

And so really, the plant speaks for itself. We are the conduits for it, but thankfully we have something that’s so amazing that we’re championing, um, and that does, that does make it a little bit easier. 

Corinne Tobias: Shanel, I have to say, and this is the only time I will ever say this and have ever said this, but I’m so glad that you got busted for weed.

I’m really so happy that it happened. Otherwise we wouldn’t be here. Thank you so much. I know this is an ongoing conversation. I can’t tell you how I am with the breadth and the width of the work that you’re doing and have done already in this industry. Thank you so much for everything that you’ve put into this. Inventing a device, but also your global policy work and your advocacy work here in the United States to protect small businesses.

And just for being an incredible human being in general, and for giving so many fucks about all of the people who rely on this plan and who need more information about it, to use it effectively. Um, I can’t thank you enough for being here today. Thank you. 

Shanel Lindsay: Thank you. I appreciate that. And I think it goes to show, you know, all the different challenges that we experienced, right?

Like we all go through these different things. And especially, you know, that arrest, um, you know, when I go through hard times now or challenges or things come up, I think back to that time. And I think, you know, that seemed that was the worst day, you know, went home, you cried, you, you know, like, yeah. You pushed it down really far, you know, um, but it ended up being the kernel of something that ended up being great before.

So people can take anything from it. I personally, when things are going bad, I’m like, Shanel, remember, you know, uh, you know, sometimes, um, lemons really do turn into, you know, lemonade and, and they actually are the impetus for you to make a change or see something differently. It definitely was a great part of that origin story and I’m so grateful to have friends and partners in the fight, you know, on this and on the education piece and understanding and empowering women, especially to make their own path in this industry.

I think it’s very, very rare that we have that opportunity um, to come in to pave the way and to really set the standards, right? And to be the voice. And that’s something I’m really proud of and hope that Ardent can continue. We got some amazing new things coming out over the next couple of months.

And, um, you know, I’d love to come back and have some more conversations and just generally, um, you know, keep this movement going because I’ve seen the strength in what we’ve been able to do and really excited about, you know, continuing on that path. 

Corinne Tobias: I hope we just continue to do it until we’re like old ladies and we can just be like, Remember when we didn’t know what CBG was?

Remember when? Remember when Shanel got busted and then changed the world? 

I do have, I do have one extra question. I would love to know what is the one thing that you wish people knew about cannabis so you never had to explain it again. 

Shanel Lindsay: So there’s more to cannabis than edible. Like literally you can replace almost every over the counter with it. So the utility of cannabis, I wish that more people just had an innate understanding of the fact that it can replace acne medication. It can replace like topical medication.

I have people that are emailing me saying that they make, um, body wash. And that it helps with all like their psoriasis and everything. What’s funny is that these guys, they’re making these really interesting mixes. They’re making these body washes. They’re making this other stuff that’s helping with their dandruff and then sometimes when I say the word cannabis suppositories people go, 

And they’re like, and they’ve like never considered this before. So I think it’s funny because the people’s world around cannabis is sometimes it’s so narrow, it’s either smoking or like a gummy and they, and it’s really hard sometimes to break people out of that idea of there are so many different things that you can do and make with it. And so to me, that is like what I’m excited about for Ardent is that like when people save money, right, with that extra three or four grams that they didn’t use to make their edibles, they can then try to make a facial toner or they can make, you know, some of these other things. So that’s my thing of like cannabis beauty. I think it’s so underrated. 

That’s what I’m talking about. Just like the utilitarian nature of it. Like, you know, that’s a big deal having a clear, having clear skin, but it’s not something people would normally think of hey, let me use, you know, weed for. So I’m hoping to change that with like our beauty line with some of those different things and just letting people know that that kind of thing works because Think of how many different, you know, acne treatments you go into CVS there’s like an entire, you know, row and do they work and do they not work? Yes. No, who knows, but 

Corinne Tobias: And they’re synthetic and they’re bullshit anyway. 

Shanel Lindsay: And that’s what I’m talking about. Taking a little extra. That’s what I do. And there’s some, if you go into any bathroom, I travel with it too. I have a little travel one that I make.

But I have that and it just, you know, it’s a huge difference maker to me. And when I don’t have it, that’s when I notice it because I’ll start to break out a little bit. I’ll have like some adult acne, but I don’t, I don’t think about it because I have this regimen that I use to keep it at bay. And so just being able to kind of like, once people have it down with the edibles and what they’re doing, being able to like explore more and more about these, you know, these things.

So everybody will know it soon. Thanks to us. 

Corinne Tobias: I love it so much. Basically, you want people to do what I make fun of Andrea and I doing, which is like, you know, My Big Fat Greek wedding where there’s like the person who’s crazy Windex. I’m like, that’s us with CBD. Like my friends probably like, don’t even want to tell me they’re like, I have PCOS and I know what you’re going to say.

And I’m like, you do know what I’m going to say. It starts with an S and ends with uppository. Just try it. Like, see how it goes. I have so much, like I’ll make it for you. You know what I mean? Like you do get to that place where you’re like I know how to make that I can, share that it’s cost effective for me.

So even now that I’m in a place where I’m not swimming in cannabis. I still don’t feel constrained by the same limits that I would otherwise, because you know how to, like you said, treat it as a utilitarian thing. I know how to formulate things in a way that it’s still going to be affordable and it’s going to be useful.

So I’m happy to share. And I think. I love that. 

Thank you. Oh, shut the fuck up. 

That was so fire. You’re so awesome. 

Andrea Meharg: That was incredible. 

Corinne Tobias: Yes, that was fire. And you know, what else is fire winning a free Arden FX. That’s the big purple device. It does everything. It D carves it infuses. And this one is Bluetooth capable. So when the app comes out, you’ll be able to use the dosage calculator to do all of your math. It is amazing. 

So if you got to the end of this episode and you’re like, I need one of those. You can win one. So if you’re listening to this and it’s still November, 2023, click the link below and join the cannabis wellness giveaway. We’re doing this all November. 

We’re going to be doing a lot of fun stuff. We’re going to be sharing podcasts and you’ll get points for reading blog posts and listening to those podcasts. And. Checking out the FX and supporting cannabis education in the world. So please join us. All you have to do is click the link below. It’s a really simple process and it’s gamified, so it will be a lot of fun and there’ll be a lot of bonus entries for you to win throughout the month. 

And we will be drawing a winner at the end of November. Now, if you are past November, if you get here December and you miss the giveaway and it’s no longer happening, no worries. You can save $30 on an Arden FX or any of the Arden products by clicking the link below or going to www.wakeandbake.co/ardent-cannabis. And using the code, WAKEANDBAKE. 

I can’t wait to see what you create with this device. And I also can’t wait to hear what you learn as you go down this rabbit hole of creating your own medicine and your own cannabis products and sharing them with others. 

It is truly one of the most fun things that you can do inside of your kitchen is becoming a cannabis kitchen, witch. And I can’t wait to see what happens for you and how this journey unfolds. So email [email protected]. Let us know if you have questions, podcasts, ideas, or if you just want to share, Hey, this is what I learned. 

This is what I did. This is what happened after listening to this podcast. we love hearing from you and we are so excited to be doing this work. Now, get out and tell somebody today that cannabis is healthy and feel free to share. We’ll see you next time.

nv-author-image

Corinne Tobias

My name is Corinne Tobias and I’m the creator of this site that is all about cannabis and health (and having a good time combining those things!). Since 2013, I’ve helped millions of people on their cannabis journey and have been featured in publications like High Times, Merry Jane, Jezelbel, Westword, and Vice.

2 thoughts on “Ep 202 – How to Make Edibles Cheaper, Faster, and Stronger with Shanel Lindsay”

  1. This was an amazing podcast. I have the FX… and have seen articles on Shanel. I bought the smaller decarb tool, and then when the FX went on sell, I bought the FX.
    I have so many tools, I have to put myself on restriction 😜😎

    Corrine you’re one of my favorite go to for information. Thank you so very much !

  2. I would love to win an ardent FX that is blue-tooth enabled and I do not see a wellness cannabis giveaway button on the text version of this awesome podcast.

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