“People are starting to look for more of the typical flavours you would associate with summer.”
With plenty of “summer daze” left to enjoy, you may be looking for a new cannabis product to infuse your weekend plans.
Whether it’s a backyard barbecue, summer festival, trip to the cottage or an afternoon at the park, our knowledgeable budtenders from Shivaa’s Rose, SunFish Cannabis and Budtimez are here to share the season’s biggest trends, their top recommendations and essential safety tips for celebrating responsibly.
For more ideas on entertaining with cannabis, click here.
What should people consider when shopping for cannabis this summer?
If shopping for a specific event, like an outdoor festival, you may want to consider smokeless options such as edibles. Not only can they be more discreet, but those around you won’t be affected by second-hand smoke. Smokeless options like edibles are a way to mitigate the risk of smoke inhalation present with pre-rolls or joints.
Gummies are a good on-the-go option. And cannabis-infused savoury snacks are growing in popularity, ideal for summer activities like camping or hangouts at the park. You can find infused trail mix, beef jerky or chips — perfect additions to a summer picnic.
When picking a product, think about keeping it odour-proof, says J.T. Smith, budtender at SunFish Cannabis. “While I enjoy many kinds of cannabis products year-round, in the summer, things can smell extra pungent. Stay respectful of those who don’t enjoy the skunky stuff.” This even goes for the packaging. “Some packages are definitely more odour-proof than others!”
Do you have any tips for edibles in the summer months?
If edibles are more your style, make sure to keep them cold! “Gummies and chocolate can melt so easily in this extreme heat,” says Budtimez budtender Ali Lamarche. “There is nothing worse than opening up your brand-new gummies and seeing them all melted together.”
Do you have any tips for enjoying cannabis beverages this summer?
Beverages in seasonal flavours with low sugar and high carbonation are popular picks in the summer months, says Smith. With summery refreshments ranging from seltzers with 2.5 mg of THC to stronger brews with a max potency of 10 mg THC, there really is something for everyone.
For those worried about overdoing it, Shivaa’s Rose budtender Kyle Farrick recommends nano-emulsified beverages. “The quick onset of effects can help prevent people from overdoing it by accident,” he says. “Stay hydrated and choose lower-THC options to help keep your head clear while still having an enjoyable experience in the sun. It’s easy to get dehydrated, which doesn’t combine well with a super-heady high.”
Budtender, Shivaa’s Rose
“Convenience first! Summertime is when we spend as much time as possible outside, so pre-rolls and gummies are easy to grab on the way to an event”
What sort of cannabis products should Ontarians look out for this summer?
“Summer is a time for “tropical, fruity, sweet, beachy vibes,” says Lamarche . Classic, fruit-forward products across all categories are a favourite for many. You can find edibles, beverages and more in flavours like blood orange, mango, blueberry and peach.
Even traditional summer beverages like iced tea, sparkling water and lemonade are getting cannabis infusions this summer.
Infused joints are also of keen interest. “The classic Benny Blunto’s (from The Loud Plug) are always one of my go-to’s,” says Smith. “And they, along with other blunt producers now offer infused blunts, with different [extracts] such as hash, kief and distillate.”
Farrick says another great infused option on his summertime list is El Blunto’s Cullinana Diamond Infused Pre-Roll.
Many consumers come into the store seeking out a highly potent product because that’s what they believe denotes quality, but this isn't the only component of a good cannabis experience,” says Farrick. Lamarche agrees, pointing out that “terpenes can play a big part in guiding or impacting your experience.”
Learn more about the importance of terpenes here.
Beyond fresh flavours and infusions, Farrick says the hottest products are all about convenience. “Convenience first! Summertime is when we spend as much time as possible outside, so pre-rolls and gummies are easy to grab on the way to an event.”
For summertime socializing, multi-packs are key. “Instead of sharing one giant doobie,” says Smith, “try getting a smaller package of more joints of smaller sizes so everyone can safely enjoy their own.”
Pre-roll variety packs can be “a great way to try a few new products with your friends,” adds Lamarche. “Everyone likes different traits in their cannabis, so if you don’t enjoy one of the pre-rolls in the pack, someone else at the barbecue will!”
Speaking of barbecues, look for infused condiments like mayo, ketchup, even hot sauce, in stores this summer. “I can’t believe we didn’t have these sooner!” says Lamarche.
Can you share any tips for enjoying cannabis safely and responsibly this summer?
If you’re planning to enjoy some flower outside, Lamarche says, “make sure you know the laws around where you can and cannot consume cannabis. I would hate to see someone getting into trouble for sparking a joint in the wrong place and ruining their summer plans.”
If travelling across the province this summer, it’s also important to know how much cannabis you can legally buy and carry, and the rules around travelling with cannabis via different modes of transit. Once you arrive at your destination, you should also understand how to identify a legal cannabis store if you’ll be doing some shopping.
For everything you need to know about consuming cannabis legally and responsibly in Ontario this summer, check out our Summer Guide to Legal Cannabis. If you prefer smoking, it’s important to know that inhaling cannabis is not without its risks. There is substantial evidence showing that the smoke produced by combusted cannabis contains many of the same cancer-causing chemicals as tobacco smoke. Exposure to second-hand smoke is also harmful, but you can reduce the risk by consuming cannabis away from others. Different ways of inhaling have different levels of risk, so you may wish to use a dry-herb vaporizer or stick to edibles or beverages.
Lamarche also recommends bringing a pocket ashtray to avoid littering, and leaving glass bongs at home. “It would ruin the day if your bong broke!”
With so many tasty edibles on the market, says Farrick, “it’s really easy to overdo it. “Listen to your body and start with a low dose, waiting at least four hours before trying another dose.”
As always, stay hydrated with lots of water, and don’t consume and drive. Check out more harm reduction practices here for a safer summer.