[The cannabis industry] is going to be massive; a major game changer.
Medical cannabis has been transforming people’s lives for longer than we can count; the history of marijuana use goes as far back as the Ancient Egyptians, possibly even earlier. We know you love hearing about the journeys of successful cannabis industry players, so read on for a look into the story of Joshua de Best Haupt, author of Three A Light, to learn why he got started in the world of weed, hear about his products and find out how it’s transformed his life so far.
What is your name and title?
Joshua de Best Haupt. My title is Chief Cultivation Officer of Medicine Man Technologies, Superfarm and Treehouse. I’m also the author of Three A Light and owner of Tall T Productions.
How and why did you get into the cannabis industry?
It started as a young kid dealing with epilepsy, and that in itself has had a major impact on my drive to further this industry. Colorado was one of the first states to go medical, and when that happened, I remember my friend asking me, “Hey, have you tried to treat your epilepsy with marijuana? It has been very effective for others and I think you should look into it.” It was a ‘one thing led to the next’ progression, and it quickly became my passion. I’d definitely say the tipping point for getting me in the industry came from my own condition, Epilepsy. There are so many reasons as to why I’m passionate about this industry, but that is one that has been with me throughout this whole ride.
Can you give us a short overview of your presence in the industry?
Yes, it’s been very wonderful! We have encouraged progression in a handful of directions since we entered the industry. From both the cultivation and the consulting standpoint, our unique and different methods have placed us in direct competition with other industry leaders. When we take part in trade shows and other events, I get a great amount of joy from how people come and react to our booth. I do think our position in the industry now is very much as an industry leader. We are working very hard to push limits, and be constantly being dissatisfied with being satisfied, helps us to ensure our position at the top. In saying that, we are constantly trying to improve our methods thru research and development, consistently working to further the industry and make a very big impact for both the direction and social acceptance by the masses.
What do enjoy most about cannabis?
Hands down, the stress-free approach. I can be so stressed out, and I think a lot of users can relate to this, you’re stressed, and you can have a hit of cannabis and can take that stress and have it be like water on a duck’s back. Just roll of your shoulders. It’s the stress relief that cannabis provides, immediately falling in line with a stress-free lifestyle, which encourages more happiness.
What sets your nutrient line apart from others?
With our nutrient line, Success Nutrients, we put a huge emphasis on cannabis. A lot of nutrient lines out there will focus a lot on the macronutrients [Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium], and these nutrient lines have had this focus throughout all forms of agriculture. However, we focus heavily on our micronutrients, this sets us apart drastically. The best cannabis will always come from paying close attention to the details, and the details will come from the micronutrients we put in our line. However, another huge piece is, what we claim is in there, is actually in there. There’s no food coloring or overwhelming amount of preservatives to increase shelf life or watered-down components. It’s literally just geared for cannabis and is very unique for those reasons. The nutrient line, which goes hand-in-hand with our guide, Three A Light, is also incredibly easy to follow.
What strains do you grow and which is your all-time favorite?
I have grown hundreds of strains, but a few that come to mind are — OG Kush, Borderliner, Black Ice, Berkel, AK-47, Super Skunk, Juicy Fruit, Maui, Super Lemon Haze, NYC Diesel, THC Bomb, Giesel, Blue Dream, Blueberry, etc.
Juicy Fruit is my favorite, hands down. Juicy fruit is a great strain– only about 16-20% THC. I have a lot of stuff to do in my day, and it’s an upbeat strain, so you’re not going to get super stoned and want to just take a nap. It’s going to be a strain that will get you kind of stoned but it’s also going to give you energy, to encourage you to continue being productive with your day. My days are fairly overwhelming when it comes to business, so I need something that, if I do smoke, heaven forbid, I can’t have something that takes away from the work I’m getting done.
What is schwazzing?
Schwazzing is a technique that was developed by the Three A Light team and is very controversial throughout the industry. It is the physical act of removing every single fan leaf from the plant at certain times throughout the flowering cycle. The purpose of Schwazzing is to create optimum light penetration and refocus the plant’s energy to the where it matters the most. Beware when attempting this process without using Success Nutrients to help the plant repair back to its full potential. Success Nutrients was built with a huge focus on this process by creating formulas to provide the beneficial micronutrients that are removed with the fan leaves during this process.
What steps did you take to advance your knowledge and training to produce marijuana?
As a medical patient in the state of Colorado, my advancement started with providing my own medicine for myself, in a seemingly infinite amount of times. I had a similar approach as I do now, which is constantly being dissatisfied with being satisfied. So my goal was to always try to outperform my prior crop, always try to make sure that what I’m doing now is unique and different compared to what other people are doing. I really wanted to make sure there was something that set me apart from the rest of the group, so that way my medicine, at the end of the day, was set apart from the rest of the group as well.
What is your favorite way to consume cannabis?
I love smoking a joint. I’m old school. I don’t need to edibles, dabs, or smoke a volcano or whatever these other contraptions are. Let’s just roll up a doobie; keep it simple.
Do you prefer sativas, indicas or hybrids?
Sativas. I have too much stuff to do with my day. Sativa provides that uplifting high, like Juicy Fruit. Indicas give you that couch lock. I like to be productive and the right Sativa strain can go hand-in-hand.
How do you like to customize your marijuana experience?
I break it down into a couple ways. One- if you are just buying the product, you are going to have a top shelf flower. If you are smoking with me, you are going to smoke a perfect joint because I’m kind of a stickler on how I roll my doobies, so it’s going to look real nice. If you are in the facility, you are going to tour a facility, one like you’ve never seen before. There is a reason why it’s been dubbed as a Willy Wonka tour. Yep, that’s definitely what it is. Above all, else it’s going to be top shelf.
How has marijuana helped define who you are?
That’s a tough one but most of all I would say… It’s helped my laid back manner. My world of people who are around me, my network, know that you are going to catch me in a good mood 99% of the time. You are going to have a very carefree, positive, upbeat individual when you are talking to me. How I carry myself is a lot of ways in tune with the music I listen to, which I generate from the marijuana genre. Your Bob Marley, Reggae and Hip Hop, you know the people that kind of have that lifestyle, that already feel very carefree, not focused on stress. So I would have to say that it embodies my lifestyle in positivity. Positive is the way I live, and that’s where we got to keep it. Sounds kind of corny, but at the end of the day, it will help you sleep real good.
Have you experienced cannabias throughout the years? If so, how have you overcome this?
Oh my gosh, yes, of course. You get a lot of people that can be very objective to you being in the cannabis industry, especially when you get those right wing republicans. They think it’s a joke. Lately, I have gotten past all these guys just by showing them my fiscal numbers. These big time business guys realize I’m doing exponentially more than their annual revenue with my production, so they immediately give me a high level of respect. They might be the biggest haters in the world, but if they know the facts, they want to know what’s going on. And then come the questions about investing.
I’ve seen cannabias less and less throughout the years. Every year I feel like we are losing 10 points on cannabias, where 5 years ago it was 100%, now it’s only 50%. A lot of people have someone in their family that benefits from it greatly, so they are no longer seeing it as some sort of problem or waste. Numbers are one thing, but leading through example with my own positivity is a whole new level. The positivity can come off as charisma and a lot of people will naturally gravitate towards a high level of charisma. Positivity and the finances go hand-in-hand. People work with people that they like. Revenue always follows relationships, always.
What advice would you give a novice grower?
Stay humble and learn as much as possible from all the different facts of the industry. Stay open minded, you have a lot to learn.
What do you believe the future of the marijuana industry holds?
The future holds huge revenue, and it’s about to be a worldwide industry. Warren Buffett told his team of lawyers, who recently toured my facility, that it’s going to make the .com boom look like it was absolutely nothing. It’s going to be massive; a major game changer.
I think hemp will replace cotton one day. It’s going to touch a lot more than just people getting stoned. It’s going to help advance modern medicine as we know it, and I’m sure it will cure cancer one day, replace paper one day. I think it has an incredible place in facets of many industries.
If you had to guess, which state do you think will be next to legalize cannabis?
On a medical level, I think a lot of southern states. A lot of southern states are behind right now, in addition to a few states up north. I think the next state, medically, will be Texas, and I think the next state that goes recreational will be Florida. I think Florida will quickly turn rec, as will New York and Massachusetts. It is simply too much revenue to stay away from.
Where can people find your products?
They can find them at a bunch of dispensaries—Medicine Man, Sweet Leaf, Herban Underground, Oasis, Livewell, etc. Some of the top dispensaries carry our product and then a ton of smaller single store dispensaries as well.
What are you working on next?
We actually just finalized some exciting ventures. Medicine Man Technology, a leading Cannabis Consulting firm, acquired our Three A Light publishing company, Pono Publications, along with Success Nutrients. They issued 7 million shares of common stock as consideration for the acquisition, which represents 40% interest in the company. I’m still the Chief Cultivation Officer, and will serve as a key member of management. We are going to take all their clients, all their future clients and we’re going in integrate our processes and procedures into their management system. This will allow them to run their grows just like my grows, with the performance delta that we have.
Our performance and grows are on a profit per square foot basis. We outperform Denver by about 300%. If you look at your average indoor grow, it produces about 30 grams per sq. ft. My grow produces about 140-160 grams per sq ft. We have many R&D (research and development) rooms that we are able to experiment with some unique things. We recently pulled over 200 grams per sq. ft in one of them. Our next thing is teaching other people how to do it from a consulting position, 35-80 grows as opposed to just doing 2 or 3. From a consultant standpoint, we get to work with them as strategic partnerships. Allowing us to leverage our brand and open a lot of doors.
Is there anything else you would like to share?
In light of everything that has happened, everything that has grown, I owe it all to support from my family, which includes my close friends and relatives. The best decision I made was hiring my friends and being very involved in my daughter’s life. There is nothing more important to me than family, and I believe other businessmen of this world should use the same ethics. A lot of dads should be equally stoked on getting home as they are with closing that next business deal.
Joshua sure is taking the cannabis industry by storm, and lighting a fire in those around him to respect and appreciate the plant as much as he has. From medical marijuana to simple enjoyment, cannabis has been changing the lives of Americans in incredible ways.
Check out Joshua’s book, Three A Light, here. In the meantime, check out our Spotlights on other great cannabis industry professionals:
Photos: Joshua Haupt, Toke Tank