50 | Morris Beegle, Musician and Hemp Entrepreneur

“Hemp will be integrated into our society much more in 10 to 15 years than it is now. Right now, we still are at the beginning phases of this industry. And it’s been focused more so on CBD and the cannabinoid side and less on the, let’s say the textile, the food and the ag side, and that is shifting right now.”

— Morris Beegle

We’ve known for decades that hemp is a versatile crop, useful for food, and as a textile, building material and biofuel. Yet because it’s related to cannabis, hemp has been shunned, its value denied. As we look for positive ways to recover the pandemic, in the context of ongoing climate change, are we finally ready to realize the tremendous economic potential of hemp? We asked Morris Beegle, who has launched multiple hemp-based businesses across various industries, for his perspective. Listen, and learn:

  • How Morris made the pivot from a career in music into success as a hemp entrepreneur
  • Why hemp, a regenerative, sustainable crop, is a better alternative for the environment and consumers
  • How to succeed in the hemp industry, whether you want to find a job or start a company
  • Why musicians have been closely tied to cannabis / hemp
  • How Morris developed the first high-end hemp guitar
  • Why Morris is excited about the Retail and Dispensary Expo

Learn more about Morris at MorrisBeegle.com

Check out the enterprises Morris is involved in at We Are For Better Alternatives, WAFBA.org

Kannaboom (00:00): Hello, and welcome back to the Kannaboom podcast. We're at episode 50 this week, we have Morris Beegle, a music industry veteran who has pivoted into hemp in a big way. He produces online and in person events, makes paper products and even makes high-end guitars, which you'll hear more about. Morris also has a message of hope right now, as we emerge from this pandemic in terms of how hemp can help us with our economic resurgence. You know, maybe you can find a job in hemp or like Morris has done create your own job. He's done this over and over and we'll dive into his best advice on how to do that. So this podcast, my website and newsletter, are all devoted to helping you figure out how cannabis and hemp can help you live better. So if you haven't yet, please sign up for my weekly newsletter, Five Boom Friday, or stop by and see us at Kannaboom.com. Many thanks to Danny, our producer and sound engineer in Milwaukee for making a sound good. So there you go. Enjoy the episode.

Kannaboom (00:57): Cannabis is booming and Kannaboom is on it. Welcome to the Kannaboom podcast, where we interview experts on the changing story of humans, health and hemp. From San Diego. Here's your host, Tom Stacey,

Kannaboom (01:09): We're back on the Kannaboom podcast and our guest this week is Morris Beegle. Hey Morris, how are you doing?

Morris Beegle (01:13): Good, Tom, how are you doing?

Kannaboom (01:15): Pretty good we're way into this COVID-19 thing. And I think it's interesting in the long sweep of history, we forget that the plague is kind of a regular thing every hundred years or so. And you know, we've also forgotten about plant medicine that plants are friends for about a hundred years now. So there's lots to talk about in that realm, especially in hemp, which you are such an expert in.

Morris Beegle (01:40): YEAH, the COVID thing has definitely created a shift all across the planet and basically everything that we do on a daily basis.

Kannaboom (01:49): Yeah. Hemp is making a comeback in this country. The Farm Bill of 2018 has had an impact, but it's been forgotten. And you're a guy who was reminding everybody of how valuable this plant is.

Morris Beegle (02:02): Well the plant has been suppressed, really since the 1930s through the Marijuana Tax Act and taking out cannabis as a whole marijuana and then him and yeah, we're now we're just playing catch up because in 2014, we passed the 2014 Farm Bill that opened up the hemp industry with pilot programs that were somewhat limited and a handful of states that, that did really get things kicked off again. And then the 2018 Farm Bill legalized hemp completely across the board. But at the same time, there's still a lot of roadblocks and obstacles out there from the USDA, the FDA and the DEA is not out of the mix. When the Farm Bill made it pretty clear that this is now under the jurisdiction of the USDA, but the DEA still has their hands in the pot. And it's still creating problems for us.

Kannaboom (03:00): There's a long history in this country. A lot of the founders grew hemp, right. We know that, and it was used for a long time. And then as you know, in the thirties, it kind of went out with cannabis, which, uh, there are all kinds of that's whole another story, but hemp was thrown in with that. And so it was outlawed, but there's, it's such a versatile plant. I mean, there's applications in textiles and paper and hempcrete all kinds of things, right. And, and you've got what eight companies that are related to hemp.

Morris Beegle (03:30): Something like that. I mean, I think we've got really like a dozen imprints, but half of those are events with NOCO Hemp Expo, Southern Hemp Expo, Hawaiian Conference, Hemp on the Slope. You know, we do a lot of events, but we've also got a hemp media company. Let's Talk Hemp and we've got a podcast and newsletter, a digital magazine. We do have a hemp paper company, Tree Free hemp. And we do hemp paper printing, and marketing collateral. And then we've got a hemp guitar company, Silver Mountain, hemp guitars, and we're making guitars and guitar cabinets and guitar straps out of hemp. Well, and we've got a One Planet hemp merchandise store where we sell tee shirts and hats and posters and bags. And so we, yeah, we've got our hands in a lot of different things. We don't have a CBD company. That's one thing that we aren't doing, but we obviously work with a lot of CBD companies with our events.

Kannaboom (04:25): So you're kind of all in on this. Tell us more about the events are, uh, obviously that's been a difficulty recently with the pandemic. Uh, so I, I guess you went virtual for your last one,

Morris Beegle (04:35): Correct. We've done two virtual events. Now we did one for the summer solstice over summer solstice week from the 16th through the 19th, I believe is what it was. We also did one over Earth Day and Earth Week, which was our initial pivot into the cloud because we postponed NOCO hemp expo, which is our, our big event. And it's the largest hemp expo and trade show conference in the world. We are going into year seven at the end of March in Denver. And we pulled the plug. I think it was on March 9th, the day before Governor Polis declared a state of emergency in Colorado. And we had been out at Expo West, which is a huge natural products trade show in Anaheim, the beginning of March. And they ended up pulling the plug at the event and it became this huge cluster for exhibitors and sponsors and people that were out there in advance. And that really set off the storm for the event industry in my perception was that, and then following later that week, we were like, what are we going to do? We're going to just kind of check out. And we were looking at AEG and Live Nation and South by Southwest, and then South by Southwest was going to go through. And all of a sudden it's like they got too much pressure. People were pulling out and they pulled the plug, I think March 6, March 7th. And we convened over the weekend and we were able to move our show from March to August and make a clean sweep with our venue and our hotel and all of our contractors. Um, and then from there we decided, well, we need to jump into the virtual space. We don't know how long this is going to go on. So we bought into a platform and created our first event in April and had a really good response. We had over 1,500 registrants and built out a virtual expo hall and a programming auditorium and a library that featured pre recorded presentations and other content that we had had at NOCO hemp expo over the years. And then we built that out further and did it over summer solstice. And then we're also gonna do one more in November. So yeah, we've pivoted to the virtual ground now. And just trying to keep the conversation going about all things hemp and providing a platform where everybody can get together and still communicate and do business and educate. And again, keep everything moving forward during this odd time that we're living in.

Kannaboom (07:07): Well, that's a very agile sort of move to make, to go from in-person to kind of media production. And as you say, up in the cloud, and I mean, a lot of tech involved in that, obviously. So who shows up at your events? So a lot of farmers or hemp contractors, and the public, or what does it look?

Morris Beegle (07:27): So all of the above we've really created kind of this hybrid type of event in-person for NOCO where we really cover all aspects of the supply chain from the farmers and genetics companies and equipment, farm equipment manufacturers, processing, equipment manufacturers, marketers, attorneys, policy makers. We really have worked hard to create the supply chain show as well as bringing in the consumer on a consumer day. So we really have like a B2B day and a B to C day. And the B to C day is a hybrid day where there's B2B. People are still there, but it's educating the public as well. So we take this big-tent type of approach, and we've tried to do the same thing in the cloud, but the cloud is really more industry focused. It's hard to really get people that are just your general everyday lookie loo tire kickers to show up and be part of a virtual thing. And that's fine then it's really for in person events where the consumers can find out more about him, but we certainly are doing what we can to educate the public here. 'This is what hemp is. This is what marijuana is, here's the differences.' Um, but it is all cannabis. It's all one plant. And we've got this legal definition that divides the plant at 0.3% THC, which is an arbitrary number that our industry doesn't like. And I don't think it just doesn't make much sense, but our whole thing is to really try to educate and work with the industry and educate the consumer as well.

Kannaboom (09:10): Have you seen sort of an explosion in interest in the time that you've been doing this? Has it been a steady increase or, or people just madly want to know more?

Morris Beegle (09:18): It's been pretty steady. We've had great growth over the years since we jumped into this in 2012, which we got in the space when Amendment 64 was happening here in Colorado, that legalized adult use cannabis. And within that legislation, there was an opportunity for farmers to start growing hemp in Colorado. So we were pre Farm Bill and we got off to a little bit of a headstart and being a full on legal adult use recreational state and a hemp state gave us a little bit of advantage. And I still think Colorado is the leader in the market. Kentucky has been a leader. They've had a lot of problems recently with bankruptcies of big companies out there. Oregon is certainly a leader and then there's other companies, other states are popping on as well, but there's been a steady increase as more states come on. Like this year, we've got Florida and Texas who are all gung ho to, to get involved and start growing hemp. And, and the more states that come on, the more interest that's gonna continue to happen. And I think that with peaks and valleys of any industry, we're gonna, eventually, we're going to have a really strong, robust hemp industry. We're not quite there yet, but the interest is there to make it right.

Kannaboom (10:34): I mean, it kind of ticks a lot of the boxes you would look for in an industry in terms of sustainability. It will employ people all along the chain from farmers to salespeople and everything in between. What is your perspective on how this could help revive the economy as we do come out of this pandemic?

Morris Beegle (10:52): Well, agriculture is very important for the United States and it's very important for humankind and we've got a big agricultural problem with the way we've been growing genetically modified crops and growing it conventionally monocropping with whether that's corn or soy or wheat or sugarcane in Hawaii, decimated the soil out there. And hemp is one of these crops that requires far less inputs, uh, is easier to grow organically and regeneratively. And I think that is one way where him can kind of stand up as the steward of agriculture and say, Hey, there's better ways to, to grow agricultural crops that are going to be, uh, positively impacting the environment instead of having detrimental effects with spraying all these petrochemicals on crops that then get into our food and also get into our waterways with our streams and our lakes and rivers, and then to the oceans, uh, we have to move away from those bad agricultural practices or we're going to just decimate our soil and we're not going to be able to grow anything. We'll be eating lab grown meats and whatever else. So I think that a hemp can provide a great opportunity for leading an agricultural revolution for organic and regenerative. And then the process, the processes and products downstream we can utilize and building materials, which are fairly toxic for the most part and bio-plastics and, uh, animal bedding and paper. And there's just a lot of different applications that end up going into these various commercialized industries that have a lot of toxic ingredients in their products.

Kannaboom (12:56): You just made some great points there. I mean, 20 or 30 years ago, there was sort of every now and then you would see a hemp store somewhere and it was run by old hippies. And now everything you just said about all the different products you can make, it's a regenerative plant. It's good for agriculture. I mean, you could make plastic bottles, you can make clothing, you can make concrete. I think some car manufacturer made cars out of it. It's a fuel. Are we crazy to think that it can do all these things? And what is the resistance to that sort of a resurgence in hemp?

Morris Beegle (13:28): Well, it can certainly do most of the things that you just said or all of the things, some of this is going to require technology and innovation, which we've been hampered on for 80 years. And now there's definitely innovation and technology that has, um, been created over in Europe and in China and in Canada as well. And if we look at Europe who has HempFlax, and Dunagro, they're two of the biggest hemp companies and fiber based for the most part that are doing hempcrete and other building materials and insulation, uh, bio composites, and you had mentioned cars and car parts. So there's a lot of these high-end manufacturers in Europe that are changing out their car paneling from plastic petroleum-based to a more bio composite using him, hemp, flax mix, hemp can have mix and it's stronger. It's lighter, it's got way less of an environmental impact. And I see that there's just tremendous opportunity for growth in those areas because manufacturers will listen to consumers, consumers think have for the most part, been fairly vocal about trying to do things the right way and voting with our dollars. And if, people make a stink about products that are environmentally unsafe and they can be made safe by using plant-based materials rather than petroleum based materials, extracted from the earth, rather than grown from the earth. I think that the shift can certainly happen again. It's going to come down to technology. I think there's a lot of technology that's out there in the fossil fuel industry, even that could be modified to a degree where that can take plant based materials, uh, you know, instead of hydrocarbon materials using carbohydrate materials and make the same products that are just as good and inexpensive eventually that's that's one of the biggest problems is the fossil fuel industry, the timber industry, the pharmaceutical industry, all of these industries have been subsidized for such a long time to develop out this technology. And if we're coming at it from a more natural holistic standpoint, we need to be subsidized to, we need access to technology to take these materials and convert them into these ingredients. So they can enter into this, into these different industries.

Kannaboom (16:18): It's a good point. I mean, some of these entrenched players, they've got the lobbyists and they have investments that are kind of protected, but you know, I've looked for hemp t-shirts because I, I read that there's a lot of, uh, fibers that come off here, polyester clothing that literally millions of fibers microfibers will come off and get into the water stream as you probably are aware, but it's basically $35 for a hemp t-shirt. So once these get to scale, there'll be more competitive with cotton, I imagine. Right?

Morris Beegle (16:48): Correct. And there's the hemp t-shirt thing. You're going to pay two to three times as much for a hemp shirt, as you are a cotton t-shirt or a polyester t-shirt in the microfiber problem, like you mentioned is a huge problem. You run these through the washing machine, the little tiny fibers come off, they go into the sewer system, then they end up spreading and it's just that stuff doesn't go away. It builds up,

Kannaboom (17:15): Right? They gather toxins as they go and then fish eat them. And it's an enormous problem that most people are just absolutely unaware of. Exactly. Um, you know, I'd love to wear all hemp clothing and him, blue jeans. I haven't found any of those yet. I'm sure someone's making them, but, uh, hopefully the momentum on that picks up and as we help educate people, there's more of a demand. And then the scale will pick up and then the price will come down.

Morris Beegle (17:40): Yeah. There are some hemp jeans being made out there. There's a company called Hempys out of San Diego that makes him jeans. I think Rawganique out of Europe is making hemp jeans. And then I know that Levi's has entered into utilizing some hemp materials for, and there'll be releasing their new hemp jeans coming here soon. And Levi's is actually making him guitar straps now, which I just realized about six months ago. Cause we're making guitar straps as well, but those guys have entered into the hemp guitar strap market. So they've got interest. And when we have companies like, um, Levi's getting into the market, that's a good thing. We've had Patagonia who has a line of him, clothing Prana makes yoga clothes out of him. So some of that stuff is out there, but most of it's pretty high end and it's not your commercial $20, $30, $40 pair of jeans is you're going to pay $80 to $120 for a pair of jeans. Yeah.

Kannaboom (18:40): Yeah. Well over time that'll come down. So you have Levi's coming in as, as a competitor. That's uh, and you, you see it as a good thing. So that's, that's great.

Morris Beegle (18:50): Yeah. I mean, I just want to see more companies making the right decision and utilizing environmentally friendly materials, replacing less environmentally friendly materials with better materials.

Kannaboom (19:05): Yeah. So, uh, I know music is a passion of yours, so let's talk about Silver Mountain and the quality of those guitars.

Morris Beegle (19:12): So I come from the music industry. I've been involved in the music industry since the late eighties, working for large music and video companies. And then I had a record label slash one stop shop production company and started in 95 called Happy Scratch records and ran that for about 15 years. So I've got a pretty extensive history in the music industry and I'm a guitar player. My brother is a world-class guitar player. And, um, when we started Colorado hemp company in 2012, and then we started NOCO in 2014, I found out about these guys making some hemp guitars and Canada, Canadian Hemp Guitars is the name of the company. And I got a couple of their guitars. And then I asked them if they would work with me on doing some private-label guitars. And we started working on that and I had them build me some guitars. And then there is another company that we started working with to build guitar cabinets. And the guys that were behind that, we started doing some other custom work together and, and we've now are sourcing some different materials and introducing a brand new line of bass guitars and guitar combo amps that utilize hemp wood from the hemp wood company out of Kentucky. And that's HempWood.com. And what they do is they're making a wood product. That's similar to bamboo flooring. You basically take the stocks and then you compress them with an eco polymer into these solid blocks. And then you can make flooring and cabinets and picture frames and guitars and a variety of other things out of the material. So we're using that material in conjunction with a particle board. That's also being grown and processed and manufactured in the United States that was created by a guy named Larry Serbin from Hemp Traders. And that product is called CannaGrove. And so it's a hemp particle board, a hundred percent hemp using the stock, the fiber and the herb all ground up and pressed together like a standard particle board. And that's what we're doing the cabinets out of. And with that we're going to be doing trim with the input on that. But the guitars have a combination of the hemp wood and the cannaboard for the bodies at this point. And it's a hundred percent hemp body. The necks are not hemp. The guards were working on a hundred percent pickguard as well as knobs. And I don't know if we're going to have it completely dialed in by this first run of guitars that we're currently doing, which I should actually have in my hands next week, we looked at the working on the pickguard stuff right now and hopefully they're gonna work. And the whole thing is, is we're creating things out of this material that haven't been done before. And in doing that, it's definitely R and D and learn as you go that we've made really good progress. And the guitars are really nice guitars. We built a, we had a prototype Stratocaster that we made that we debuted at the World Ag Expo during the Hemp Innovation Challenge. Um, looks great. Sounds great, plays great. And this new model that we're doing, it's going to be our own Silver Mountain Hempcaster. And it's not a knockoff of a Strat or a Telecaster or any other Gibson fender type guitar that's out there. Cause we're trying to stay away from having those guys come after us for any sort of a cease and desist. So we've got our own modified, unique little body look to it, and we're very happy with where things are at now and we're anxious to get him onto the market and continue to develop these.

Kannaboom (23:01): As a musician, you're able to look at this and say, you know, this, this guitar is as good as any guitar you can pick up. It's not a novelty, it's a functional instrument,

Morris Beegle (23:11): Correct. Just it's definitely pro gear. And I would compare it to just high-end boutique guitars and guitar cabinets and combo amps. So our guitars are going to retail and the $3,000 range and a lot of boutique guitars will go from $2,000 to $6,000. So we're kind of in that realm and the combo amps are going to be anywhere from three to $4,000, depending on what we're loading them with. And again, there, I think that they will stand up to other instruments in those price ranges and people are pretty particular when it comes to their instruments and their amps. And there's a lot of nuances with different players, like different things. Some people like it brighter, or some people like more mid rangy, some people like a little darker tone. So it's, it's one of those things where people, if, if you're a top guitar player, you've got your own little specific preferences. I think for the most part, anybody that plays a guitar, that's a pro caliber player is going to be like, wow, this is a really nice well-built guitar or wow, this is a, this amp sounds quite good. I'm surprised.

Kannaboom (24:25): Right? And then if it is competitively priced and all things being equal, most people would rather do something that's sustainable for the environment. So you probably have some traction there,

Morris Beegle (24:35): Correct? Because a lot of guitars, almost all guitars are sprayed with sealants and polyurethane and stuff that's not very environmentally friendly. There's a lot of toxic chemicals used in making musical instruments. And our instruments are definitely going to be some of the greenest, if not the greenest instruments that are out there,

Kannaboom (24:57): What a great enterprise for you, it combines your interests in hemp and music and sort of a crossover way. That's cool.

Morris Beegle (25:05): Yeah. And we've always got entertainment with our events that we do, and I'll always be involved in the music industry. And I think that there's a lot of crossover with the music industry, the hemp industry, the cannabis industry, you've seen quite a few people make the transition from that industry and to this industry on the publishing side too. I know that there's several people out there that have started magazines in the cannabis space that come from the music industry space.

Kannaboom (25:30): Why do you think that is? I mean, traditionally we know cannabis was used by jazz musicians. And is there an open-mindedness or what do you think is at work there?

Morris Beegle (25:40): I think that cannabis has definitely gone hand in hand with the music industry for a long time, since the thirties, I'd say since the jazz side of things and the blues side of things, and then you come up through the sixties with pop and rock and roll and, and hard rock and then reggae and then the hip hop scene and cannabis is kind of a mainstay throughout the music industry. And people are just open-minded about why should this plant be illegal and prohibited in the first place? I mean, there's no reason for it. It's far less harmful to your body and to society than alcohol is. Right. I think a lot of people have just got that because it's like, 'Oh, this seems dumb. Why should it be illegal? And I like using it, it helps me creatively. And it makes me relax.' There's just a lot of different reasons why people are open to it. And I think musician-wise that again, most of the musicians I know are just generally more open minded about things.

Kannaboom (26:51): Yeah. So which came first for you? Was it music or hemp?

Morris Beegle (26:56): Music. By far. I grew up, I grew up within a musical family and I didn't really get into hemp until 2012. Although I, when I started Happy Scratch back in 1995, I befriended a store that was there in Fort Collins called the Hemperor Wears No Clothes or the Hemperor's New Clothes, based on Jack Herer's book 'The Emperor Wears No Clothes' and we actually made him shirts and hemp pads for some of the bands that we worked with. And I wasn't really a hempster. I was a cannabis user recreationally, but I did get educated about hemp back then. And I was really just more into the music thing and didn't become a real hardcore advocate or activist until 2012. When I was looking for kind of a career shift since the music industry had plummeted because of the internet, I was in the physical media business, doing CDs and DVDs and physical distribution. And all of a sudden all these stores got closed and companies went out of business who were selling physical products because of all the digital download opportunities that were out there and pirating and file sharing and all of that stuff. So we really got into the hemp industry and in 2012, when we started Colorado Hemp Company.

Kannaboom (28:17): So that, that's the story of you pivoting. Uh, once again, technology does change how consumers consume. And I guess when states started to legalize, there was an opportunity for you to, um, jump into another industry.

Morris Beegle (28:32): Yeah. A brand new industry, which I believed in because reading Jack's book back a long time ago, it's like, wow, this plant can do all these different things. I had no idea. And then, you know, I was focused on the music industry stuff. I was trying to keep my company alive until I couldn't keep it alive anymore. And I had to shut it down. It's like now, what am I going to do? And what opportunities are out there? And the cannabis thing was definitely happening in Colorado. And I didn't want to get into the medical and rec side. I just didn't see that as something that I was passionate about. But then when the hemp thing was included in Amendment 64, and it's like, wow, we can do hemp t-shirts and hemp paper and posters. I could tie my music side of things into this and I can take my skill set and really almost template it into the music industry as a or into the hemp industry from being a music promoter to be in a hemp promoter. And that's what I did. I pivoted. I got in early and fortunately started NOCO in 2014 is the first real trade show that was going on. Um, as an outside promoter, there was a, uh, hemp industry organization. They have industries association that has been doing a trade show every year, and it's a small two, 300 people come into a trade show. And it's like, well, if this industry is going to go forward, you got to have a, an industry trade show and participating in shows like CES and the NAM show and NAR in my music industry days and seeing these huge trade shows that were either industry oriented or the hybrids for the industry and the consumer market. It's like, this is what the hemp industry needs. And being there first and seeing it grow exponentially year after year has put us in a good position. And it's also allowed us to create these other brands. So we've got, you know, we're not just stuck in one facet of the industry. We can still pivot and do paper. We can, we've got our little hemp guitar company. We have a media platform that we're building out with Let's Talk Hemp, that we've got a weekly newsletter, a digital magazine opportunity to help really educate the hemp industry and the consumer market.

Kannaboom (30:52): So you're a serial entrepreneur you've started at least eight or nine companies or more in this hemp space in manufacturing events, media, you've talked about R and D. So for some of the people out here among our listeners who might be, you know, without a job, there's a lot of people who are out of work now and they look to hemp as possibly a place to maybe start their own company. What advice would you have as people wade into that?

Morris Beegle (31:20): I would say, do your due diligence, make sure that you're going to follow something in your heart that you're passionate about and that you're good at. And where can you contribute? I would say that if you're looking at what's currently going on and 'Hey, I want to get into the CBD industry' that you should take pause on that because the CBD industry is very volatile right now. And if you haven't already been in it and established that, I would be very cautious about jumping into that part of the industry, that you can take a look at the entire supply chain. And if you've got a skillset that aligns with whether that's farming, genetics, R and D processing sales, marketing, manufacturing, that there is a place for every skill set that exists in this industry. And again, I would say, do something that you're passionate about and do something that is authentic.

Kannaboom (32:24): You know, I would also add just network, get involved with people who are involved in this, you know, go to your events. That's where there are gatherings of people who are like-minded and, um, talk with other people. And that's going to help you build a network.

Morris Beegle (32:40): Without a doubt. Networking is key. To any industry and particularly this industry and the cannabis industry, as it's still nascent at this point, and being able to get out there and whether it's our events or other people that are doing similar type of events, the more people, you know, the more people you can talk with, the better off you are going to be and trying to find your place to land in this industry.

Kannaboom (33:04): So none of us has a crystal ball, but if I ask you what this looks like in 10 or 15 years, do you see a world where hemp is more integrated into all these things, the economy it's done better for the climate? What, what does that world look like? If hemp is being used to its optimal capacity?

Morris Beegle (33:24): Well, I think that it will be integrated into our society much more in 10 to 15 years than it is now. Right now, we still are at the beginning phases of this industry. And it's been focused more so on CBD and the cannabinoid side and less on the, let's say the textile, the food and the ag side, and that is shifting right now. And so I see that there's going to be a lot of investment coming into this kind of ag and fiber and environmental side. And that you will see big companies starting to shift and pivot towards utilizing materials that are more environmentally friendly in their products and adopting more environmentally friendly practices and hemp will be leading that conversation or a big part of that conversation. So how is that going to translate? Is it too late to save our world from continuing down this path of fossil fuels and climate change and just poor environmental practices? I hope not. I hope that we can make the change. And I think that, um, one thing that I'll say, so we have this gal Winona Duke, who's a native American she's up in Minnesota and the natives are embracing this crop. And, and she made a comment on our, on our events at summer solstice about pandemics or portals into a new way of thinking and a new way of doing things. And that our systems today are, are collapsing and they're outdated. So hopefully during this pandemic that when we come out the other side, that we really do have, uh, a higher consciousness and a better awareness of our, you know, our environment and how we operate as a species on this planet. And that we will look at making better decisions for, for our species moving forward, because if we don't make changes now, I think that we're going to be in a world of hurt come 20, 30, 40 years from now.

Kannaboom (35:40): Right? Well, that's a powerful perspective there that cannabis could be the catalyst that helps us come out of this in a, in a positive way. Let me ask you, are there other things that we can do to help spur the adoption, the ballot box? What else can we do to help grow the hemp movement?

Morris Beegle (35:57): Well, yes, the voting booth and you're voting with your wallets is certainly one aspect of voting at the ballot box too. And that is with local politicians, state politicians, and making sure that we have people in office that are actually listening to the constituents and that have a focus on the environment and climate change and independent, small businesses, and that are really listening to the people and that are just not being bought off by big corporations. And that's a tough thing to do these days. Our political system is hopefully fixable. Um, you know, I'm not, I'm not a fan of either party. So I think that we've been going down the wrong path for a long time. And, and how do we fix it with the two-party system on the federal level? I'm not sure, but I think that we, the people, have to continue to use our voice and use our voice collectively for our equality, for all, um, for cannabis being legal and not prohibited people, shouldn't be in jail for this plan. And anybody that does have a violation in misdemeanor felony for small possession should have that expunged. And we just have to be vocal to our, to our politicians, into our leaders. You know, we've, we've kind of exited prohibition. This mind thought that we'd been in it and it's outdated. It doesn't make any sense and that we have to do things better moving forward.

Kannaboom (37:42): Absolutely. If 2020 has shown us anything, it's how badly broken our political system is. You know, the other thing is it's, it's hard to know where to get good information. There is fake news. And so it's hard to know what to believe, but we can all decide to, as you say, do our due diligence and believe that hemp is a viable, sustainable crop, that can make a big difference. Um, you know, obviously you're, you're showing that every day, uh, and as you've been doing for the last eight years or so, you've shown that you can make guitars out of this. No one's ever done that, but that's something you can do. And there's a lot of other things that haven't probably even been thought of yet that hemp could be a solution for

Morris Beegle (38:22): Absolutely. And the more good people and smart minds that we have involved in this industry, the better the long term is going to look. And I'll say it again. This industry is only going to grow and have more impact on society. So I invite everybody, that's got a passion for trying to do the right thing to, to hop on board. Cause we, we, we need more people that can bring value to the industry and then you can come from any walk of life and we need more diversity too. This is an industry where we want to build equity and equality for all. We don't want it to be run by a bunch of white men, and we are going to do our part to provide this equal platform so everybody can participate. Black, Brown, white, straight, gay, whatever your religious affiliation is. You know, everybody should be able to participate on an equal playing field. We want to democratize industry.

Kannaboom (39:28): That's a great picture. Morris, is there anything we haven't covered that we should,

Morris Beegle (39:32): I do want to mention one thing, and this will be the kind of the first announcement that I've made on a podcast about it. And that is we are partnering with Marijuana Venture Magazine and Cannabis and Tech Today for the RAD Expo. And this is a Retail And Dispensary Expo. It's going into its third year and Marijuana Venture Magazine has run this the last two years in Portland and it's moved to Vegas and it's the first week of October 6th and 7th. And this is a more retail oriented event, but it's for dispensaries, health, food stores, smoke shops, anybody that stocks, cannabis-related products, hemp-related CBD products. And we are working to do a live event in October. It'll be our, probably the only live event that we get to do this year, as long as we can make it happen. But we're been working with the Las Vegas Convention Center, who has implemented protocols for big gatherings, and they're going to be the first ones really to kind of lead the way and this isn't going to be NOCO, it's not going to be MJ Biz. It's not going to have 10, 20, 30,000 people, but it will be a good in-person event with several hundred exhibitors and three to 5,000 people, hopefully. And we're going to gather in Vegas in the first week of October. And I just want to let everybody know that you're invited to come participate.

Kannaboom (41:02): Thank you for getting that out there. Congratulations on getting into that with some powerful partners. That sounds like a must for a lot of people. So put that on the calendar.

Morris Beegle (41:12): Yeah, we're, we're excited about, we just had a conference call finalizing a lot of things right before we hopped on this podcast.

Kannaboom (41:18): Morris, where can we find you online?

Morris Beegle (41:21): MorrisBeegle.com. And then if you go to WAFB.org there, you can see all of our brands and click on the brand and it'll take you to the individual website.

Kannaboom (41:34): We'll look you up and we'll get all that into the show notes and, uh, good luck with your event in October. That sounds really exciting. And thank you for taking the time to explain the world of hemp to our listeners. I know a lot of people are going to be really excited about this.

Morris Beegle (41:47): Well, I appreciate the opportunity, Tom, and thanks for spreading the good word about cannabis on the whole to your listenership. And that's all just keep on keeping on right on.

Kannaboom (41:57): Thanks Morris.

Kannaboom (42:00): You've been listening to the Kannaboom Podcast with host Tom Stacey, if you like the show and want to know more, please check us out at Kannaboom.com and please leave us a review at Apple podcasts or wherever you listen. See you next week.