The California State Fair has unveiled the winners of a first-ever, state-sanctioned marijuana competition, awarding 60 trophies and medals to businesses whose products were judged based on lab testing for quality and cannabinoid profiles.
Officials first announced the competition late last year, celebrating the fact that the state’s cannabis industry is being recognized as legitimate market that’s no longer being treated differently than other commodities.
“Adding cannabis cultivation, alongside wine, craft beer, cheese and olive oil, was a perfect fit with the CA State Fair’s history of celebrating California’s rich agriculture history,” California Exposition & State Fair Board of Director Chair Jess Durfee said in a press release about the winners on Thursday.
More than 300 entries were submitted in three grow-type divisions (indoor, outdoor and mixed light) in 10 different categories per division. Those categories were based on cannabinoid concentrations for components such as CBDa, CBGa and THCa, plus terpenes like Myrcene, Limonene and Pinene. Among the top winners are MOCA Humboldt, Esensia and Greenshock Farms.
The California-based SC Labs conducted the analytic testing for the competition. The Fair’s page listing awardees includes the lab’s “PhytoFact” report that breaks down cannabinoid profiles, aromas and flavors and effects associated with the tested products.
“Award-winning cannabis comes from the immaculate care, craft and skill in the drying, curing and preservation of the most fleeting quality indicators that cannabis produces—which are the terpenes and other trace volatile compounds present in any given cultivar,” SC Labs co-founder Alec Dixon said.
The award winning products will be featured at an exhibit the State Fair, which takes place from July 15-31. Adults 21 and older will be able to learn about the science of marijuana and the history of cannabis cultivation in the Golden State. No on-site consumption or sales will be allowed at the fair, however.
“We love the science-based lab testing involved with this competition and are honored to be a part of the legendary CA State Fair,” MOCA Humboldt Vice President of Marketing and Sales Aaron Salles said. “This relationship lends legitimacy to our industry and provides us an opportunity to educate people about the many benefits of the cannabis plant.”
The California Exhibition & State Fair is an independent state agency established by law under California’s food and agriculture code. Gov. Gavin Newsom (D) is an ex-officio member of the fair’s board of directors, as are several state lawmakers.
On the other side of the country in New York, officials announced ahead of last year’s State Fair that, since cannabis was legalized in the state, adults could consume marijuana in any place where tobacco use is permitted.