Click through our photo slideshow of the grand opening ceremonies above.
Tucked away in the industrial zone of Santa Ana, a giant red building has just become Orange County’s newest legal medical marijuana dispensary. Only MedMen isn’t like any collective out there, in fact, they’re paving a new path for patients and how they buy their medicine.
“They are pioneers for the cannabis industry regarding professionalism and the optics of what a collective should look like moving forward,” said Payvand Salehi of Honey Vape. “So I love what they’re doing and I’m grateful to be part of this industry.”
Medmen’s July 1 grand opening ribbon cutting ceremony was attended by Santa Ana Councilmen Vicente Sarmiento and Jose Solorio as well as several patients. Inside the massive 8,000 sq. ft. bright room, vendors from Canndescent, Dixie, Treat Yourself, Honey Vape, Vet CBD and other cannabis companies were networking, sharing product knowledge and handing out samples throughout the day. After the cutting, MedMen Training Manager Mikayla Kemp gave us a tour and explained how everything was laid out and what makes them different than other collectives.
Immediately to the right, polite and professional budtenders waited behind the check-in desk, each trained to know about all the various flower, edibles, topicals and other products the collective offers. However, MedMen as a management company, has developed a concept that allows the patient more access to information without the help of an employee. Strategically placed throughout the room are gorgeous tables categorized by the type of medicine. Inside the glass each product is perfectly displayed and an iPad stationed above which contains all the testing results, strains or any information on the product and the materials used. “We don’t carry anything that is not properly labeled,” Kemp said. “Everyone knows exactly what they are getting all the time.”
“It’s the Apple store of dispensaries,” said an elderly MedMen patient. “It reminds me of an Apple store.”
Only a few employees have access to the flower; they must wear gloves and all the buds are displayed in
cylinder containers with a magnified glass and a slit that can be opened to spell the strains. In addition to the name and info on each plant, MedMen has color-coded the strains and hybrids to reflect what you should expect from each one. This is perfect for the patient coming in who doesn’t know anything about names and strains and is simply looking to feel a certain way. MedMen Director of Communications Daniel Yi hopes that with the spread of this concept it will change the way many people view the use of cannabis for medicinal purposes.
“Cannabis legalization and what’s happening in this industry is the biggest story of our lifetime and I thought it was very exciting to be a part of it, to help shape the narrative,” Yi said. “I want the narrative to be, oh it’s cool, it may not be for me but it’s cool because it not always about getting high it’s about wellness and lifestyle.”