It’s been about 3 months since we’ve launched, and we’ve been truly humbled by all the love we’ve received for Carmel products.

You can plan as much as you want leading up to launch, but until you hit the shelf, get feedback from retailers and consumers, none of it is real.

From the phenos we’ve selected, the quality of the product, to the feedback on the brand, it’s been great to hear all the positive feedback.

But it hasn’t all been positive. We’re always listening and working to improve, so here are some of the learnings we’ve had since we’ve launched:


Ok so turns out we overdid it on the bag size. We wanted to find a size that worked for both 3.5g and 7g formats, but ultimately that was the wrong decision.

We’ve decided to shrink our bag by about 30% to:

1. Decrease waste

2. Minimize headspace

3. Make it pocket friendly

here’s a sneak peak at the new bag:

Why do we use bags again?

-Nitrogen flushed for freshness

-Ability to add key product information

-Less plastic vs. jars

-Lower shipping weight


This one hurt. We’ve all been burned by over dry weed from the rec market, and when we realized we had fallen into the “legal weed is too dry!” camp, we were really disappointed.

Good news is we’ve fixed it. Long story short, our buds were losing moisture in the packaging room, and we’ve since made some environmental adjustments.

Previously our packaged product was coming in at around 8-10% moisture content and moving forward it’ll hit the 11-13% range.


3 months since launch, 2 times we’ve had our Instagram Account shut down.

What have we learned? We’ll be focusing more of our efforts on alternative channels (Twitter, email marketing) and we’ve also got a new handle for Instagram.

For us it’s always been really important that we showcase the behind the scenes of our grow and Instagram is really the best platform for that, but we’ve taken the hint, Zuckerberg.

This post has by no means been an exhaustive list, and we’ll continue to try and improve every day.

We appreciate you joining us on this journey and for the continued support.

We’re grateful for all our retail partners and customers, and we’ll leave you with a few images of our most anticipated drop to date, MAC1 👇

We’ve got a bit of a confession. We’ve always felt a little uncomfortable with the term craft. While at one point it served as a rallying cry for artisans to get behind in their fight against monopolistic giants, it’s now just an overused term that is almost devoid of meaning.

Even throwing shade at the term craft is a little tiresome at this point, but we think there’s an important discussion to have here.

The over use of ‘Craft’

Type in ‘craft’ over on the and you’ll see brands using the term in a variety of ways, whether it be brands that rename every cultivar in their portfolio to include ‘craft’, or large scale producers launching sub brands under a ‘craft’ moniker where they effectively buy from smaller growers that meet the craft criteria.

Craft Cannabis on the OCS

While we can sit back and denounce how much craft has been misused as a term, it still means something to most people, and that’s important. Smaller, independent growers who produce a quality product need a banner to rally behind, to help distinguish themselves from the irradiated mids that make up +80% of the market today.

Retailers are starting to differentiate themselves based off their craft assortment, and are going so far as to exclusively merchandise parts of their stores to showcase a craft section.

Overall we think these are positive trends, and we at Carmel hope to shape what craft cannabis means for Canadians.

So, that’s why we won’t ditch the term.

Recently the OCS decided to draw a line in the sand about what craft means, and we commend this action.

OCS Craft Cannabis Criteria

Less than 10,000 KG per year per facility (we’re about 2,500kg)

Hang Dried (We do this, obviously)

Hand Trimmed (Yes, we do this)

Hand Packaged (Yes, we do this)

All in all that’s a good start. We’ve also heard that they’ll start enforcing the craft washing that’s taken place in the industry by brands that don’t meet this criteria. We think this is great, as it will benefit both smaller producers and consumers.

Sure, we can debate whether or not 10,000 square feet is a reasonable size, why curing isn’t included, and whether or not irradiated product should be considered craft (we do not irradiate) but at the end of the day this is a step in the right direction and we’re all for it.

In the first of a what will be an ongoing series giving you the behind-the-scenes access to Carmel, we check in with our two co-founders, shedding light on where everything started. 

Well guys, let’s start out with introductions and what you do at Carmel?

Dustin (co-founder): I head up business development at Carmel, and as a small company that title is really just a catch-all.

Roey (co-founder):I manage the operations side of the business, which really means trying to make things as smooth as possible for our incredible grow team to execute on their vision.

Before we get into how Carmel came about, when did you guys first come to know each other?

Dustin: We met each other in grade 9, and funny enough our teacher designated Roey to keep me in-check although I think he wound up getting me into more trouble than anything. Since then we’ve been involved in a few entrepreneurial pursuits but after college we went in different paths. I stepped into the family business and he started working as a lawyer.  

How did things get to where they are today, when did you guys link back up?

Roey: after a few years of practice in law, I was really getting burnt out and wasn’t sure I was ready to continue down that path for the foreseeable future. I ended up resigning with a game plan of taking some personal time to travel. Dustin and I had always been close friends, but in early 2017 we started to focus in on all the opportunity surrounding legalization in Canada.

Dustin: For us though, we really saw opportunity in a different light. All you heard leading up to legalization and even for a period of time after legalization was square footage and stock price. ‘Bigger is better’ was pretty much the only narrative out there, and we were disappointed in the lack of companies actually focusing on the consumer, on delivering unique and memorable experiences. Brands didn’t seem to stand for anything and everyone was peddling the same generic, mass produced product.

Original floor plans circa 2017

So it seems like you were pretty dialed in on an issue in the industry, how did you come to the solution?

Roey: We met with a ton of different teams across the industry, from retailers to growers to ancillary services.  Everything really crystallized when we met Drew. We wanted to do something special, something different and Drew’s vision was perfectly aligned to that. He’s really put in his time and honed in his craft of delivering a product of exceptional quality, along with unique genetics that were at the forefront of consumer tastes. When we saw his product, heard him talk about his growing philosophy and begun to get an appreciation of the incredible seed bank he was sitting on, it all made sense.

Dustin: I remember opening one of Drew’s bags in our office and honestly, neighbouring offices started a que to see what was going on. When they saw the product, smelled it and were lucky enough to try it, everyone was just blown away. We wanted to replicate that feeling, something this good deserved to be shared and we’ve been focused on recreating that same excitement and fanfare ever since.

Roey: We really can’t wait to see the product on shelf. We’re confident the market is desperately looking for higher quality and greater variety, so everyone reading this stay tuned for updates when we’ll be in market. Right now we’re looking at a September launch, but give us a follow on Instagram (@carmel.cannabis) for the most up-to-date information. Thanks for reading.   

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