We’d love to introduce you to Karissa, a cannabis industry veteran with a passion for organic cultivation. As the Assistant Manager at Violet Wild, she brings years of experience and expertise in organic cultivation to the team. With a passion for helping people find the perfect cannabis product and a love for all things green, Karissa is an invaluable asset to the Violet Wild family. Keep reading to learn more about Karissa’s journey in the cannabis industry.
Karissa entered the cannabis market pre-legalization in 2018. She was in the first group of staff to set up the hybrid greenhouse in Strathroy, Ontario for WeedMD (now Entourage, producers of Color Cannabis and Saturday Cannabis). Her hard work and dedication quickly paid off, and she was promoted to Master Grower/Cultivation Manager. In this role, she was responsible for over 158 acres of greenhouse and outdoor facility, 150+ staff, and full-cycle growing (planning, scheduling, and growing clones to harvest) for 100,000+ plants. Karissa’s expertise in cannabis growing led her to be featured on panels alongside Legacy growers with the Ontario Cannabis Store about outdoor growing terroir and year-round growing in controlled hybrid commercial greenhouses.
In 2021, Karissa moved to Vancouver Island and started growing with Cedar Organics as their Master Grower/Head of Cultivation, responsible for 28 acres of outdoor cannabis grown for high terpene content. Now, Karissa resides in Chemainus, BC, where she enjoys a more relaxed lifestyle tending to her garden while feeling grateful to be helping others in her community. Her favourite strains are Mango Haze, Lavender Cake, and anything with a high terpene count. Her favourite consumption method is flowers or pre-rolls for a treat! In her free time, she loves spending time with her cats, and partner, and immersing herself in nature by exploring the natural wonders around Vancouver Island.
At Violet Wild, Karissa uses her knowledge and experience to help her community find the right cannabis product for them. Whether you’re a seasoned cannabis enthusiast or just starting your journey, Karissa is always happy to chat about cannabis and share her expertise!
The Inside Scoop: Karissa Answers Your Burning Cannabis Questions
How did you first get interested in the cannabis industry, and what motivated you to join it?
I first became interested in the industry prior to legalization when the LPs were all just starting to ramp up production. With my experience in organic farming and project management, I was excited to join a ‘budding’ industry that I could grow into (puns intended). Learning from some of the best growers in the industry has been a highlight, as well as meeting all the dope people who tend to gravitate toward this ever-changing industry.
Are there any unique strains you grew? What makes them stand out from other strains?
Mango Haze has been one of my favourite strains to grow, as it is a high CBD/low THC strain that has a great, mild buzz. The plant itself is a jungle to grow in, and she loves to branch out at all of her nodes, creating an absolute monster of a plant! Some other favourites include Ghost Train Haze (very tall and lanky) and Blueberry Seagal (short, squat and puts on the pounds).
What’s your favourite thing about working at Violet Wild?
The incredible people I work with and the wonderful community members I get to meet on a daily basis have been my favourite parts of working with Violet Wild! I’m passionate about helping people understand all aspects of cannabis, and being able to teach people each time I’m in the shop is very special for me.
How do you work with customers to help them find the right strains, products, or consumption methods to meet their needs?
Having an understanding of their end goal is helpful, and together we can work towards finding the product that works best for the individual. Each person is unique in the way that they feel the effects of cannabis, so learning about their prior experience with the plant, their favourite strains, expected outcomes, and favourite flavour profiles can help shape their unique cannabis profile.
What are some of the most common misconceptions people have about cannabis, and how do you address them?
One of the most common misconceptions I find in the industry is that high THC equates to the ‘best’ cannabis. This is not only false but can be dangerous to new users who are being marketed high-THC cannabis. If you want the ‘best’ cannabis, look for high terpene percentages from craft cannabis producers – we have lots of tasty options in the shop, and all of us are happy to help you find your new favourite strain!