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Rethinking Strain Names

Forget indica or sativa- true cannabis curation, especially for specific medicinal purposes, should be according to chemical composition rather than plant morphology. Dispensaries can help guide patients and consumers through a spectrum of effects that more effectively target specific needs and desired experiences.

The question on everyone’s mind is how cannabinoids and those delicious scent compounds, terpenoids, work in tandem to create, mitigate and modulate our individual responses to cannabis consumption. This is commonly known as the “Entourage Effect.” This poly-pharmaceutical phenomenon suggests that the way we experience cannabis is dictated not by the plant’s morphology (indica or sativa) or even one or two isolated compounds, but through a myriad of molecules working in conjunction with one another and how all these active compounds—but particularly cannabinoids and terpenes—interact with our bodies.

We are in an exciting and dynamic period in the evolution of cannabis. The truth is, though, a lot of misinformation is out there, much of it steeped so deeply into cannabis and mainstream cultures that we have no choice but to work with it. The flawed, but familiar indica/sativa/hybrid taxonomy is here to stay for the foreseeable future but through education and new testing regulations- cultivators, dispensaries, and customers can work in conjunction and move toward a more evidence-based paradigm.