In 2016, VICE met business partners in Atlanta who had a dream of getting into the legal weed business but couldn’t see a way to take their illegal grow off the streets. Two years later, the entrepreneurs—Felix and Kingston—are now running Gas House, a successful legal weed company in Oakland whose products are sold in dispensaries across California. In an industry home to a small number of black business owners, Felix and Kingston have become pioneers inspiring others to leave the underground market behind.
VICE met up with the duo to learn more about how they market their products, and the legal requirements they had to meet to transition from the black market to an above-board operation. Then we talked with dispensary owners, locals, and cannabis entrepreneurs about the access and inclusion gaps in California’s legal weed industry—and what companies like Gas House are doing to close them.