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Candy Girls Earn Their Medical Marijuana Stripes

24 March 2010 News 46,990 views 4 CommentsPrint This Post Print This Post Email This Post Email This Post

It’s 10:30 on a Monday night and the Candy Girls, aka Jennifer Hawkins-Smith, Anna, and Sonja (the latter declined to use their last name) have just arrived at the commercial kitchen they rent,  carrying bags of groceries. The late hour is the time they always meet to begin their orders for their many customers.  

 “It was just easier this way,” explains Hawkins-Smith, “When we were cooking here during the day, we shared the big kitchen with other chefs who were also renting the space. But they kept asking us for samples – and we couldn’t give them any. So now we come at night.”

And why couldn’t they give samples? Because the Candy Girls are one of Denver’s most prominent medical marijuana edibles companies, supplying many dispensaries with a wide variety of baked goods and savory dishes. Tonight’s orders include whole wheat bread, truffles, and cookies.

“Even though we offer many non-sweet foods, people seem to want the classics,” says Anna. “Brownies, cookies, that sort of thing.”

The Candy Girls began in a small north Denver apartment, when the three women began creating cannabis-infused candies for medical marijuana patients they knew couldn’t afford to buy their own. From that limited menu, they’ve grown and expanded along with the rest of the the Colorado medical marijuana industry.

Jennifer and Anna, who are first cousins, first named their company “Growers for God,” since they feel that cannabis was a healing plant in the tree of life, a belief that all organisms on earth are genetically related. However, their appreciative customers kept calling them the Candy Girls, and the name stuck. Soon dispensary owners were calling them for their chocolate truffles, lemon pies and mini-cheesecakes.

The Candy Girls pride themselves on the fact that their food is made with no preservatives and is all organic. Their canna-butter, which they offer in whipped form with different flavorings, is “washed” often to eliminate as many impurities as possible. Their extensive menu includes soups, appetizers, salad dressing, and more. Gluten-free, diabetic-friendly, and heart-healthy creations are also available. 

Many dispensary owners push edibles because smoking is not healthy. Chemo patients who are trying to regain their appetites and weight, are particularly keen on edibles.

“People who will never, ever smoke pot will eat it,” says Hawkins-Smith. “It’s a whole additional market of people.”

The Candy Girls are affiliated with the Tree of Life Caregiver Co-op in Denver, and they work personally with patients there, helping with nutrition and special diet. Both Jennifer and Anna have family members who have healed through the co-op, and they feel strongly about helping those truly in pain—whether mental or physical.

One family member, diagnosed with a seizure disorder, was one of the first hundred Coloradans to obtain a medical marijuana card. During this time, they visited some shady dispensaries; as a result, they are very particular about the dispensaries they sell to.

“We thoroughly investigate dispensaries that want to carry our products,” says Anna. “We won’t work with shops that aren’t truly considering the health and well-being of their patients.”

Now the Candy Girls bake for many Colorado dispensaries, including a customer who drives in from Grand Junction and a Chinese restaurant in Colorado Springs that sells their medicated chocolate-dipped cherries.

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