This past week the biggest players in the California cannabis industry gathered at the Sonoma County Fairgrounds Santa Rosa for Hall of Flowers 2023. The atmosphere at this year’s event had noticeably shifted, with intermittent rain that led to fewer people seshing outdoors, a smaller pool of exhibitors, and an overall more serious tone throughout the event. However, the event halls were buzzing as brands, retailers, and ancillary businesses networked and talked shop.
Brands Take Interactive Booth Design to the Next Level
As expected, all the exhibitors went all out with unique, interactive booths to attract buyers and partners, but there were a few presenters at this year’s Hall of Flowers who especially stood out.
- Cannacraft’s Farmer and the Felon brand was highly visible to anyone who ventured outside. The brand put together an outdoor activation covered in bright orange with a unique retro feel, complete with a vintage van.
- Dabwoods, the number 10 best-selling disposable vape brand for March 2023, took the “interactive” aspect to the next level with their “human crane” booth, hooking up eager event attendees to drop them down into a pit of prizes.
- Stiiizy, the number one best-selling brand in California for Q1 2023, also turned heads with their interactive space, boasting a photobooth setup with a variety of cannabis-themed backgrounds.
Vape Brands and Device Companies Showcase Continued Innovation
Vapes have played a huge role in the California market for years, and that shows little sign of changing with the category bringing in 29% of total dollar sales in Q1 2023. While many brands were there to show off the familiar vape cartridges that consumers know and love, there were also a host of innovative new vape products at this Hall of Flowers.
- Disposable vapes have grown their share in the California market, with BDSA data showing that disposables made up a 16% share of vape sales in Q1 2023, compared to 10% in Q1 2020, and this was reflected in the product offerings on the event floor. A Golden State, Raw Garden, and Airo were just a few of the brands showing off their disposable vape products.
- Vape brands and device manufacturers brought some exciting innovations to the event. Cookies wowed attendees with their Dual Chamber All-In-One vape, a disposable product with two oil tanks that gives consumers options for different strains while on the go.
- One of the most innovative devices at the show was the OOKA, a battery-operated vape “hookah” that mixes vape technology with a sleek design. The OOKA works with proprietary preloaded pods, each filled with a blend of flower and terpenes that can be vaporized at a wide range of temperatures thanks to the device’s adjustable heating element.
Solventless Products Showed Up in a Big Way
Solventless products have seen strong growth in California over the past two years, with BDSA data showing that rosin alone has doubled its share of dabbable dollar sales between Q1 2021 and Q1 2023. This trend was also very apparent in Santa Rosa last week, with many brands touting solventless product offerings, and not just in the concentrate category!
- Sitka came through with several hash offerings, including pressed dry sift hash, and their “Sikarillo” infused pre-rolls. These hash-wrapped joints come in unique packaging and packed a punch.
- Several brands were also offering solventless products that went beyond the concentrate category. Space Gem Candy came to the show with their hash-infused “Spacedrops” and “Mind Expanding Belts” gummy edibles, while renowned California flower brand Fig Farms boosted their new hash rosin-infused “High Flyin” edibles.
The pressures on the California market could be felt at this year’s Hall of Flowers in Santa Rosa, but the enthusiasm for the California cannabis industry has hardly waned. Consumers are still highly engaged, brands are still innovating, and legal cannabis in California still has room to grow in the years to come.
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