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Meet Peter Barsoom of 1906 in Henderson

Today we’d like to introduce you to Peter Barsoom.

So, before we jump into specific questions about the business, why don’t you give us some details about you and your story.
I worked in finance for many years, specifically within highly regulated markets. Today, I’m the CEO of 1906, where I’m responsible for the day-to-day management of the company, and driving development, finance, and operations. I’ve held a variety of senior management positions at leading institutions including American Express, Merrill Lynch, Morgan Stanley, and Intercontinental Exchange. I have a Bachelor of Arts from Colgate University and a graduate degree from Princeton University.

I got into the cannabis industry because my wife and I were enthusiasts of smoking flower, but we were concerned about the health impacts of smoking. Edibles didn’t seem like a viable alternative because they were too unpredictable, they tasted bad, and they had a lot of unhealthy ingredients. We also were fascinated by plant medicine from Ayurveda, Chinese medicine and other traditions, and then, of course, cannabis is one of the most widely-used medicines in history. We saw a major opportunity in the market – to blend the functional benefits of plant medicine with the longstanding benefits of cannabis, and combine those in a healthy, delicious and safe edible. That’s how 1906 was born.

Has it been a smooth road?
It hasn’t always been a smooth road, but it’s definitely been a worthwhile one. There are many limitations to our ability to advertise, and there are many limitations in retail. We can only sell in a legal dispensary, and the dispensary has highly variable display space for a product that we have little control over. Sometimes, we can’t even show boxes. In terms of the marketplace, there’s an established visual vernacular for cannabis brands–hyper-colorful, a bit psychedelic. Cutting against that makes you stand out, but it also creates potential confusion. Also, budtenders completely control the consumer experience in a dispensary, and they tend to prize potency above all. That preference is not meeting the needs of scores of cannabis consumers. Particularly, women, older people, parents–anyone who can’t afford to be incapacitated or even unsure of what a particular edible or flower will do to them. In fact, many people are scared of edibles because they’ve overcommitted dosage-wise, or gotten a product with poor dosing accuracy, and that’s made them averse to trying again. 1906 is meeting the needs of this consumer through high quality, safe, ultra-consistent, low-dose edibles. We are essentially an alternative to the mainstream of cannabis brands.

The legal struggles are enormous, but what’s most difficult is the volatility of regulations. When a regulation changes, all of our packaging, and for some companies, even their business model, may come under question. For example, we recently repackaged our entire product lineup to meet new labeling requirements. It was incredibly costly and time-consuming. But we look at these moments as opportunities to iterate and dial-in our product to keep reaching new consumers.

So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the 1906 story. Tell us more about it.
1906 is on a mission to bring cannabis back to the mainstream. Our unique and innovative line of edibles combines great taste, superior ingredients, and rapid-delivery formulations in a range of experiences that bring the benefits of cannabis and plant medicine to health-conscious adults for whom indulging has to compliment – not deter – a healthy lifestyle. Our lineup delivers five unique experiences that promote sleep, energy, arousal, relaxation and a happy mood, all in safe and predictable formulations using single-strain organic cannabis.

I am most proud of the fact that 1906 is impacting people in pretty simple and yet profound ways. We are there for intimate and vulnerable moments in people’s lives–we’re there when they want to sleep, or have better sex, or relax after a hard day, and it’s such an honor to be able to help them in these moments. Part of what I’ve learned in this work is that so much of the American population is suffering around these issues. We want to give people permission to seek out a better experience–around sex or sleep or hanging out with their mate after the kids go to bed. We don’t have to suffer. We have lots of plant-based allies, and, as a company, we’re proud to bring them together in an accessible, safe, reliable product.

We are among a select few companies focusing on experience-based edibles designed to enhance specific aspects of your life

Pricing:

  • LOVE Chocolates: 3 pieces: $18-22
  • Go Chocolates: 3 pc: $14-8 + tax
  • LOVE Beans: 20 pc: $30-36 + tax

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Image Credit:
1906

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