Mary Jane’s Primo Hemp Vodka: Booze Meets Grass
What do you think about Vodka made with hemp?
Well, there is one, and it’s called Mary Jane’s Primo Hemp Vodka™ on sale in Canada.
With the legalization of marijuana in Colorado and Washington many wonder which state will be up next in going pro-cannabis (Speaking of “going pro” the outcome of the Super Bowl suggests Washington might handle their grass a bit better than those Coloradans– but I digress).
Let’s look at another approach.
What is the story behind Mary Jane’s Primo Hemp Vodka?
An entrepreneur in Canada named S.R. Collier (founder and CEO) developed a vodka brand with a 4.20% infusion of Hemp, which is introduced during distillation. That negligible amount of THC (the chemical responsible for marijuana’s effect) and the distillation process do not affect the buzz but rather give the brand some “fun, naughty and interesting marketing hype,” according to Mr. Collier.
I have not had the opportunity to try it yet but from what I am told it provides a distinctive and unique taste with overtones of hazelnut. Collier explains that the Hemp oil yields an “ultra smooth” profile.
Are you wondering why this Mary Jane Vodka isn’t available in the United States? Enter the alcohol regulatory authority.
The product was submitted to the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) for formula and label approval. The formula was approved but due to the label containing the image and phrase ‘Mary Jane’ (slang for marijuana) the product was ultimately rejected. Who knew the TTB are so hip?
But wait a minute. This is the same regulatory agency that approved alcohol labels with such names as Fokker Ale, Fuchen Liqueur, Chockin’ Chicken, Fat Bastard, Big Dick Beer, along other classy names. Never mind, Mary Jane’s Primo Hemp Vodka cannot be sold in the US under that name. But, the product itself is okay. Check out Robert Lehrman’s blog for more information.
Enter Washington’s Revolution Spirit.™
It turns out that our founding fathers (Washington and Jefferson included) grew Hemp on their farms. The crop was useful for rope, paper, and clothing. Hemp was long promoted in Virginia as an alternative cash crop to tobacco. According to some sources, Washington, not only grew Hemp, but also actively promoted its growth. It’s claimed that in letter to his plantation field manager, he wrote: “Make the most of the Indian hemp seed, . . . and sow it everywhere!”
So, Mr. Collier has changed the name of his product to Washington’s Revolution Spirit.™ for US distribution. The TTB approved that label and it uses the Mary Jane’s Primo Hemp Vodka formulation currently used in Canada. Same recipe, different name.
Very clever idea, eh?
By the way, the brand is for sale including the brand names, websites, intellectual property, glass molds, inventory, and so on. Let me know if you’re interested.
Check out the different labels: