The late Bob Marley’s name conjures up three images that defined his life: reggae, Rastafarianism and ganja. His music and beliefs live on, and now his name will live on in another way; a new Bob Marley pot and hemp-based array of products they hope will soon light up sales.
A Los Angeles launch event this week introduced the “cannabis lifestyle brand” Marley Natural that markets a line of smokable pot, smoking accessories and a hemp seed and natural oils body care products. As legal marijuana for medicinal and recreational use has spread in the U.S., several pot entrepreneurs have wanted to capitalize on Bob Marley’s image, tendency to light up and overall reputation, which has not diminished since his death from cancer in 1981. The family began the effort to bring Marley Natural to fruition three years ago.
The resulting firm is a partnership between the Marley family and a Seattle-based company, Privateer Holdings. Their Website emphasizes that “Marley Natural celebrates Bob Marley’s respect for the healing power of nature, the beauty of the earth and the relationship we all share with it.”
The packaging, adorned with a lion (a Rastafari symbol representing Haile Selassie), emphasizes nature with its earth tones. They feature a quote from Marley, “Herb is a plant. Herb is good for everything.”
As one would expect, the Marley brand has several strains of cannabis with differing strengths and levels of THC. Those products will initially be available for those with a prescription at three Los Angeles-area medical pot dispensaries, then elsewhere in the state. Eventually, the plan is to sell the Marley-branded marijuana in Colorado, Washington, Oregon and other naturally pot friendly markets.
Son Stephen “Ragga” Marley, who is also a Grammy-winning reggae artist, explained to Rolling Stone that “herb is such a big part of our life. It’s a sacrament to us.” He also noted that the plant itself has much more to offer than a means to get high.
Accordingly, the other products in the line (besides the smoking paraphernalia) are largely hemp based. The personal-care products use cold-pressed oil from hemp-seeds, which reportedly has outstanding moisturizing and non-greasy properties in skin care lotions. Cold pressing involves low-temperature, mechanical extraction to eliminate the need to use any chemical solvents to preserve the oil’s natural qualities. This helps maintain the essential fatty acid blend that makes hemp seed oil an effective moisturizer.
The oil is combined with a variety of Jamaican botanicals, such as lemon grass, ginger and turmeric, and other natural products like eucalyptus, rosemary and such. The items available include lotions, soaps, lip balms and other skin care items. As the company also noted, “All of our formulas are paraben, sulfate, and cruelty free.”
While the pot sales are limited in scope to those who legally light up in L.A. now, the Bob Marley Naturals brand of body care products are available nationwide via the company’s Website. Eventually there will be availability in retail outlets, too.
Written and Edited by Dyanne Weiss
Rolling Stone: Marley Natural: Inside Reggae Dynasty’s Splashy L.A. Cannabis Launch
Los Angeles Times: Bob Marley-inspired Marley Natural lifestyle brand launches in L.A. with personal-care items
Product image courtesy of Marley Natural