After years of being stigmatized in the public opinion, cannabis users can finally take a deep breath and say it loudly: yes, we love weed.
Since the legalization of recreational cannabis in Colorado and Washington in 2012, the US cannabis market has boomed tremendously. To this day, 10 states plus the District of Columbia have legalized weed for recreational and medical purposes, and 47 states have some kind of a medical marijuana program.
Advancements have reached nearly every segment of the industry.
We even have weed influencers nowadays — something you would never think of a few years ago.
And yet, there’s a tradition older than marijuana legalization — the Cannabis Cup.
The origins of Cannabis Cup date back to 1988 when HighTimes, the founder of the event, run it in Amsterdam for the first time.
Let’s answer the most frequently asked questions about the Cannabis Cup.
The Cannabis Cup is the world’s leading cannabis festival and trade show, celebrating the weed community through competitions, instructional seminars, expos, concerts, product exhibitions, celebrity show-ups, and more.
The organization behind the event is the High Times magazine, the publication reporting on marijuana and cannabis culture topics since 1974.
Ahead of each Cannabis Cup, weed entrepreneurs submit entries in the following categories:
At the end of the year, companies scoring the Top 10 of each category in their regional cups will qualify for the World Championship Cup.
Originally, the Cannabis Cup was held in Amsterdam since 1988. However, with the passage of medical and recreational laws, the show has expanded to the U.S. and other countries.
So far, the Cannabis Cup took place in Denver, Michigan, Seattle, California, Nevada, and Jamaica, with new hosting places being added each year.
Make sure to stop by CannabisCup.com for details and announcements about the upcoming events and newly added cities.
As mentioned, the Cannabis Cup isn’t solely about the competition. It’s home to different contests and events for the best cannabis strains and cannabis goods where weed entrepreneurs can showcase their new products like new smoking devices, cannabis edibles, growing equipment, hemp clothing, cannabis beauty products, and much more.
During the Cannabis Cup expo, marijuana enthusiasts and journalists join cannabis industry experts to award seals of approval or awards for the best products in their category. This isn’t the same as the exact Cannabis Cup competition, though.
The Cannabis Cup is also a great place for those cannabis users seeking first-class entertainment. The event gathers plenty of celebrities who openly support cannabis, so there’s a good chance you’ll meet some famous stoners like Snoop Dogg, Seth Rogen, or Cheech & Chong.
There’s also a music festival taking place during the event. High Times doesn’t usually announce musical lineups until closer to the event, but there are almost always special concerts between the official High Times stages and the many stands with cannabis vendors.
If neither the competition nor the entertainment part is your pair of shoes, then you might want to show up at the Cannabis Cup for the sake of broadening your knowledge about weed.
The Cannabis Cup is a perfect opportunity to learn from the pros, from live grow-room tours with reputable cultivation experts to kitchen performances with cannabis chefs. On top of that, you can try a cannabis topical massage spa, visit vape pen clinics, and see some impressive dab rig expositions.
There’s a two-tiered digital system including a qualitative score coming from judges and a quantitative score that comes from third-party lab results.
75% of the total comes from the qualitative score. The judges are looking at the visual aesthetics, aroma, taste, the type/duration of high, burnability, and other factors which vary by category.
Everyone who believes in their high levels of cannabis knowledge and is extremely dedicated to the cause and task of judging can apply for being a judge. High Times then carefully selects all applicants to create a team of the best judges from around the world.
The magazine uses an online application system; access to the application is as easy as asking a High Times staff member who’s willing to give assurance for your expertise. Keep in mind, however, that judging begins before the competition, so you’ll have to be available in the area leading up to the event if you want to join the committee.
Yes, but there are certain requirements you must meet.
To begin with, Cannabis Cups in recreational states are open to adults 21 and over, and smoking is totally allowed as long as you can show a valid ID.
In medical states, smoking at the event is a bit more complicated. While the Cannabis Cup in medical states is open to anyone 18 and up, you can only smoke weed when you have a valid medical card or recommendation from your doctor.
The Cannabis Cup is BYOB regardless of where it’s held. This means you should bring our own bud (and accessories) if you want to smoke. If somehow, you forge your weed, you can come empty-handed and browse the vendors to find your new favorite strain or product.
Whether you’re a cannabis aficionado or a legal marijuana entrepreneur, there are many benefits to attending the Cannabis Cup. Getting a booth and winning the competition in your category is a great honor and prestige; it will also coin you recognition among investors, not to mention that you can make new friends and establish partnerships that can help you grow your weed business.
For tickets and all announcements for upcoming events, visit CannabisCup.com. If you’re interested in attending the specific Cup, keep track of the events and follow @High_Times_Mag on Social Media.
Have you already been to the Cannabis Cup? Which year and city rocked it the most in your opinion?
We’re excited to read your stories in the comments!