For our next cannabis profile, we interviewed Munib Bhandari, the founder of Grasse, a cannabis extract and processing company based in Portland, Oregon. We talked about his connection to the Oregon cannabis industry and where he thinks there's room for improvement.
About Munib: Munib is the co-founder of Grasse, which launched to the Oregon market in December 2018. He oversees the business development, sales, and marketing of the company. His goal is to bring all natural cannabis concentrates to the Oregon market and beyond, and he believes he's identified a new customer base for this product segment. Beyond cannabis, Munib brings expertise in analyzing current market trends and creating business models that will capitalize on those trends.
What was your inspiration for starting Grasse?
We like to make products that we are proud of and consume ourselves. We did not see a big variety of natural or solventless products in the market and we realized that it is something we had to bring to Oregon.
What makes Oregon's cannabis community special?
Oregon’s craft culture is truly amazing and it translates to the cannabis industry. Folks from around the country and the world truly appreciate the dedication to quality cannabis in Oregon. Oregon also is one of the few places on earth that is ideal for cultivating cannabis, which makes it truly special.
Where do you think Oregon's cannabis industry is most lacking?
Not having a consumption license in Oregon does the industry a big injustice. Having a safe place for folks to enjoy cannabis and to learn and try different products is something that will help educate and also help end the stigma around the industry.
What advice do you have for people looking to start cannabis businesses?
The number one thing that I tell people is that the cannabis industry is about being passionate about the plant. There are a lot of hurdles and competition in the industry but if you are passionate and believe in the plant and your product then you should pursue it.
What is one business lesson you wish you'd learned sooner?
It is important to understand and follow the trends in cannabis in Oregon and also other states. When we started four years ago, there weren’t that many Adult Use States. Now with so many new states, it is important to keep track of trends around the country for inspiration and growth.
Plus, check out this previous interview we did with Munib back in 2019 at the Cannabis Connex Conference: