Business is booming for cannabis dispensaries in America, so it's not surprising that many are looking for ways to give back to the communities that have helped the new industry thrive. That's why The+Source - a Las Vegas dispensary with two locations in the city - is hosting a food drive for the local Three Square Food Bank.
This year will be their second engagement with the group to help feed the food-insecure population of Nevada.
"We wanted to pay it forward and help in any way we could, so, last year, we decided to host a food drive," Dan Zarrella, Director of Marketing, told Civilized. He described the venture as an "enormous success" since they were able to collect over 150,000 pounds of food donations, which, they say, was the biggest haul in the state.
"It was truly heartwarming to see the looks on the faces of patients, customers, team members and everyone else who saw and helped build those enormous towers of food cans in our stores’ lobbies,” he said. “So, we decided to do it again this year."
Due to the success of last year’s endeavor, this time, the company has decided to take it even further by donating three meals for every half an ounce of their "shake and bake" cannabis purchased throughout the month of November. The "shake and bake" is comprised of small pieces of cannabis flower that break off of larger buds and is priced at $75. Zarrella said that they will also be accepting monetary donations.
He says The+Source is happy to continue the food drive because they are indebted to the community for supporting the dispensary.
"Those of us lucky enough to know the community we belong to know how generous and caring it is. It’s good for everyone whenever we can give back and have fun doing it."
It was also a great opportunity to show the value that a cannabis company can bring to a city, and that the business is full of people looking to improve the industry in any way they can.
"We have a duty to not only give back but help showcase what a remarkable group of people represent this amazing plant," Zarrella explained.
"The+Source employees came to volunteer at Three Square last year and wanted a way to support our mission even further," said a representative for the Three Square Food Bank. "After a few discussions, their team came back with the idea to offer their customers an incentive for their involvement with a non-perishable food drive."
Because of the success of last year’s food drive, Three Square decided to reach out and ask if The+Source would partner with them again over the holiday season.
"The+Source’s desire to give back aligns perfectly with our needs and we certainly wouldn’t operate successfully without dedicated partners like them," said the Three Square rep. "Philanthropy works best when it’s coupled with passion, and that’s exactly what we got from the employees at The+Source."
Through the help of their service network of 1,600 community partners, Three Square says they serve more than 164,000 individuals monthly, meaning they rely on these partnerships to reach as many food-insecure people in their community as possible.
And while some companies like major American financial institutions are still wary of working with the cannabis industry, Three Square said they have no trepidation about working with the marijuana industry. Zarrella indicated that the collaboration made sense for them as well, saying "Three Square was our first choice to partner with, as they’re a great organization that does so much good in the community."