Women make up nearly half of cannabis users—and it’s high time that the business world embraces that fact.
According to the most recent National Survey on Drug Use and Health, about 40% of annual marijuana users in the U.S are female. That means there are roughly 13 million women who smoked (or otherwise consumed) pot last year—and yet most marijuana products and paraphernalia look like they were designed for teenage boys.
Enter Annabis, a company devoted to making marijuana accessories for women. “Until two to three years ago, the only women in cannabis were big-busted women with marijuana leaf pasties [on their breasts],” quips Jeanine Moss, Annabis’ co-founder and co-CEO. “Guess who doesn’t care about that or want to see that?”
Moss, who grew up in Venice Beach (“everyone smoked pot in Venice Beach”), has been a cannabis user for years and was habitually frustrated by her inability to find an elegant solution to storing her weed and somewhat bulky accessories like pipes and vaporizers. The company “was born out of necessity and experience,” she says.
A former Madison Avenue exec who still runs her own communications firm, Turning Point Solutions, Moss partnered with longtime friend and designer Ann Shuch to create a bag for female smokers that is both functional and fashionable. The function part of the equation has two aspects: odor control and organization, says Moss: “You need a place for the vape, a place for the plant…maybe pockets for hand cream, eye drops, lipstick.”
All of Annabis’ bags are made of Italian leather and lined with a plastic resin film, which the company calls Odor-Loc Technology (the founders are still in the process of applying for a patent). They range in styles and sizes, with prices starting at $85 for a wristlets and ranging up to larger, cross-body bags that go for $295 a pop.
The company started selling its products in November of last year, and “sold out all of [its] inventory” says Moss, though she declined to share sales figures. The company, which currently operates out of New Jersey, is in the process of raising seed funds from investors, including Mitch Baruchowitz, a principal at cannabis infrastructure fund Greenfield Capital.
“I think Jeanine’s personality and the fact that she understands the media really gives Annabis a leg up” compared to other cannabis startups, says Baruchowitz, who also expects the company to expand to other verticals. “It’s hard to pick the winner this early,” he says, referring to the hyper-fragmented consumer product market, “but I believe in the passion and the vision of the founders.”