Budtender Bios: Ben

Budtender Bios: Ben

This is Ben. Hands down, our most articulate staff member. One of the kindest (and most punny) souls you’ll ever meet, Ben is definitely the guy you want answering your toughest extract questions. He’s a walking lexicon with an encyclopedic memory and can probably crossword us all under the table. It should come as no surprise that he also happens to write for an up and coming cannabis publication, The Highly, in his free time.

Q: What do you do at Farma? Any special role?
A: I am the scheduling manager, as well as the cartridge buyer here. I’ve been in both roles for just about two years.

Q: What did you do before getting into the industry? 
A: I started my working history in Portland providing one on one care for adults with developmental disabilities. I moved into the kitchen industry from there, and worked the gamut from bar kitchens to fine
dining, though I eventually settled in to prep cooking and doing small pairing dinners.

Q: What made you want to get into cannabis?
A: Admittedly, I was pretty nervous to enter the cannabis industry at all! After working in fairly solitary professions for over a decade, I had trepidations about entering a section of the industry that was so public-facing.

A very close friend of mine, Matt Taylor, was the flower buyer here, and slowly convinced me that I would fit in well at Farma. His positive encouragement wore me down over time, so I decided to apply and see what would happen. I’ve been here for over three years now.

Q: What’s so special about Farma?
A: The people truly do make this place. I’ve never worked with a group of folks as kind, compassionate, and solution driven as the staff we have here. Everyone has a sincere love for both education, and to be educated. We all want to make sure our patients get what they need, whether they be a purely recreational consumer or one with more medicinally focused needs.

Q: How do you spend your free time?
A: I spend most of my free time with my wife Rachel, and our animals. I try to go to as many concerts as possible, as I feel that live music is my preferred way to recharge my social batteries. I also very much enjoy playing board games and role playing games, and currently have two D&D campaigns that I’m involved in.

Q: What’s your favorite way to consume cannabis? (method of consumption)
A: I don’t know if anything will ever top a freshly packed pipe, though I find myself using this method less and less nowadays. I also really enjoy small .1-.15g joints; just enough to get the point across. I tend to use cartridges as my main method of consumption, though, largely due to my buying role here.

Q: What are some of your favorite things to do while high?
A: In my mind, there is no better pairing than cannabis and attending a good live concert by yourself. It’s such a centering experience.

I also very much enjoy going on hikes when weather permits, or just having a quiet evening reading or trying to get some writing done.

Q: Favorite terpenes?
A: I’m a big fan of anything with a well-balanced ratio of limonene, linalool, and beta-caryophyllene. I really enjoy the mood elevation and euphoric aspects of limonene, and appreciate both linalool and beta-caryophyllene for their body focused, calming effects. Cultivars like Skittlez, Shave Ice, Wedding Cake, and Obama Kush really hit home for me.

Q: Favorite non-flower product (and why)?
A: The Living Resin cartridges from Evolvd are something special, and probably my most used non-flower product. I’ve never had a line of cartridges that so accurately represent the terpene profiles of the
cultivars from which they are extracted.

I also very much enjoy the Wood Balm from Physic. This topical has worked wonders for my general pain management, and also does a great job of helping soothe the inflammation and pain associated with
arthritis.

Q: What is popular misconception about budtending that you can mythbust?
A: The one thing that I can’t stress enough is the misconception that we are medical professionals. Though many budtenders (especially the ones here) are very knowledgeable regarding cannabis and it’s chemical interactions with various ailments, this does NOT make us able to provide and health diagnoses. This being said, we want to help as much as we can, within the realm of information that we can provide!

Q: What do you think is the most important skill a budtender can have?
A: Practicing empathy and understanding is the single most important thing you can do as a budtender. You never know what someone’s life has thrown at them before entering the doors of your dispensary; trying to build an understanding and respectful relationship with your customers can make more of an impact that many of us know.

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Jelena Grove