The growth of gourmet ganja

THEY are Scotland’s cannabis connoisseurs, the nation’s self-styled “ganja gourmets” – and they are driving up the cost of the nation’s most widely used illegal drug.  Soaring demand for increasingly sophisticated varieties of cannabis –the weed equivalent of a fine Barolo, Sancerre or Chateauneuf-du-Pape –has doubled the average price in the last year alone, the Sunday Herald can reveal.  One gramme of the drug now costs an average of about £10, the same price as a bottle of decent wine.

Kenny Simpson, a veteran detective of three decades now acting as a civilian expert for the Scottish Crime and Drug Enforcement Agency (SCDEA), explained: “A more discerning market is developing. We are seeing a lot of people getting involved in home-grown cannabis. “We have a growing cottage industry because of the money to be made, because the price of cannabis – the flowering tops, the buds – has doubled. But the quality of the product has also improved greatly. People used to just talk about ‘cannabis’. “But now we are seeing varieties such as ‘AK-47’, ‘Purple Haze’ and, especially, ‘Cheese’.”

“Cheese” might sound like a bad version of a Chris Morris parody on The Day Today, but there is big money to be made in this cottage industry for high-quality skunk. A single gramme of marijuana sells, on average, for £10, Simpson said. Its resin is cheaper, at £5 per gramme, but that is up from £2.80 this time last year.  The Sunday Herald was this week cited prices slightly lower than these, £25 for one-eighth of an ounce, the standard measure for the product, roughly 3.5 grammes.

Cannabis resin, or hashish – now often a far cry from the poor quality “nine bar” or “soap bar” product of recent years, can also command huge prices.  Simpson reckons the resin market is also getting increasingly sophisticated, especially for those who refer to “first presses” of hashish, as if they were buying virgin olive oil in a delicatessen.

via : Herald Scotland

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