Last week the Dutch Passion team visited Spain’s iconic cannabis expo “Spannabis” in Barcelona. If you ever get the chance to go to a future Spannabis you really should take the chance. It is a very relaxed atmosphere, packed with thousands of visitors and full of fascinating people.
For Dutch Passion the main focus of the fair is to meet and chat to the thousands of visitors from all over Europe (and beyond) that come to say hello. It is also a great chance to get a representative sample of public opinion. Every time we attend an exhibition we get chance to speak to hundreds of people that have grown, or are growing, Dutch Passion varieties. We get to hear what people like, what they don’t like and what they would like to see in the future. For Dutch Passion it is the customer feedback, good and bad, which allows us to shape our future activities.
We got lots of great feedback. And we met people from literally all over the world. South America, North America, Russia, China, India…everywhere!. Of course there were Europeans of all nationalities including a lot of Eastern Europeans. One thing that was very clear to us is that the scale of home-grown marijuana is truly massive nowadays. And it continues to grow and grow ! Over 20,000 people attended the show and it was featured on Spanish TV, radio and of course most of the stoner magazines had someone there to cover the show. This was a seriously big event and we were surprised to see just how busy the show was.
AutoFem’s are now firmly established favourites. Outdoor growers, especially in the Mediterranean regions are now successfully cropping AutoFem’s 3 times a year. For the ‘self sufficient’ grower who doesn’t want to have too many plants growing at any one time the AutoFem is a great solution. Growers can get several plants under way early in the year, wait 9-10 weeks until harvest and crop. They just keep repeating this process until winter comes. Visitors from central European countries were able to get 2 AutoFem crops a year. And even northerly growers were finding that they could grow AutoFem’s in their short summers. We met a few people with growing seasons too short for traditional varieties but these customers were able to grow outdoors for the first time thanks to AutoFem’s
As always a few customers brought us samples of the end product to try and we were as impressed as they were. AutoMazar was the most common of the varieties we were kindly given, and the Spanish grown stuff is excellent!
Spain now has some of the best and most tolerant weed laws in Europe. The economic climate is Spain is not good, with lots of young people short of cash and in need of work. With money in short supply many people in Spain are now saving cash and growing their own weed. A few years ago is seemed quite a few people were growing their own. Now it seems like almost everyone is. The interest in home-grown weed is simply massive in Spain. Every day there were thousands queued up to get into Spannabis. Many people told us they grow quite openly on their patio and balconies. Even those living in small apartments were able to grow a few plants on a terrace. Lots of others had found private areas in the countryside to grow a few plants, sometimes in collaboration with a few friends.
A few years ago it was mainly the connoisseurs who understood the subtle differences between the cannabis varieties. Today it seems like most people we met had a good idea of their preferred varieties. As always there were the hardcore pure indica and pure sativa fans. But there were lots of people who knew exactly what they wanted to buy. Some people came along and bought lots of their favourite seeds. Others came along and had a long chat to find out more and get recommendations from our team.
The Spanish Cannabis club is proving to be a popular model for marijuana fans in other countries. We met lots of people, and lots of medical marijuana users who found the cannabis clubs to be a great way of allowing responsible adults to get a supply of quality marijuana. And we are pleased that many of them are growing quality Dutch Passion varieties.
Spannabis maybe over for another year, but we met lots of new friends and the conversations we had with our customers help shape the way we think about new developments.
March 10th 2012