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Growing Forward Podcast

Growing Forward Logo with mic and marijuana leaf

A podcast exploring the cannabis industry in New Mexico. Hosted by Andy Lyman, reporter at New Mexico Political Report, and Megan Kamerick, correspondent at New Mexico PBS, on-air host at KUNM radio and former business reporter.

Cannabis Risks and Concerns - Special Episode

In this special bonus episode of "Growing Forward," we investigate some of the concerns that still exist around cannabis use and the potential legalization of recreational use in New Mexico. Dr. Brant Hager, a Psychiatrist at UNM, reached out to us recently to point out some of those risks and concerns, in relation to both recreational and medicinal use of cannabis. He spoke with hosts Andy Lyman and Megan Kamerick about what exactly those concerns are and what lawmakers still need to be considering when debating a legalization bill next year. (Note: Dr. Hager is speaking from his own perspective and his opinions are in no way representative of UNM as a whole).

 

Episode Music:
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"
Poddington Bear - "Good Times"

Holiday Leftovers

This week, we conclude Season 1 with a good 'ole batch of holiday leftovers. We covered a lot in this first season, but there are still plenty of issues left to discuss when it comes to New Mexico's existing medical cannabis program and the potential for a recreational-use market if lawmakers approve legalization in 2021. Hosts Andy Lyman and Megan Kamerick discuss everything from revenue projections, to banking challenges for cannabis-related businesses and much more!

 

Episode Music:

Blue Dot Sessions - "Lupi"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Pastel De Nata"
Chad Couch - "Wilsons Snipe"
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"
Poddington Bear - "Good Times"

Field Trip

Going into a cannabis dispensary can be confusing. Not only do patients juggle the many strangely-named strains of the plant, but they also have to figure out how to ingest it. Do they smoke the bud? Use a topical cream? A wax concentrate? Well, this week on “Growing Forward,” our crew grabbed their mics (and masks) for a field trip to a local Albuquerque dispensary & manufacturing facility to answer some of these questions. Listen, as we talk to the brains behind the cannabis products that patients all around the state rely on!
Episode Music:
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"
Poddington Bear - "Good Times"
Blue Dot Sessions – "Detailing"

Cannabis and Indigenous Communities

A missing piece of most cannabis conversations in New Mexico, whether it has to do with medical or the potential for legalization of recreational- use, is how Indigenous Communities are impacted. It's a complicated scenario, especially when you consider the 23 Tribes in our state are all sovereign nations. This week on "Growing Forward" we dive into those sovereignty issues, and how Indigenous communities perceive the future of cannabis in their communities.

 

Additional Reading - We talk a lot in this episode about a hemp-growing operation in Northwest New Mexico. As the episode points our, there are a lot of concerns about how that operation is being handled and operated. A lot has happened in this story since we taped out interview with Navajo Times Reporter Arlyssa Becenti, but here are some of her most recent updates and related reporting from other news outlets:

Coalition of Officers Raids Benally's Hemp Farms - Navajo Times

Redfeather-Benally Replaces Dineh Benally on Farm Board - Navajo Times

Police Agencies Still Investigating Hemp Farms on Navajo Nation - Farmington Daily Times

Uprooted: A Police Raid Near Shiprock Has All But Ended an Illicit Cannabis-Growing Operation - Searchlight New Mexico

Episode Music:

Christian Bjoerklund - " Hallon"

Poddington Bear - "Good Times"

Testing and Regulations

The clock is officially ticking, if New Mexico wants to legalize recreational-use cannabis. That's because voters in Arizona approved a measure last week, legalizing the drug in another neighboring state. Lawmakers and Governor Michelle Lujan Grisham will no doubt make it a top priority for the 2021 session, but there are many questions still to be answered as the legislation is drafted. One of those questions as to do with testing and regulations. This week on Growing Forward, hosts Megan Kamerick and Andy Lyman dive into this issue as it relates to the state's medical program. As with most things, it turns out New Mexico is different than other states in how they handle testing and regulation, in a lot of different ways.

Arizona Legalizes Recreational Cannabis | Special

This week, Arizona voters approved an initiative to legalize recreational cannabis in that state. Hosts Andy Lyman and Megan Kamerick talk to Arizona Republic reporter Andrew Oxford about what that initiative entailed and what impacts it may have on New Mexico's push to also legalize recreational cannabis in the upcoming 60-day session.

Cannabis Education

This week, we go back to school on cannabis education. And, we're not just talking about understanding how to get your medical card and how the plant can help alleviate pain and discomfort or even, potentially, help a person kick an addiction to opiates. It also has to do with how much cannabis dispensary employees should know about medical conditions and advising patients on the proper strains and doses to take. We'll walk you through the process from beginning to end and find out what kind of training requirements the experts say there should be in this burgeoning industry.

Episode Music:
Podington Bear - "Good Times"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Neon Drip"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Building the Sled"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Svela Tal"
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"

Pulling Back the Leaves

This week on "Growing Forward" we are truly pulling back the leaves, exploring more about the cannabis plant itself. Have you ever wondered how the plant works? Do you know what terpenes are? You will after listening to this episode! We'll also discuss other important issues, what goes into growing cannabis, and what it means for one of New Mexico's most precious resources: water.

 

Episode Music:
Podington Bear - "Good Times"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Doghouse"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Building the Sled"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Pastel De Nata"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Roundpine"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Low Light Switch"
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"

Who's Running Things

This time on Growing Forward we take a closer look at those people running the medical cannabis program, and how legalizing recreational cannabis would impact how they do business. This includes manufacturers and dispensary owners. It's a diverse group of people at the heart of this industry, and includes some surprise names. We'll also delve into other issues like plant limits and licenses and well as management companies, a fairly new approach to work within those license limits.

Episode Music:
Podington Bear - "Good Times"
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Building the Sled"
Kevin MacLeod - "Backed Vibes Session"

The Dynamics of Legalization

The push for the legalization of recreational cannabis has really picked up in recent years in the New Mexico legislature. In this week's episode, we look back at those efforts to date, and the strategy behind the legislation proposed in past sessions. We talk to lawmakers and advocates about how that legislation addresses complicated issues like restorative justice, protecting the medical cannabis program, and other regulation concerns.

An Abridged History of Medical Cannabis in New Mexico

The debate over medical cannabis use in New Mexico goes back to the 1970s. But it really cranked up in the 1990s, when former Governor Gary Johnson came out in support of legalization and decriminalization. It was a controversial stance at the time, but was coupled by the early stages of a push for legislation creating a medical cannabis program. That debate would last for nearly a decade, but the Lynn and Erin Compassionate Use Act was signed into law in 2007. In this episode of "Growing Forward" we look back at that time and talk to lawmakers and advocates who worked tirelessly to create the nation's 13th medical cannabis program.

Episode Music:
Blue Dot Sessions - "Svela Tal"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Highride"
Blue Dot Sessions - "Neon Drip"
Chad Crouch - "American Coot"
Chad Crouch - "Western Tanager"
Chad Crouch - "Wilson's Snipe"
Podington Bear - "Good Times"
Christian Bjoerklund - "Hallon"

Growing Forward Season 1 Preview Episode

"Growing Forward" is a podcast dedicated to covering the cannabis industry in New Mexico. Right now that only includes the medical program, but lawmakers are inching closer to legalizing recreational cannabis as well. Before we dive into all the intricacies and nuances of legalization, we wanted to take a step back and give you the history of how we got to this place and time. Hosts Andy Lyman of the NM Political Report and Megan Kamerick, Correspondent at NMPBS and on-air host at KUNM discuss the start of the medical program in New Mexico, and what happened with recent attempts to pass legalization legislation in the Roundhouse. Be sure to subscribe to "Growing Forward" today and listen in next week (September 29) as we officially premiere episode 1 of season 1.

Growing Forward Season 1 Trailer

Growing Forward is a journalistic endeavor designed to cover the cannabis industry in New Mexico. Season 1 officially premieres on Tuesday, September 22nd. The podcast is a collaboration between New Mexico PBS and New Mexico Political Report, with funding provided by the New Mexico Local News Fund.

Note: Interviews for Growing Forward were all conducted via Zoom as a part of our COVID-safe practices. Originally our plan was to do interviews in person, but in order to maintain social distancing and to keep everyone involved safe and healthy, we decided to use the technology available to us.

 

Growing Forward Logo Created By:
Katherine Conley