Willie Nelson smokes pot. Well technically, Willie Nelson probably vapes pot more often nowadays. That's what he was doing when James Joiner sat down with him during the SXSW madness in Austin.
Joiner filed his story about Willie Nelson's huge Heartbreaker Banquet last week, complete with loads of pics. But one little bit of news that Willie Nelson accidentally dropped in the interview spun off a whole new conversation.
Willie Nelson is planning to open a chain of pot stores, featuring his own personal strain of weed.
Willie Nelson has been a champion of all things cannabis, including industrial hemp and marijuana, for decades. But now he's bringing his wares to Main Street of select towns.
Michael Bowman is the spokesman for Willie's pot store enterprise. He says that there is more to this than 81-year-old Willie Nelson selling his favorite pot, which they plan to call "Willie's Reserve." They will sell product from other growers, but with certain caveats.
"There will be our own, and then there will be opportunities for other growers, who meet quality standards. Let’s just call it the anti-Walmart model. Personally, internally, that’s what we call it. A certain standard by which growers have to account for carbon and such, in a way that empowers small growers who are doing the right thing."
Bowman went on to explain that a good comparison for what Willie Nelson wants to accomplish with this enterprise is how a well-known health food store chain works.
"It will be like when you walk into a Whole Foods store. Whole Foods has their 365 brand, or you can buy Stony Brook, or you can buy Horizon… It’ll all fall under that umbrella of 'here’s our core beliefs, and here’s our mission statement,' and they will be a part of that, to be a part of us."
— Charles Passy (@CharlesPassy) March 27, 2015