Cody Coulson is a solventless hash maker and founder of the family run Coulson Cannabis. They produce rosin under the Persy and Port North brands which are both ‘rec’ brands available on the OCS.
It was a typical cold and snow covered January day in Ontario, Canada when I made the 3 hour drive from Hashtek HQ to Port Elgin, Ontario – the small Canadian port city that Coulson Cannabis calls home. Port Elgin has a population under 8,000 and is the perfect home for a craft cannabis brand like Persy. The lab is located on a converted dairy farm and meets all of Health Canada’s strict compliance regulations. A true dream for any craft producer, and evidence that it is possible to survive, and even thrive- in a market where regulations tend to favour oligopolies and big players over small craft producers.
Cody and his partner Missy got me signed in and led me past the barbed wire gate. An ice machine was situated right outside the door, a hallmark of hash processing labs.
Lab approved attire included a lab coat, hair/beard net and a pair of company issued crocs – wicked. The total height in the lab was around 7’ and all the processing rooms had windows into them from the outside. Giving the whole place a “willy wonka” vibe as Cody put it.
We got into the cold water processing room and I was happy to see the Hashtek A-series machine setup almost perfectly. The only issue being that the custom [Ht] strap was set up upside down! After giving Cody a hard time about this we started loading up the machine for a quick pre soak. Typically for fresh frozen material I soak for 5-10 minutes and for dry material 30-60 minutes of pre soak. Cody has similar pre-soak times in his SOPs.
While the material was soaking Cody took me over to his secure storage to show me some of the hash they had previously produced. Of particular interest were the hand rolled temple balls that Cody and his team make. These are a form of traditional hashish pressed via Frenchy tek named after the late and great Frenchy Cannoli. Cody proudly informed me that the terpenes on this batch of temple balls tested over 10%. A very impressive feat for a more traditional expression of hashish. Typically you only see terpene levels this high for more refined products like hash rosin which have been de-waxed via the rosin pressing step. This is certainly not the type of hash that was run through a meat grinder and would fetch a much higher retail value. Frenchy claimed that these temple balls, after 1+ year of curing, could form a dabbing grade product as the resin amalgamates and the hash cures.
There was also some beautiful rosin in that secure storage fridge. As per Health Canada Regulations, 10-25 grams of every batch of rosin is put aside as a “retain” sample. This ensures that in the case of a product recall, there is additional material that Health Canada can re-test.
These retain samples also show how poor the cold supply chain is in Canada’s provincial cannabis distribution system. The excised sample that Cody gave me was a lot darker than the retains from the same batch. Showing that OCS (Ontario Cannabis Store – the govt. enforced distribution monopoly) had not maintained a cold supply chain during distribution. And yes for a producer like Cody in order to legally giveaway samples of his product he must send it to OCS and then buy it back from them.
After about 10 minutes the pre-soak was complete. Cody had already been using the Hashtek A-series system for 1 month prior to my visit so him and his team were already pretty familiar with it. I showed the team how to run the system with continous recirculation as they were used to running batch style agitation. I also showed the guys some ways to modify the pre-set agitation settings, including how to ramp the speed up to 100% (up from the 70% on the default ‘agressive’ setting).
The video above shows the agitation with the proprietary Hashtek paddle. Notice the multiple water currents going up, down and around ensure maximum water movement and thus trichome yield. We got a number of good trays of hash out of this run of Gelato-33 grown in the province of Quebec.
When I got home I sampled some of the same Gelato-33 that we washed that day. The flavour profile was excellent- with deep earthy tones and a slight GMO undertone. The exhale tasted like freshly baked goods and the excised gram that Cody gave me did not last long.
Cody Coulson’s Background with Cannabis
Cody has a very personal relationship with Cannabis, highlighted in his interview with High Times. This touching per
Coulson tells High Times, “I noticed the major lack of both access to and knowledge about the cannabis industry. After he passed away, I was frustrated with the cannabis system’s lack of regulation and access to quality products, and driven to find a solution.”
At eighteen years old, Cody experienced his own bout of illness. After Cody’s first grand mal seizure, doctors diagnosed him with epilepsy.
The medicine given to Cody produced a host of negative side effects.
Unable to experience life the way he used to, Cody looked for different treatments, including CBD. Yet doctors would not prescribe cannabis.
Cody explains, “After months of asking my family doctor for alternatives (including CBD), the short answer was no.”
Motivated by the “cold sweats, insomnia, anxiety and a severe loss of emotion” that came along with his prescriptions, Cody began taking CBD against his doctor’s advice.
CBD has allowed Cody to stop taking the medications prescribed by his doctors. Cody successfully ended the cycle of side effects and avoided other prescriptions to counteract them, with cannabis.
“I also haven’t had a seizure in the 3 years I’ve been taking it,” Cody tells High Times.High Times
The Future of Coulson Cannabis
We hope you enjoyed this feature as much as I enjoyed spending the day at the Coulson Hash Lab.
Speaking with Cody Coulson he is excited to grow with the market and looks forward to supply chain improvements which will allow products like full melt to be brought to the Canadian recreational framework.
Happy Hash Making!
Aleks – Hashtek Founder