Lift & Co. did an excellent job with the annual Lift Expo. The event spanned 4 days (Thursday to Sunday) consisting of a business conference, industry day and finishing up with the two-day public expo.
The conference took place in the North end of the Metro Toronto Convention Center. This was a refreshing location for a cannabis event, above ground with natural light pouring in. It also made for an interesting backdrop, the CBC building, as people medicated outside.
We were at the Lift Expo basically all day Friday, Saturday & Sunday and could have still used more time to talk to booths. Thursday was Lift & Co. Cannabis Business Conference (LCBC) where industry experts discussed both medical and the up coming recreational cannabis markets. Inside the conference hall, vendors were busy setting up their booths for the nest three days.
The conference opened up on Friday for Industry Day, a day with exclusive access to the event. This is intended for the owners of companies, influencers, media, commercial growers, and those who want to beat the crowd. It’s a great opportunity to walk around and get a lay of the land without the thousands more that will be present Saturday. If you suffer from anxiety or don’t like big crowds, getting a pass to the Industry Day is a great way to avoid the crowd and still get product samples.
From walking around it was clear Lift had improved on their previous events incorporating water bottle refill stations, food vendors, and a space to sit down to eat/relax. The size of the conference appeared to be a lot larger than last year but that may have been an optical illusion. The space was rectangular, rather than previously a square, with large windows along a long side letting a bunch of natural light in. This made an immense difference and it was reflecting in those we spoke with, exclaiming how large and enjoyable the event was.
After Industry Day we made our way to Hotbox Café in Kensington Market for the co-branded party with High! Canada. This party was truly one of a kind. Entry gift bags included rolling tray, infused tea, CBD dog treats, rolling papers, and more hand outs through the evening of infused chocolates and pre-rolled joints. High Society Super Club prepared & served finger food throughout the party, with each piece being infused with 5mg of THC. The weather was perfect, so the patio was packed with people. After a couple joints we heard there was a dab bar set up upstairs so we decided to check that out as we left.
When we got upstairs, not only was there a full dab bar stocked by Sublimator Warrior with two sublimator’s going, but also Gorilla Rosin Presses’ were set up for rosin pressing. We couldn’t miss the opportunity to have Dabber Man press some buds for us on the 25-ton press, so it was awhile before we left. I had an amazing time and is up there as one of the best parties I’ve been to. Thank you very much Hotbox Café and High! Canada for organizing the party, it was a great way to start off the weekend.
Day 1 of the expo was busy, as expected, with the general public rushing in to get to the booths. With the large numbers of attendees I was pleasantly surprise to find it not overly crowded. You could walk around without issue; on occasion there were large groups in an aisle but they quickly let you through when made aware.
People were rushing to get to booths with giveaways to ensure they didn’t run out. Nutrients looked like the hot product, with Emerald Harvest and Advanced Nutrients having large crowds around them. Emerald Harvest had 2 & 3 part nutrient boxes including additives for those who joined their mailing list. Advanced Nutrients had 250mL bottles of Bug Bud, (coco & soil) B-52, and Ancient Earth. CYCO had a limited number of nutrient boxes for knowledgeable growers that struck up a conversation with them.
A lot of booths had snacks to be enjoyed at the conference; unfortunately all that I saw were unmediated. There were rumors of medicated samples somewhere, but didn’t come across them. There were also t-shirts, fabric bags, rolling papers, hats, lighters and some Med-Tainers. This year many companies were handing out phone holders and cardholders you stick on to your phone. There was also Dr. Marijane, a soil amendment and root probiotic that had samples. I’m looking forward to testing this out as it has instructions for proper use.
Day 2 of the event was nice and relaxed with a smaller crowd attending. This provided a great convenience to talk to the booths you hadn’t seen yet. For example we went back to the Xotic Seeds booth to browse seeds, picking up a pack of Zombie Kush by Ripper Seeds and Moby Dick by Dinafem. We got the pleasure of meeting Brent from Funktion Genetics, a seed breeder, who was giving out tester seed packs. Please check out his Instagram (linked) to see the strains he’s breeding and hopefully will soon be carried by Xotic Seeds.
The weekend was full of wonderful experiences and conversations. We had an informative conversation with a representative from Integra Boost telling us about a new lab test proving Boveda alters the smell and taste of your cannabis and Boost didn’t. This was really interesting to learn, so I collected the product info and will be re-reviewing Boost following a side-by-side comparison.
We were also given some Flyte products for reviews including their vape pens, THC and CBD drink additives. At their booth they were giving out samples of their drink flavouring without the cannabinoids. From what we sampled the products were quite flavourful. I look forward to further product testing so stay posted!
Lift Expo presented various new products including Shatterizer’s new Black and Grey domes for the Shatterizer Vape Pen. The Resolve ONE was another new product that Dankr had the opportunity to sit down and chat with. The Resolve ONE uses preloaded cartridges, variable heating cycles and a patient feedback loop for self-improvement. There are two vapourizers, one for flower and one for cannabis oils. More info about the Resolve ONE will be included in a following write up.
Last by not least the TVape vape lounge that was restricted to medical patients with documentation and ID on hand. Last year everyone 19+ was allowed to enter, with both years you need to provide your own cannabis. This created barriers for groups of individuals where not all of them were medical. This wasn’t a major issue with an abundance of booths and speakers on multiple stages to keep you entertained. For those looking to medicate there was a constant group of people outside smoking, vaping, dabbing and networking. This is great advertising for the event as many people stopped as we smoked, asking what the conference was about.
Lift did an amazing job this year and it was an unbelievable way to kick off the summer conference season. I hope everyone got home safely and we’ll see you in a couple of weeks at O’Cannabiz.