“Our biggest lesson so far is that most people in Massachusetts don’t know cannabis delivery is available”
There are few things more impressive in the weed world than watching a company blossom from nothing into a licensed entity. As far as miracles go, it’s nearly as amazing as the actual science of cultivation itself.
And so when we see a new company operating in the Massachusetts space—and particularly when they’re doing interesting things in a relatively new area, like delivery—we like to bury them with questions. The more we all know, the better.
Below is our exchange with Julia Germaine, an operating partner at KindRun, a “social equity, veteran-owned and women-led business offering cannabis home delivery” in Mass. The company made its first “live” sale on April 19, and pledges “to create sustainable pathways into the cannabis industry for individuals most impacted by the War on Drugs” and promote a “carefully curated menu that supports a diversified and accessible cannabis market.”
How is it going so far?
Generally speaking, it’s going great. Cashless, direct-to-consumer cannabis delivery was not an easy service or tech stack to build, but we did it, and it works a bit like magic for our clients. We already have regulars, who are very important to any business operator.
What are the exact parameters for where, what, and how you deliver?
As a business, KindRun offers delivery from 10am to 8:30pm, Tuesday through Sunday, in 25 municipalities from Worcester to Boston. In Massachusetts, over 180 towns and cities have individually banned legal cannabis delivery. Any adult 21+ with valid identification (drivers license, passport, etc.) can create an account at kindrun.com/shop to select products, upload their ID for pre-verification as required by the state, select a delivery window, and register for digital payment to pay online.
KindRun is a true digital commerce experience—clients receive order updates by text, and just need to provide their same ID and a signature when our team arrives. Any adult may order up to one ounce of flower (or the equivalent of infused or concentrated products), once per day, to any residential address. Massachusetts doesn’t allow cannabis delivery to hotels, college housing or federal public housing.
KindRun offers same day or scheduled delivery, up to 30 days in advance. We also offer a concierge service for custom delivery windows and product packages. KindRun can deliver to multiple clients at the same time and place, as long as each is present with their ID to receive the order.
What was your biggest hurdle—or hurdles, plural, if you must—in getting to the point where you could make your first delivery?
KindRun’s biggest hurdle to cross before making our first delivery was building a brand new process—cashless cannabis delivery—that functions and also complies with the myriad laws and regulations that restrict the cannabis industry. Our leadership team of operations, finance, and inventory experts held meetings we dubbed “tech jams” multiple times a week for months leading up to operations to assemble and develop e-commerce, constituent resource management, inventory management, point-of-sale, digital payments, system-of-record, logistics, and communications capability. The cannabis industry suffers from limited access to established software-as-a-service, and industry-specific developers have to navigate a patchwork of state regulations, which often results in sub-par functionality in new markets.
You are veteran-owned and women-led. How does that reflect throughout your business and even right down to the brands you carry and transactions that you carry out?
KindRun’s principals (directors and operators, and the majority of leads) are women. The hiring process for any management or leadership must include at least one female candidate. The company as a whole self-reports as 47% female, 47% male and the remainder, other. As a veteran-owned company, KindRun has relationships with local veterans groups to offer job opportunities and provide education.
For many vets, including KindRun’s founder, cannabis has proven an integral part of rehabilitation from service-related injury, and reintegration with civilian life. Residential delivery is ideal for anyone who can’t or doesn’t want to leave home to access cannabis, for recreational or therapeutic purposes. KindRun only sells adult-use (“recreational”) cannabis, not medical, but some of our clients prefer not to register with the state for the medical program.
KindRun diligently pursues wholesale relationships with fellow diverse brands, which are under-represented in the Massachusetts market. For one example, we are proud to carry Nimbus flower and other products cultivated by Hudson Growers’ Alliance, a woman-owned business right next door to KindRun in Hudson.
What are some brands you are working with that you have developed particularly close relationships with?
KindRun carries a range of products, from operators large and small, and can be very responsive to what our clients and the market want. One hard-to-get product I can’t wait to offer is JustinCredible Cultivation’s flower—tasty and distinctive. Small-scale cultivators have to jump through the same hoops as mega-grows, so start-up is grueling, their craft-scale flower products are often superior. The brand I’m most excited to work with most recently is actually not a cannabis brand, but Nan’s Rustic Kitchen and Market, a community business that KindRun is collaborating with to combine home cooking with cannabis home delivery through our “Backyard Box” variety box.
Have you had to adjust much since opening?
Our biggest lesson so far is that most people in Massachusetts don’t know cannabis delivery is available. There are few rules and limits that can disappoint prospective clients, and we have learned how to say, “we can’t deliver to your hotel,” or “your [banned town]” in upbeat tones. We knew adoption would take time, so no major adjustment, just many small adjustments as we launch and evaluate many different educational and business development efforts.
What do you see as the future as far as consumption as well as delivery trends for Mass?
Cannabis consumption will continue to normalize. Products will continue to mature, specialize and improve. People who don’t want to shop in dispensaries, for whatever reason, will continue to adopt delivery as a preferred method for cannabis delivery in MA—from KindRun, cannabis delivery is discrete, convenient, affordable and safe.