Doc Ray on the Battle to Save Heritage Growers and Genetics

High Times

Small-scale cannabis farms—the very pioneers of the industry—are being purged out of the legal market as the wholesale price per pound plummets, while at the same time, invaluable genetics are ripped off and renamed, often inaccurately. Anybody who has been in the game long enough knows that craft cannabis grown in the Emerald Triangle—Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity counties—is among the finest in the world, representing a different class of flower. Doc Ray is a U.S. Army Green Beret, a former art professor and a respected cultivator and breeder in Emerald Triangle for about 50 years. He’s the creator of countless terp-ridden strains—the type of varieties you want to write home about. He’s also a storyteller, with tales such as gun fights with DEA agents in the hills of Northern California since the ‘70s. He chatted with High Times to discuss his mission: save heritage cultivators and unveil a new collaboration with some of Emerald Triangle’s rising heavyweights. “I’m an old-school outlaw cultivator,” Doc Ray told High Times. “I’m kind of an open book at this stage. I’ve been around the block a few times. I’m an old school Green Beret. I’m a little rough and crusty. At this stage in the game, I just call it like I see it.” As a Phenotype-Specific Geneticist, Doc Ray owns some brands such as Doc Ray Genetics—with mouthwatering beans such as Malawi Gold Mango. He also operates a microbusiness in cannabis cultivation in Arcata, California. As an old school breeder, Doc Ray has gotten himself into all kinds of facets of cultivation. But lately, amid unprecedented thievery and competition with cheap “deps,” Doc Ray has been exploring patented strains, intellectual property (IP) and blockchain technology as a means to protect small scale growers and the strains they love, almost like one of their…

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