The green rush has garnered a great deal of attention as one of the trendiest ways to get rich off legal weed. In the midst of the 420 frenzy, Matt Lee, co-founder of San Diego’s Jetty Extracts, says he aims to preserve the culture of cannabis before it’s seen as just another commodity.
“It’s less about how you can make money in the cannabis industry,” he tells Jane Street. In that vain, Lee gives away cannabis for free.
He doesn’t give it away to just anyone, though. Jetty Extracts’ Shelter Project provides over 400 cancer patients cannabis oil for free. No income requirement, no location requirement — the only eligibility standard is that they have cancer. All the patients have to do is enroll through the project’s web page and they’ll get a delivery of four grams of oil a month and vape cartridges.
“When we started Jetty Extracts we had friends and family who were cancer patients and cannabis oil seemed to help them,” Lee says. “We were giving oil to them for free and that kind of morphed into a business model. It made sense to us.” Now Jetty Extracts provides free oil to cancer patients with medical marijuana recommendations all over the state of California.
If a patient is on a specialized program, Lindsey Friedman, Shelter Project manager, will incorporate different products into the delivery to suit their needs: suppositories, capsules, high-CBD oils, and more. Otherwise, the product delivered to the average patient is a high-THC vaporizable oil.
Lee founded Jetty Extracts in 2013, and the Shelter Project two years ago. At first, the model was “one for you, one for cancer,” he explains: For every cartridge someone bought, another would be donated to a cancer patient. “But there were way more cannabis consumers than cancer patients,” he says. Hence, they decided a program to just give medical marijuana away.
Since then, Friedman says she’s received a number of thank you cards from grateful patients, and has heard stories from patients who had gone into remission after joining the Shelter Project. “They really thought the oil had a lot to do with it,” she says.
“We did cruises that we never thought of going on,” one patient’s wife wrote to Friedman. “I want him to be at peace without pain and enjoy his other life wherever that might be. I do want him to live to see his 59th birthday in December…I thank you all from the bottom of my heart for helping my husband.”