The retired police chief of Grand Junction and Vail is selling “THC” brownies at retail locations across Colorado and shipping them across state lines, and was last seen cruising around in a 1985 Volkswagen Vanagon.
Greg Morrison, currently residing in Grand Junction, has managed to evade arrest by putting absolutely no THC (the active ingredient in marijuana) in his product. Yes, Morrison’s company, Totally High Country Brownies, sells gourmet brownies that are 100 percent marijuana free.
Always wanting to start his own business and after traveling outside of Colorado and constantly being bombarded with jokes about if he brought any brownies with him, Morrison created the unique business idea and started brainstorming … in the hot tub.
“A lot of this was created in the hot tub over cocktails,” said Morrison of his new spoof-based business.
He started with the name THC Brownies and ended with four flavors that have cross-generational appeal: Mary Jane Plain, Alice B. Toklas Toffee, Acapulco Gold Almond and Cheeba Creme Brûlée.
“I spent a lot of time on the Internet trying to look up marijuana slang names to come up with the names for the different flavors,” Morrison said.
Mike King, a friend of Morrison’s who worked with him as the now-retired chief and commander of the state patrol in western Colorado, attributes the success of this company to Morrison’s passion and sense of humor.
“He’s a wild man,” King said. “He’s got an incredible sense of humor. That’s probably why he came up with something like this and it’s working for him.”
Morrison recognizes that being a former police chief makes his business and story funnier and capitalizes on that, but also relies on the respect that comes with such a position.
Morrison has had to explain the joke to the U.S. Postal Service, as well as several banks, which, under federal law, cannot provide services to clients in the cannabis industry.
“When you walk in and you go ‘Hi, we’re THC Brownies, they’re like ‘hey thanks, there’s the door,’” Morrison said. “I think my prior position as the police chief definitely helped. If I had worked in a head shop or something, I would have probably had a more difficult time with the banks.”
Starting just a month ago, THC Brownies pushes their product online and currently distributes to 10 “retail” businesses (gift shop-type stores) across Colorado.
Barbara Mason, sales clerk at the Mountain Heritage Museum Store in Crested Butte, says customers are always a little confused at first.
“Most people, you know, when they pick them up, they have to look at them really good,” Mason said. “And then they start laughing.”
Morrison, King and Mason all pointed out that, spoof aside, the brownies are pretty dank.
THC Brownies is planning an expansion in January, both in Washington, whose voters legalized recreational marijuana at the same time as Colorado, and in Oregon, which recently became the third state to legalize recreational marijuana.
Collegian Green Beat Reporter Laren Cyphers can be reached at email@example.com or on Twitter @larenwritesgood.