This is another rock star episode of On The Rise where we are talking about the journey of the entrepreneurs who are pushing the cannabis and hemp industry forward, making it possible for people just like yourselves to have safe and legal access to the highest quality products on the market place.
I’m super excited to be talking to and introducing you guys to our guests for today, Joel Peterson and Danyal Durman who are the owners and founders of Price Land Hemp Co. – the first legal hemp dispensary in Wisconsin where they made the jump from real estate into the cannabis industry no matter what the threats from the Department of Justice were or the threats of arrest.
Here they are, pioneers, in their quite conservative state, opening up the CBD dispensary, so here to tell their story and share a little bit about the journey of being able to own and operate that type of business in their state.
Hemp is grown for two main reasons. First, its fibers are used to make anything from bracelets to clothing. Second, and far more profitable for those like Peterson, its oil is used for medicine. Confusion over a new state law could put Peterson and some farmers out of business.
In this episode, the Price Land Hemp Co. founders share their story, how they shifted from the real estate business to being cannapreneurs and putting up their own hemp shop despite the battle to keep their store door open and threats of arrest.
01:49 – A backstory of his career before venturing into Hemp and CBD space
03:22 – On having in-house products at the same time partnering with other big companies
04:33 – Why the jump from real estate to hemp-CBD space
06:12 – How they manage to get the kids to be involved and educating them about the kind of business that they are in
12:39 – How is business going at this time
15:34 – Social proof of cannabis’ efficacy
17:45 – Outpouring of support for cannabis products
18:47 – What are their ways of giving back to the community
19:31 – About partnerships with other companies
Connect with Price Land Hemp Co.
118 Main Street, Black River Falls, WI 54615
Connect with Sonia Gomez
The most important part, when you’re doing anything, when you’re trying to help somebody heal naturally with the plant is you have to know what you are treating. And know what is available and what is legal. – Joel Peterson
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Sonia Gomez: What’s up guys? This is Sonia Gomez tuning in from Denver, Colorado. This is another rock star episode of On The Rise where we are talking about the journey of the entrepreneurs who are pushing the cannabis and hemp industry forward, making it possible for people just like yourselves to have safe and legal access to the highest quality products on the market place. I’m your host, Sonia Gomez and I’m super excited to be talking to and introducing you guys to our guests for today, Joel Peterson and Danyal Durman who are the owners and founders of Priceland Hemp the first legal hemp dispensary in Wisconsin where they made the jump from real estate into the cannabis industry no matter what the threats from the Department of Justice were or the threats of arrest. Here they are, pioneers, in their quite conservative state, opening up the CBD dispensary, so here to tell their story and share a little bit about the journey of being able to own and operate that type of business in their state. Our good friends, Joel and Danyal. Hey guys, thanks so much for being here with us.
Danyal Durman: Hi!
Joel Peterson: Hey, how are you doing? Thanks for having us.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah. I’m excited to hear your guys’ story. This is, you know, as everybody knows who’s listening hear this, these are tumultuous times. We have businesses growing faster than the legislation can keep up with. I have family in Wisconsin, so I know, somewhat of what the temperature is like over there. But before we dive into your ventures in the hemp space, why don’t you tell us a little bit about who you are, what your background is and how you got into the hemp CBD space?
Joel Peterson: So, basically what we were doing prior to this, we had rental properties and we flipped houses. I was a licensed contractor, so, doing the construction of course. And then my wife, she was the designer. So, you know, it’s great having teamwork at things. So, initially we were going to build a hempcrete house and we actually had zoning, we had a lot and we were going to build this house and then instead it just worked out where we got a building downtown Black River Falls, we opened up our shop and that’s just, it’s all history from there.
Sonia Gomez: Well, I want to dive into that history. Um, because you know, most of the buzz that we see in the marketplace right now around hemp-CBD is coming from online. You see ads all over social media, you see people, I at least interface with people every single day, entrepreneurs who want to be hitting that national marketplace. And I believe that the local market places where these companies or owners are originating from are underserved. And you guys are taking a really unique approach. Well, right now it’s unique but hopefully, soon it’ll be popping up more. But, you guys have taken a pretty unique approach in opening a brick and mortar store. Are you selling your own products there or are you allowing multiple products to distribute their brands inside of your space?
In-house products and collaboration with other companies
Joel Peterson: Well when, when we opened our location and we were all, you know, of course, we were white labeling like most companies in the beginning. And once we dive farther into it and started working with formulations, we’re about 85% in-house. We pretty much manufacture all the products ourselves. And so we have a couple companies, a couple of national brands that we work with just because they have good products and we try to work with, you know, as many companies as we can as we feel fit to, for placement.
Why the jump?
Sonia Gomez: So what was it that, you know, your real estate is a pretty lucrative industry. There’s a lot of the people that I know are diversifying their entrepreneurial portfolios, by being in real estate or what are some of the other ones? Cryptocurrency or you know, even making the corporate to cannabis jump. What was it in 2018 you guys opened on 420. But what was that 2017, 2018 that said, let’s move this real estate game into cannabis. But what made you guys make the jump?
Joel Peterson: Well, I think that when we were, I started working with hempcrete and I was really excited about working with the fiber side of it. And, you know, just learning about the medicinal side of cannabis and the powers of it is, really, I think that was the ultimate thing that pushed me into watching people to actually heal naturally with cannabis is what was kind of the final stake that push us into developing our brand and just moving forward with it. Cause I mean there was, of course, everybody was selling different brands, you know, a couple of national brands. We’re in just different health shops and whatnot. But it was like behind the counter, it was never like, you know, blatantly, hey, I’m selling CBD. Kind of like how when we start advertising and Priceline on there.
Danyal Durman: I think it’s about education, you know, educating people on them and people not labeling belief as like it’s bad or whatever, educating what it can do for people that is legal.
Sonia Gomez: Okay. So you guys are parents and you guys are a couple and so you’re having to play a professional and personal role with one another in this pretty unnavigated landscape of the hemp industry. Talk to me a little bit about what’s that like, do you involve your kids in your business? Do they understand what Mommy and daddy do? Talk to me a little bit about how you bridge the gap to inform and educate your own kid and how that translates into your business.
Struggles of getting the whole family involved in the business
Joel Peterson: Well, I think it’s always been kind of an uphill battle because forever people have been told that marijuana or cannabis, hemp, they all, they kind of group it together. Cannabis, hemp, marijuana, it’s all the same thing. And I think that it’s all been labeled bad and you know, that’s part of what we’re trying to do. And even with whether, cause we have all the children, I have my 16-year-old son, he actually works and, in our production side. So, I mean he is very interested in learning about what our endocannabinoid system does and operates. And I think, you know, that’s the most important part when you’re doing anything, when you’re trying to help somebody you all naturally with the plant is that you have to know what you’re treating and know what’s available and what’s illegal. Cause, of course, we, we always get people that inquire about RSO oil and certain things that aren’t legal here. You know, they’re trying to cure cancers and other things. So we try to point people in the right direction. And also, you know, I’m not an attorney but hey Wisconsin’s law does not allow for some of this, you know, THC products.
Danyal Durman: Our daughter, our seven-year-old is here. I tried to be, you know, a working mom and try to juggle it all and it gets hard.
So she has been here numerous times. Rides in her bikes in this big store, you know, trying to help customers if she can with business cards and she knows it cause she takes the CBD oil cause she has like the proxies speech and, so it really helps her a lot and she knows what the flower, what the plant does and she understands that as a seven. Yeah, I mean it’s hard to be a couple and be working and try to do everything together. You have your struggles and you just kinda learn how to try to manage it, I guess.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah. Well, I know the struggle. The struggle is real. I’m married to my best friend of 20 years. We’ve been doing business together for, I don’t know, probably 15 of those years. In 2009, we came to Colorado to open up one of the first licensed dispensaries and work with the Department of Revenue on legislative development. And since that time, it’s just been like a constant every day, you know, together with from sun up to sundown, there are no breaks. There’s you like, it’s just, it’s so insane. And the stress of the work and I don’t want to say stress, but like it is an unknown landscape. You’re sailing into uncharted territory. And so, that in itself comes with its own set of challenges, right? So I think that there is something there. I mean, I think there’s something really incredible about, you know, Mama and Papapreneurs who are in the cannabis or hemp industry, having to pioneer and blaze the trails of owning and operating this type of business. The many, many hurdles and threats and challenges that you’re faced with on a daily basis. But then this deep sense of reward that you’re given at the end of the day. I mean, it’s pretty incredible. And you guys keep talking about the stories of the people who are impacted by your work. I wanna get a picture, maybe you guys can paint this for me, but you’re cruising up to an opening day for your shop there and in your town and the Department of Justice knocks on your door. Talk to me a little bit about what that was like for you guys as new business owners in this new industry being the very first in your area. What was that like for you?
A possible run-in with the Department of justice
Danyal Durman: It’s very scary. You know, having a lot of money invested just to open up and to be told that if you open that you’re breaking a wall. And, yeah very scary. I’ve never been to jail or had anything like that, wasn’t on my bucket list to have that done. But, it was really scary and I did, I was like, I don’t want to be here on opening day, but I knew that I had to.
Joel Peterson: Her brother said she’d bail her out.
Danyal Durman: Yeah, yeah, yeah. Right. I thought about it and I knew our rights and I knew that we weren’t doing anything wrong. And all the people that reached out to us it became to, well, if I have to have a mugshot on my bucket list, I guess it has to be.
Joel Peterson: I think the overwhelming support from the community and you know, even the sheriff after time, after everything kind of wore off, he understood what our license included and what it was limited to do. And you know, when the day actually was out in front painting the building by hand and I see, of course, you see when the sheriffs walking up about three or four of them with another lady in a suit and may introduce themselves as the Department of Justice and Attorney General. So, you know what I mean? That definitely wakes you up to the fact that people are taking notice o what we’re doing. And we’re here to educate. We’re here to explain to them that, hey, this is our license. You know, we kept showing the license, we showed them all the product that we’re going to be selling and we had a couple of different news outfits. So I mean, we had plenty of advertising on behalf of cannabis cause I mean, we’re ultimately working for the sacred plant. So I mean, we saw all of our products in two days. The first two days that we’re open, we sold all of our products. So we sold about 30K of products on a Friday and Saturday that we were open. So.
Sonia Gomez: Wow! Congratulations guys. That’s crazy. And so now here we are a year later, a little over a year later. Talk to me a little bit about what the temperature of your guys’s business, are you guys still doing well there or has, have things even doubt? Is there more of a buzz in your community now or…
No stopping from scaling high
Joel Peterson: Yeah, I think that, you know, we’re getting like we had a pastor from a church, we’re working with a lot of people. Actually, I’m filling orders. So, I mean we have 56 affiliate locations of different other shops selling our brand. We’ve very sought after. We have a distribution company that’s selling our products. I mean, we haven’t reached out to anybody and which we’re so blessed that we haven’t, you know, had to go out and actually do sales. Like, all other companies, creating roads and whatever, they actually send salesmen or we haven’t done any of that, you know, and we’re, we’re just kind of at the tip of the iceberg. I think, you know, when you look at being in this industry and how CBD covers so many different things. And then working with CBG, CBN and it’s just, it’s endless learning, we have a lot of different products that are in R and D right now that we are excited to release as they become available.
We need to pass the tests and the labs and making sure that we know, cause we're ultimately learning from people. We're learning what it can cure and what it can't. -Joel Peterson Click To Tweet
And we need to pass the tests and the labs and making sure that we know, cause we’re ultimately learning from people. We’re learning what it can cure and what it can’t. So, with that being said, we definitely don’t want to sell something to someone that’s not going to work for them, or they might have a hot UA for their work or you know, trying to work was, companies, like we had Dr. Boardman coming in from Memorial Hospital, he wanted to find out what CBD was cause he had some staff that were using it and they test for THC. So, and we actually have suboxone clinic here in Madison. So, we work with some rehab patients and then we also have a doctor, a medical director that will go to back for anyways or any situations that we have where people might, you know, have issues with their employer because we want to educate them. There’s a therapeutic level that CBD full spectrum will produce.
Sonia Gomez: Yes, I love this. Okay, cool. I can’t tell you how important I feel like the work for rehabilitation. You know, this is, I’ve seen way, way, way too many communities and both personally witnessed that almost every single person that I speak to has some sort of gut-wrenching story around the opioid challenges or drug challenges in their communities, sometimes even in their families. And, multiple people have expressed to me the transformation that they’ve witnessed, whether in clinic or at home, you know, with a family member watching the transformation as they use hemp-based or cannabis-based products to transition off of their opioids. What are some of the transformations that you’re seeing in your community, whether it’s from prescription medications or people who are improving their health, what are some of the stories that stick out to you guys?
Success Stories of Cannabis’ Efficacy
Joel Peterson: Yeah. You know, some of the people, the biggest things that when I get called and someone says that they used to have seizures and they’re not, they’re seizure-free now that those are the most important for me because I think, you know, seizure disorder is something that CBD is really good at treating and I shouldn’t, maybe I shouldn’t use that word, but working towards and all-natural health. But I think, when I hear those stories, it’s really hard, breaks your heart because you’re saying, Geez, you know, cannabis did this. So that’s kind of awesome.
Sonia Gomez: Okay. How about for you Danyal? What are some of the stories that stand out for you?
Danyal Durman: There’s a lot of, just people with any, rheumatoid arthritis-like anxiety and different things like that, that, you know, you share so many different stories of people coming in and just saying, you know, hey, thank you for helping change my life. And I don’t feel like we, it’s the plant that did it, not us. We just brought it to them or you know, made available. So yeah, it’s very heartwarming when people come in and tell you and you’re like, wow, okay. I mean, because the plant did it.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah, I do. I do. I’ve been working with Miss Mary Jane for quite some time and I have my own transformational story in working with her and her derivatives and her, the different products and materials that she’s coming out with now. So it’s a really fascinating time for me. I never, and let me know if you guys think it best. Did you ever in your wildest dreams think that you would be behind the shelf selling cannabis or hemp-based products? Be honest.
Joel Peterson: Not legally.
Sonia Gomez: So funny. I said, do you pinch yourself when you’re just like, time to bring home the Bacon!
An overwhelming outpouring of support for cannabis products
Joel Peterson: Well, I guess, you know, I don’t think we ever imagined that we would be working with so many different people and having so much, you know, overwhelming reviews and recommendations and doctors and you know, every walk of life pretty much coming through our door, you know, because in the beginning and people are a lot at were skeptical and I think, as the word of mouth, which hasn’t had been our best advertising cause we had a commercial, we’ve done minimal amount of advertising. It’s mostly all organic that, by word of mouth. So, you know, when you get people to start talking then they’re saying, hey, I actually had a good night’s sleep last night. Or Hey, I’m not using my cane or all the things that we’ve heard.
I don't think we ever imagined that we would be working with so many different people and having so much, you know, overwhelming reviews and recommendations and doctors and you know, every walk of life pretty much coming through our door.- Joel Peterson Click To Tweet
Sonia Gomez: I love it. I love, love, love it. What would you say is, is the mission of Priceland Hemp? What is it that you guys, you know, above and beyond that keep you going? When things get tough or when things are really great, you feel like really excited about getting closer to hitting that goal. What is the mission of Priceland?
The idea of giving back
Joel Peterson: Well, I think that you know, what we want to do is we, we’ve been working with some people, some low-income people and actually people that really can’t even afford CBD. So we’re trying to get CBD in the hands of people that can benefit from it. And we can supplement that through sponsorships, too, charging full price for products. We have instead of, like we donate to the fire department and other local things, but to give back to the whole community as a whole, we want to help other people out there actually that can’t afford it. And we have 110 acres of hemp that we are managing this year. So we have plenty of product to,o around for people like that.
Sonia Gomez: Are you guys becoming fully vertical?
Joel Peterson: Yeah, we pretty much so, we have in Austin, Texas where we’re slowly building our team. And you know, we have nine farms that we’ve developed, five that we actually own some partnership in. So, we actually need it though, because of the demand and just the amount of products that we’re going through.
Sonia Gomez: Wow! Very cool. And, where is most of your products being sourced or manufactured right now?
Joel Peterson: In Boulder.
Sonia Gomez: Cool. Okay. I can’t wait to see you guys when you come down to Colorado. That is my hometown. I lived in Boulder for like 10 years. That’s where our cultivation was. That’s where a lot of our manufacturing is. That’s where a bunch of the different brands that I work with is manufacturing in the Boulder leave lands sort of long areas, though it’s a great place. I’m sure you guys are doing some amazing things up there. I’d love to come and check out the facilities sometime and give people behind the scenes peek, especially around the launch of this episode, I think people are really intrigued cause there’s not a ton of transparency in the marketplace. Everybody talks about education, everybody talks about their whole process. And how they have the world’s greatest pan kissed by Zeus, Aphrodite. But I never, nobody ever really shows the behind the scenes, of how all of this stuff is working.
So it’s really exciting for me to be able to pop in and show them, give them a little taste and tease of, you know, what does it actually look like? What is the process that it goes through? It’s actually not a bunch of emboli because there are real people back there too and it has been pretty cool. Yeah. Yeah. Pretty cool stuff. So I’d love to come and check it out some time.
Joel Peterson: That would be an honor.
Sonia Gomez: Yeah. Awesome. Well, I am super excited to have you guys on the show. Thank you so much for telling your story with us and I wish you guys the best congratulations that that part of the world, but that part of the country is like the third world as far as I’m concerned in their awareness or understanding of holistic health. I think this is a really, really huge opportunity. I’m referring it as many are to the hemp health revolution where we are starting to understand through the conversation of hemp and cannabis, the real possibilities of natural health, natural healing and not only recovering from the things that we have been “diagnosed with”, but really working on the air of preventative medicine. How can we prevent some of these life-altering illnesses? How can we nourish and fortify our system when we’re under so much stress under so much pressure, having to perform at such a high level. How can we work with mother nature’s medicines to supplement the things that we are otherwise depleted from?
So, thank you so much for the work that you do in the world and for your community. I’m, I cannot wait to come and see you guys and see what you’re up to here in Colorado and also over in Wisconsin. And for those of you guys who are interested in finding out more about Priceland Hemp, will be posting links somewhere around this video probably right below it and I would be really excited for you guys to check out Priceland Hemp. Danyal, Joel, any final words or message that you’d like to share with our audience today.
Joel Peterson: Just be kind and always realize that mother earth is in control and if you keep that in mind, the sacred plant will always heal.
Sonia Gomez: Danyal, seconds. She just nods. I love it. Well, thank you guys so much for the awesome work that you’re doing in the world. You guys, this was another rock star episode of On The Rise Podcast where we are exploring the journey of the entrepreneurs who are pushing this industry forward. I’m your host, Sonia Gomez, and we’ll see you on our next episode. Bye, for now.
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