They’ll be the 33rd New Jersey recreational adult use cannabis dispensary to open by Heady NJ’s count.
Leaf Haus is the first NJ cannabis dispensary that is a micro-business top open.
It is a woman-owned business with CEO Shani Madaminova heading the team. She is from North Jersey.
“Haus” is the German translation of “House.” They are based in Franklin Township in Somerset County.
They had a soft opening to iron out issues, prep for a larger crowd, and incorporate feedback.
Madaminova is a serial businessperson who had previously owned senior adult day cares.
Chief Operations Officer Ravil Valishev worked closely with Madaminova to launch the company. They won a New Jersey adult use cannabis license last October from the NJ Cannabis Regulatory Commission (NJ-CRC).
At ten months, they might have set a new record for the fastest opening after receiving a New Jersey cannabis license.
The number of New Jersey cannabis dispensaries is growing progressively faster.
Opening Leaf Haus
At the Leaf Haus Grand Opening on Thursday, there will be a DJ, merchandise, and accessories will be given away. There will also be a caricature artist and a food truck. The ribbon cutting will be at 12:30.
There are rolling discounts on products. They will have a 1/8 of cannabis flower for around $40 with a discount.
Leaf Haus General Manager Nick Scarpulla is eager to sell quality cannabis products from craft cannabis and small-batch companies in the near future.
He is from Williamstown in South Jersey. Scarpulla has been in the New Jersey cannabis industry for almost a decade working for Compassionate Science which became Curaleaf and Columbia Care.
He said they will have the largest menu possible. They are also running discounts. For example, college students, likely those from nearby Rutgers University in New Brunswick, get a 15 percent discount.
However, they must be over 21.
“We want all demographics to come here and tell us what we want,” Scarpulla emphasized.
Choose Quality Cannabis with Budtenders Help
There are kiosks as well as budtenders who try to give the most information possible to consumers.
Scarpulla noted they ask New Jersey adult use cannabis consumers how they want to feel versus simply looking for something with the most THC, the property in cannabis that gets you high.
Cannabis is a unique plant where strains can help in different ways depending on their cannabis terpenes.
“Not everybody is the same. They’re very happy to help,” he added.
Scarpulla tries to treat him better than he was treated elsewhere. He is eager to eliminate the high turnover rate he said is widespread elsewhere.
All are locals to the areas given the rules governing micro-businesses.
Leaf Haus will also feature pre-order pickup.
“I’m definitely excited,” Scarpulla exclaimed. “It’s a nice little team.”
He thought it cool to see them as a micro-business operating versus a Multi-State Operator (MSO) cannabis corporation.
Hustling Entrepreneur Makes Progress
Scarpulla praised Madaminova’s business savvy. It’s impressive she is the 100 percent owner.
“I’ve never had this kind of connection with someone who is at the head of the business,” Scarpulla explained.
He noted Madaminova was able to make connections to make strides for Leaf Haus when others are unable to do so. He said her creativity in business is a breath of fresh air and an interesting perspective in the male-dominated cannabis industry.
“They’re not greedy in any way, shape or form. They’re really trying to give back to their employees,” Scarpulla explained. “They don’t cut any corners.”
New Jersey Adult Use Dispensary Hurdles
He noted it was a difficult process to open.
“We thought we were going to be open by 4/20. But it kept getting pushed back,” Scarpulla lamented.
Unfortunately, regulatory approvals from the NJ Cannabis Regulatory Commission (NJ-CRC) has been delaying them.
He maintained they were ready and understood it’s a very widespread problem.
“We’re just happy to be open,” Scarpulla said.
He noted the ability to act quickly to an unexpected change is a highly valued asset in the New Jersey cannabis industry.
“This isn’t a sprint. It’s a marathon. There’s so many ebbs and flows. Especially in New Jersey, it’s the wild west,” Scarpulla added.
Growing Into a Vertically Integrated Cannabis Company
Scarpulla said they want to go expand quickly.
Leaf Haus wants to be vertically integrated with growing and manufacturing operations sooner than later.
First, they need to convert their micro-business to a standard size. He said they had applied already to do so.
“I’d love to hire more of the local people,” Scarpulla noted.
He explained Leaf Haus has purchased a 15,000-square-foot growing facility.
“We’re going to have some crazy genetics (cannabis seed strains) that I’m very excited about,” Scarpulla said.
Leaf Haus is partnering with a professional Scarpulla said is well known on the East Coast. But he couldn’t say specifically.
(Full disclosure this is an advertorial purchased as part of an ad package.)