This woman is diversifying the weed industry.
Ophelia Chong is the founder of Stock Pot Images, a cannabis-centric stock photo company, which focuses on ditching the stoner stereotype and creating diversity in the emerging cannabis industry.
“I look in the room and all I see is white marshmallows — just white marshmallows everywhere,” she said to NowThis. “So, what I’m looking for is the raisin who looks like me.”
Chong is also one of the three founders of Asian Americans of Cannabis Education (AACE) which focuses on helping Asian Americans see weed differently. She says Asian Americans have traditionally stayed away from cannabis because of the fact that it’s illegal.
“Cannabis right now is internet 1996. It is the slow bandwidth, it is three maybe providers, two browsers, and that what we have right now in cannabis,” she said. “We have maybe three or four major companies, a groundswell of small dispensaries and farms, but that is the beginning. And now we fast forward to 2018 for the internet. Where are we now? There’s apps, There’s apps for everything. There’s apps for when your dog sneezes.”
Unfortunately, it’s not very easy for people of color to get into an industry that’s traditionally marginalized them — but Chong continues to fight for the change.