009: An Insider’s View of the Medical Cannabis Industry with Jennie Leuzarder

Though adult use cannabis is rapidly maturing in many parts of the United States, the medical cannabis industry is still developing as well. It faces a different set of operational hurdles and challenges, is continuing to shift and develop, and remains the sole source of legal cannabis in a number of states, including New York.

Operating in 11 states across the country, Vireo Health is a fast-growing medical cannabis company. Founded by a doctor and backed by scientists and physicians, they are a seed-to-sale business building several brands in the medical and wellness spaces.

Joining us today is Vireo’s VP of Sales and Marketing, Jennie Leuzarder. On today’s episode of the podcast, she takes us through the unique challenges of creating 11 separate functioning operational chains and shares insights into how Vireo created their unique brand. You’ll learn how they’re working to shake cannabis’s decades-old association with hippies, the complications of Vireo’s licenses, and how Jennie’s background in alcohol sales translates into this bold new world.


  • The challenges of the current licensing process for medical cannabis – and why Vireo has had to create entire manufacturing facilities.
  • Why Vireo emphasizes that they were founded by a doctor and how they work to ensure that product potency is always the same.
  • Why cannabis remaining a Schedule 1 drug creates massive inefficiencies in the supply chain.
  • How a pharmacist consult for medical cannabis is like working with an old-fashioned apothecary.
  • The biggest hurdles for brands in the medical cannabis space – and why even now, very few people know how to get a card.
  • Why Vireo has different brands and voices across a number of different spaces – and the approach the company takes with each of these brands.
  • The reason Jennie thought cannabis would be federally legal by now – and why she believes full legalization is a year away, at most.


I think society goes through these waves where you get an idea of what something should look like. And then the cycle is that inevitably someone comes along and says, ‘Well, that’s ridiculous.’ And I think that cycle will happen here.” – Rick Kiley




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