Stop and smell the weed with cannabis icon and co-founder and creative director of Xula Herbs, Mennlay Golokeh Aggrey who is this month’s VIF aka Very Important Friend! We caught up with her somewhere above the clouds in between NYC and Mexico City on what she’s currently smoking, her favorite CBD of 2021 and most importantly, we finally get to the bottom of how many houseplants occupy her home. Shop Mennlay’s TOP 20 here and use her code MENNLAYVIF for 20% Off + 5% of all sales go toward Sweet Freedom Farm and The Floret Coalition.
Currently here: Currently in Mexico City at my desk, slightly burnt out but blessed and ready for the fucking holidaze.
Really, wish I was here tho: Living in the mountains of Morelos, Mexico. Spent some time in a pueblo named Tlayacapan to write and it was one of the most magical, back to nature, grown and sexy experiences I’ve had. Take me back
Preferred Pronouns: She / Her / Ella
I am an: A tenure cannabis multidisciplinary; currently the co-founder and creative director of Xula Herbs.
I’m smoking: A Colombian landrace (aka heirloom native to the region) strain that my business partner grew here in Mexico City on her roof. I actually snapped off some leaves prematurely for an interview and ended up drying it, curing and currently smoking it. To my pleasant surprise it has a really clean bright terpene and sativa profile.
I have __#__ house plants around me at this moment: So I just counted and there are 22 plants in the entire apartment, 8 of them are around me at the moment.
If you could only eat one thing for the rest of your life, what would it be?: Fufu and soup with a side of green juice.
Describe your perfect vacation destination - are you alone or with a friend(s)?: I am alone next to the mountains in a forest with a warm coastline not too far away. There’s a stocked refrigerator, water filter, lots of weed and wine, a cool breeze, a surface to write, beautiful birds chirping and a sweet smell in the air.
The interiors are simple, smoothe, rounded, modern and clean. Lots of plants, wildlife, lots of light and a beautiful view looking out over the mountain.
Fashion trend you’re crushing on rn: The slow fashion trend, ethical trend, vintage trend, true eco fashion trend. The type of fashion trend that instead of being shipped to Kantamanto market on the coast of Ghana—it’s reused to make cozy sweatpants, knits and other super soft super green garments.
3 essentials you just cannot live without: My rose attar / cedar / bergamot, essential oil blend, weed, sparkling water.
What are you reading right now? They Came Before Columbus: The African Presence in Ancient America by Ivan Van Sertima and Drug Use for Grown-Ups: Chasing Liberty in the Land of Fear, by Carl Hart.
Tbh looking forward to finishing them so that I lighten the vibe with fiction.Favorite Girl Group of All Time: SWV (Sisters With Voices).
Last instagram account you followed? @kidsofimmigrants
Stressed when: Oversaturated with work, social events, and haven’t had enough sleep and water.
Impressed when: Someone thinks before they speak. Takes a beat and pauses before responding.
What were you most excited to see come to life in 2021 (or 2022) that you wanna share? The possibility of me editing my current book proposal and sending it to editors. Hoping someone picks it up.
One piece of advice you would say to 14 year old Mennlay today: You’re perfect. Read more.
It's hard to play favorites when it's your own brand, but if you had to choose - what is your favorite Xula product right now and why? I’ve had terrible posture this week—working from a non ergonomic chair and desk combo so my neck, shoulders and back have been going through it. So this week I have been slathering our uff! (Touch + Soothe) balm all over while giving myself mini self-massages. The smell of the ginger, cayenne, weed, and comfrey leaf is so bomb. It sort of brings you into a nourishing sensorial experience.
You’re a published author and weed butter expert - what are your top 3 tips for someone who's never decarbed anything before? Do your research. Read from the book, watch a couple video tutorials. We’re lucky to live in an era where you can google search for weed stuff and not be worried that the feds will come to your door to raid your grow house. LOL I’m clearly triggered.
We heard you're about to release a new book (!!!) any sneak peek you can share? And when can we buy it ?! I’m still editing the proposal to send out to editors. No one has picked it up yet so it may be too premature to talk about?
Most memorable canna cuisine you’ve ever made: Infused West African jollof rice. It was fucking delicitious and epic. There’s a recipe in print for Kitchen Toke magazine.
Most used CBD product of 2021? uff! (moon + womb), it’s replaced over the counter menstrual cramp meds, so I take it every month when I’m on my moon cycle aka period.
Favorite edible of 2021 or ever? Hands down the limited-edition batch of rosin-infused Rose Delights by chef Natasha Pickowicz for Gossamer. They are so good.
Tell us why you picked Sweet Freedom Farm as your non-profit? Sweet Freedom Farm’s work is so damn important (most recently running a Food not Prisons) campaign. They center their work on growing and distributing vegetables, grain, herbs, medicines, and maple syrup to their community—prioritizing the folks affected by the incarceration system. They intend to act as a training site for young BIPOC farmers, a gathering space for partnering projects in the alliance, and as a host site for youth in alternative-to-incarceration programs.
The Floret Coalition, of which I am a board member is an anti-racist collective of 135+ mostly femme-led cannabis and cannabis adjacent businesses. Through the giving circle-like method, we donate 10K monthly to organizations that prioritize the needs of Black, Latin, and Indigenous communities
The wisdom and expertise of these communities are foundational to cannabis culture, yet bear the deepest scars of the misguided war on drugs. We can’t undo the past, but we must work diligently to ensure a fair and equitable future. To date, The Floret Coalition’s 135+ brand members have donated over $120,000 to the organizations we have partnered with thus far.
Where can we find you on the internet and beyond?
@mennlay on all platforms