Interview: Julianna Carella of Auntie Dolores

Julianna Carella of Auntie DoloresAuntie Dolores, with its gorgeous, distinctive black and white canisters, has been making gourmet marijuana edibles in San Francisco, CA since 2008.

With products like caramel corn, chili lime peanuts, and glazed pecans, it’s hard to resist these tempting treats — even if you’re not looking for a buzz.

The fact these products are also chock full of organic superfoods and indicate if they are paleo, vegan, gluten free, and low glycemic is just icing on the brownie.

We chat with Julianna Carella, who looks more rocker chic than Betty Crocker with her wavy brunette locks and fringe, about her company, the challenging new regulations that will face California manufacturers, and recent trends in cannabis-infused edibles.

How did the vision for Auntie Dolores come about?

I saw a void on the shelves of dispensaries in 2008, because only sweet, high sugar edibles were available. I wanted to provide edibles to a community that appreciates gourmet flavors and health-conscious ingredients. Early on, we became passionate about masking the bitter cannabis flavor with complex flavors by using spices and superfoods, as well as terpenes.

We saw a need for sugar-free savory options for diabetics and other patients wanting to avoid sugar. Our menu currently consists of vegan, gluten free, sugar free, and paleo products, so that all patients can enjoy edibles without compromising their diet.

Where do the ideas for recipes come from?

I am often drawn to savory flavor profiles that mask the flavor of cannabis effectively. I have loved baking since I was a little girl. My mother and I did a lot of baking when I was growing up.

I am a third-generation SF native who had lived in Alamo Square area for many years.

Auntie Dolores Edibles

How does Auntie Dolores ensure the consistency and safety of its marijuana edibles?

Our company uses third-party lab testing at every stage of production from oil to finished product. We also test for microbiological analysis, chemical residue, heavy metal detection, and cannabinoid/terpene profiling.

How has the marijuana edibles industry changed since 2008?

In short, there have been many changes. Some for the better, and some for the worse. When we got our start, the potency of products were labelled in “doses.” But now the general public is informed, and the industry finally began to label edibles with the milligram content of THC and CBD.

Auntie Dolores Edibles Assortment

How will the legislation legalizing recreational marijuana impact Auntie Dolores?

The new legislation is not finalized yet, but many of the proposed regulations are not actually workable for many manufacturers. The lab testing requirements, mandatory distribution, and potency caps are a few of the challenging new regulations that manufacturers will face.

As the stigma of cannabis slowly disappears, we have seen many customers new to cannabis who are curious about its health benefits as an alternative to their current medications and to liquor and other recreational drugs.

Additionally, with the increased awareness about CBD and other non-psychoactive cannabinoids, many customers previously uninterested in cannabis due to its psychotropic effects may now enjoy the health benefits without the high.

What are some recent trends in cannabis-infused edibles?

Recent trends include many new creative product options that appeal to many customers and patients such as low potency micro-dosed products. These allow customers to manage their experience with THC more effectively.

In 2013 I founded Treatibles, our line of products for pets. We were the first company to create hemp-based CBD chews, dropper bottle oils, and gel caps for pets. As you are probably aware, this is currently one of the fastest growing segments of the pet industry!

Treatibles - hemp for pets

Thank you, Julianna!