In the course of researching the cannabis industry, I came across cannabis delivery and subscription services (such as Eaze, the Silicon Valley startup Snoop Dogg invested in). Although federal laws prevent me from subscribing to any services that contain actual cannabis, I did stumble upon cannabis-related subscription services.
After contacting each company and receiving boxes for October/November, I decided these boxes can actually be a good deal, depending on not just the value, but the utility of the items contained in it. Each box is curated by a different group of budding entrepreneurs and is geared toward a slightly different type of pothead. Here’s a breakdown of the marijuana-themed subscription services I tested this month.
The prices are for a month-to-month box, though prices are discounted for longer billing terms (most up to a year).
1. Burn Box ($20/$25/$30 per month)
Burn box focuses on smokers, with a $20 Burn Box for paper smoking supplies, $25 for glass accessories, and $30 for actual glass. Each Burn Box contained quality products focused on smoking, and although some were promotional samples, this was minimized.
In November, it included 420 Wipes sanitary wipes, a cigar slicer, hempwick, a Lighter Bro, rolling filters, and corn husk rolling papers, along with a high-end glass pipe. Included with October’s Super Burn Box was a mid-grade pipe, Boveda packet (perfect for curing/storing cannabis), low-end plastic container, some Formula 420 spray and an assortment of rolls, wraps, cones, and matches.
The Lighter Bro salesman must have had a good month, as I’ve come across these things multiple times over the last year and nobody is ever interested. The product did, however, find it’s way into both Burn Box and Kush Cargo, making me immediately think of Steve Buscemi trying to sell celery in Portlandia.
Lighter Bro aside, the Burn Box did curate much better quality items than some of the other boxes. As a smoker, I’ll actually use the matches and paper supplies, and there’s always a use for glass. The cleaning supplies were also a welcome addition to my personal smoking collection, as I’ve always been a fan of sanitary smoking.
The cigar splitter is great for making blunts, and the variety of smoking accessories made me feel prepared to take on any smoke circle I come across. Though the glass quality in October suffered, November’s box included a glass piece I’d actually buy for $30 on its own.
The corn husk wrapping papers particularly stuck out to me, as it’s the first step I’ve seen to commercialize the MacGuyver smoker categorized by the movie Half Baked. Though I would never spend money on a tiny slice of corn skin I could get myself for free, it was nice to see something unique after all the cannabis trade shows and conferences I’ve traveled to.
Burn Box is a great way to supplement my weekly smoke and vape shop visits, giving me a few pieces of swag that are worth showing off and introducing me to something new. On top of this, the company is run by college students who differentiate themselves by contributing portions of profits to NORML and educating consumers about typical pothead tropes and stereotypes, such as the misappropriation of Rastafarian culture.
Overall, Burn Box is definitely worth trying out, especially if you’re the type of smoker who constantly needs a replacement for smoking supplies.
Burn Box Rating: B
2. Green Bake Box ($30/mo)
Green Bake Box has a flat $30 monthly box, though more items are added if you subscribe to a 3-month plan. Included with Green Bake Box’s November box was some trail mix, a high-quality titanium dabber, a mid-grade glass pipe, matches, rolling papers, hemp wick, a clippers lighter, matches, cheap plastic container, and concentrate holder. Also included was a marijuana sticker.
While most of the items were simply promotional stuff, the dabber was a good quality and two-ended dabber giving it high utility and instantly becoming my new favorite dabber. The trail mix was also a nice touch, as I always love nuts, especially during the fall.
Beyond that, I will use the wick, but the rest of it will likely be given away or thrown away, as I don’t have much use for it. Cannabis stickers are a bad idea to rock when you’re an actual cannabis user, due to it still being federally illegal. The pipe would be impossible to scrape resin out of and therefore has little use to me.
The dab containers look cute but aren’t as practical as the myriad of options I already have. I would’ve more appreciated one of the 8-chamber containers that holds a variety of flavors. Aside from the two circles in the d and b, the rest is just wasted space.
The matches are just like bar matches and clippers lighters can’t compare to Bics for reliability in lighting joints, blunts, and pipes. Overall, Green Bake Box did an admirable job, but the quality simply didn’t cut it for the price point.
Green Bake Box Rating: C-
3. Kush Cargo ($20 Nug or Dab/$38 Combo)
Kush Cargo divides their boxes between Nug and Dab-oriented offerings and offers a combo box as well. Like the Burn Box, Kush Cargo’s October box included the Lighter Bro (along with a pocket clip and stickers). It also came with a carb cap dabbing tool, an 8 mm dab nail, a Raw tin filled with cones, Zen pipe cleaners, a set of triangle-shaped concentrate holders, a Bic lighter, and glass pipe.
Here’s how Kush Cargo’s pipe compared to the others. Only the Burn Box November and Kush Cargo pipes made it into my personal collection, whereas the other two were too fragile and too difficult to clean resin out of. Kush Cargo’s pipe had a sexier look with the Sherlock pipe (though a longer one would’ve been nicer), and the thickness, design, bowl size, and everything else about Burn Box November’s pipe made it stand out from the crowd.
The Lighter Bro (and accompanying stickers) were again garbage, and the titanium nail was so small when I brought it to my smoke shop, it took us the better part of 15 minutes to find something small enough to fit it. We then laughed at the tiny nail and wondered why they make such things – it’s barely worth the butane and easily outmatched by a dry dabber.
The beehive carb cap in Kush Cargo did turn out to be an interesting piece, but, since it didn’t match the nail, it meant I was given a bunch of pieces that required me to purchase other things to use them with. The decent mid-grade pipe wasn’t offset by the cost of buying multiple pieces to match the dabbing tools I was given.
I couldn’t tell you the last time I saw anyone use a pipe cleaner for anything other than elementary school projects, and they’re certainly not capable of handling cannabis resin, making them basically useless. The Raw tin was a nice touch, however, and I’ll end up using that to roll joints whenever my tray isn’t handy.
The dab containers were much more useful than the ones from Green Bake Box, though I was sad to see two of the same color.
Overall, Kush Cargo did supply better items than Green Bake Box, but it couldn’t hold up to Burn Box, which impressed with the quality of the one pipe, cigar splitter, and smoking supplies. Although Kush Cargo appears to have gone to lengths to provide a better monetary value, the usefulness for a smoker/vaper such as myself fell short.
Kush Cargo Rating: C
And to provide a base comparison, here are a few pics of the swag I’ve picked up at trade shows for free:
Brian Penny is a former Business Analyst and Operations Manager at Bank of America turned whistleblower, troll, and freelance writer. His work has appeared in High Times, Huffington Post, Fast Company, Cannabis Now, Lifehack, Hardcore Droid, BBC, and more.