Appellation Whitethorn Valley FarmJPG.JP

HUMBOLDT COUNTY GROWERS ALLIANCE

Appellation of Origin

& County of Origin

Preserve, protect, and enhance Humboldt County's collective intellectual property.

The Appellation of Origin Program

Appellations are legal standards-based geographic designations awarded 
to products of places that are exceptional and unique due to their Origin of Production. It is well-known that Humboldt County has a rich and long history cultivating cannabis, has a formidable diversity of genetics, and produces some of the most environmentally conscious cannabis grown anywhere in the world by implementing regenerative practices.

 

In coalition with many of the heritage producing regions and advocacy groups that represent farmers, HCGA successfully advocated for the development of an exclusive Appellation of Origin Program (AOP) similar to the French appellation d ‘origine contrôlée (AOC). This model will establish a terroir-based (in-ground, full-sun) appellation of origin regime for California cannabis and set the groundwork for national and international standards.

 

“Terroir, a French term, which has been eloquently translated as the ‘taste of place,’ acknowledges the natural environment as foundational to this exclusive or essential causal link, and the basis of appellation of origin designations” (Genine Colman of Origins Council, “The Case for Terroir Based Appellations,” 2019).

The Appellation of Origin Program

Appellations are legal standards-based geographic designations awarded 
to products of places that are exceptional and unique due to their Origin of Production. It is well-known that Humboldt County has a rich and long history cultivating cannabis, has a formidable diversity of genetics, and produces some of the most environmentally conscious cannabis grown anywhere in the world by implementing regenerative practices.

 

In coalition with many of the heritage producing regions and advocacy groups that represent farmers, HCGA successfully advocated for the development of an exclusive Appellation of Origin Program (AOP) similar to the French appellation d ‘origine contrôlée (AOC). This model will establish a terroir-based (in-ground, full-sun) appellation of origin regime for California cannabis and set the groundwork for national and international standards.

 

“Terroir, a French term, which has been eloquently translated as the ‘taste of place,’ acknowledges the natural environment as foundational to this exclusive or essential causal link, and the basis of appellation of origin designations” (Genine Colman of Origins Council, “The Case for Terroir Based Appellations,” 2019).

Public Policy Milestones

  • 2015 Supported policy in MMRSA to allow for the “possible development of appellation of origin for marijuana grown in California” (CalGrowers).

  • 2016 Supported policy in MCRSA that “mandated establishing standards for recognition of a particular appellation of origin to marijuana grown in certain geographical areas in California” (CalGrowers).  

  • 2017 Supported policy in MAUCRSA, “no later than Jan. 1, 2021 CDFA shall establish appellations of standards, practices, and varietals applicable to cannabis grown in certain geographical areas of California” (CalGrowers).  

  • 2018 Participated in CalCannabis’s public outreach sessions (HCGA).

  • 2019 Supported Sen. McGuire’s (SB 185) Prohibiting the use of an appellation of origin or similar- sounding word unless the cannabis or cannabis product meets the appellation of origin requirement guidelines and participated on the CalCannabis Appellation Working Group (HCGA). 

  • 2020 Help drive Sen. McGuire's (SB 67)  to reserve appellations of origin specifically for cannabis plants grown in the ground, under full sun, without the use of artificial lights or structures. Setting an in-ground, full-sun baseline for cannabis appellations ensures that appellations are based in the terroir of a region, and that California’s origin regulations will meet established international standards for appellation recognition. Signed by Gov. Newsom Sept. 30, 2020 (HCGA). 

Humboldt County of Origin Designation

Advocating in coalition with other heritage regions of California and championed by Senator McGuire, California chose to protect the name, and thus the reputation, of producing counties through the development of geographical indication protections known as “County Of Origin.” County of Origin is inclusive of all production methods and products within the origin county.  

MEMBERSHIP  |  ABOUT HCGA  |  WHAT WE DO  |  EVENTS  |  NEWS + UPDATES  |  CONTACT US

Cell:  707-599-6670

427 F Street, Suite 213

Eureka, CA 95501

The Humboldt County Growers Alliance is a California mutual benefit, not-for-profit, trade association that is funded and owned by, and for its members

(EIN #82-0658286).