YEARS IN REGION
Ponder uses all LED lighting to reduce our energy consumption, and we provide all of our employees with Orca passes to reduce the environmental impact of their transportation to work, and thus, our operations.
Our budtenders start out earning $15 an hour plus tips. They also receive a monthly Orca pass. The average budtender wage is approximately $16 an hour plus tips. Ponder does not currently offer any health care benefits, but plans to in the future. We are currently searching for a health care plan that best fits the needs of our shop and staff. We offer time off to new parents, but we currently do not offer compensation for parental leave, but we offer paid sick and safe time, as required by the City of Seattle. Ponder fosters a sense of togetherness with our staff and community, in effort to create an environment where all feel welcome. We are currently working towards becoming a LGBT certified safe space.
We are perceived as the neighborhood shop of the Central District. Our primary focus is on our community and their needs, and have very close relationships with our regulars. Additionally, our staff and security help keep an eye on our block to ensure its cleanliness and safety. If Ponder employees notice any trash generated by our shop (i.e. bags or empty packages), we pick it up and dispose of it properly. We’re here for our customers first and foremost. Their support is what gives us our livelihood -we couldn’t do it without our community! ‘Ponder for the People’ is our motto.
We are the first retail shop to request pesticide testing from our vendors to ensure quality cannabis, and we are proud to be a leader in this area. We have also requested some vendors list the most prevalent terpenes found in their strains, to steer the market away from purchases based solely on THC, and more towards the entourage effect off all cannabinoids in relation to terpenes. Additionally, our owner is an active member of the Washington State Cannabusiness Association (WACA), that works to “build a safe, quality-controlled and fully-regulated marketplace for marijuana in Washington state.”
We prioritize vendors who reduce packaging waste. Quincy Green has 100% compostable packaging, and Soulshine has compostable boxes and are moving to compostable bags this fall. We also try to feature as many companies with recyclable or reusable glass packaging as possible.
Ponder has little need for water in our daily operations, but we will be installing water conversation fixtures in our next remodel.
Currently, Ponder is not involved in actions related to correcting the former prosecution of cannabis holders and/or distributors before the passing of I-502. However, Ponder fosters diversity and cultivates an environment where all feel welcome to explore the emerging cannabis industry, despite race, gender or sexual orientation.
Ponder became Washington State’s first Clean Green Certified retailer when we partnered with Green Barn Farms. Currently, we offer a variety of flower and pre-rolls from Green Barn Farms, who focuses on sustainable and all-natural farming techniques. We also carry two other environmentally friendly vendors - Quincy Green and Soulshine Cannabis. Both companies source packaging that is compostable. Quality cannabis is our top priority at Ponder, and we are the first store to third-party test all of our vendors. This is the only way to verify their product is free of harmful pesticides, and though it adds an additional cost to our business, we will continue to do so to ensure the safety and quality of our product for people and the planet.
HEALTH & SAFETY
We are the first retail shop to request pesticide testing from our vendors to ensure quality cannabis. We have also requested some vendors list the most prevalent terpenes found in their strains, to steer the market away from purchases based solely on THC, and more towards the entourage effect off all cannabinoids in relation to terpenes. As well as being a recreational cannabis shop, Ponder is also a medically endorsed retail store. As required by the DOH and LCB, any medically certified product we bring into the shop will undergo pesticide and heavy metal testing. Any product that has not undergone both tests will not be approved for medical retail sale. Since the legalization of cannabis, medical cannabis users have noticed pricing increases within the industry; to alleviate the cost of our product, Ponder offers a 20% discount on all full-priced items to medical cannabis card holders.
In addition to working hard to ensure our products do not contain harmful pesticides, we have also sourced edibles and other non-flower products to meet varying health and dietary needs, including sugar-free and vegan options. We have a large variety of edibles for consumers who choose not to smoke, as well as vaporizers for those that do. Our budtenders work closely with our customers every day to find strains and products that best suit their health, needs, and experience levels.
Ponder is a quiet and classy presence in the Central District, that many in the neighborhood are still finding out about. As a new presence in the market, they impressively lead the entire industry being the first store to independently test all vendors for pesticides, at their own cost. Ponder demonstrates great commitment to values-led business practices in many areas, and we look forward their continued leadership and development as a company. Ponder are wonderful folks, who the market is lucky to have. (Editor’s Note: We note that Ponder is the youngest company scored, and their score of 88 is excellent for a company at their stage, and we expect their score to increase as they are around longer.)