Pink Kush: it tastes fantastic, sounds nice, burns well — and, according to Weedsy fans, it feels so sweet.
Pink Kush was raised and developed around the world, this well-known strain is a big hit in Canada, and the second most sought-after strain among Canadian readers, right after Blue Dream. But oddly, Pink Kush‘s affection is not felt as deeply in the US, where its quest for fame is dropping to hundreds.
Canadians and Americans have several socio-cultural differences, including beautiful national parks, a fascination with team athletics, and a passion for mac and cheese. And what might be causing dissonance in the tastes of our weeds?
A closer glance at Pink Kush shows nothing in the way of a reaction. The Canadian tale starts as other storeys, with gossip and conjecture shaping a forgotten past that no one can settle on.
The condensed family tree starts with the Hindu Kush, a sedative landrace strain named after its roots in the Himalayas. The mother strain gave birth to the American-made OG Kush and Zombie OG Kush, a widely accepted close relative — if not a direct parent — of Pink Kush.
The Kush weed family found its way to BC through the US in the mid-2000s, according to Kyp Rowe of Shelter Products. “When the Cannabis Craze reached the West Coast of the US, there were several reports about one of the OG reductions that made it up to BC,” he says. “This may clarify [Pink Kush‘s] roots, but very honestly, without hard lab evidence and a chain of custody, all the theories of cultivar origins are merely someone’s tale.” Once Pink Kush made his BC debut, the news of his influence circulated rapidly. Rowe says that the cloning of houses on the Sunshine Coast, Interior and Kootenays dramatically raised the mass pressure because farmers could get even better costs. However, market appetite rendered it harder for brokers to buy and sell. Says Rowe, “It was Peach Kush, then all the rest.”
But is it Pink Kush? Really?
Forget regarding the name for a second. The Pink Kush sensation starts with a fragrance. “You can’t beat the scent,” says Michelle Tafler, senior branding officer of Aurora Weed. The business San Rafael ’71 Pink Kush is one of Aurora’s most prominent sellers. “It has a nice, earthy scent of pine with touches of citrus,” Tafler says.
Close examination of tiny, thick buds exposes pink-hued hair beneath frosty trichomes. Tafler acknowledges the distinctive pink colour influenced by the iconic name of the route, while she mentions that Aurora’s San Rafael ’71 label has a more purple shade.
Pink Weed delivers a strong, full-body narcotic experience, primarily due to its high THC content, which can vary anywhere from 20% to 30%.
Tafler calls it ‘calming and soothing.’ Rowe defines it as a ‘night-time knockout.’ Habitat Design Weed CEO Rudi Schiebel calls the Pink Kush experience ‘an effective high if you choose to get a weed encounter that doesn’t shut you out, but is still quite powerful.’ This strength motivated Habitat to develop Pink Kush in some of its varieties to build a heavy-hitting design range.
Why so much love in Canada?
After a solid decade of success with no indication of stopping, does Pink Kush represent a distinctly Canadian preference for bagged milk and ketchup chips? Or does our love of this strain show little more than the naivety of the market?
Thanks to its growing success in the traditional market, Pink Kush has become a household brand associated with “couch lock.” Nowadays, despite Canada’s stringent labelling regulations rendering it impossible for customers to distinguish one drug from another, Pink Kush‘s street image is just as crucial as its THC logo.
Schiebel compares this to the US, particularly California, where growers more readily exchange experiences and results based on terpenes and other cannabinoids outside THC. Growers and distributors in the States, he says, “are a little more open to think about such sorts of stuff and shift to more terroir design development, so to speak, whereas Canada has been restricted to warning labels.” Our attraction to Pink Kush can also derive from its roots on the Pacific coast, where the famously potent BC Bud was born irrespective of strain or cultivar. But Rowe notices that Pink Kush returned on the scene well after the first BC bud craze of the 90s.
A super consistent strain
Or maybe Canadians want continuity, which is one of Tafler’s ideas on why Pink Kush sells so well: “The results are not going to change with the strain or the stock,” she says. “It’s a very stable commodity that I feel is one of the keys to its popularity.”
As with food or alcohol, though, market preferences for cannabis are continually evolving and increasing, and Pink Kush will inevitably circulate out of fashion. Schiebel believes that this is already happening: “It’s cyclical; there are well-known varieties like Bubba Kush, Master Kush and Rockstar Kush that have all had their moment in the sun.”
Looking at cannabis terroir-obsessed California — where food and wine patterns are already emerging — Schiebel’s team is optimistic that Canadian buyers would soon be increasingly interested in where their marijuana is produced, how it’s going to grow. In other words, Pink Kush is not going to be overlooked but is going to make room for younger, more desirable varieties that cater to a more targeted audience.
For Tafler, however, Pink Kush already attracts customers with a racist flavour. “We assume that people who love Pink Kush are users who appreciate the nature of cannabis and cannabis and are rather discerning observers themselves.” No one knows why it is so much more common in Canada than in the US; she postulates that we might be pickier regarding euphoric experiences. “I’m not too positive,” she notes, “but we know that Canadians enjoy it.”