You’ve heard of counterfeit bags, counterfeit watches, and counterfeit money...but counterfeit cannabis? Yep, it’s a thing that happens when a medical cannabis strain becomes so extremely popular on a global scale that counterfeiters try to profit off the strain’s popularity. They do so by disguising other (often lesser-quality) cannabis strains in counterfeit bags that are made to resemble genuine packaging.
And it’s happened to Runtz, Leafly’s 2020 Strain of the Year and one of the most popular strains to come from California. As it rose in popularity, so did counterfeit packaging, bags, and vape cartridges. You can learn more about how to spot counterfeit Runtz packaging online, but in the meantime, we’ll explore everything you need to know about Runtz.
It’s a rare hybrid.
Runtz is a rare hybrid medical cannabis strain by Cookies. If you’re familiar with Zkittlez and Gelato, the overall flavor profile of Runtz is very similar; after all, it's a hybrid of the two popular strains. Its appearance and scent can be traced directly to its parent strains, especially its deep purple color, resulting from the anthocyanin terpene content found in both Zkittlez and Gelato.
The tropical aroma comes from its terpenes, the compounds that also contribute to the strain’s flavor. Available in white and pink varieties, Runtz is rare and incredibly potent.
A little bit about Runtz history.
There are many commonalities between Runtz and Cookies, and one of those is their shared use of music as a marketing tactic. Rapper Yung LB made music with Berner in the past, and through his campaigning, he helped create hype for Runtz. Yung LB is a Los Angeles-based rap artist, who comes from a long line of West Coast cannabis rappers from Long Beach, CA.
Per Cookies, Runtz came from the Runtz crew, composed of “Ray, Nick, and Yung LB.” They used the recipe Berner spoke about to build their own platform to launch Runtz, with Yung LB first debuting the strain at the Emerald Cup in Santa Rosa in December 2017.
Another famous member of the Runtz team is the rapper Nero, the creator of the White Runtz strain. Not only are Nero and Yung LB great rappers, but they’re savvy businessmen who helped put the Runtz name on the map. Without their interest and promotion, Runtz never would have caught the attention of the Cookies brand and become the household name it is today.
Per Genius.com, over 100 rap songs use the word “Runtz” in their lyrics.
It’s Leafly’s 2020 Strain of the Year.
Speaking of Leafly, “phenomenal quality, soaring demand, and a meteoric rise in pop culture” made Runtz their Leafly Strain of the Year in 2020. Being a relatively new strain (it’s barely three years old!), its popularity reached phenomenal heights in a short amount of time. Here’s more on how Leafly uses data and science to select their Strain of the Year:
- Leafly uses a combo of data and editorial expertise to narrow down the finalists.
- From there, they review its performance for at least one calendar year, analyzing its trajectory in comparison to other strains.
- Their independent review excludes any input or influence from outside parties, including the Leafly sales team.
Once they review the data, crunch the numbers, and evaluate a strain’s popularity, they officially choose a Strain of the Year. Previous Strains of the Year include Gelato and Wedding Cake.
Some info about its potency.
Since you can buy different versions of Runtz (namely White and Pink, but also Obama and the upcoming Azul), it’s difficult to state exactly what patients can expect, and the intensity may vary depending on the THC content (Runtz strains range from 19-29% THC.)
Runtz can have a strong impact on users, so speak to your budtender about your history with medical cannabis use, and he or she can help determine if Runtz is the right choice for you.
Its secret is in the terpenes.
Runtz may be high in THC, but its secret lies in its terpenes. THC powers cannabis’ various effects, but terpenes modulate the effects, making it multidimensional rather than singular and short. The top three terpenes in Runtz lab samples are caryophyllene, limonene, and linalool. Caryophyllene is responsible for Runtz’s citrus flavor; limonene contributes to its gassiness while linalool adds a berry complexity to the strain. This terpene combo is so dominant, it has actually become a criticism of the strain.
How to buy Runtz
Medical cannabis patients can purchase Runtz from a licensed Cookies partner dispensary. And now that Runtz is part of the Cookies fam, you can expect to see more varieties of Runtz in states where medical cannabis is legal.
CULTA is hard at work to bring its patients Runtz, and in the near future, you’ll be able to purchase White Runtz, Pink Runtz, and Azul Runtz from CULTA. White and Pink are both phenos of Zkittles x Gelato, while the specifics of Azul are still strictly under wraps. Head to our flagship dispensary and speak to one of our budtenders for the latest on Runtz.