Fast Five Q&A: Chris Folkerts, CEO of Grenco Science
The advent of cannabis legalization has led to an increased demand for new plant-focused technology. From cutting-edge cultivation techniques to groundbreaking smoking devices, the research and development happening in weed seems non-stop.
Chris Folkerts, the founder and CEO of Grenco Science, is one of the preeminent names in cannabis innovation. As the creator of the iconic G Pen line of vaporizers, Folkerts revolutionized how people consume flower and concentrates. His company also acquired iconic gravity infuser brand Stündenglass, rounding out the ever-evolving catalog. G Pen has also teamed up with artists like Snoop Dogg, Berner, and most recently, The Grateful Dead, introducing his products to wider audiences with every collab.
Folkerts answered GreenState’s Fast Five questions, revealing how he lands his big-name partners, his creative process, and what’s ahead for the brand.
GreenState: How did your journey with cannabis begin?
Chris Folkerts: I was born and raised in Belleville, IL, which is a town of about 40,000 people on the other side of the Mississippi from St. Louis. I was introduced to cannabis in high school.
At that time, in the Midwest, there was still a stigma around cannabis, so it wasn’t until I reached California that I was introduced to the industry and the business opportunities. I immediately gravitated towards bringing this into the mainstream and applying skills I had learned in other industries to something I was extremely passionate about. What was once a pastime has become my purpose and career.
GS: What is your favorite way to consume?
CF: With friends.
GS: Grenco continues to revolutionize the cannabis space. What is your creative process like?
CF: With my chief technology officer and team, I believe we are designing the future. Michael has been engineering products for the last decade, and together, we are refining vaporization.
When we look to develop a new groundbreaking technology product, we always keep the end consumer in mind. What is needed? How do we make things better?
GS: You’ve had several high-profile collabs over the years. How do you solidify these partnerships?
CF: Prior to founding Grenco Science, I worked in the entertainment industry. I was fortunate to meet all sorts of amazing entertainers. Our first collab was with Snoop Dogg. He put G Pen on the map. I knew from there we needed to work with the network I had built. Pairing their musical genius with our ingenuity in this space—further legitimizing cannabis consumption and the roadmap we built.
GS: What’s on deck for Grenco? What can the fans expect to see next?
CF: I am really proud to be at the helm of a company that has such a diverse product portfolio. For the novice to the connoisseur, from dry herb to the finest concentrates, we have created something for everyone and will continue to innovate in all categories. Our approach is inclusivity. We create for all walks of life.
This month, G Pen and Stundenglass are launching their most significant collaboration to date with none other than the legendary Grateful Dead. This collaboration represents a thrilling opportunity for both brands, further solidifying our presence among the ranks of the world’s largest and most influential brands, including but not limited to Gucci, Nike, North Face, Igloo, and Ben & Jerry’s.
The answers given by Q&A subjects do not necessarily reflect the opinions of GreenState. The subject is solely responsible for the views stated in this piece.