Western News

Ganjamaica Cup to climax Rastafari Rootz Fest

Observer West reporter

Thursday, December 13, 2018

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NEGRIL, Westmoreland —

The three-day Rastafari Rootz Fest, a Jamaica Tourist Board-endorsed event, which kicks off tomorrow, will culminate on Sunday with a presentation ceremony at Long Bay Beach in Negril, where winners of different categories of entrants in the Ganjamaica Cup will be declared.

But, according to Ras Iyah V, founder of Rastafari Rootz Fest, as Jamaica prepares for the international ganja market, this year the Ganjamaica Cup will be used, not only to identify ganja farmers who cultivate the best quality of the different strains of cannabis, but to especially determine where the various strains are grown.

“It is a competition to determine where certain types of herbs are grown because right now the international market requires high THC herb and also requires high TBD herb, so we need to be in a position to know where what is grown best and who is growing it best,” Ras Iyah V explained.

“One of the aims and objectives of the event is to really educate the people... update them in terms of what's happening in the international ganja industry. And what it is that they require to access the international market. What are the standards and so on … so within that framework what we have done is we have a competition, the Ganjamaica Cup. The competition encourage ganja farmers from all over Jamaica to send in a two-once sample so that we can test it for THC, TBD, we also encourage oil, hash and hybrid.”

The event is also designed to expose the Rastafari religion to the international community as according to Iyah V, himself an elder member of the faith, the movement in some parts of the international sphere is only associated with reggae music.

“They don't tell the basic theological, historical and anthropological foundation of the movement,” the dreadlocked Rastafarian said.

The event, which will be fired up with educational seminars on cannabis tomorrow, will see discussions on the business aspect of the herb on Saturday. Then, the event will be highlighted by health and wellness seminars during the day on Sunday, before the Ganjamaica Cup in the evening.

“On Sunday, it is strictly a health and wellness day where we have about six medical doctors coming in, but these doctors are also involved in herbs. We have Anthony Hardy, a neurologist, one of only five doctors in the state of Florida to have licence to prescribe marijuana to his patient. We also have a next Jamaican doctor, Dr Anthony Pottinger, a gynaecologist, Dr Genny Wilkins, Dr Hearse of Jamaican background, based in New York. There is a possibility that Dr Julius Harvey, son of Marcus Garvey, might be there, Ras Iyah V disclosed.

There will be live performances by notable reggae artistes during the three nights of the event.

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