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Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura launches cannabis edibles brand

Inside Jesse Ventura's new brand of edibles
Inside Jesse Ventura's new brand of edibles 01:46

MINNEAPOLIS — Former Minnesota Gov. Jesse Ventura, who has been a strong supporter of cannabis legalization, is launching his own edible brand on 4/20.

Ventura partnered with Retro Bakery — a Minnesota Black woman-owned business in Brooklyn Center — to create hemp-derived products. While his website doesn't list his products, there is one photo of bag of 10 gummies called the "Lake Street Collection."

Jesse Ventura Farms

Retro Bakery CEO Mason Alt says the products will be as unique as the former governor. 

"We have a Baja-flavored gummy, so that kind of gives us homage to his favorite vacation spot down in Baja. We also have a Hunter's Blood milk chocolate bar, kind of like an orange chocolate bar. That's going back to maybe his Predator movie days," Alt said. "Eventually, kind of like a Jesse Ventura, pre- and post-workout line with cannabis infusions, you know, something that'll help you get amped for your workout, one that'll help you simmer down from it."

Alt says the partnership started after he and Ventura started chatting at First Avenue's legalization event in August.

"Before you know it, we were hanging out at Jesse's house playing board games till two in the morning, honestly. So it was a fun time," Alt said. "He heard that Minnesota was legalizing, he dropped whatever he was doing in California, looking at whatever companies and he came straight to Minnesota and said, I need to work here. So that to me was like, that's who I want to work with. I want to work with someone whose main goal is to work and support the local Minnesota economy."

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The partnership, called Jesse Ventura Farms, will make its products available for preorder on April 1. They'll be shipped in time for April 20, the website states. Ventura will also host a launch party on April 20 at the Hook and Ladder in Longfellow.

"I can't tell you how truly amazing this feels," Ventura said. "To finally be able to legally share with you, products from a plant that has had such an amazing impact on my life."

Ventura said he partnered with Retro Bakery because they're headquartered a few miles away from where he raised his family in Brooklyn Park. After interviewing "hundreds" of cannabis companies over the past few years, Ventura said he was impressed with their focus on giving back to the community and having award-winning products in their inventory.

"Cannabis saved my family's life," he added in a video on his website. "And now it's time for me to return to the cannabis world."

"This isn't just Jesse hype. This isn't just like a quick cash grab or anything. This is building a legacy with Jesse, to give back to the people who've always followed Jesse who have loved Jesse," Alt said. "We're just a little ship making waves. Jesse just helps our ship get a little bit bigger so we can make a little bit bigger waves."

The products will be launched on April 20 or "4/20" with a launch party at Zen Arcade. Tickets range from $100 to $2,500 for one-on-one time with the former governor. 

"You can buy the products, you can hang out with Jesse. We're doing a bunch of meet and greet type things," Alt said. "You could, you know, maybe have a little vape sesh or something like that, you know, sit down and talk conspiracies, whatever you want to do. This isn't just Jesse hype. This isn't just like a quick cash grab or anything. This is building a legacy with Jesse, to give back to the people who've always followed Jesse, who have loved Jesse."

Last year, Ventura testified in front of a Minnesota Senate committee in support of legalizing recreational cannabis use for adults in Minnesota. Ventura was in attendance when Gov. Tim Walz signed the marijuana legislation into law, making Minnesota the 23rd state to legalize the drug.

Ventura was a surprise winner of the 1998 gubernatorial race, running as a Reform Party Candidate. He served one term.

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