There are medical marijuana dispensaries, and then there's Earth's Healing.
An industry leader, Earth's Healing opened in Tucson on May 20, 2013 after owner Vicky Puchi-Saavedra persevered through two years of red tape as lawmakers debated the legality of medical marijuana dispensaries.
For Puchi-Saavedra, the issue was not so complex, and her desire to open a medical marijuana dispensary was just as simple: She wanted a natural way to help people suffering from medical conditions like epilepsy, cancer, Crohn's disease, chronic pain, or other issues for which common medical or pharmaceutical treatment can be burdensome or unhealthy. Recently, post-traumatic stress disorder was added to that list, effective as of next January.
"We have patients who were on two, three, four prescriptions who don't want to live like that anymore, and who thank us for being open—for persevering," Puchi-Saavedra said.
It is fro m her perseverance and the support of a knowledgeable, dedicated staff that Earth's Healing was born and continues to thrive as one of the most recognizable dispensaries in the city, known largely for its quality on-site concentrates, which routinely incentivizes people to drive from all spectrums of Tucson to fill their prescription.
In a few months time, Earth's Healing will also have a proprietary grow (Earthgrow), complementing its large array of edibles that features more than 75 menu items like juices, brownies, crackers, cookies, gummy bears, energy shots, as well as several balms and tinctures. The company is also exploring delivery possibilities in the coming months.
Earth's Healing has also become known as the most affordable dispensary in town. Compared to other dispensaries that sell at $20 per gram, Earth's Healing offers $13/gram.
"Our prices don't mean less quality," Puchi-Saavedra said. "We provide the best quality product at the most affordable prices. We've done a lot of research and spent a lot of time and money to make sure we produce the best concentrate."
Patients who spend money at Earth's Healing are also rewarded for it. Its Loyalty Pays Reward Program gives customers one point for every $1 spent. A customer who earns 300 points will receive a free gram, while customers who earn 1,000 points will receive a free eighth.
"We want to give back to them for their loyalty," Elliott said. "We also want to give back to the community."
Earth's Healing has built a reputation for donating to schools, funerals and charities.
That pattern will continue when Earth's Healing hosts MMJ for Tucson, a medical-marijuana resource event that will allow the general public the opportunity to become more informed about marijuana as a treatment option. There, Earth's Healing will donate to a charity that is still to be determined.
Staff from other marijuana dispensaries will be present, as will alternative pain doctors and others related to the industry. There will be food trucks, music and a raffle.
"We're the first dispensary to host this event, and we think it's going to prove very beneficial for the public," marketing director Florence Hijazi said. "We want to show people there who might be suffering that there are alternatives out there. The only side effect for our patients is happiness."
For more information on Earth's Healing, visit www.earthshealing.org or call 373-5779. Earth's Healing is located at 2078 E. Benson Highway.