Strain Heritage Series: Landrace Strains of Morocco
Published on 1/3/23
Legal cannabis has come a long way over the past two decades. Whether it's the massive growth and incredible money-making potential of the North American legal cannabis market, the ever-growing push for widespread recreational and medical use, or nations like Mexico or Canada fully legalizing nationwide, it's clear that cannabis in the West is here to stay.
In other places in the world, however, cannabis has been around for much longer than the past few decades. Cannabis has been present in some parts of the world, like India, for thousands of years. It has been a part of mainstream culture in Amsterdam for nearly 50 years now and has been used for both religious and recreational purposes since humans came down from the trees and started walking on two legs. Another one of the oldest and most long-standing nations with cultural roots in cannabis is Morroco!
As part of our ongoing strain heritage series, we wanted to highlight the rich and incredibly diverse cultural impact of Morrocan cannabis exports. But to fully wrap your mind around how and why Morrocan cannabis exports are so highly sought-after and well-lover among stoners in the know, we need to get to the bottom of how and why it exists the way it does. After all, that top-notch Morrocan hash didn't just develop overnight.
So with all of that in mind, let's dig right into it by breaking down the interesting and complex history of cannabis culture in the cannabis capital of the Maghreb region of North Africa!
The History of Cannabis in Morroco
It's almost impossible to discuss cannabis in Morroco without touching on top-notch Morrocan hash. Northern African nations like Morroco have long been connected at the hip with hash, going together like peanut butter and jelly. To understand how and why Morroco has habitually exported some of the very best hashish on the planet, we first need to dig into the history of cannabis culture in Morroco.
Although it's impossible to nail down exactly when and where cannabis was first introduced into Morroco, we know it spread and was used like wildfire! During the sixteen-century, cannabis use was so commonplace that it was grown in gardens nationwide for local use. It was only in the 18th century when the mountainous Rif region adopted cannabis from a production perspective. Like most other nations on the planet, however, restrictions were eventually placed on cannabis and its use by government powers. In Morocco, this ban came from Sultan Hassan I in the late 1800s, on excusing the previously mentioned Rif region due to its money-making production power.
Surprisingly, that nationwide ban stayed in place until the 1950s, only to be banned again in 1956 by King Mohammed V, shortly after the nation of Morocco we know today declared its independence.
Whatever the legal status of cannabis in Morocco, nothing has slowed down the thriving cannabis tourism industry that their top-notch hash has produced. The Rif region has been producing top-notch hash for hundreds of years now, defining its craft over decades of uninterrupted refinement of their strains and hash-making process. As a result of that ultra-refined process, the unlawful recreational use of cannabis has long been popular and spread throughout Moroccan society.
Typically smoked using a long traditional sebsi pipe, mixed into foods, or used as part of Sufi religious rituals, cannabis culture has long been thriving in Moroccan society. Just take majoun into consideration as a prime example. This traditional edible is a well-known candy or jam made from ingredients like cannabis, honey, chocolate, or various nuts is incredibly popular in Morocco and leaves users with a similar sensation to that of smoking.
Due to the astounding long-standing popularity of cannabis use in Morocco, there have been several recent pushes to decriminalize, legalize, and create a state-run medical program in Morocco. As a result of that push, Moroccan authorities finally made things official in May 2021, with their Parliament adopting Law 13-21, approving the legal use of cannabis for medical, cosmetic, and industrial purposes!
Top Landrace Strains From Morroco
First up on our list of strains is the possible mother of them all, the world-renowned Beldia landrace strain. Don't be fooled by the name, dear reader. There's far more to this strain than sharing its namesake with an extremely potent and high-quality type of hash. After all, it's not exactly a secret that Beldia hash is about the best you can get when it comes to Morrocan cannabis products.
This strain has been native to Morroco for more than 800 years, making it one of the oldest and most storied strains we've ever covered here at Where's Weed. This product of the ultra-mountainous Chefchaouen province is about as pure as it gets and has been used to craft lovely Morrocan hash varieties since the 60s.
Well-known for its delicate flavor profiles that remind folks of sweet, natural honey and fragrant in a way most cannabis strains could never be, the famous Beldia strain is about as good as it gets when it comes to unique landrace Morrocan strains.
Plain and simply put, this top-notch strain is a prime example of the very best of what Morroco has to offer!
A top-notch landrace sativa strain born in the beautiful Ketama Valley in Morocco, it's tough to find another strain comparable to this one. Known for leaving users feeling talkative, relaxed, and perhaps most interestingly to many readers, aroused!
Whether the unique and exciting notes of wood and mint stand in as the backbone of this strain's flavor or the uplifting and energizing standard sativa-style effects that fade into a mellow, relaxing vibe, this strain is about as unique and interesting as it gets. Often compared to flavor notes of blue cheese and sage, thanks to its terpene notes and heavy THC content, the Ketama strain is a lovely option if you can manage to get your hands on it state-side.
No matter how you slice it, this strain is a great option for those dealing with issues like depression, issues related to chronic pain, and stress/anxiety-related conditions. We highly recommend this unique Morrocan landrace strain if you come across it on a dispensary menu.
Widely regarded as one of the most even and well-balanced hybrid Morrocan strains, this classic kush is well-known for its spicy, peppery aroma and indica-like effects. Often considered for its incredibly unique flavor and scent profile and sedative, sleepy, relaxing effects thanks to its unique terpene profile and potent cannabinoids, this strain is about as good as it gets when it comes to Morrocan landrace strains.
All of those traits combined are great for recreational and medical users alike, easing the issues and symptoms associated with problems and conditions like depression, insomnia, and stress/anxiety-based conditions thanks to its about 14 percent THC and touches of terpene like myrcene.
Whether it's the earthy, rich notes of pine and pepper, its sedative properties, or its incredibly rich terpene and cannabinoid profile, it's clear that this wonderful Morrocan strain will do the job!
Bearing the namesake of the famous Moroccan mountains it's often grown on, Rif Mountain is a top-notch Morrocan strain known for its hybrid effects, buzzy full-body high, and short flowering period.
Often referred to as a Moroccan heirloom hashish strain, this variety of unworked Morrocan landraces is perfect for making world-renowned beldia hash. If you've ever had the pleasure of enjoying this iconic Morrocan hash type, then you'll know how significant of a building block this strain truly is!
Whether you've gotten your hands on it during a stop at an iconic Amsterdam coffee shop or some of the blonde, chocolaty resin this strain is known for, this famous Moroccan strain is about as good as it gets when it comes to native Morrocan landrace.
Whether it's the 3:1 THC to CBD ratio, the rich cerebral effects from both the strain and the hash, or the rich and exciting flavors that come along with it, it's hard to beat a top-notch strain like this one for pretty much any reason.
Here's hoping that all the Morrocan cannabis enthusiasts out there do everything they can to protect this highly endangered landrace strain!