Q & A With Native Leaf CEO Sidney Quitorio

March 2, 2023
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Q & A with Native Leaf CEO Sidney Quitorio about his brand, sustainability, and having the slowest-burning wrap on the market.

Native Leaf produces pesticide-free wraps made from naturally processed hemp leaves that provide an unparalleled cannabis smoking experience. We interviewed the CEO of Native Leaf, Sidney Quitorio, to give Jointly users the inside scoop on these awesome new wraps and how they’re different from other papers or blunt wraps. 

Jointly: What is the story behind Native Leaf?

Sidney Quitorio: We have a parent brand, Purple Rose Supply, that helps compress your cannabis so it burns super slow. Our customers were asking us to provide hemp leaves so they could have an all cannabis experience. 

I loved the concept of wrapping your cannabis with cannabis. It sounded like the ultimate form of consumption. On top of that, it was the most sustainable way of smoking because cannabis leaves typically get thrown away or turned into compost, when they could be repurposed as wraps. Because a whole-leaf hemp wrap didn’t exist in the market, we set out to develop it ourselves. 

Through a ton of R&D, I realized not only are the wraps sustainable, if produced correctly, they’ll leave zero taste other than naturally occurring terpenes present in your flower. In other words, all you taste is cannabis! Once I started to smoke the first versions of Native Leaf, I realized how much flavor I’d been masking in all my years of smoking papers & other wraps. It’s a completely different experience.

We wanted to keep natural and clean in our identity, so we only partnered with pesticide-free farms. We also made a choice to not include any unnatural chemicals in our production process.

Jointly: Wow - that’s incredible! I know I’m not the only one excited to try Native Leaf wraps. You touched on this briefly, but what needs in the cannabis market does Native Leaf fill?

SQ: Firstly, whole-leaf hemp wraps just don’t exist as an option for consumers. You either have to be a grower or know a grower. Also, the wraps that currently exist mask the taste of what you’re smoking. Beyond this, when we set out to make the wraps as clean as possible, we ran into a lot of trouble. It was really tough finding farms that passed our testing standards. Even certified organic farms were failing our pesticide tests. When researching the problem more, I found some studies that shed light on contaminants in the wrap industry. One study found that a lot of the mainstream wraps in the market had heavy metals and pesticides well above the legal limits. Quality control seemed to not be a big priority. 

We discovered the industry just didn’t really care about clean wraps. It was next to impossible to find a wrap that had no chemicals and no pesticides. That’s why we became so strict with our standards for Native Leaf because this is the exact gap we’re aiming to fill. We even made a conscious choice to shut down our business for 1 year, so we could properly vet all of our suppliers. This significantly reduced our supply chain and growth rate, but we needed to ensure the leaves we sourced were in line with our overall vision. 

Since using pesticides is within a farmer’s control, we only partnered with farmers that believed in the same clean vision and chose not to use it on their crops. Along with this, even though some heavy metals are naturally present in soil, we work with farmers that have little to no heavy metals on their land. This significantly cuts out the vast majority of hemp farmers in the US, which is why we were out of stock for so many months. The industry isn’t as regulated yet, so a lot can fall through the cracks, but we want to make sure we’re being as intentional as possible on our end.

Jointly: It sounds like you were very conscientious and intentional at each step of the journey. So, what is the process of making Native Leaf wraps?

SQ: It’s goes through our proprietary slow dry process and is handcrafted from there. I can’t go into the full details, but we pride ourselves on having a clean experience through and through, so we do everything to make sure the smoke is smooth and the taste is all cannabis terpenes!

Jointly: Okay, so how is your process different from how other hemp wraps or rolling papers are made? 

SQ: Other hemp wraps and rolling papers are made by grinding the materials and using the paper making process we learned in grade school. However, once you get to the industrial level, chemicals and other synthetic ingredients are often introduced to make them look & feel better. On top of that, the taste is horrible, where it often tastes “grassy” or like paper.

Jointly: How does Native Leaf compare to other hemp wraps or rolling papers in terms of taste and burn time? 

SQ: Native Leaf stays in its natural form as a leaf, whereas other hemp wraps will be processed into paper. Because it remains a leaf and is naturally thicker, it burns a lot slower than other hemp wraps. Our customers tell us it’s the slowest-burning wrap they’ve ever experienced. Our commitment to clean leaves and process also means that you can feel better about what you smoke. You’ll notice the difference when you try a Native Leaf, both in taste and how effortlessly smooth the inhale will be.  

Jointly: How do Native Leaf wraps enhance your cannabis smoking experience?

SQ: Native Leaf allows you to enjoy a sustainable wrap that is made entirely of the plant you’re smoking, just herb wrapped in herb. We’ve got quality down to a science and the hemp wrap is so clean, you’ll only taste the terpenes in your flower. It wins every blind taste test we’ve ever done. 

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