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UpperCut is the first dedicated project presenting Thai cannabis culture to the world directly from the Thai cannabis community. On the face of it, UpperCut will be a competition between ten of Thailand’s premier growers as they farm, harvest, dry and cure the same clones from three cultivars. Through a dedicated YouTube channel and episodes, HighThailand will follow, document, and publish the growers’ respective progress. Please subscribe to @highthailand on YouTube for all upcoming UpperCut episodes. At the conclusion a panel of judges will proclaim a winner for each cultivar. However, our ultimate aim is to cast a broader light on the rich culture, art, music, creativity, lifestyle and incredible personalities who make up our community. Through a series of live events, YouTube episodes and real time social media we will broadcast the dynamic nature of our community as it continues to evolve in the face of challenges from unfriendly growing conditions to the ever uncertain regulatory framework. Our competition is just the starting point of the story we wish to tell.

BKK Budtender, Maruku_x and 22Babyface at our event in Pattaya

Sadly, when covered by observers from the media, the story of cannabis in Thailand has been a circus side show—a way for international (and local) news organizations to gain quick cheap attention through sensationalist headlines tainting the plant with a static overplayed stigma. But Thai cannabis and its culture are not another notorious vice of nightlife here. We have growers who can stand tall and compete with the best in the world. We have a culture with roots deep in life, art, music, food, medicine, and religion. A culture which has been reborn, re-energized and has brought like-minded people together leading to education, development, and creation. Indeed, throughout our months working within the Thai cannabis environment we have always come back to the conclusion that Thai cannabis and its culture are soft powers which should be showcased to the world. UpperCut is designed to do just that.

The first event at Never not High

HighThailand has been working on the UpperCut concept since August of 2023 (after sitting through a pheno hunt with Sovereign Asia and brainstorming the idea of sharing their genetics with Thailand’s best growers) and have been filming since December. But the idea of UpperCut is a natural development from the work that HighThailand has been doing since legalization. Our work began with an online resource helping consumers locate the closest sources of cannabis through an interactive map. We then expanded to writing about the many dispensaries and businesses popping up throughout Thailand—learning first about the incredible cannabis grown within Thailand and then learning about the growers themselves. The growers became the key subjects of our articles and coverage, but they also became our teachers, instilling an understanding and appreciation for their work, the art that they create, and the influence it has on the wider community.

Stoner girls are cute

Thailand’s cannabis culture is incredibly unique and complicated. Luckily it is also welcoming and warm (though not without its own petty family friction and drama). Our team has immersed itself with the growers, with the community and we proudly consider ourselves to be part of the community. We have engaged and reported, but most importantly we have learned about the infinite layers that make up our community directly from its members.

Hanging out at Ganjana’s first official Anniversary

Our culture may start with growing but as discussed above it encompasses so much more. It includes history, art, food, music—the interaction of people and the exchange of ideas. Thai cannabis culture is a combination of centuries old wisdom and practice coupled with a young energy of creativity and social engagement. A type of social engagement which is hard to uncover in Thailand. Thai cannabis culture is a unique and novel culture like nothing else, a culture that we are keen to introduce to the world.

Canis Major and Young Gu having fun at our event at PHC – Pretty High Cannabis

We are incredibly fortunate to feature 22BabyFace, Canis Major, Fire Farms, Green Space, Olive Farm with Ghost Gang, Power Puff, Terpie Garden, T-Rex, Underground Grower and Yoda can Grow as UpperCut’s first team of competitors. The three cultivar clones they have been provided are Blue Dream from Humboldt Seed Organization, Sour Tangie from Sovereign Thailand and Zweet Inzanity from Teera Botanicals. While the above-mentioned growers and cultivars may catch the attention and imagination of the greater cannabis world—and while we are thrilled to tell their stories—we are equally excited and looking forward to telling the wider story of our community. To this end we invite everyone in our community to come, meet with us, attend our events, tell your stories, show your personality, help cast that positive light for everyone both at home and abroad to see. UpperCut is more than a competition—truth be told all our growers are champions in our eyes and crowning a winner is secondary to the cannabis journey we are sharing with our community and broadcasting to the world. We have no idea where that journey is going, there is no map. We have already veered in countless unanticipated directions—each time experiencing an equal amount of frustration and fun but learning from it all. We have little to promise but we can guarantee that UpperCut is going to be crazy, beautiful, educational, and an endless amount of fun. Join us for the ride – in addition to YouTube you can find us on Instagram – it’s your journey we are living!

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Mendel Menachem

Mendel Menachem is a curious and well-known cannabis commentator in Thailand, with a particular focus on locally grown flowers and their growers. His unwavering support for the local industry has earned him widespread respect within the Thai cannabis community. Mendel also regularly reviews cannabis from throughout the country, which he expertly reviews thanks to his renowned palate. Follow him on Instagram