The Broken History of the Thai Stick Blunt

BARBARI Botanical 101, Brand, Thoughts

How the Thai Stick claimed its fame in America

Cannabis became popular and easily accessible in the 1970s-80s in the United States, whereas Thai cannabis culture has a very long and rich history. “Ganga” in Thailand, the cannabis plant was once used quite heavily throughout the country. Hemp or cannabis leaf was an ingredient found in most kitchens, and hemp was widely grown and used for textiles and rope. Of course, they were also growing some of the best Flower for smoking. 

American soldiers brought cannabis back to the US from the Vietnam War, introducing not only some of the best weed in the world to the US but also some of the Thai culture of growing and smoking cannabis, including the O.G. Thai stick. There’s not a lot of consensus about what the exact method or even ingredients of the original Thai stick were. And maybe all the stories about it are true. Some people swear that they were laced with other things, like opiates, and others say the Americans just weren’t accustomed to good, potent herb. What we do know is that the Thai stick started out as nice, sticky nugs tied tightly to a stick and cured that way, usually with the leaves of the cannabis plant wrapped around the outside of it. The purpose being a slow-burning smokeable that stayed fresh longer than loose flower. 

Just like what has happened with so many other traditions from around the world, Americans brought it back home and started doing it their own way, creating bastardizations that would ultimately eclipse, but never quite live up to the original. 

Now, of course, good weed of all different types and flavors is available in much of the western world, whether legally or not. And when you have the sticky stuff, it’s tempting to pack it tightly around a stick and smoke it slowly, as if you were sipping a fine brandy. So the Thai stick, or at least the concept of the Thai stick, has made a resurgence in the states. Nowadays, most industry folks who make these use a press to bind the flower together around a stick. They’re often drizzled with extract or resin, or dipped in kief, if not both. Factoring in the amount of flower that’s used, it can quickly get pretty luxurious, pretty showy, and very potent. The American Thai stick seems to be much more widely known as a “cannagar” now. 

At Sway, we’re all about creating a unique and refined smoking experience without getting you super high, so you can stay in the present, and enjoy the ritual. We call our’s Thai sticks because we look at smoking as a timeless ritual, which means that we honor the way our human ancestors have interacted with the plants and the elements for millennia. We focus on creating that slow, smooth burn, carefully sourcing hemp flower with the right consistency and quality for pressing and rolling in this style. The result is a slow burn and an unforgettably smooth, enchanting smoke.

When Barbari approached us with the ideas for the blue lotus and lions tale Thai sticks, it became this beautiful marriage of our dedicated efforts to perfect the Thai stick method and their rich knowledge of smokable herbs. Together we’ve created two delightful smoking experiences for you to try, and we are grateful to the Thai stoners that advanced cannabis cultivation and found innovative ways to smoke pot, laying the groundwork for us to do what we do today.

Sonia Fay is the co-founder of Sway, a wife and wife team offering hand-rolled premium organic blunts, including our Lion’s Tale and Blue Lotus Thai sticks. She believes that smoking hemp is a timeless ritual which brings us into our bodies and allows us to release tension, relieve pain, and be more present. Sway hemp blunts are designed for a smooth, satisfying smoking ritual that can fit seamlessly into your daily life, or elevate a celebratory moment.

Check out or follow Sway @swaycbd on Instagram.