Mennlay Golokeh Aggrey: Cannabis Culinary Maverick
Mennlay Golokeh Aggrey is a massive fan girl of weed, the author of The Art of Weed Butter, and an interdisciplinary cannabis professional, working in the legalized streets since 2005.
In Mexico City (where she currently calls home), she explores cannabis, foodways, and the diasporic connections between Africa and Latin America. Like a true Gemini (ascendant, sun, Mercury, and Mars), she often has her hands in many projects simultaneously. These days, she is working on the upcoming launch of Xula, a full-spectrum hemp brand that she co-founded with her friend Karina, co-hosting the Broccoli Talk podcast, and scheming a future event for the benefit pop-up dinner she founded called Cenas sin fronteras. She is booked, tired, busy but most of all blessed.
PP: How did you first discover plant-based medicine?
MGA: It was probably in my youth when I was given ginger for an upset stomach. It worked. And when things work (whether it’s placebo or woo woo hippy manifestations) you go back to it. After a while, this experience informed me that perhaps other plants, herbs, and plant-based foods could be “medicine” for an ailment.
Yes, I will take that occasional ibuprofen when I don’t have access to plant-based care. One should be reminded however that plant-based medicine has become a very privileged form of medicine. Due to colonization and capitalism, many Indigenous and Afro Descendants communities have less access to plant-medicine and that is a very painful problem. I give thanks every day that I can rely on natural remedies to care for my well-being and community (herbal knowledge has resist so much violence).
PP: What is one of your key plant-based medicine rituals?
MGA: Sparking up herbs to smoke, or heating herbs to steam in the form of a nourishing tea.
PP: Do you have a cultural or ancestral connection to any plants?MGA: I think it’s safe to say that all living beings have an ancestral and cultural connection to plants. For this we have such things as forest bathing, and eco therapy. I truly believe that we cannot live without plants. There are specific herbs and foods aka plants native to West Africa (where my parents were born) that I have an affinity for, like: plantains, rice and foraged leafy greens.
But when it comes to a spiritual and ancestral connection to the act of cultivating plants—as an African there is an undeniable force I feel from plants. Africans after all, are the original people who are responsible for a lot of technology we know and use, such as regenerative agriculture. So yeah, I for sure am drawn ancestrally to plants. I am a longtime “plant mom” as the kids call it, and consider plants to be a vital and influential part of my life.
PP: What is the one plant/herb you can’t live without and why?
MGA: Weed. It’s my medicine and the only reason why I’m here today.
PP: Can you share your favorite self-care practice?
MGA: Meditation, water, yoga and weed are my tried and true. They are forms of self-care that all go well together and separately. And I’ve somehow been able to develop a deep and long lasting relationship to these small forms of self care.
PP: What is one organization you think people should know about and support?
MGA: There are so many organizations and groups of people taking on community care—it's hard to choose just one. But I would recommend peeping The Floret Coalition, an anti-racist weed collective of over 100 small businesses*, supporting and funding via monthly donations to organizations prioritizing the needs of Black, Latinx, and Indigenous communities.
*Note to readers: Prismatic Plants is proudly part of The Floret Coalition
Photo By: Jake Lindelman