How Real THC Appeared at a Regular Chicago Bakeshop

The Wake-N-Bakery officially opened its doors at the start of 2020, and it wasn’t until August—after consulting a lawyer, researching farms and fine prints, and setting an age barrier of 21 for the baked goods—that they became the first bakery in the country to sell real THC-infused products. Cookies, cakes, pistachio crème brûlée—a smorgasbord dosed with varying ratios of hemp-derived THC and CBD. All (technically?) legal. At least until federal regulators start caring more about the way the Farm Bill and its phrasing around Delta-9 THC is being interpreted.

“Yes, we are a little worried about the Farm Bill being retracted,” says Banks. “However, by that time, we hope to have the Delta 9 license. We have applied for the license but have yet to hear the results.”

The menu (and the colorful, hand painted exterior) may be bold, but Banks doesn’t cut any corners. The hemp products come from KifCure, a local grower and processor in Illinois, and COAs for all that product are always on hand for customers interested in seeing test results.

Whatever regulatory risks are at hand for Banks, her customers couldn’t be more grateful for the whimsical addition to the neighborhood. In the fall, Banks partnered with a local pizza shop for a THC-infused pizza night, selling 22 whole pies for takeout the first night. During the week of Thanksgiving, they sold about 30 infused holiday pies. Banks has since brought on a pastry chef and an executive chef from Johnson and Wales College of the Culinary Arts to help craft new delicacies and delights, and, thanks to one of her socially savvy employees, the bakery went viral on TikTok in October.

“When we first advertised, people kept asking, ‘Is this real?’” recalls Banks. “We kind of laughed, but we also understood that we are the first and that we could pave the way for other businesses. The community has been super supportive through this difficult year. Now we get a lot of 21-yr-old’s who want to celebrate their birthdays here though.”

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