This Guy Is Turning a Classic American Snack Into Pot-Infused Edibles
Is the edibles market ready for Space Food Sticks?
Some edibles will send you to space with a single dose. And if nostalgia-junkie Eric Lefcowitz's vision comes to fruition, you'll be able to buy an infused-food product inspired by an energy bar that has actually been to the moon and back: Space Food Sticks.
According to the Space Food Sticks Preservation Society (SPFS), which was founded by Lefcowitz, the sticks were first developed by NASA as an efficient means of providing astronauts with meaningful sustenance.
"The Pillsbury Company, which had been lending its support to NASA, saw an opportunity to catch a little 'moon fever' for their company. Their efforts lead to the creation of Space Food Sticks. . . The long chewy stick could slide into an airtight port located in an astronaut's helmet to provide essential nutrition in case of an emergency. Pillsbury released a commercial spin-off of their cosmic creation, imaginatively dubbing the product Space Food Sticks."
Lefcowitz brought the sticks back to life in 2006, teaming with a top food scientist to create a recipe that would yield bars similar in taste and texture to the original. Through the SPFS, Lefcowitz sold the resurrected sticks online and in various retail locations around the country––mostly space museums or planetariums.
KINDLAND spoke with Lefcowitz about the next evolution of Space Food Sticks: Marijuana-infused edibles.
KINDLAND: What inspired you to bring back Space Food Sticks the first time?
Eric Lefcowitz: I have a background in content. Back in 1999, I was writing a weekly column for AOL called "Retro Future," which looked at all of these innovations that were supposed to change our lives by the year 2000, like jetpacks and flying cars. One article was called "Let Them Eat Fake!" It looked at meal-replacement concepts: Products like Soylent, meal-replacement-pills, and the like-–which are seen as futuristic. Space Food Sticks were mentioned in that article. That's where the craziness started. These were just fantastic items to have. You could really brag about having Space Food sticks in your lunch. I had an inkling that there would be a cult-following for them.
KINDLAND: How did you arrive at the idea for a cannabis-infused Space Food Stick?
Eric Lefcowitz: You know that saying, "Luck is what happens when preparation meets opportunity?" I lost the manufacturer for Space Food Sticks, and now the opportunity has presented itself for me to be the guy that ushers a classic American brand into the edible marijuana age. The luck part is running into a guy in New York, let’s call him Ray. He’s been in marketing for 30 years, and wanted to get into the edible space. In the course of our conversation, I realized I was sitting on a trademark that would work perfectly for an edible product: Space Food Sticks.
KINDLAND: That's a pretty cool sounding name.
Eric Lefcowitz: By cosmic coincidence, it was just really perfect. Imagine if you could take a brand like Almond Joy or Chuckles candy bars and turn them into edibles. This is kind of like that, but even more fun.
KINDLAND: Do you see weedy Space Food Sticks being marketed more as a medicinal product, or more like a recreational snack?
Eric Lefcowitz: I see the next incarnation of Space Food Sticks as being medicinal. So many people want to get off of pharmaceutical medications, and I see medicinal edibles as being a solution to that.
KINDLAND: Thanks, Eric. Let us know when we can try some.