Published On: Tue, May 5th, 2015

Two Jewish Boys from Denver Are Getting Into The Legal Marijuana Business

“Many of the original real trailblazers and entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry are Jewish, and there are a handful of major operations within Colorado that have Jewish ownership."


Marijuana field

The legalization of marijuana in the State of Colorado has led to a number of young entrepreneurs starting new pot businesses. These include two Jewish thirty somethings named Seth Wong and JJ Slatkin who have founded TEQ Analytical Labs.

The two were recently profiled by the Jewish Telegraphic Agency.

They are halfway to their goal of raising $1.5 million needed to start their new business venture. The money is needed for the new lab which they are constructing at the Fitzsimons Innovation Campus in Aurora. The duo will then need to be certified by the Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment and another third-party certifier.

It should come as no surprise to anyone that a couple of young Jews are getting in on the ground floor of a new business field. And it is not just the ones who live in Israel who are starting new companies these days.

Slatkin, who has a background in finance, told JTA, “Many of the original real trailblazers and entrepreneurs in the cannabis industry are Jewish, and there are a handful of major operations within Colorado that have Jewish ownership. Our Jewish community relationships have definitely been important.”

It was through the Jewish world in Colorado that the two met. Although, they have very distinct backgrounds.

Slatkin, who founded his own non-profit consulting service called JJ Ventures, got his start in the world of business ten years ago as an analyst with Lane Berry. He went to a Jewish Day School as a child and is very active in a local Conservative synagogue in Denver. The 32 year old studies Tora reguraly.

Wong comes to the venture with a scientific background. He is the president of Industrial Laboratories, a company which tests food for contaminations such as E Coli bacteria.

As his name suggests, his has Chinese ancestry. His father was a Chinese Protest and who was adopted by a Jewish family and his mother was born Jewish. The 34 year old’s father owns Industrial Laboratories and converted to Judaism in time for Seth’s Bat Mitzvah.

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