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Jack Turner

Jack Turner - Founder Pan's Ink - Natural Terpenes - June 28, 2013

Jack Turner grew up in the San Francisco Bay Area. He attended the University of California Santa Cruz where he received a B.A. in Global Economics and an M.S. in Applied Economics. While attending school, he spent a semester abroad in France, where he was exposed for the first time to both French aromatherapy and American post-modern literature. After graduation he became an analyst for a research firm where, after sitting on his butt for two years, he started to develop debilitating back pain and discovered he had a herniated disc. He decided too much sitting around was no good and jumped ship to attend business school at Stanford University. During this time, he cultivated a keen interest in psychology and the central nervous system. He also started meditating and learned a lot about Buddhism. One pivotal class he took while attending Stanford was a course on the use of Myth in literature and culture. This class jived well with his interest in psychology and philosophy. Jack left school with the entrepreneur bug and decided to start a company.

Pan’s Ink’s first steps started during Jack’s time at Stanford. Having attended UC Santa Cruz, Jack was no stranger to the plant and decided to try cannabis medicine as an alternative to the anti-inflammatory drugs he took regularly to deal with his back pain.  Being ever-curious, he started to wonder why there are so many different strains of cannabis and why they have such varied effects. He experimented with mixing different strains of cannabis together in the same bowl to change the effects. Being an economist by training, Jack ran a regression. He wanted to determine what ratios of THC to the other cannabinoids would cause certain effects. The data rebuffed him—all the different strains had basically the same relative amounts of the various cannabinoids (THC,CBD,CBN,THCV) even though they had such different effects. So he turned back to his research and came across an article that talked about terpenes and their effect on the highs people associate with different strains. It was the missing link. Basically, the research[1] suggested that what your strain smells like will drive the effects you feel from it. Citrusy-smelling cannabis is likely to be calming. Flowery-smelling cannabis is likely to be relaxing. And piney-smelling cannabis is likely to make you feel (relatively) more alert. Terpenes are what make up those distinctive odors.

After graduation, Jack imposed on his life-long friend (who has since become his business partner) and took up residence in the office of his friend’s condominium in San Jose, California. A year and a half of research and development and bouncing ideas off his future business partner, he was ready to launch his product that he believed would revolutionize the medical cannabis paradigm. He had code-named the product “Ink” and eventually settled on the name “Pan’s Ink” based on the Greek god Pan. Why Pan, the Greek god of mischief and merriment? Why Pan, the satyr of Arcadia? Pan is a name that has made its way through history as a symbol of childlike innocence (and naughtiness)—Pan is the child in us that never dies and is the wellspring of our youth and vigor. Pan connects us with our bodies through dance and play. And Pan connects us with the beautiful chaos and order that is nature and life. When we lose touch with these things, life becomes more wan and tired. Things hurt more. The struggle stops being worth it.

It has long been Jack’s dream to involve his friends in the work he did. In starting Pan’s Ink, Jack’s dream came true. The website and labels were designed by a talented designer and friend who really took the essence of Pan and ran with it.  He made our presence very magical and mythical. The logo picture of Pan with his smoking pan pipe was designed by Jack’s older brother, a talented musician with an equal talent for drawing.

So what is Pan’s Ink? Based on his research into terpenes, Jack concluded that if you were to find those same symptom-targeting terpenes elsewhere in nature and add them to your cannabis medicine, you could theoretically nudge the effect profile towards a particular feeling or effect.

Where can one find terpenes outside the cannabis flower? One place to find them is in an aromatherapist’s lab. Aromatherapists use essential oils to help fight infection, bring about a particular mood, relieve pain, and to restore balance to the body’s systems in various ways. Essential oils are made up of terpenes. You know those lavender bed pillows people buy to help them sleep? There’s science behind that. Linalool, one of the terpenes found in lavender essential oil, has sedating and anxiety-relieving properties. Linalool is also found in the essential oil of cannabis strains noted for their relaxing, sleep-causing, and euphoric effects (for example, Lavender Kush).

Pan’s Inks are aromatic, all-natural mixtures of essential oils from plants like lemon and lavender which mimic the terpene profile of certain strains of cannabis. You add a drop of the mixture to your cannabis before smoking and it nudges the terpene profile of your medicine towards one that may bring about greater relief. We have three mixes currently available for sale—Drowsy, Daydream, and Focus. Each is designed to create a certain effect profile based on the terpenes prominent within each mix.

Not everybody has access to excellent cannabis. Nor do most people have access to a person who can tell them which strain to pick based on which terpenes are present. (Most people also don’t have access to more than one strain of cannabis.) Most strains of cannabis haven’t been tested for their terpene profiles and sometimes they are mis-named. Pan’s Ink is designed to take the guesswork out of choosing the right terpene profile for your particular ailment. If you suffer from sleeplessness, cannabis rich in beta-myrcene, linalool, and/or beta-caryophyllene may be helpful. If you smoke for pain during the day, cannabis rich in alpha-pinene may help you stay sharp enough to do your work. Pan’s Ink can help patients achieve the relief they are seeking.

We recommend using Pan’s Ink with organic, outdoor-grown cannabis—this cannabis is the most natural but sometimes suffers from having a weaker scent than its indoor-grown cannabis brethren, which is the perfect place for Pan’s Ink to step in.

For more information, please check out our website at www.pans-ink.com.


[1] Russo, Ethan B. “Taming THC: potential cannabis synergy and phytocannabinoid-terpenoid entourage effects.” British Journal of Pharmacology (2011). 1344 – 1364.