Jessica VerSteeg had no initial intentions of becoming a cannabis entrepreneur. In fact, the ex-beauty model was opposed to the idea of her ex-boyfriend, NFL player Tyler Jordan Sash, using cannabis as an alternative to opioid pain-relievers.
However, VerSteeg’s outlook changed drastically when Sash lost his life aged just 27 a result of an accidental opioid overdose. The young sportsman’s death is a reflection of the opioid epidemic that has plagued America for many years. Common opiates, such as oxycodone, hydrocodone and methadone, caused an estimated 42,249 deaths in the U.S. in 2016 alone.
Soon after Sash’s death, the 28-year-old female entrepreneur sought out safe, non-addictive medications, only to discover that cannabis dominated her research results.
“It hit me kind of deep because he had asked me multiple times if he could use cannabis to deal with his pain,” disclosed VerSteeg in a recent interview with POPSUGAR.
Despite the plant’s negative stigma, of which VerSteeg once believed to be true, the motivated young woman soon came to realize that marijuana might have actually prevented her late boyfriend’s unexpected death.
Now, as the industry blossoms, so is VerSteeg’s revolutionary blockchain technology – Paragon. Her wealthy Russian technocrat husband, Egor Lavrov, supports her in her quest to change the world of weed.
What is Paragon?
Marijuana is changing the medical world, with patients around the world actively using the herb to relieve and treat widespread medical problems. From chronic pain to Parkinson’s disease, the scientific research pointing to cannabis’ medical potencial is prolific.
One study published in the journal of Cannabis and Cannabinoid Research revealed how medical cannabis patients believe medical marijuana to be a successful substitute for opioid-based pain medication.
When an industry transforms as quickly as the cannabis industry has done (and continues to do so,) inevitably, certain problems may surface. In the case of the marijuana industry, transparency is a major issue. In an attempt to overcome this, VerSteeg has launched a blockchain technology called Paragon.
“I realized, after a few months, that I was building something that the entire cannabis space could use, and if they use it, could make it legal: [the government has] made cigarettes legal, alcohol, opiates . . . and it’s because they can literally track and trace all of that, and they can tax it. With cannabis, they can’t track or trace it,” said VerSteeg.
The digital ledger was created to establish an element of trust between cannabis suppliers and the government. Offering complete traceability and transparency on either end of the spectrum, Paragon is helping suppliers to operate legally and oversee transactions for taxation, all the while clearing the smoke in regards to weed being labeled a “gateway drug.”
How does Paragon work?
There is absolutely no risk of corruption occurring when Paragon is used. Designed to record all kinds of virtual transactions, Paragon is a glitch-free, easy-to-access solution that acts like a certifier. Even rapper-entrepreneur The Game supports the revolutionary technology, of which he is a spokesperson for.
When a cannabis supplier uses Paragon to record information, whether it is related to currency or lab results, it cannot be edited. From the initial growing conditions to the drying and trimming stages, everything is locked into this reliable blockchain technology.
VerSteeg is Helping Patients to Get Natural Medicine
Paragon is not the only business venture VerSteeg has been involved in. A former contestant on The Amazing Race, she kick-started her career in cannabis in 2014 with a monthly cannabis subscription called AuBox. This medical cannabis delivery service eliminated the hassle of visiting a licensed dispensary to procure lab-tested pot.
Inspired by her late boyfriend who was unable to access safe medicine in the form of marijuana, AuBox was somewhat of a stepping stone to VerSteeg’s success. Only when she was made aware of the fact that certain suppliers were falsifying medical marijuana lab results did she tackle this problem with blockchain technology.
VerSteeg’s Plans for the Future
Although Paragon was primarily developed to guarantee transparency amidst producers, suppliers and the government, it is evolving into something much more than that. You might have heard about ParagonCoin before.
A crypto-element of VerSteeg’s blockchain technology, this tailored solution aims to push cannabis into the mainstream. A doctor database is also being built upon to regulate solutions within and legitimize the medicinal cannabis industry as a whole.
“We will be more transparent than the liquor industry. More transparent than opiates. More transparent than cigarettes,” claims VerSteeg.
Someday, she also envisions Paragon as the leading technology for certified organic produce and cannabis agriculture.