About Trichome Institute

Science. Education. Certification.

Trichome Institute has been setting the highest standards for science, education, and certification in the cannabis industry since 2014.  Because the lack of standardized education is a shared problem across every aspect of the industry, credible, accurate, and thoroughly researched information is necessary to further unite the cannabis community and end prohibition once and for all. Trichome Institute is not only setting the bar for cannabis education, but continuously raising it as the legalization of cannabis permits more legitimate research into this amazing and complex plant.

Trichome Institute produces cannabis education courses for cannabis industry professionals and consumers. Throughout the world, Trichome Institute-certified students and Interpeners working in every level of the cannabis industry, including cultivation, extraction, distribution, retail, legal, culinary, and cannabis cups.

Trichome Institute is dedicated to proper cannabis education by empowering cannabis consumers with knowledge on the science and quality of cannabis, so they are confident in what they are consuming. As this flourishing multi-billion dollar market becomes a mainstream, normalized, and federally legal industry, Trichome Institute will continuously evolve and embrace the newest science, technology, and research. 

Affiliations & Approvals

Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division

Trichome Institute was invited to help build the Responsible Vendor Program for the cannabis industry in the state of Colorado in 2016. Trichome Institute is certified by the Colorado Marijuana Enforcement Division (MED) to train and certify individuals and businesses in the cannabis industry.

Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment

Trichome Institute has been reviewed and approved by the Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment for a CO Responsible Vendor certification through the MED.

American Culinary Federation

Trichome Institute Courses and the Interpening Book are Recognized by the American Culinary Federation Education Foundation as an ACFEF-Approved Program.

Department of Health of Puerto Rico

In 2018, Trichome Institute acquired the approval of the course “Dispensary Technician” by the Department of Health of Puerto Rico in collaboration with Puerto Rico Legal Marijuana and iComply. That course is a requirement for anyone that wants to work dispensing cannabis in Puerto Rico.

Hocking College

Hocking College offers a Cannabis Lab Technician associate’s degree program approved by their accreditor. The Interpening book is utilized as required reading for two courses, Cann1101: ‘Humans, Cannabis, and the Forgotten History’ and Cann2206 ‘Product Optimization and Resource Efficiency.’ 


“Providing foundational knowledge of interpening for cannabis flower quality and aromatic nuance provides my students with a unique skill set that gives them an advantage as emerging cannabis industry professionals.” —Professor Thane Evans


Legal review was provided by the Law Offices of Vicente Sederberg LLC, Denver, CO. Members of Vicente Sederberg, LLC were instrumental in writing and shaping cannabis legalization in the state of Colorado. They continue to help develop the regulatory and legal landscape of cannabis in Colorado and around the country.

Science & Medical Expert Review

  • Franjo Grotenhermen, Nova-Institute, Hürth, Germany
  • Nolan Kane, Cannabis Genomic Research Initiative, Boulder, CO
  • Noel Palmer, Mary’s Medicinals, Seattle, Washington
  • Julius Gavin and Martha Montemayor, Healthy Choices Unlimited, Denver, CO
  • Joe Cohen, Holos Health, Boulder, CO
  • Stephen Goldman, PhytaTech Labs, Denver CO

Industry Professional & Customer Reviews

Interpening Book Reviews

This art and science of characterizing marijuana varieties through olfactory training adds the crucial next dimension in deciding on your next purchase in this ncreasingly complex contemporary marketplace”
Rick Strassman, MD

Author of DMT: The Spirit Molecule



Montrose’s pioneering books teaches readers how to use their senses to evaluate cannabis quality as well as predict potency and physical effects, thus imparting invaluable practical knowledge to connoisseurs and patients alike.”

Nishi Whiteley

Author of Chronic Relief: A Guide to Cannabis for the Terminally and Chronically Ill


Amazon Reviews

Student Reviews

Meet the Team

Max Montrose

Max Montrose


Max is the cannabis industry’s authoritative voice and a key educational advisor to the government, business, and public sectors for cannabis-related projects. Max specializes in cannabis safety, education, and awareness. He works with lawyers, doctors, and scientists in the cannabis industry to understand, discover, and educate people about the truths and complexities of the cannabis plant. Max is the co-founder of Trichome Institute, which specializes in providing a certifiable cannabis curriculum for professionals and recreational users. Max created Interpening, the art and science of the cannabis sommelier. As the author of the Interpening book, tools, and producer of Trichome Institute’s online courses, Max is continuously researching cannabis to provide the world with proper education about this amazingly complex and beautiful plant.



Jim Nathanson

Jim Nathanson


With more than 30 years of experience as a strategist in the marketing services and branding industry, Jim has based his career on thinking differently and creating unique growth opportunities. Jim’s infectious energy for what he does has helped him influence customer and associate engagement and marketing strategies of both national and global brands, including top retailers, travel companies, utilities and government agencies. Jim is a renowned expert in organizational development, technology, operations, and strategic initiatives, lending his considerable talents over the years to companies such as CarMax, Booking.com, and FileMaker, an Apple subsidiary. As President of Target Marketing for nearly three decades, Jim focused on redefining the company’s sales strategy, effecting double digit revenue and EBITDA growth over the course of his leadership. As co-founder and CEO, he brings that same passion to Trichome where his drive to actualize great ideas makes him a galvanizing leader and a strong partner.

Brandon Allen

Brandon Allen

Director of Research and Development

Brandon Allen is a professionally trained chef who studied at the Art Institute of Pittsburgh, where he created his own apprenticeship with a master chef on the Olympic Culinary Team. Throughout his culinary education he competed in numerous competitions, preparing him for the day he earned the title as the first ever High Times Top Cannabis Chef. Brandon is an Interpener – a sommelier of cannabis – through Trichome Institute and has the ability to identify cannabis quality and effects through visual and aromatic evaluation. After sharpening his Interpening proficiencies and further educating himself on cannabis quality, evolution, and taxonomy, Brandon partnered with Trichome Institute as the Director of Research & Development, with the parallel mission to normalize cannabis and develop Interpening as a respected expertise.