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Chris  Ball

Chris Ball

Founder, CEO of Ball Family Farms

Chris Ball

Founder, CEO of Ball Family Farms


Chris Ball is the founder of Ball Family Farms, the first Social Equity licensed vertically integrated cannabis facility in Los Angeles. Mr. Ball is an accomplished entrepreneur and innovative cultivator. The Southern California native began selling cannabis as a teen to put himself through junior college, where he played football. He later went on to play at UC Berkeley on a scholarship, a brief stint in the NFL, and eventually entered the Canadian Football League.

While in Canada, Ball discovered the cultivation side of cannabis. With no prior knowledge of the craft, he began his self-taught botany education. Primed for the burgeoning legal market by legacy experience, Ball acquired a 5,000 square foot cultivation warehouse in Los Angeles – with only 14 lights in one small room. For the next three years, he burned through plants as he attempted to master his cultivation skills.

In 2016, Los Angeles adopted commercial cannabis regulations and announced its Social Equity Program (SEP). A licensing program developed to acknowledge and repair the harm caused by the War on Drugs and the over-policing of low-income, minority communities. Learning he qualified as a Tier One Social Equity applicant, Ball saw this as the perfect opportunity to transition and grow his business.

Ball Family Farms (BFF) incorporated in 2018 and launched its first commercial strain, Daniel LaRusso. The balanced hybrid instantly became a favorite strain in licensed cannabis retail. And earlier this year, BFF doubled its facility size to 40,000 square feet and dropped its second collection of strains.

While Ball's initial goal was to create unmatched premium cannabis products, BFF also aims to promote equal pay, diversity and inclusion, and women's empowerment in the workplace. As a tribute to the company's activism and commitment to excellence, the company embraces its motto and tagline, "Cultivating the Culture…from the Ground UP!"

Speaker Videos

MJ Biz Con Introduction Speech

What It’s Like Growing Up Black in Los Angeles | VH1

Social Equity in the Cannabis Industry

Speech Topics

Transitioning from the Legacy Market to the Legal Market

In this talk Ball recounts his tumultuous journey and transition from being Federally indicted for transporting 2,000 pounds cannabis across state lines and facing 10 years in prison, to successful (and legal) cannabis business via Los Angeles’ social equity program. Now, the founder of Ball Family Farms, Ball is using what he learned in the traditional market to create one of the most sought after, culture rich brands in the industry.

Cultivation: The Ins & Outs of Building a Farm

Did you know there are only around twelve strains and their various hybrids (more accurately known as cultivars) in the legal cannabis industry? Regardless of unique names, plant genetics in the industry are fairly homogeneous. Why? Most cultivators want to maximize profit by minimizing the time it takes to flip crops and cutting corners (like pheno-hunting) they think consumers won’t notice. Conversely, Chris Ball and Ball Family Farms rely 100% on pheno-hunted genetics to set them apart from the crowd. From funding, to choosing a grow method and lighting system, in this talk, Ball delves into the importance of pheno-hunting and the intricacies of building a functional and consistent grow facility.

Cannabis 101: Understanding the Basics

Terpenes, cultivars, pheno-hunting, and trichomes...if you’re unfamiliar getting into the cannabis industry can be overwhelming, even learning basic terms. In this talk, Ball teaches cannabis 101 giving you the basics for getting started on your journey in cannabis. Learn the terms and what they mean, how cannabis is grown, what to look for in a flower nug, and how to tell good from bad flower.