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Girl Scout Cookies Strain Soars in Popularity Before Running Into Controversy Over Name

Despite unorthodox challenges, the Girl Scout Cookies marijuana strain remains a top seller for growers and dispensaries.

There are now thousands of strain names listed on popular marijuana strain online listings. With so many possible strains to choose from, how does a single strain shoot to popularity in just a few years, becoming a staple on the shelves of legal marijuana dispensaries everywhere?

Is it branding? Clever naming? Celebrity endorsement? Other strains have these and don’t reach the level of recognition that the Girl Scout Cookies strain has achieved in so short a time.

Superior Genetics

Girl Scout Cookies, also known as GSC, is an indica dominant stunner. The strain is popularly claimed to be OG Kush x Durban Poison, but some sources claim it could be a mix of OG Kush x Cherry Pie (Grandaddy Purp x Durban Poison).

Born in the Bay Area, it didn’t take long for Girl Scout Cookies to spread across the West to states like Arizona, Colorado, Oregon, and Washington.

GSC marijuana strain

The strain is characterized visually by its purple streaks, orange hairs, and light green leaves. It features a sweet and spicy, oven-baked scent, while some users report notes of citrus and musk. Girl Scout Cookies is known for a cerebral intensity and comfortable body melt, translating into pure relaxation.

The strain also manifests as a number of phenotypes: Thin Mints, Platinum Cookies, Forum Cut, and more, with slight variations of these characteristics.

Due to Girl Scout Cookies’ high potency and soaring popularity, growers have overlooked the strain’s low yield during cultivation, knowing that it will sell well and command a high price on dispensary shelves.  


Like most popular strains, some controversy surrounds Girl Scout Cookies, including regarding its origin and its name.

Once the strain reached bestseller status, it became a challenge to find “real” Girl Scout Cookies. Looking to capitalize on the trending popularity of Girl Scout Cookies, many dispensaries began slapping the Girl Scout Cookies name on similar strains, meaning that the Girl Scout Cookies strain name lost some exclusivity, as imposter strains made their way onto dispensary shelves.  

Girl Scout Cookies controversy

In late 2016, the Oregon Liquor Control Commission banned the sale of Girl Scout Cookies and about 20 other strains like Candyland, Charlotte’s Web, Grape Ape, and Cinderella whose names could make them potentially attractive to children.

Girl Scouts of America weren’t amused by the strain’s rising popularity, going so far as to send a cease and desist letter to California dispensaries in 2017 for selling Girl Scout Cookies.

Regarding these letters, the Girl Scouts released the following statement: We were recently made aware of local dispensaries using the Girl Scouts trademarked name, or a variation of our trademarked name, to sell their products. In January, dispensaries in California were issued a cease and desist letter from Girl Scouts of the USA for trademark infringement and have removed the product in violation from their shelves. “Girl Scout Cookies” is a registered trademark dating back to 1936. Our famous cookies are known the world over for their delicious flavor and we do not want the public to be confused by unauthorized products in the marketplace.

As a result of these steps taken against the strain’s name, many dispensaries in legal marijuana states began to shorten it to simply GSC, allowing it to continue to be sold on their shelves.

However, it seems that legal marijuana and Girl Scout Cookies are connected in other ways. Girl Scouts in several legal marijuana markets made headlines over the past few years for selling Girl Scout Cookies outside of dispensaries. One young scout in San Diego reportedly sold 300 boxes in under 6 hours, or an average of 50 boxes an hour. That’s almost a box a minute.

While some chapters of the Girl Scouts came out against this practice, the California Girl Scouts said as long as the scouts were obeying rules created for their safety, they are free to sell where they choose, meaning that it is possible to buy the Thin Mints cut of Girl Scout Cookies in your dispensary and then buy Samoas from your local scout on the way out for munchies later.

Learn More

You can learn more about legal cannabis on our Cannabis 101 page, or for the latest in marijuana news, click here.  

  • August 9, 2018
  • Jeffrey Stamberger