She was just an ordinary 24-year-old mother with a taste for cannabis when her life changed completely. Mila Jansen, now 74, developed Pollinator®, the first mechanical process for separating trichomes from plant material – a crucial aspect of preparing cannabis – and earned the title The Hash Queen.
As she explains in the teaser video above, Jansen was suddenly inspired while doing her household chores by the way wet clothes tumbled inside the dryer, which was the same way cannabis leaves used to be shaken over a sieve. After a few tries, the Pollinator machine was ready to be sold.
Now, no Cannabis Cup – marijuana trade shows – can ever be complete without Jansen as a jury member or guest of honour. High Times even lauded her as one of the 100 most influential people in cannabis.
Jansen is a businesswoman, a traveller and a single mother, who has had quite an adventurous and tough life, which she describes in her autobiography, How I Became the Hash Queen.
In the book, she talks about her escape from Amsterdam to India when Social Services threatened to take away her daughter, owing to her drug-filled life. After coming to India with “no money”, she gave birth to three more children, yet continued to manage as a single mother. Putting her knack for fashion trends and her entrepreneurial skills to good use, she sent hashish in hollowed-out books to Europe and started a knitting cooperative in the Himalayas with 60 seamstresses. Now India is where her heart lies and she wants her children to scatter her ashes in the Himalayas one day.