“The secret of getting ahead is getting started. The secret of getting started is breaking your complex overwhelming tasks into small manageable tasks, and starting on the first one.” ― Mark TwainDownload Brochure
“When looking into greenhouse cultivation, many growers came from small cannabis [with] illicit market experience, which they scaled and ramped up into legal production in warehouses. They’ve never done good agricultural practices (GAPs) or good manufacturing practices (GMPs), or even best management practices (BMPs) for greenhouse cultivation. I’d … look to outside agricultural experts and industries, other than just thinking we’re going to grow in a greenhouse just like we grew in a warehouse, and it’s going to be the same. That’s absolutely not the case – for how you cultivate plants in vegetative state, how you train plants for maximum canopy control, or how much soil, water and nutrients are required for adequate production and growth.
The people behind the scenes making the cannabis industry a reality are being exposed to unregulated and extremely unsafe working conditions. Common industry wide workplace hazards include inadequate airflow, pesticide application, mixing of chemical fertilizers without protective eye wear, unlabeled bamboo stakes, flammable solvents and loose CO2 canisters. If you are looking toward the long term in this industry you must create a safe environment for your workers, adequate training and create products that are safe for consumers! 3C’s CEO Nic Easley highlights these important points and more in this video.
3C’s Nic Easley describes the environmental conditions required for cannabis to thrive without pesticides. Creating a healthy environment through intelligent guidance and foresight is key to success in the cannabis industry. Cultivation and processing facilities are like living organisms and when they are designed and maintained in a healthy way they keep pests and disease at bay.
Regardless of what party affiliation you claim, the 2016 Presidential and state-level elections have been a roller coaster ride that still hasn’t ended. The results have huge implications for the marijuana industry that will continue to develop for some time to come. It is an exciting time for the cannabis industry: As the original legal and medical markets show signs of maturity, new programs passed in the last year are set to come online and a whole wave of new programs will begin to take shape throughout the coming year. The only thing we can say with complete certainty is that the commercial cannabis landscape is changing very, very rapidly. These changes present multiple opportunities and challenges for the industry.
Nic Easley presents To Do or Die: Staying Relevant in the Maturing Cannabis Market at the Indo Expo in Denver, CO. This speech is a must for new and existing cannabis businesses looking to succeed in the industry long term. Nic discusses the relevance of branding as critical component of a successful cannabis business.
Products grown, manufactured and distributed with organic methods and practices are in high demand. The term “organic” provides consumer confidence in the safety and morality of the products they are purchasing. In turn, operations that comply with all state-mandated guidelines, while working to provide a product that is produced via standardized ecological principles, appeal to that consumer confidence, in addition to having resilient production that can absorb biological shocks and disturbances.
The National Organic Standards Board has defined the “organic agriculture” as: “an ecological production management system that promotes and enhances biodiversity, biological cycles and soil biological activity. It is based on minimal use of off-farm inputs and on management practices that restore, maintain and enhance ecological harmony.”
With the above definition, it is important to ask if cannabis can even be grown in an organic manner. Unfortunately, the term organic is often used as a greenwash to attract consumers. While many cannabis patients and consumers are under the impression that the organic label in the cannabis industry is governed by a set of rules and regulations, no guidelines or stipulations exist for cannabis to be produced organically. (There is no federally recognized organic certification for cannabis.) Many steps, however, can be taken to ensure you are using organic practices and methodologies to provide a safe product for consumers.
The marijuana industry continues to evolve at a staggering rate. Regardless of what changes may come, successful marijuana businesses and their employees will need to focus on a few key business fundamentals in order to thrive in this new, ever-changing marketplace.
For every way that a business can succeed, there are hundreds of ways that it can fail. This is just as true in the growing marijuana market, which while being an ever-expanding economic Colossus, some investors are viewing with a skeptical eye. Those who feel bold enough to start new marijuana businesses without acquiring the requisite knowledge may soon find themselves joining the ranks of the disenfranchised and disappointed, as more and more “hot” marijuana-based businesses fail to leave the nest after hatching.
In the effort to mitigate risk, adhering to a few common sense, proven approaches will create a greater chance of success. The fact that so much money is now being made with marijuana is just one reason entrepreneurs should consider entering the market. There is research to be done, rules to abide by, regulations to conform to, and ways of transacting business that are unique to the industry. To help both newcomers and industry veterans, here are a few crucial keys to being successful in the cannabis industry:
Cannabis cultivation involves many levels of decision-making and fundamental production choices that ultimately determine the quality and efficiency of product output. While there are myriad factors to be considered around cultivation style and methods, choosing the specific medium that cannabis will be grown in is a broad, but important topic of debate within the cannabis industry. Ultimately, the decision boils down to choosing between hydroponic or soil cultivation methods.
Many arguments can be made in favor of, or against, both methods, and it is up to informed producers to determine the best growing choice for them. Soil mixes specific to the needs and demands of cannabis are based in generations of agricultural know-how to best mimic naturally occurring ecosystems utilizing natural resources. Hydroponic growing has unique advantages and disadvantages, and can be a valuable growing technique.
The best strategy for cultivators in deciding which growing media to utilize is to consider site-appropriate technology, specific fertilization programs, the yields and consumer base, and, finally, the overall effect on the company’s bottom line with regards to economics and business values. Deciding what type of growing media is best to use and how to make informed decisions about what cultivation methodologies your company will implement can set your company on the path to success.
The harvest — something agriculture has experienced since the beginning of time — is the culmination of all of your work in planning, zoning, buying land, obtaining financing, constructing facilities, training staff, acquiring genetics, cloning, vegetative and flowering growth, and countless other activities.
Reaping the fruits (or flowers) of your labor is not an easy process, but rather one fraught with risk, potentially causing high levels of stress if not thoughtfully designed. Poor harvesting techniques may lower the harvest’s quality, which ultimately impacts your financial bottom line and can create potential brand and even industry damage with distribution of low-quality products.
Building efficiency into the physical and logistical details of harvesting plants, manicuring buds, handling raw plant material and storing the final dried and cured product will help you streamline your operation and reduce costs of goods sold. This is essential, since the very nature of a competitive business environment like cannabis shrinks the margin of error for product quality, price and presentation. As the industry scales into a standardized and commercialized agricultural sector, this becomes even more important.
Below are tips to guide you through a successful harvest. These can be used with any form of production, whether outdoor, full-term seasonal greenhouses, hybridized year-round greenhouses, or indoor models. The goal is to help you develop standardized methods for harvesting that result in quality products and a strong bottom line.