“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
In this column, we will reframe common industry perceptions of nutrients and fertilization with an introduction to the “soil food web.” We also will explain natural fertilization approaches that are inexpensive, highly productive and provide multifaceted benefits, such as pest and disease resistance. And, we include recommendations for those employing hydroponic systems, in addition to general guidance on monitoring and testing your nutrient solution, media and runoff to ensure that you are doing what is best for your plants — which translates to high-yielding, high-quality harvests.
Welcome to 3C’s first newsletter. Our goal is to provide valuable, hard-hitting news and advice for those in the cannabis and hemp industries. Throughout this journey, we hope to provide best practice tips and techniques along with industry updates that will help your cannabis business thrive. Feel free to browse the information and be sure to send feedback!
Nic Easley, chief executive officer at Comprehensive Cannabis Consulting (3C), delivered the keynote address at the first annual Cannabis Labs Conference, co-located with Pittcon. Easley begins with a discussion of the 2014 milestone where Colorado and Washington legalized recreational cannabis, opening the floodgates for a diverse range of products and business opportunities in quality and safety testing. With members of his team sitting on the Colorado Department of Agriculture’s Pesticide working group, they are working with industry leaders and regulators to comprehensively write the standards. “The industry gets regulated in 2014 in Colorado with a total of $2.7 billion in sales in the first year of the industry’s history,” says Easley. “We have this giant influx of business, but without process validation, good agricultural practices and proper SOPs, each state is left to fend for themselves to write regulations.”
In Part I of this two-part series — titled “Successful Expansion of Your Cultivation Operation: A Pre-Construction Guide” — we addressed questions of whether or not you should expand, things to take into account while planning the process and designing your expanded facility, as well as legal and compliance considerations. In this column, we continue exploring how to effectively and successfully scale up, focusing on important issues to take into account in three key areas: Construction, staff preparation and management, and crop propagation.
The recalls involve 20 separate companies that either grow the plant itself or process it into edibles and other products. Comprehensive Cannabis Consulting (3C) has released a position paper that objectively addresses the legal and safety issues of pesticide use on cannabis so that the public is not misinformed.
Applying pesticides off label is a federal offense and successful pest management should not require some of the pesticides used regularly in the industry and cited in recent Colorado recalls.
Those that follow the legal cannabis industry are undoubtedly aware of the struggles of Colorado to regulate pesticide use on cannabis. At the time of this writing, there have been 19 recalls of products contaminated by pesticides in as many weeks. Authorities could not in all cases identify exactly how many units of products may have been tainted, but based on the numbers available, roughly 200,000 individual cannabis products, if not more, have been pulled from dispensary shelves. Along with these recalls have come a large amount of coverage and commentary from various news outlets, industry stakeholders, and even those companies who have had products pulled from shelves.
Nic Easley & Adam Koh
Chief executive officer & chief cultivation officer 3C – Comprehensive Cannabis Consulting || Denver, Colorado
“To maximize yield without compromising quality, indoor cultivators are well-served to install equipment that can exercise precise control over the room’s conditions. Both yield and quality will be lost if it is too humid or dry, too hot or cold, or if the environment has too much or too little carbon dioxide.
“We have seen facilities with mediocre strains, clueless staff and no effective direction from management still pulling very respectable yields simply because the environmental control equipment installed in the facility was top-notch and conditions in garden areas were optimal.”
The legal, regulated cannabis industry is expanding at an explosive rate, creating opportunity for large-scale cultivation businesses. Prior to state-level legalization initiatives, cultivation was performed clandestinely and on a relatively small scale (at least compared to traditional agriculture). Also, many medical growers are faced with the opportunity to expand significantly to serve developing recreational markets. Consequently, one of the most frequent and challenging hurdles faced by cultivators is the prospect of developing and operating a large-scale facility or site devoted to commercial production. This column will explore considerations that need to be taken into account by existing operations looking to scale up and capture a larger portion of the market.
Much of the information also is applicable to those attempting to use cultivation knowledge gained in a small-scale or home-grow setting to enter the regulated industry.
CANNAINVESTOR Magazine is a monthly subscription based digital magazine with an exclusive focus on Cannabis finance that delivers convenient insights on publicly-traded and privately-held cannabis companies through informative articles, company profiles, and market trends that inform and educate investors;attracting inquisitive, highly engaged digital audiences around the globe.
Do you have a question about cultivation, harvesting or processing? Improving site or facility operations? Sourcing or supply chain management? Hiring, training or compensating staff? Analyzing costs and maximizing profitability? Compliance or licensing issues?
Send your questions via email to: GrowingPains@GIE.net.