Cultivation Archives - Green Market Report

StaffStaffDecember 2, 2019
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7min3260

Currently, there is a bit of confusion regarding the legalization of hemp as an industry in the States. This confusion leads the local government to ban new farmers from attending to their hemp gardens for fear of being penalized under the new law.

The next few paragraphs will hopefully clear all the confusion away and allow new farmers to work on their land without much hesitation and limitation. 

Where the Confusion Lies

The confusion lies mainly with the different individual laws that are passed with regard to hemp production and planting in different American states. Most of these areas act as though they are their country ways exclusive set of laws that only applies to their jurisdiction.

At present, a few news outlets have already expressed their dismay regarding the food and drug administration’s lack of clear cut guidelines regarding the implementation of the new ordinance regarding hemp production.

Some of these experts also tend to confuse CBD (hemp) with marijuana, which is still illegal in some American states. Because of the confusion, most of the so-called independent states that support the legalization of hemp have made some changes in their policies, which prevent new farmers from producing this helpful product and therefore damaging the industry as a whole.

The Effects

In addition to this, some establishments already prohibit the offering of hand based products in fear of the new laws. These bans in some New York establishments have taken effect since July of 2019. 

Law enforcement has arrested many under the assumption that the perpetrators allegedly carry marijuana and have delivered products laced with THC, which is known as the basic component of the plant-based drug in various states in the country.

The Official Statement

In a statement, the FDA said that the regulations and implementing rules regarding the ordinance would vary depending on the accused intent and purpose of use. This stipulation means that the alleged owner of the CBD would be released if they have carried and use the products as medication as opposed to eating it outright.

The agency also has said that they are aware of increased public interest in the use of CBD and are committed to finding ways to allow lawful marketing of CBD in public. This way, people will still be able to reap the health benefits of utilizing CBD or hemp as part of the farming industry.

Individual Policies

For now, the people must be content with each state’s individual ordinance against or for the legal use of hemp in each of these areas. Here are some additional details regarding the allowed amount of hemp in each state.

  • Alabama, Colorado, and Maine allow production and delivery of hemp as long as it has less than 3% of THC in it.
  • On the other hand, Indiana, Texas, and Utah require QR codes to allow this a delivery and distribution of CBD-based products.
  • In New York, some CBD-based products are allowed. However, there are a few that will remain uncertain about using this particular product as an additive in recipes.
  • California allows CBD-based food products as long as there are proper certification and labeling within the packaging itself.
  • New bills and ordinances could be passed for or against CBD Products and its producers in North Carolina.
  • In Alaska, officials will only place and enact new guidelines regarding hemp, its production, and use upon successful testing.

The U.S. is one of the proponents of the legalization of CBD-based Products in the world. However, it seems that the lack of clear regulation regarding the production of this product is most likely to affect the popularity of the product within the country itself.

The FDA certainly will make sure that they can provide the necessary evidence and tools that could help producers and vendors of these products to benefit from the ever-growing CBD industry, not only the U.S. but all over the world.

Conclusion

It is certainly just a matter of time, so if you are interested in becoming a CBD producer, it would be best to know the product itself and the regulations involved in making it. This way, you will be safe in running the business. You should look at some of the best weed strains available in the market before making your final decision. This way, you will get the best out of the product in the future.

Guest Post by Alan Wood.


StaffStaffNovember 16, 2019
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7min4311

The USA has a new boom for hemp farmers. Though it is forbidden to consume cannabis at the federal level, 33 states legalized its usage for medical purposes and 11 states don’t mind about you smoking hemp for your personal advantage. 

Let’s distinguish the difference between hemp and marijuana. There are over 50 thousands of goods that have hemp as one of the ingredients. They include clothes, cosmetics, beverages, food, construction supplies, etc. These two types of crops are cultivated from one sort of plant, Cannabis sativa L. However, hemp has only 0.3% of THC (Tetrahydrocannabinol), the addictive component of marijuana. This means, that hemp can’t make you high and doesn’t have a similar effect as smoking a joint of marijuana. 

According to Barclays Bank and EssayShark, the size of the legal cannabis market reached $28 billion in the past year. If the USA legalizes the full cannabis market, it will enhance to $41 billion by 2028.  In case the medical usage is legalized in Europe and at the federal level, the market will grow to $55 billion. It’s logical that such perspectives attract lots of investors. This fact led to the appearance of many hemp-related startups in 2018. At the beginning of 2019, their total value was worth $1.2 billion.

It’s not surprising that these tendencies and potential increased the number of new hemp farmers. There are limits to growing cannabis, but they are quite ridiculous. For example, you can’t grow more than three sorts of the plant. A person can freely grow up to 6 bushes of hemp. People who managed to “catch the wave” of planting cannabis have now grown to the earning millions of dollars. The average price for their final product is seven thousand dollars per one kilo. Farmers are sure that it’s better to work legally and the prohibitions only support the drug dealers and the development of the black market.

The product that had been illegally brought to the USA turned into legal goods. Authorities imposed taxes and customs on them. Workers involved in the hemp industry obtained official employment, government establishments started checking the quality of the product. As a result, the price for legal cannabis increased by 5-6 times in comparison to the illegal options. Many people with low budgets prefer purchasing under-the-table weed instead of paying more. Thus, the new hemp farmers who want to have a stable income must sell their product almost without any retail margin to compete with the existing offers until they have a stable audience of customers. 

Due to the high demand and the global madness over an opportunity to earn money in this industry, many people attempt starting their own production of hemp. Those people who have never had experience with anything related to agriculture (it is agriculture by any measure) have a strong belief that it’s a piece of cake. New hemp farmers usually make the same mistakes. They don’t compile a harvest plan and take into account the weather conditions. As a result, they might lose their yield or have a smaller amount of crop than expected.

Another reason that influences the new businessmen is their confidence in finding the customers or contractors for selling their products. Experienced and considered farmers search for the contractors prior to planting the crop. Therefore, they can estimate the approximate number and the workforce required to cultivate and process the product. The majority of new farmers rely on independent contractors who have to cultivate, harvest, and dry their crops. Unfortunately, many such contractors make only verbal promises and don’t satisfy their customers’ needs. As a result, farmers fail to yield and process hemp to have a final product for sale. 

It’s difficult for amateur farmers to enter the market and beat the competition. The huge processing and harvesting companies in the industry leave almost no chances for small businesses. Thus, even if you consider all the negative factors like unfortunate weather, low prices, lack of labor, and create a perfect harvesting plan, there is still a high possibility that you might push your income into the red. The industry is facing the oversupply of hemp which leads to the decreased rates. Many farmers hurry to fire-sale their crops to anyone not to lose all the money and efforts put into the cultivation, harvesting, and processing. 

The hemp market is definitely flourishing in the USA. Unfortunately, the equipment, workforce, knowledge, skills, and time required to grow cannabis might be too much for the newbie farmers. They tend to underestimate the efforts and financial risks for entering this sphere. 

Guest post by Kelly Pethick


StaffStaffJune 27, 2019
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4min8400
Dr. Jared Helfant graduated Cum Laude with dual degrees in health science and business from the University of Florida while simultaneously owning and operating a successful college town nightclub and lounge, called Simon’s, in Gainesville. He has since graduated top of his class from NYU dental school and built the TLC Dental brand that includes 5 successful locations in South Florida.
At Sparx, Dr. Helfant applies his expertise to oversee operations, branding, and marketing. With a proven track record of providing top-tier, customer-facing services and long-term strategic planning, his knowledge helps facilitate budget analysis, marketing strategies, and partner relationships.
GMR Executive Spotlight Q&A – 

Full birth name: Dr. Jared Noah Helfant 

Title: Co-Founder and President 

Company: Sparx Cannabis

Years at current company: 1

Education profile: Dr. Jared Helfant graduated Cum Laude with dual degrees in health science and business from the University of Florida. He has since graduated top of his class from New York University Dental School.

Most successful professional accomplishment before cannabis: Help build the TLC Dental brand that includes five successful locations in South Florida.

Company Mission: Sparx Cannabis is a California-grown, vertically-integrated and family-owned lifestyle brand that fits into the everyday life of cannabis consumers across all demographics and backgrounds. 

Sparx wants to remove the stigma and stereotypes that are associated with cannabis by showing how cannabis fits into the motto “Everyone, Everyday.” Sparx Cannabis strives to provide the highest quality, premium product through state-of-the-art technology and innovations that continue to move the industry forward. 

Company’s most successful achievement: Raising $10,000,000 in Series A funding to help expand the company’s footprint, hire more hard working employees and give back to the community. 

Has the company raised any capital (yes or no): Yes

If so, how much?: $10,000,000 in Series A funding was announced this month (June 2019)

Any plans on raising capital in the future? We do plan to raise additional capital in the future, but right now we are focused on utilizing our most recent Series A funding of $10 million. 

Most important company 5 year goal: In five years, Sparx Cannabis hopes to expand our footprint into multiple markets across California and potentially the country depending on how regulations change.


StaffStaffMay 9, 2019
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3min9540

Just two months after announcing the launch of Arcadia Specialty Genomics™, a new cannabis-dedicated division of agricultural crop improvement, the company has released images of its first crop of sun-grown, Hawaiian hemp. Arcadia’s new cannabis unit, cultivates six Hawaiian hemp strains on its 10-acre Hawaiian facility.

In March, the company revealed it had been granted an Industrial Hemp Pilot Program (“HIHPP”) License by Hawaii’s Department of Agriculture. The license allows for the cultivation of industrial hemp for the purposes of agricultural and academic research. Hemp and hemp products produced under the program may be commercially sold.

With a 10-acre field station in Hawaii, Arcadia is producing its first research crop of hemp to test the impact of climate and geography on crop parameters like yield and quality. Arcadia Specialty Genomics’ scientists and agronomists are evaluating and characterizing the performance of a number of local strains against various climate and biological conditions to understand the attributes of each, as well as identify opportunities for improvement. In addition, the company has hired full time staff at its Hawaii facility to oversee the ongoing research and grow operations.

“It’s highly gratifying to see our first hemp research crop taking root in Hawaii, having planted six different Hawaiian strains,” said Matt Plavan, president of Arcadia Specialty Genomics and CFO of Arcadia Biosciences. “In order to solve for crop variability – a major concern for U.S. hemp farmers – we first need to understand its drivers. We’re applying the sound, scientific approaches we’ve used to improve other crops, such as wheat, to create new breeds of superior hemp.”

Hawaii is the first state where Arcadia Specialty Genomics has commenced its research and cultivation of hemp in federal and state legal cannabis markets, using non-GMO techniques to produce superior U.S. hemp crops.

While traditional agricultural crops can be difficult to grow and export economically in Hawaii, the rich soil and warm climate are ideal for cultivating high-value crops such as hemp.

Arcadia Biosciences is a recognized leader bringing deep experience and established capabilities in this kind of crop innovation and optimization, delivering proven results safflower, wheat and durum such as:

A 100 percent increase in the production of omega-6 GLA for safflower
Two to six times more fiber than standard wheat and durum with its proprietary GoodWheat™ flour
A 65 percent reduction in allergenic gluten content in its GoodWheat™ flour
30 percent more lysine, an essential amino acid, in GoodWheat™ compared to standard wheat
The company expects to harvest its first crop of Hawaiian-grown research hemp this summer.

 

 


StaffStaffMarch 21, 2019
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4min19990

Canopy Growth Corporation  (TSX: WEED) (NYSE: CGC)  has acquired American hemp company AgriNextUSA in a cash deal for an undisclosed amount.  The company did note that purchase was not material to its current cash position and that the transaction would speed up Canopy Growth’s entry into key markets in the United States.

AgriNext is a hemp enterprise led by CEO Geoff Whaling, that has been at the forefront of hemp advocacy and building a vibrant hemp sector in the USA.

The United States is the next stop on Canopy Growth’s desired path to becoming a leading, revenue-generating company focused on all aspects of cannabinoids and their potential,” said Bruce Linton, co-CEO and Chairman of Canopy Growth. “Our significant investments, acquisitions, and compilation of talented leaders such as Geoff will position us for swift expansion throughout the United States. By collaborating with a pioneer like Geoff, who has been involved with our team since our earliest days in 2013, we will aim to turn hemp supplied by American farmers into a wide range of products.”

Canopy Growth had previously announced that it was on track to build the first Hemp Industrial Park in the Southern Tier of New York State, after receiving a state license to produce and process hemp. At that time, the company said that it had committed to invest $100M to $150M into a hemp operation that would lead to significant job creation and positive local economic impacts, as well as the produce CBD products for Canopy.

The vision proposed by AgriNextUSA and supported by Canopy Growth would involve creating Hemp Industrial Parks such as the one planned in New York State, where this super crop could be fast-tracked through a production cycle that would result in commercial applications for all parts of the plant, from root to tip. Camopy said in its statement that American farmers will benefit from a model that provides a single, regional destination for their hemp crops and connects them with the researchers, entrepreneurs, and innovators whose ideas will turn their crops into new products and industries.

“Hemp has the potential to become a multibillion-dollar industry that will boost the American economy for generations to come,” said Geoff Whaling, CEO of AgriNextUSA, Chairman of the National Hemp Association and newly appointed Strategic Advisor, Hemp and CBD, Canopy Growth USA. “By working with Canopy Growth, we will turn our vision into a reality, one that helps American farmers, small and medium-sized business owners, and the next cohort of innovators who see the extraordinary potential that hemp has to offer.”

Some industry insiders believe that hemp will be an even bigger market than adult use or medical marijuana. They believe hemp has the potential to disrupt several prominent industries like advanced materials, cosmetics, energy, fiber and textiles, food and protein production and the health and wellness sectors. Hemp is also a natural source of CBD, the non-intoxicating component of cannabis that can be used for health and wellness purposes in jurisdictions where legally permitted.

 


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtDecember 20, 2018
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5min20310

The 2018 Farm Bill, passed by Congress on December 12, 2018, and signed into law by the President on December 20, 2018, includes Section 10113 titled “Hemp Production,” which removes hemp from the Controlled Substances Act, places full federal regulatory authority of hemp with USDA, and allows State departments of agriculture to file hemp programs plans and regulate hemp cultivation per their State-specific programs.

“This bill constitutes a momentous victory for the movement in support of hemp farming, and will have far-reaching positive impacts on rural economies and farming communities, increase availability of sustainable products for American consumers, and create new businesses and jobs in the hemp industry,” said Eric Steenstra, President of Vote Hemp. “Now that we have lifted federal prohibition on hemp farming, it’s time to invest our energy in expanding hemp cultivation and the market for hemp products across the country so that all can reap the benefits of this of this versatile, historic American crop.”

Vote Hemp went on to say that in addition to defining hemp as cannabis that contains no more than 0.3% THC by dry weight, the bill asserts a ‘whole plant’ definition of hemp, including plant extracts; and removes roadblocks to the rapidly growing hemp industry in the U.S., notably by authorizing and encouraging access to federal research funding for hemp, and removing restrictions on banking, water rights, and other regulatory roadblocks the hemp industry currently faces. The bill also explicitly authorizes crop insurance for hemp. The full text of the hemp provisions in the Farm Bill of 2018 may be found at:  https://www.votehemp.com/2018farmbill.

Section 10113 “Hemp Production,” expands federally legal commercial hemp cultivation to tribal lands, reservations and U.S. territories—lands that had previously been omitted in Sec. 7606 of the 2014 Farm Bill, which allowed only for hemp farming programs in ‘States.’

“For too long, the outrageous and outdated ban on growing hemp has hamstrung farmers in Oregon and across the country,” Senator Ron Wyden said. “Hemp products are made in America, sold in America, and consumed in America. Now, hemp will be able to be legally grown in America, to the economic benefit of consumers and farmers in Oregon and nationwide.”

David Bronner, Cosmic Engagement Officer (CEO) of Dr. Bronner’s, soaps in North America that use hemp seed oil in its products said, “Dr. Bronner’s has advocated for the legalization of hemp farming since we added hemp seed oil to our products in 1999, and fought and beat the DEA during the Hemp Food Rules Challenge from 2001 to 2004. As a maker of hemp products, we are eager to source the 20 tons of hemp seed oil we use annually from American farmers.

“We see passage of this Farm Bill as a critical step in the development of the hemp industry. Now American farmers will have the opportunity to participate in a high value crop with a growing market opportunity, and consumers will have better access to hemp-based products,” said Dixie Brands CEO Chuck Smith. “It will also dramatically improve supply chain access for companies such as Dixie Brands, which has already developed a diversified and revenue-producing portfolio of CBD-based products under our Therabis and Aceso brands. As such, we applaud this development as a win for multiple groups and look forward to further advancing Dixie’s growth initiatives in this now legalized space.”


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtDecember 18, 2018
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6min16720

The beauty of brands like McDonald’s (MCD) or Coca-Cola (KO) is consistency. Consumers can walk into any McDonalds and always expect the hamburger to be relatively the same. They can open a can of Coke and it will always taste the same. This isn’t the case in cannabis these days.

A popular strain like Blue Dream might have a variation in its THC percentage depending on the state where it was cultivated. A 2015 study  determined that “marijuana strain names often do not reflect a meaningful genetic identity.” Another test of cannabis products in Alaska found that the THC levels were not what was advertised. This lack of inconsistency is causing companies like MMJ America to wipe its cannabis slate clean and start over with a new crop of cannabis plants that it can control.

MMJ is switching its existing, vertically-integrated Denver facilities, as well as enabling its new ones in Las Vegas, to a method powered by TriGrow Systems that will standardize and automate the cultivation process. A combination of custom software and specialized hardware is resulting in consistent results from plants. This customization even extends to proprietary nutrients that are blended for specific strains as well as to optimize plant growth.

The software solution allows for a consistent product regardless of the location of the cultivation facility so that MMJ’s customers can have a similar consumption experience no matter where they buy the product. Not unlike McDonald’s and Coca-Cola.

The consistency is also beneficial from a business standpoint as it gives the grower some predictability and that allows the company to have reliable information which helps with business planning. The cultivators at MMJ America feel they are akin to artists when it comes to growing cannabis, but they have said that the TriGrow System will take their artistry and truly replicate their strain. TriGrow says its system can increase the average potency of cannabinoids by 28.8%.

Green Market Report has visited many grow facilities, but what set this one apart was the vertical stacking of the TriGrow units. It’s typical to see rolling tables to maximize the floor space, but stacked tables with catwalks really maximize the amount of yield a producer can get from a warehouse space with tall ceilings. These units can be stacked three high which can increase the yield by 7.8 times and they are like Lego pieces. The units can be stacked on top of each other or linked side by side and each comes complete with its own set of lights. There is a catwalk system that comes with vertical stacking.

Another producer in Washington state has decided to implement the same system for its newest 30,000 square foot facility in Bellevue WA. Hannah Industries has been growing cannabis for two years and a traditional setup seemed to be the way to go, but with competition heating up the pressure is on to save money on the build out plus produce more. Hannah said it estimates it will be able to produce 80% more weight out of its new facility with TriGrow and save 10-15% on the build out.

TriGrow has received an investment from long-time cannabis investment group Poseidon Asset Management. Morgan Paxhia, co-founder of Poseidon said “Poseidon has been an early investor in the agtech area of cannabis. Cultivation is going to face commodity pressures as production scales to meet legal demand, as we are already seeing in certain markets. As a result, operators will need to be extremely focused on consistent production at low cost. TriGrow’s platform is built to support this mission, which we are seeing real time from the customers they are onboarding across several markets.”

The company has also partnered with cannabis loyalty software company Baker, which recently went public as a part of the TILT Holdings (CSE: TILT) (OTC: STTVF)) rollup. As more companies become multi-state operators, consumers will expect and demand that the products be consistent. Being able to deliver this consistency is going to be a challenge for many and no doubt they will have to seek out cultivating methods that move from traditional styles to the latest technology and hardware.

“TriGrow provides an opportunity to create scalable solutions producing consistency across production facilities,” said David Kessler, SVP of Horticultural Solutions at TriGrow.  “Our goal is to provide precision cultivation solutions, enabling indoor growers to scale operations efficiently and grow the highest quality crop consistently, at low operating costs” he added.


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtDecember 5, 2018
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6min12270

When a company is caught growing cannabis illegally, it’s often the landlord who’s left to clean up the mess. The criminals rarely come back for their equipment and the police want nothing to do with it either.

So, the landlord is confronted with clearing out sometimes hundreds of sophisticated, expensive lights, watering systems, and other various cultivation items in order to get the space back to rent. Metal scrapper and the owner of CH Hydroponics James Robba stumbled into the market when he was asked to disassemble a huge illegal grow.

Initially, he tried taking the lights apart to sell for scrap metal. Then he found that he could make more money keeping the lights intact and reselling them versus taking the lights apart. He began testing the lights to see if they worked and when they did he began selling them. “I was getting between $200 and $250 per ballast,” said Robba. For the uninitiated, ballasts run grow lights that are used in indoor grows.

After selling off his first tear down, he began running ads on Craigslist offering his demo work in order to get more second-hand equipment. “We started tearing down huge grows,” he said. “People that get busted don’t go back for their equipment.” He said building managers and landlords began calling him.

“We’ve seen gnarly stuff,” said Robba. “We’ve seen people tunnel down, right through a foundation, down 20 feet to tap into the main power line.” He has disassembled illegal grows with 500 lights making these $5-$6 million illegal operations.

Busted

You would think that it’s the landlord who has called the police and informed them about the illegal grow. But Robba said instead it’s usually disgruntled employees who end up tipping off the police. He told one story about an unhappy employee who knew the building didn’t have security guards on Sunday, so he went there with the intention to steal. Instead, he set off a silent alarm which automatically called the police. Oops.

Another way that illegal grows are discovered is that cities are using drones to find buildings with excessive amounts of HVAC equipment on the roof. Most buildings will have a few of these mechanical units on the roof, but a grow could have as many as 40. A telltale sign of something unusual.

Then there’s the smell. Robba said one operation without thinking opened a roof panel on the building, thus letting out the fragrant aroma of its cannabis plants. Neighbors complained and called the police.

Code Violations

With all these illegal grows getting busted and torn down, one would think people would be going to jail but that isn’t happening. Police departments found it wasted time and money to go after the lawbreakers. An operation one block from the police station in San Bernardino was busted with over 25,000 plants and no one went to jail.  Instead, cities found that good old-fashioned building codes and civil penalties were the way to go.

It’s very black and white. There is no way to argue building codes. It removes the police and courtrooms from the equation. It’s very easy for a city to tag a property with a building code violation and charge the owner with fees and penalties. Five tons of HVAC equipment on a roof is a dangerous situation for the occupants inside because in general buildings aren’t able to withstand that amount of weight.

It’s a violation and the city can earn big money by charging an owner a daily penalty until the building comes back into compliance. So, rather than spend money on police and attorneys to shut down an illegal grow, the city can instead earn money and still have the same outcome. This incentivizes the owners and landlords to fix the situation as quickly as possible.

Used Equipment

If the equipment is cheap and old, Robba will charge the owners to remove it. If it’s high quality, then they pay the landlord a reduced rate to demolish the grow. Robba said he does about two a month, but then added he’s already done three this past month. A new light can cost $250 each, while Robba pays about $20 for each ballast, he can resell them for roughly $75.

He believes the high tax rate of legal cannabis companies in California is creating the shadow black market. While many hobbyists buy his used equipment, he also believes that plenty of small black market operators are buying it as well. Still, he said it is getting harder for the illegal grows to stay in business as the city cracks down.

He doesn’t condone breaking the law, but he said the disruption of legalization has hurt the small operators who will now need to turn to other forms of business to make a living. Other things that could be more harmful than a small grow operation.


Debra BorchardtDebra BorchardtAugust 28, 2018
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3min12261

Medical marijuana producer WeedMD Inc. (WDDMF)  reported revenues of $2.1 million for the three months ending June 30, 2018. This was an increase of 83% sequentially and 787% over the same time period during last year. Revenue of $3.2 million in the first six months of fiscal 2018 represents a 1271% increase compared to the first half of fiscal 2017.

“We are pleased with our performance in the quarter, with revenues growing in excess of 700% year-over-year,” said Keith Merker, CEO of WeedMD. “Having secured supply agreements with Shoppers Drug Mart, the Nova Scotia Liquor Corporation, the Alberta Gaming, Liquor & Cannabis Commission and the British Columbia Liquor Distribution Branch, we are well positioned to deliver on our milestones, including expanding production through our newly licensed greenhouse facility, additional provincial supply agreements, building market share and accelerating growth.”

WeedMD also reported a net comprehensive loss of $1.7 million, which was much lower than last year’s loss of $4.7 million for the same time period. The loss per share for the quarter was $0.02 versus last year’s $0.08.

Looking Ahead

WeedMd said its cultivation facility was recently licensed and plants were moved into the 25,000 square feet of space throughout the month of June. This puts the company on schedule for its first harvest by September 2018. The month looks to be a busy one for the company as it is also planning to expand from the current three growing rooms to four over the next week. By the end of September, six more rooms representing roughly 60,000 square feet are expected to be licensed and populated.

By the end of this year, WeedMD is planning on having 400,000 more square feet commissioned and more than 500,000 square feet of total cultivation production space.

Merker added, “Our production platform positions the company to support existing and incoming supply commitments as well as pursue international distribution opportunities. With an expected 500,000 square feet of fully-funded production space online by the end of this year, WeedMD is poised to become a top ten licensed producer in terms of actual realizable production capacity.”


Anne-Marie FischerAnne-Marie FischerAugust 21, 2018
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8min64502

As the July 1 regulations had most California cannabis companies scrambling to meet compliance standards for cannabis products, two companies implemented the best practices they had been planning since January 1 and are now dominating the California cannabis industry.

Headset, a real-time data source for the cannabis industry released their Insights Report where Caliva and Papa & Barkley are creeping up to the top, holding 50 top-10 rankings across the state of California.

Smoking Sensations

Caliva is leading in the flower, pre-roll and vape categories, proudly showcasing information about the testing standards completed for phase II compliance in California. The San Jose based retailer offers some of the industry’s finest pre-rolls, including “House Doobies” and Dogwalkers, and Toasties, rolled into the Caliva Collection.

By passing the California cannabis standards that came into effect July 1, in regards to packaging, testing, labeling, using child- and tamper-proof technology, and using prominent wording on labeling, Caliva rose to the top.

“We started preparing for July 1 regulations in earnest by January 1st. It wasn’t easy,” says Dennis O’Malley, CEO of Caliva. “We cycled through a couple different testing labs until we felt confident we found the best.”

From the consumer perspective, it was the trust that customers feel in the Caliva experience. “Trust means providing a pristinely compliant product that does what it claims to do every time,” says O’Malley, “At Caliva, we are obsessed about delivering the products the consumers want in the manner and channel of where and how they would like to purchase.”

The Caliva Collection is an excellent example of the best practices in packaging, labeling, and engaging the customer experience.

Topical and Tincture Trailblazers

Papa & Barkley is dominating the California cannabis industry in the way of cannabis tinctures and topicals. Their strategies began early with an “all hands on deck” approach to the changing packaging and labeling regulations. In the ever-changing industry, they never see their job as complete, “We are currently working on flexible on-demand packaging systems in anticipation of more regulation changes,” says Kimberly Dillon, CMO.

Of their success in topicals, Dillon attributes ease of use and a demand for non-psychoactive products; “Topicals are an easy introduction to use as a wellness product,” Dillon says.

Providing products ranging from balms to patches, to body oils, to body soaks under the Releaf brand, Papa & Barkley provides clear labeling on both their products and on their website. Tinctures and capsules allow oral ingestion for those who are looking to use cannabis without smoking or vaping.

When Preparation Meets Opportunity

It required a strong investment to get cannabis products up to snuff for California’s regulations. “We did not predict the large impact that the July 1 regulations would have on the industry,” says Caliva’s O’Malley, “We took our lumps in Q1 of this year,” in preparation for the July 1 regulations.

For Papa & Berkley, the process is continuously evolving as they come out with new product lines and anticipate new regulation changes, demonstrating the need to be nimble in the industry.

Both companies are seeing new opportunities emerge and are working those into their strategies. “Products need to fit into consumers’ daily lives and for the vast majority of the new cannabis consumer, there needs to be micro-dosed options,” says O’Malley. Caliva plans to release products marketed as “fun for you”, “good for you”, and “relief for you” to help consumers get their best cannabis experience.

For Papa & Berkley, it’s all about helping people use tinctures and topicals to explore the vast array of products and medical cannabis therapies available to people. “Some portion of the [new user] cannabis cohort will graduate into other form factors and use cases,” says Dillon. The company plans to expand into new product lines under the Releaf brand, including Whole Plant CBD products that will allow those who aren’t in legal states to access the benefits of their award-winning products.

As new companies emerge, and existing companies merge to pool resources for compliance regulations that are ever-changing, Caliva and Papa & Berkley serve as excellent models of the way for cannabis product best practices in California and across the industry.

 



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The Green Market Report focuses on the financial news of the rapidly growing cannabis industry. Our target approach filters out the daily noise and does a deep dive into the financial, business and economic side of the cannabis industry. Our team is cultivating the industry’s critical news into one source and providing open source insights and data analysis


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@GreenMarketRpt – 2 days

Our biggest fans this week: WallandBroad, IMITAKCO, Gambiste1. Thank you! via

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