Why the Cannabis Industry Needs to Think Tomorrow, Rather Than TodayIt’s 2018 and after decades of vehemently persecuting marijuana production, nearly thirty states have legalized the controversial plant in one way or another. A booming demand for regulated and reliable marijuana products has opened new revenue streams within the agricultural industry, but this profit wave has not flowed without its own unique set of regulatory hurdles.
Although most states are still confined to medicinal use, and although scientists have proved marijuana’s positive impact on a large range of diagnoses and substantiated their claims with thousands of medical studies, recipients are proceeding with a cautious curiosity. It was not long ago, that society deemed cannabis a hazardous drug, so it is no surprise this new industry is still met with a lingering hesitation. The government has inflicted a comprehensive set of standards on the cannabis industry to combat the skepticism, forcing growers and suppliers to comply with seed to sale tracking mechanisms that outline the life cycle of each strain.
Transitioning a historically black-hat operation to a fully-regulated, code-abiding production has proved quite the challenge, especially as the whole world closely examines the metamorphosis. Grow and distribution centers have turned to precision technology to build bridges where gaps exist and to propel operations through the long list of cannabis compliance codes in the most painless way possible.
Where there is a new technological need, there is a growing number of startups waiting to leverage solutions. The cannabis industry has fallen into a trap, adopting one-size-fits-all platforms for a grossly dynamic production scene. The majority of seed-to-sale platforms are scaled to today’s consumer climate, a market where the majority of consumers are patients. Planning your technological infrastructure around today’s demands, will leave you back at square-one tomorrow when legislation legalizes to the masses.
Can Your Seed-to-Sale System Support What’s to Come?
Seed-to-sale software processes and curates the entire cannabis business lifecycle, including inventory management, data processing, cloud computing, and POS modules. The data flow begins with RFID and barcode tracking mechanisms where each plant receives a unique identification code that accounts for all growth and manufacturing stages. This identification code is tacked onto everything—the yield, the waste, the packaging. No blip in the supply chain is not computed and filtered into the database for later retrieval. When the product finally concludes its journey to the shelf of a dispensary, the consumer or regulatory agencies would be able to inquire about the lifecycle at the point of purchase and be given each and every detail of what processes the cannabis underwent to end up in their hands.
Effective seed-to-sale tracking requires a merge of several different systems. First, we have the growth cycle, measuring potency, providing molecular data specific to the strain, and logging feed to growth ratios. Dissecting the seedling to flower process allows growers to optimize their botanical processes and leverage the data against current inefficiencies. Beyond the growth cycle, seed-to-sale includes transportation management, tracking all exchanges and deliveries, laboratory testing procedures, dispensary inventorying, all the way to payment processing. Merging these technologies under a singular, unified umbrella simplifies the process and makes state compliance a breeze, considering all data is stored in the cloud and can be retrieved in real-time.
Cannabis cultivation is increasingly sophisticated; botanist become alchemists, engineering bizarre strands and repurposing the plant into different forms. If recreational use undergoes a large-scale legalization, the marijuana operations will feel more pressure to innovate and diverge from one another to establish themselves as brands rather than medical suppliers. Naturally, as cannabis takes on a growing number of identities, the seed-to-sale process becomes a whole lot more complicated. For this reason, seed-to-sale platforms are only as strong as their scalability.
Rather than settling for an off-the-shelf option someone is offering you today, find a scalable solution, tailored to your business objectives and production goals. Seed-to-sale software must evolve with the operation, keeping pace with the growing complexity and effectively managing the big data funneling into the system.
The cannabis landscape is changing day-to-day. If you are battling to reach code compliance with your current processing bandwidth, imagine the difficulties you will face in a market a million times the size with increasing complexity. Think big picture: will your seed-to-sale software brace for impact or come crashing down?