Legacy to Legal: How Tech Helped the TransitionHead Cultivator at Grizzly Peak, Gonzalo Soto shares his experience building a new legacy for his family in the legal cannabis space.
Gonzalo Soto is precisely what our pioneers envisioned with the legalization of cannabis. As a third-generation cannabis cultivator, Soto brings decades of cannabis experience to the industry. Although the legacy market may have been prohibited, thanks to perseverance and passing on centuries of expertise, the legal industry has become what it is today.
Soto and his father witnessed the transition from the legacy market to the legal market, fulfilling his dream to turn their livelihood into a career. Today, the legal cannabis industry has allowed Soto and his family to create a business and a new legacy for their family.
He admits that he is humbled by his ability to share his transition from a once illicit market to a legal business.
Combining Expertise with Technology Systems
Although switching from the heritage industry to the legal industry was challenging, Soto readily admits that the technology solutions have helped them achieve consistent, high-quality crops.
In fact, Grizzly Peak was just recognized by Headset Analytics as the number one and number two pre-roll sold in California. Soto talks about their processes and what goes into making a quality pre-roll and scaling that process to mass production.
Soto attributes their consistency and quality to implementing solid SOPs and using SaaS platforms, like Aroya, to monitor their grow and catch problems in advance.
Using set parameters and sensors in their facility Soto and his team are alerted any time there's a problem, and they're able to address it before it becomes a more significant issue. Soto believes that this system has helped them reduce costs and increase quality overtime.
The detailed data and the graphs provided by the system allow Soto and his team to predict the way the plant will react in different conditions and environments. This data has helped them to better understand how variables will impact their crop.
"Having full control has been a game-changer; we no longer have to guess what the environment should be," Soto stated.
Systems for Transparency and Compliance
Soto believes that compliance has been one of the most challenging things to maintain in his transition and that the software provided by Aroya really helps to smooth the system and keep them in compliance with the state. Implementing these advanced technology solutions has reduced the amount of time and paperwork his staff needs to complete their job.
“Technology has evolved, and we are evolving with it,” Soto mentioned.
One of the unspoken benefits of nationwide legalization is interstate commerce, allowing the cannabis industry to evolve much as the wine industry has.
Hope for Legalization
Implementing technology solutions like Aroya has increased their yields. Now, the biggest challenge is that there’s too much supply. Soto believes that If there were more retail licenses, there would be more outlets for their product. Additionally, if interstate commerce were legalized, they would be able to provide other states with the product, thus alleviating the supply overages that many growers in California are currently struggling with.
Learn more about Grizzly Peak and Gonzalo’s transition in this interview on A Tech Moment!