Although the news of cannabis cultivator busts is not uncommon, a recent incident in California appears to be establishing a seismic shift in the response from law enforcement. You can read the entire Associated Press article on MSN, but here are the highlights:
- 4-story warehouse
- 35,000 plants seized
- 18,000 pounds of marijuana
- $67,000 per month electric bill
Historically, growers would hear this type of news and feel super uncomfortable being reminded of the potential for incarceration, steep legal fees, being labeled a felon, etc. The outcome of the case referenced above is yet unknown, but consider several key factors that appear to signal some very positive, long-awaited news for cannabis cultivators:
- No initial charges have been filed in the case
- The owner of the property has not been arrested or charged with a crime
- The quote from law enforcement that “marijuana has been legalized, but there are stringent requirements.”
For the sophisticated cultivator, the tide is turning. No longer must growers be subjected to a life of fear for participating in their craft. The key, however, centers on compliance. Pouring through the latest 115 page Bureau of Cannabis Control California Code of Regulations is, to say the least, a time consuming effort fraught with uncertainty. The requirements for obtaining a license in California promises to be both an expensive and highly detailed endeavor. Once a license is provided, the effort required to maintain compliance can also be highly time consuming amidst evolving state and local regulation codes. A comprehensive set of solutions that are flexible to accommodate change across the cannabis value chain will be essential to long-term, sustainable prosperity.
As we all know, the cannabis trade promises an array of benefits for the smart businessperson seeking greater control of their future. There’s a massive land grab underway, but it will be the experienced, well-informed, shrewd, and legally adept operators that will avoid the pitfalls along the way. Maintaining the right partnerships to manage both the pre-license process as well as aspects such as seed to sale tracking and compliance, cultivation management, and manufacturing and processing operations will be the tried and true recipe for cannabis industry success.