Predicting things to come has never been an accurate science from a human perspective ever in the history of Mankind! At best it is said that about 10% is down to chance occurrences and that seems to be our rate of prediction! Well I have a prediction that will reverse these percentages and it is based on the future of the Cannabis industry!
I predict that within 5 years of legalising Cannabis use in Washington State and Colorado in the USA, that the Cannabis industry will be splinted into specialised areas, each being a job/work all in itself! What is going to happen will all hinge on the first years production in these two states in USA.
Up until now the data collected is from what police seized or what went through the courts system…but it is only those who were caught not based on people who worked and never had any problems, so the real figures or data will only begin to be collected from 2014 onwards…making this the birth of a old-industry in modern times.
With new industry comes teething pains which will be inevitable! However if these pains are over come with minimal problems, I see the future working roughly in this way.
First there will be a surge in appropriate real estate/properties and demand will most probably increase rentals and m2 prices for purchase, initially before any real cultivation takes place. Therefore securing a good factory or greenhouse or terrain in an area within laboratories, transport, production…will be a major consideration.
Second the people who will be applying and running these companies with licences will be scrutinized for credit records, civil and criminal histories, and any other NECESSARY information required before being consider for applications. A licence in any industry is not granted to the person who maybe best suited to grow plants since there are many responsibilities to be considered. States are right to screen people to see if they pass certain criterion to be enabled to apply to phase 2. Considering big business and banks will be financing these ventures it will need a protocol and minimum set of rules to initially run and conform to until things are better known and data is gathered like in other aspects of agricultural areas of work.
Once licences are given and properties are rented or purchased the real work will begin on the agricultural areas of this market.
The Clone industry will come into its element. Genetics of strains with prior experience will dominant the first year but this may change as the demands of the market and types of materials needed in raw form are understood. The genetics with a history and with a laboratory test that can be offered at good prices, consistently the same and with a business protocol will be where farmers/licensees will go for reliable healthy clones. To ensure cultivators are growing a plant that will serve the market uses and be profitable to their area of the industry will only really be clear after one or two harvests. So the initial cultivation period of 2014 will not be as everyone thinks or even be as profitable or with the plants many people are banking on. Science will aid this area for the cultivators and the supply and demand of the market place will dictate genetics that will be favoured over time.
Farmers/licensees who choose to grow the plants/clones will be obviously streamlining their part of this industry and that will mean scheduling in as many crops per year with their capabilities and facilities. Darkening systems for greenhouses , indoor facilities with artificial lights will be the most popular systems as outdoor will not be as reliable for an industry to function on all year nor will it be as consistent with raw product as either indoor or greenhouse grown Cannabis.
Adapting greenhouses that were originally set up for cut-flower growers will be the best facility to obtain as there will be all the essential facilities already present and only adaptation to a specific flower will be necessary.
Transport companies specialising in picking up and delivering to be tested or processed elsewhere will increase and certain companies and modes of safe transport will come into being to deal with what will be needed.
Garden supplies will increase and many new products will begin to creep into mainstream agricultural supplies to deal with specifics like we have for tomatoes and cucumber growers. Prices for so called elite products will reduce as the competition for market share begins and the quantity of growers increases.
Harvest companies with drying facilities for large crops will come into being as they do not exist as yet. When cropping greenhouses and large quantities of plants at the same time there is a need for very specialised workers and processors of the plant as well as drying facilities and storage methods for short term as well as long term storage. Plus secure storage facilities will be another new off spin of this work, since not all material can be used at one time. Security companies offering facilities to those who produce in quantities as well as supplying transporting options will also appear since this part of the work may be larger and more necessary to secure from any criminality or possible contamination etc, depending upon its value and uses.
Most importantly out of all of my predictions the facet of laboratory testing for Cannabinoids, contaminants, food grade standards, and so forth will boom! This field alone has attributed to Cannabis going from Hippy to Science in a very short time frame. So it is only logic to expect an exponential curve in this field for all areas of post production, extraction, standardization of products levels, testing for food grade standards, testing for cosmetic industry, plant testing with HPLC standards, terpene profiling for identifying plants, essential oil distillations, sterilizations for medical applications, terpene separations , cannabinoid separations and more. In my opinion the laboratories will be the revolutionary standard lacking at present in this renegade industry. In fact working alongside a good laboratory will be essential in the future if not obligatory as currently unregulated material is being offered to people who are asking for product to make medicines for their own uses…all of this is untested and unknown and far from regulated so it can only improve as far as i am concerned.
Dispensaries and retail outlets in each city will be an inevitable outcome as it exists today in some 20 USA states. A place serving the growing public for consistent products, available standardized extractions certified with lab tests results, cosmetics, edibles, as well as the plethora of new products yet to hit the market. Having areas and facilities like vaporizers to necessitate medication and interaction and specialized assistance with products to use as well as administering techniques will all be needed on an individual level! To support new clients with new medicines and ways of using them that suit the individual will need dispensaries and trained personel.
To a degree Holland achieve these things but lacked the testing, regulations of product standards and lacked a certified way to show consistency of product time and time again. Regulation by names will not be satisfactory in the future since patients/users rely on certain products being the same time and time again. Therefore obligatory terpene profiling for each batch maybe the best way to begin a standard so the end user will be assured this is the plant they received previously and can therefore make a decision from a lab test to use the product or not. Retail outlets will be imperative for the end users and reputation for consistent products, certified will be their service for the community. How they will look and what they will be allowed to do will be something yet to be considered properly and implemented.
Research and Development like Lab testing on finished products will be essential to increase the understanding of what benefits what conditions. Which compounds are more likely to help with certain health issues or mental issues will need investigation. As new compounds are found and measured and extracted and separated, research and development will go hand in hand with identifying ways and means of doing this. Refining specific uses of products will be the future work and will need human trials, material and prototype medicines, administering tools and data. This never ceases worldwide but is slow and laborious with hours of repetitive work, but it is essential for advancements and eureka moments!
Educational Aspects and Training of Work types will grow as new people see potential in changing their vocations. Business plans will accompany courses to learn how to do all aspects of this job. Certificates and accomplishments will become important for company owners to employ new people to this work. Advanced courses specialising in certain parts of this work and industry will lead certain people to become highly capable and fulfilled and expert. Like in any other branch of work the better educated and experienced with all facets of a job, the easier it will be to become employed in this work.
My prediction covers a lot in its entireties! However I believe I am talking from some level of expertise and therefore do not consider this a real prediction rather than a reality for the future, if things continue as they are. For years I have persisted in this work and it has never been so at a precipice as it is today! Let us see in 5 years how things are working, I am sure many things will be a little different to initial thoughts but one thing i would not hesitate to say is the business will be much bigger , more sophisticated more professional and more regulated than it is today, for sure!