The commercial cannabis industry is still relatively new, which means there are few, if any, established industry standards and best practices that new commercial growers can follow. Growers are often left to their own devices and must try to adapt methods from other industries to cannabis cultivation.

While we can’t tell you all of the strategies and practices that will work best for your cultivation as you expand in the commercial space, we can break down the top considerations that many growers don’t know, but should.

Competition is fierce

Not all states allow the retail sale of marijuana, and those that do usually put a cap on the number of dispensaries allowed in each city. As a result, people looking to break into the commercial cannabis industry often turn to cultivation. For a grow operation to stay competitive, cultivators want to scale quickly without sacrificing product quality. To do that, many look towards fully vertical cultivation.

There’s intense legal pressure

It’s no secret that the regulations surrounding cannabis production are incredibly strict. In reality, there’s even more pressure than you might realize. If cultivators make it past the licensing process, they’ll be subject to ongoing, state-specific reporting requirements, which are often unclear and quick to change. To keep up with evolving regulations, you should invest resources in a flexible, robust compliance program.

There are limited financing options

With the federal status of cannabis still up in the air, many finance institutions may hesitate to do business with a cannabis grow operation, or they may simply be unable to due to local laws. Private financing is often the most effective method of getting funding. However, you won’t find it easily, so stay open to other financing options, such as mergers.

Facility location matters

As a new commercial grower, it might be tempting to grab the cheapest piece of real estate available and take it from there, but the location of your facility could create headaches down the road. Beyond the legislation specific to the area, the town’s or city’s attitude about cannabis will impact the ease with which you operate and grow.

Maintaining product quality may be a challenge

Consistently producing high-quality cannabis is a challenge in and of itself—and it becomes even more difficult as you put more focus on growing your operation. In addition to investing in purpose-built growing equipment that simplifies your cannabis production, make sure to create your own standard operating procedures, so your workflow and product quality don’t suffer as you work on expanding.

You’ll run into industry knowledge gaps

The commercial cannabis industry is expanding rapidly but is still relatively new, so suppliers and manufacturers looking to take advantage of the explosive growth don’t always have the cannabis knowledge you need.To help overcome these gaps, anyone breaking into the commercial cultivation space (or already in it) should look for trusted companies that offer cannabis-specific products.

Outdated methods aren’t sunstainable

One of the biggest reasons new commercial growers don’t see profits is because they’re trying to adapt home-grow methods to large scale cultivation. Rather than attempting to scale basement growing methods, look towards other large-scale grow operations and the practices they’re using.

Grow space optimization should be a priority

As you scale, finding more real estate may feel like a natural next step, but that can end up hurting rather than helping your business. Rather than jumping to a larger space, you can optimize smaller spaces with vertical farming. Expanding upwards allows you to increase your canopy (and your profits) without needing to move or add locations whenever you need more space.

You need scalable equipment 

Breaking into commercial cannabis cultivation is an expensive venture, which means you don’t want to waste money buying all-new equipment every time your needs change. From your grow trays to your HVAC system, you want modular equipment, such as Grow Glide’s, which not only addresses common cultivation painpoints but expands as your business does.

You shouldn’t skip marketing and branding

Many cultivators get into the industry because of their passion from growing cannabis and producing the highest-quality product. However, at the end of the day, cannabis cultivation is like any other business, which means you’ll need to focus on more than just your cultivation to succeed. To stay afloat in a highly competitive market, you’ll also need to manage your company image and relationships with customers and partners.

Elevate Your Commercial Cannabis With Grow Glide

Succeeding in the cannabis industry is an uphill battle, but we’re here to make it easier with purpose-built growing solutions that solve real cultivation challenges, so you can grow your business while producing high-quality product.  Connect with us to learn more about why commercial growers trust Grow Glide.