Challenges Commercial Growers Faced This Year,
And What to Expect in 2022
One of the most important things any cannabis operation can do is attend industry-related shows. These shows allow employees, business owners, and dealers to speak with like-minded individuals, learn what new innovations are coming, and even get insight into what cannabis operators can expect in the coming months – sometimes even years.
That’s why Regrow’s, Solution Architect, Cameron Stone attended the 2021 Cannabis Conference. From new technology to shifts in cultivation, Stone was able to learn just what challenges commercial growers faced this year, and what to expect in 2022.
What are some of the biggest takeaways from the conference?
By far the biggest takeaway was learning that most cultivators are currently dealing with major supply chain problems. Much like the world saw with lumber, the supplies needed to cultivate, and even package, are hard to find. And when you do get your hands on it, they are more expensive than ever before. Rising costs and scarcity in supplies are certainly top of mind for most I met at the show.
Why are supply chain systems important for cultivators to utilize?
Monitoring your supply chain is one of the most important aspects of any company. However, with cannabis – even more so. At the most basic level, a responsive supply chain will be flexible and agile enough to respond to customer wants, while still providing a reliable and efficient model for your company’s specific needs. A program like Regrow can do all this, and more, making it easy for growers to focus on what they know best – growing quality cannabis.
What are the biggest challenges commercial growers faced in 2021?
There were quite a few challenges that commercial growers faced in 2021, supplies of course being one of them, but something else that comes up a lot is a shift in culture.
We are seeing fewer and fewer cultivators in the field who live and breathe the process of growing cannabis. People who have a true admiration for the plant are getting pushed out by big corporations, insisting cultivation be done a certain way, only caring about the numbers.
The reason this is such a challenge is that we are slowly starting to see the diversity in the products go away. Eventually, if things stay this way, cannabis products and strains will be nearly identical across the board.
Do you foresee anything being done to mitigate that challenge?
Much like the craft beer industry, I think cannabis will start to see a number of microgrowers. It seems like there are almost as many microbreweries as there are Starbucks. This is because people were tired of being pushed out by the big guys and wanted to make sure their products had a unique spin. This is what the cannabis industry is going towards in my opinion, which is exciting for the consumer.
When the world started to open back up in early 2021, how was the cultivation industry impacted?
Honestly, the cultivation industry was not impacted as much as others. Growing cannabis is not a work-from-home job, so people, many in Colorado and elsewhere, were still working. This allowed many operations to keep their staff. There was also an increase in sales throughout the industry as well as a switch to buying processed products versus dried flower.
What challenges can cultivators expect to see in 2022?
As mentioned previously, most cannabis operations do not have the proper supply chain systems in place. So, with 2022 expected to be a big year for the industry, they will need these systems to stay organized and on top of the demand.
Do you see the federal government changing its stance on cannabis in 2022?
The industry is bullish on getting a Fair Banking Act in 2022. Something needs to happen by this coming year because companies are suffering, employees are consistently at a safety risk and, in my opinion, the industry has shown it is responsible, lucrative, and functional. Even though the hope is it will be approved in 2022, there is no saying when the actions will actually take place.
As with any industry, the cannabis sector has its challenges. Some are in the control of the cultivators, and some are untouchable. However, challenges are part of business, and while the cannabis industry certainly has its fair share of them, there are many industry-changing aspects in store for 2022 and beyond. From advanced technology that simplifies the supply chain to microgrowers putting their own spin on things, it is an exciting time to be part of cannabis.