How to Avoid Missing the Mark on your Cannabis Cultivation Forecast

By Rob Woodbyrne

Get ahead of what strains should be grown and when through real-time metrics

  • For cultivators, predicting cannabis demand can mean the difference between profitability and failure
  • Utilize  performance analytics to identify popular strains and timing to guide inventory strategy
  • Regrow is  the platform  that provides real-time  metrics, task automation and cultivation forecasting tools operators need in order to make educated planning decisions

Leading cultivator Aurora had a disastrous year in 2020. What can we learn from their mistakes?  

Over the years, Aurora Cannabis has become a household name within the cannabis industry community, primarily due to its large valuations ahead of cannabis legalization in Canada where it operates. It was once poised to become a top-five producer in the world, and one that many investors bet on. While valuations have since stabilized and many cannabis companies are facing the fact that they must make money and not just spend it, Aurora recently made headlines for doing the exact opposite. In fact, they broke the cardinal rule of business mismanagement – don’t make stuff people don’t want.

The real failure of Aurora was not that they grew bad weed, it was that they failed to grow the types of strains that consumers wanted; in other words, they missed out on capitalizing on consumer buying trends. And many cultivators are facing this exact same problem. 

Use performance analytics to understand what consumers want.

Consumer cannabis consumption and buyer behavior have continued to evolve as a more legalized and regulated market has emerged. The old belief that you just need to grow some pot and the customers will come could not be further from the truth in 2020 and beyond. Consumers are more sensitive to price fluctuations and quality. They will not take just any ol’ weed. They are learning their favorite strains, which can change season by season. Even moreso, they are more sensitive to different effects, higher potency versus lower, and the effect that has on their enjoyment and wallet. All of these factors are driving buying trends that today’s cultivator needs to be in tune with. 

Unfortunately, operators and growers may be overlooking key metrics to inform strategies that can make or break their business. This has to change in a modernized industry. But how do cultivators know what products will sell and which ones won’t? How can they plan their batches accordingly? The answer is simple: data.

While data collection is possible, consolidating and presenting it is a different story. Operators often  have an overwhelming amount of information in disparate sources that can be difficult for cultivators to navigate. For example, certain geological areas will have different demands than others. And with cultivators servicing the entire state of California, it can be difficult, if not impossible, to plan batches and crops without the use of software. Going above and beyond “seed-to-sale” compliance software, operators need true integrated supply chain management software. Specifically, a system that provides geographically focused predictive analytics based on real time and historic data that is  presented in a meaningful way, allowing executives to plan accordingly. This allows businesses to create a cultivation planning strategy that will produce cannabis that actually sells. 

Position yourself on the frontlines of the cannabis industry’s evolution.

Established industries have been using advanced software technology to monitor buying trends for decades. Take candy producers, for instance. If they produced the same amount and type of candy year round, they would surely run out around Halloween and incur losses due to unsold candy around the “get in shape” New Year season. They could have too many of those animal-shaped marshmallow candies in August, but not enough around Easter. 

This same type of predictive supply chain management will become more and more crucial to an established cannabis industry. Consumer trends will continue to emerge as more consumers begin to purchase cannabis, either for the first time or on a consistent basis. And if cultivators plan on running a tight ship (i.e. making a profit with the least amount of waste possible) they are going to have to adapt to the demands of consumers, not just grow the best product they like. Partnering with a service such as Regrow, which provides not only these types of predictive analytics but overall workflow management, inventory planning propagation planning and compliance allows cultivators to be predictive when making their cultivation planning decisions. Knowing what strains to plant and how much, when to plant, and when they will be ready for distribution could mean the difference between profit and failure.

Want to learn more about Regrow and see if it’s the right fit for your organization? Request a demo today.