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Getting Cannabis Industry Jobs: Industry Employment Guide

Getting Cannabis Industry Jobs: Industry Employment Guide

There’s a lot of cannabis industry jobs out there. They’re just hard to find.

There are now more than 30 states that have legalized cannabis for medicinal or recreational use, and the jobs are there if you are willing to look. Due to its stigmatized nature and lack of advertising, finding cannabis industry jobs can be tough, especially in states that have just recently opened their markets.

States like Massachusetts and Michigan are both projected to be highly successful markets. But whereas Michigan just legalized with plans in place for a recreational marketplace within one year, Massachusetts has been legal for two years and has yet to open a dispensary, although that looks to be changing soon.

Cannabis Industry Jobs by State

Every state has set up their legal cannabis markets differently, whether medicinal or recreational. Colorado has one of the most effective and respected programs, and it is highly regulated. California on the other hand has much less restrictions on working in the industry, but a more difficult process of starting a cannabis business in the state.

The more you know about each state’s laws, the easier it will be to decide where you want to work, and what you want to do. Some states are only giving out licenses for growing and extracting, while others have given them all out, and now just need budtenders. Some states require you be a state resident to work in the industry in that state. Other states have no such requirement.

Another way to learn about getting into the industry from the outside is to hear the story of someone who did just that…me!

This Week on The Real Dirt

If you didn’t notice by the author line at the top, I’m Travis, and I’m the guest on this week’s episode of The Real Dirt.

I have been writing for The Real Dirt for over a year, and have been writing about cannabis for roughly 5 years. What started as a fantasy of working in the legal industry developed over time into me picking up and leaving Pennsylvania to move to Colorado to work full time for The Real Dirt and Cultivate Colorado.

It wasn’t easy for me to find a job in the industry, especially from the east coast. It will be hard for you too, but it’s not impossible. You don’t need to pick up and leave with no job security and hope you find something. You just have to look. Hard.

It took me at least 6 months of doing unrelated jobs on the side and looking for cannabis-related jobs before I actually found The Real Dirt. So don’t give up.

My story isn’t anything special. I saw an opportunity and went for it against odds, and succeeded. Now I’m writing this trying to help you get past the point I was stuck at too! If you want to hear more about me and how I ended up 2,500 miles away from all my family, listen to my episode of The Real Dirt!

Plus, I wrote a nice Industry Employment Guide that goes into detail about the fastest growing cannabis industries in the country, and all of the requirements for working in them. Please check that out, download it, print it, frame it, burn it, whatever you want. But it will help you understand the basics of these state’s respective industries should you decide to start looking for a job.

I hope you get something out of this episode and the industry guide, and as always you can ask me any questions at Travis@therealdirt.com, or talk to me on Instagram! I run both Cultivate Colorado’s and The Real Dirt’s Instagram accounts, and I LOVE TALKING WITH FANS!

 

Read the Full Real Dirt Industry Employment Guide Here!

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The New Taxonomy of Cannabis

The New Taxonomy of Cannabis

The taxonomy of cannabis is changing. That is, the definition of what makes cannabis cannabis is changing.

What we know as indica and sativa is not the full truth. It’s been diluted a lot through pop culture and a lack of scientific information regarding the origins of cannabis and how it has been bred through the generations.

Indica and Sativa Aren’t So Certain

There are two main origins for cannabis. What we have come to know as sativa is originally from Europe. Specifically, sativa comes from European hemp. This makes sense when you consider the stretching qualities of “sativa” plants, similar to hemp.

Indica on the other hand originated in Asia. The Middle East, Southeast Asia and other surrounding areas hosted this “drug cultivar” of cannabis that grew shorter and developed heavier cannabinoid content through enduring more harsh weather conditions.

While indica naturally developed into its drug cultivar through its environmental conditions, sativa had to be bred over time to develop its drug cultivar.

It’s Mostly Just Indica

The reality is that most of the cannabis that people will consume in the western hemisphere will be indica. Technically, the only truly classified sativa is European hemp. But through evolution of the plant and breeding it has become very diluted.

While indica naturally produces drug-like effects, sativa contributed its strong cannabinoid contents to combine for what’s become known as the entourage effect in modern cannabis. The interaction of potentially over one hundred different cannabinoids combine to products the typical effects felt when consuming cannabis.

The bigger reality is that it goes much deeper. As Jessica Baker puts it, “there’s actually seven distinct biotypes, of three species, that came from six subspecies that are now extinct, or thought to be extinct.” If that sounds a little too complex, just let Jessica explain it!

Tune into to this week’s episode of The Real Dirt where Chip sits down with Jessica Baker to talk about the new taxonomy of cannabis and how everything we have come to know about cannabis in the dispensary is just scraping the surface.

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Is Hemp Constitutional in Colorado? Harvest Special Pt. 5

Is Hemp Constitutional in Colorado? Harvest Special Pt. 5

What makes hemp, hemp? Is it where it’s grown, or how its grown?

It all depends where you live at this point. The Agricultural Act of 2014 allowed farmers to grow industrial scale hemp legally, as long as the THC content was .03% or lower in the plant.

Seems simple enough. But when states have the right to make their own laws, the Agricultural Act becomes basically irrelevant. Some states require .01% THC or less to be considered legal. Other states require .05% or less, and some are even considering raising it to 1% or less THC.

Colorado’s hemp laws

Colorado is the only state in the country that actually includes cultivation in the state constitution. This means that Coloradans have the right to cultivate legally in Colorado. But that could all change soon.

A new measure being voted on this midterm would take the laws regarding hemp in Colorado, and make them statutory rather than constitutional. While the constitutional law currently allows legal cultivation of plants containing .03% THC or less, Amendment X would change that law to better reflect the federal law.

What if?

What if the people vote no on Amendment X? Hemp will remain in the constitution of Colorado, with a mandatory THC level of .03%. If the federal government were to reclassify hemp tomorrow and say the new limit is 1%, Colorado could be stuck. With the delays between introducing new laws and voting on them, it could be upwards of 2 years before Colorado could catch up with the rest of the country.

What if the people vote yes? Hemp will become statutory, not constitutional, putting it on par with federal regulation. Growing will no longer be a right, but a regulated law organized and voted on by lawmakers. There will be little noticeable change at first, as the constitutional definition of Colorado hemp is near identical to the federal definition already. But should the federal definition change to lower the plant’s controlled substance status or raise the legal THC limit, Colorado will be on par with the rest of the country.

What’s your vote?

What would you vote if you were a Coloradan in this situation? Would you want hemp to stay in control of the state, enshrined in the constitution, only to be changed by the people’s vote? Or, would you want to join the rest of the country in a unified federal regulation of hemp?

Hear what Chip is planning on doing on this week’s Real Dirt episode! In the FINAL Harvest Special, Chip talks about the new bill and what it could mean for Colorado and the country.

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Cannabis Culture and Community: Harvest Special Pt. 4

Cannabis Culture and Community: Harvest Special Pt. 4

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again: I don’t know if we cultivate cannabis, or cannabis cultivates us.

Another harvest has come. Soon, it will be over. Unless you’re an indoor grower, you have some time until planting season.

One thing that is overlooked during harvest season is the community and cannabis culture that develops from the entire group coming together around one plant. Cannabis connects us together as humans, but there is also an unspoken connection that we have with cannabis.

Cannabis culture and community

Whether it’s through sitting around the trim table together or just enjoying cannabis frequently with friends, the cannabis culture that has developed from these connections is a beautiful thing. Movies, TV shows, radio shows and more have also helped to bring cannabis into the mainstream.

Stoner comedies, informative documentaries, news series, and more have all helped propel cannabis into the spotlight. But it’s the regular enthusiasts like you and I that really helped build up — and continue to build — the cannabis culture we enjoy today.

Harvest season is the reason

It might not be the reason, but it’s definitely one of them. Getting the whole gang together to trim up your big harvest is a great way to connect, talk about the growing season, changes to be made, etc. And let’s be real, you’re blazing up the whole time you’re trimming ‘cus that shit sucks, especially if you’re trimming by hand.

I hope that you’ve been enjoying these Harvest Specials as much as I have enjoyed sharing some harvest knowledge with you. It may not be the most scientific or researched tips, but I’ve been in this industry long enough to know how things work, and how to do things the right way.

So, enjoy this week’s Harvest Special while you trim up some beautiful ganja with your team, or roll one up and relax after a long day at the grow with The Real Dirt Podcast.

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Croptober Problems: Harvest Special Pt. 3

Croptober Problems: Harvest Special Pt. 3

Croptober is here! Which means harvest time, and harvest problems.

If you’re in a more arid, dry climate right now, your harvest is probably going off without a hitch. The same can’t be said for the East coast growers out there.

With the extremely rainy hurricane season that hit the east coast this year, growers, especially those in the Southeast, are feeling it.

Croptober harvest problems

October has always been the prime time for harvest, with the natural transition into fall pushing plants into their flower stage just in time for harvest. While those who grow indoors do not have to worry about the changing seasons since they can regulate their environment and grow year round, outdoor growers aren’t as fortunate.

Some can’t afford to grow indoors, others prefer outdoors, and some don’t have any other option than to grow outdoor. This puts the grower at the mercy of nature, and she hasn’t been too kind to growers in the east this year.

Not just the weather

If you thought it was just the weather impacting farmer’s harvests, think again. On the opposite side of the country, it’s a little too dry.

You may have noticed from the 400,000 acres of scorched earth in Northern California that there have been some fires. When fires destroy thousands of acres of land, they also destroy the homes of thousands of wildlife. Especially squirrels.

The impact of the forest fires in California have displaced thousands of squirrels, pushing them south into the Emerald Triangle. I’m sure you can see where this is going.

The refugee squirrel problem

Forced from their homes and into the hills of the Emerald Triangle, squirrels have become an unwelcome guest on many cannabis farms. While non-violent toward the farmers, the same can’t be said of the squirrels and their relationship with cannabis plants.

Crawling all over the plants, eating the stalks and breaking off branches of plants are just some of the problems caused by the new squirrel migrant crisis. It’s too soon to say the total impact this event will have, but many farmers are already reporting ruined harvests due to the rodents.

Harvest Special Pt 3

Hear all about the savage squirrels, the drenched east coast and more on this week’s Harvest Special! Join Chip on Lookout Mountain in Georgia as he talks harvest tips, problems, and solutions.

Listen to the episode right here on The Real Dirt, or listen on the go on iTunes, Spotify, Stitcher and more.

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Curing Cannabis: Harvest Special Pt. 2

Curing Cannabis: Harvest Special Pt. 2

When it comes to curing cannabis, you want to do it right. Not doing it right can ruin your entire harvest.

You’re done harvesting cannabis from your grow. Now it’s time to cure it.

Room size, temperature, humidity, air flow…these are all things that you need to consider when it comes to curing cannabis. Too much humidity and your plants won’t dry properly. Not enough humidity and you’ll dry your plants out faster than you want.

Curing cannabis right

It really is a science. People have moved on from the old plywood sheds that they would use to dry their cannabis. Now, people get full-blown steel buildings with full, regulated setups for curing cannabis. This way can be better, if done right.

A benefit of the classic drying shed that was outside with some plywood walls was it’s interaction with the environment. It acted as a self-regulator, changing humidity and temperature with the outside conditions. Unless there was a more rainy season, this would usually result in perfectly cured cannabis.

Modernized curing

With new, modernized curing facilities, it becomes the job of the grower to regulate that indoor environment. This is where the essentials come in, such as having fans, ventilation and temperature control.

Your method of curing cannabis also depends on how you want to trim it. Some people like to “green trim”, or trimming cannabis fresh when it is still wet. Others will only trim dry, as it is easier and many think it is more effective at maintaining potency when the bud had more time to cure.

The bottom line

One of the most important factors of curing cannabis that people overlook is storage. The best way to store your cannabis for curing is in storage bins. Some plastic bags will leave an odor on your cannabis if left in the bag too long from the plastic chemicals.

Once you have your cannabis contained, it is important to monitor it regular, burping the container to prevent the buds from flattening each other out. In a regulated indoor environment, this will be curing easy.

Here more about curing and trimming on this week’s Real Dirt Harvest Special!

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