Flowchart of Cannabis Industry Sectors

Cannabis Flowers

Distribution

Analysis

Production

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Concentrates

Edibles and Topicals

Cultivation Facility

A business which grows Cannabis spp. plants for consumption

 

Needs

-Grower to oversee crop development

-Botanist to design a watering, fertilization, light, and harvest program

-Engineer to implement systems

-Manual labor

 

Challenges

-Acquiring good genetics

-Growing healthy crops that optimize medical potency

-Preventing the spread of microbes (particularly mold) among the crops

-Complying with the appropriate local, state, and federal regulations

-Properly drying, curing, and storing product to optimize cannabinoid and terpene profile

 

A cultivation facility is the place where Cannabis species plants are planted, grown, harvested, trimmed, dried, and cured. The planting process involves seeding new plant growth, either from seed or from clone. Clones give the added advantage of having a known phenotype (chemical profile) and gender, as only the female plants produce Cannabis flower. If a female plant is fertilized by male pollen, she will produce seeds and have a reduced output of flower and cannabinoids. For this reason many plants from seed, which may be of either gender, are grown and studied in an isolated nursery, with promising female plants being transferred to the main cultivation area in the form of clones, to reduce the risk of contamination by male Cannabis pollen. The growth phase involves following an appropriate procedure for watering, fertilization, and light exposure. It is typical during this phase for trace amounts of mold spores to proliferate on growing plants, causing mold problems in the crop and facility down the line. Harvest involves cutting the cannabis flowers from the stalk of the plant, and trimming to remove any excess leaves. Drying and curing involve reducing the water weight of the flower from about 90% moisture down to 8-15% using air flow followed by sealed containment. During harvest, trimming, and drying a cultivation facility will typically have much greater need for manual labor than during other times.