Big Weed: ten farms could supply all of America with marijuana


#1

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2017/12/31/amber-waves-of-green.html


#2

https://malegislature.gov/Laws/SessionLaws/Acts/2017/Chapter55

Mister Peabody say Ctrl-X Ctrl-V, America

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#3

Massachusetts is putting steps into the law to make sure that small businesses get a piece. Social and economic justice is one of the main planks of our legalization platform.


#4

What would happen if pot farms could be as large as wheat or corn fields?

So, are we favoring small-business farming here, at the expense of agribusiness? How sad, he said, sarcastically. Of course you could get your hooch cheaper from ConAgra, by way of WalMart.

(Once again, life imitates Minecraft, where a tiny little farm, really a garden, can feed several active players forever.)


#5

Unfortunately this provides fodder for the prohibitionists. “We need to keep arresting people and destroying their lives over a substance safer than the legal drug alcohol because Big Marijuana”


#6

Colorado law makes this unlikely to happen here. Access and audit requirements make outdoor grows impractical.

Having an outdoor grow makes pot seasonal, you can’t control when a plant goes into flower as well, so harvest is once a year.

There’s also the question of quality. Having a tall gangly pot plant, putting energy into its stalk, doesn’t make a more attractive plant in the showroom, nor improve the cannabinoid percentage, which a lot of shops test and display.

Finally, there’s the growing concern with pesticides. An outdoor grow is at higher risk of cross-pollination, and vulnerable to pests. Trace amounts of pesticides in pot found in some local shops has made people upset.

However, that being said none of that is a big concern for THC infused products, and the market for thc infused products is definitely growing. If big agra gets involved in pot, its going to be in edibles in my opinion.


#7

the pesticides remain a concern for infused products. The pesticides are generally soluble in the same solvents as the active compounds and are extracted with them.


#8

Said like 20 years ago if they legalized it, there would be no more pot drug dealers, as no one could compete with Walmart selling Marlboro Weed.

Still, given the vibrant craft beer industry as an example, and how so many people make weed a life style, there is room for both Bud Light and some super custom hybrid.


#9

What did there, I see it.

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#10

Until weed is legalized by the Feds, all transactions are in cash because banks don’t want to handle what are essentially illegal transfers of money. I kinda doubt anyone too big will want to deal with that.


#11

wa state let’s in-state only credit unions handle cash for rec and med cannabis folks.


#12

If the Feds don’t legalize it, they can’t collect excise tax on it. For comparison:

Revenue from tobacco taxes totaled $14.5 billion in FY2015, accounting for 14.7 percent of all excise tax revenue. Federal excise taxes are imposed on tobacco products, which include cigarettes, cigars, snuff, chewing tobacco, pipe tobacco, and roll-your-own.

Excise tax revenue from alcoholic beverages amounted to $9.6 billion in FY2015, 9.8 percent of total excise receipts. There are different tax rates for distilled spirits, wine, and beer.


#13

San Diego’s Reader has 20 plus pages of weed ads. On any given day you can get an Oz of top shelf for less than $50.00 bucks. I’m having a hard time seeing a business model here that works for all the suppliers / dispensaries, but it’s awesome for the consumer.


#14

The CA medical MJ regime has been fascinating. Everyone in the production chain - growers, processors, medibles manufacturers, and dispensaries - has to be medical card-holders, because they are, in legal terms, “patient co-ops.”

This has led to an industry populated almost exclusively by boutique "mom’n’pop’ operations.

Phillip Morris et al. can get no foothold, because the entire corporation would have to be CA medical-card holders.

Not sure what will happen under the new rules. No one is.


#15

$50.00 /ounce for top-shelf bud?

In San Diego?

Are you you sure about that?

I’d love a pointer to sources, because if that’s true, I see a quick day trip in my future. :slight_smile:

But I suspect you’ve misread something. Top-shelf bud here in LA is more like $35-50 per eighth of an ounce (often four-gram “fat eighths” because reasons) , and even the really cheap bargain bud is ~$180-200 per ounce, while good top-shelf is generally $300 an ounce and up.

I’d be stunned to find that big a differential between LA and San Diego.


#16

That’s absolutely true, but people are less aware of pesticides in processed foods. There’s not even that much scrutiny in conventional foods, but when you burn and inhale something, people start thinking about it differently. Smoking trace amounts of pesticides seem to worry people more, than eating them.


#17

I think it’s a fair concern. The intestine has the surface area of a car hood. Lungs have the surface area of a carpark. It can be addressed with QC regulation and testing. Public Health for the win.


#18

Say what? “Capital-intensive”?

BHO-based extracts, hash, rosin, ‘live resin’, and ethanolic tinctures (and products made with them) are widely produced in cottage-industry settings that require very little in the way of capital and equipment. CO2 extractors are a bit of an investment, but they’re becoming way more affordable as demand ramps up.

But as new start-up businesses go, the capital requirements are actually quite modest. And the margins are rather generous.


#19

Seconded from Seattle. You’re going to get 3.5-4 grams of top shelf for ~$40-$50. Although you can get trimmings and shake from top shelf strains in bulk sometimes around $120 for 28 grams. Not very common for prices that low for a whole ounce, but I’ve seen them.


#20

There are industrial and medical uses for cannabis.