The Technological Invasion in Cannabis Cultivation
image credit: Oregon Dept. of Agr. (Flikr)
Robotics and AI Are Being Tapped by Cannabis Growers
Increasing market demand and challenges in farming cannabis crops have prompted farms to seek technological upgrades to improve cultivation. Introducing robotics and artificial intelligence (AI) in Cannabis cultivation is having a massive impact on its production processes.
Related to cultivation, the use of tech has improved output and quality in a number of ways. Firstly, the crops are healthier. It has also made planting, monitoring, and harvesting more efficient. Companies are also integrating high tech into other stages of the production processes, from seed to delivery and right through to methods of consumption.
Why AI is a Game-Changer
Despite the upfront costs, high-tech saves growers money and increases output. With more states legalizing the use of cannabis, farmers benefit from a consistent product and improved yield. According to the Grand View Research Report, the "growing legalization and the adoption of marijuana for the treatment of chronic diseases are the key factors driving the growth of the market". Dependability is critical for growers. Farmers are reinvesting profits to introduce technology that will improve the production process and resultant crops in order to satisfy market demand.
One advantage of the technological invasion of cannabis farming is it provides solutions to the planting environment issues. One solution is well-monitored indoor farming; this avoids many of the challenges of outdoor farming. From environmental challenges to the risk of cross-pollination, choosing indoor farming controls many key factors in producing cannabis.
Getting the THC concentration, temperature, and other figures right are key parts of farming cannabis in a monitored, legal setting. While indoor farming addresses these issues, it is expensive to maintain. With artificial intelligence, the management system is simpler and less expensive using automated systems and monitoring. It also can also aid the detection of pests and other threats.
The stakes are high for growers. The current global market for cannabis is $20.5 billion. Grand View Research has predicted that the global market for cannabis will be worth $73.6 Billion by 2027. With healthier, more consistent crops produced in larger quantities, some of this demand can be met without equal land expansion.
Cannabis Companies Benefitting from AI
High tech has found its way into the marijuana industry from seed through distribution. Below are three interesting publicly traded companies and information on how they’re benefiting from technology.
Medicine Man Technologies, Inc., d/b/a Schwazze (OTCQX: SHWZ), is a growing vertically integrated cannabis company located in Colorado but planning to spread its wings into other states. They operate seed to sale with work ethics that integrates customer-centric thinking and data science to test, measure, and drive decisions and outcomes in every stage of the production chain. Their implementation of technology in improving their operations is driven by their belief in the full potential of cannabis.
Sugarmade, Inc. (OTCMKTS: SGMD) is a company that improves customer satisfaction by integrating technology in service delivery. The delivery of cannabis is made easier and faster for customers with their technological approaches. Sugarmade has a portfolio of brands, within the recreational cannabis industry and outside, these include SugarRush, Budcars, NUG Avenue, and CarryOutsupplies.com.
Stem Holdings, Inc., d/b/a Driven by Stem (OTCQX: STMH), is a farm-to-home cannabis company providing solutions through high-tech innovation. Their business model is customer-driven as they have their own AI-based app delivery businesses throughout California that are expanding into the mature Oregon market.
Corporate farming of any kind relies on high tech, and cannabis is having its own set of demands and challenges, whether it is indoor or outdoor. Cannabis companies are increasing their reliance on data science and high-tech solutions like artificial intelligence to survive and improve success. With automated processes and machine-controlled methods, cannabis production is keeping up with the exponential growth that is set to reach new heights.
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