The growing promise of the cannabis business is evident in the ongoing trend of its legalization and acceptance.
Nearly half of U.S. adults (49%) have tried cannabis, according to Gallup polls. The last few years have seen over 18 US states and Canada legalize recreational cannabis- the world’s most commonly used drug.
There is already a growing feeling that as more states legalize marijuana, there will be growing participation from stakeholders.
Cannabis businesses are looking for the best ways to improve their operations, primarily focusing on optimizing production.
Therefore, businesses are working to enhance the cultivation, production, manufacturing, and marketing of cannabis.
So, what are the technological trends with the increased legalization and use of cannabis? In this article, we look into 8 emerging technological trends with the rise of cannabis adoption in 2022.
One of the biggest challenges facing cannabis production and marketing is legal compliance. The companies are required by the government to give information regarding cultivation, production, shipping, and sales.
This information is what the relevant government agencies use to monitor the entire chain. The goal is to ensure transparency. But collecting, tracking, and monitoring data is a big challenge for most businesses.
To solve the problem, cloud-based cannabis software solutions have emerged to help cannabis companies collect and analyze appropriate data to ensure they comply with the legal requirements.
These industry-specific software solutions also enable cannabis businesses to establish and implement operational standards for the good of their business.
While the production of cannabis has traditionally been outdoors, recent developments have seen more indoor growing with greenhouse technology.
The indoor growing of cannabis is more efficient and enables multiple harvests per year, unlike the outdoor crops that are limited by climate, hence may have only one growing season.
There are also new growing systems in indoor growing: soil-based and hydroponics.
In soil-based planting, cultivation is done in soil, mostly in typical pots and planters as well as in the ground.
Hydroponics, on the other hand, involves cultivations without soil in an inert growing medium and nutrient-infused solution.
These new growing technologies are expected to produce higher yields, as these cannabis tech companies continue to build and sell devices that help in the cultivation of cannabis.
While medical marijuana has been in use for the last two decades, it is in 2018 that the new Cannabis Act expanded medical access to marijuana to dispensaries.
Medical marijuana is mostly used to treat anxiety, epilepsy and seizures, inflammation, and relieve pain.
These expanded opportunities have ensured more technology emerges to extract medical benefits from cannabis for more medical applications.
CBD and other hemp-derived products have been in high demand over the last few years, and more technology has emerged to produce the highly demanded cannabis component.
It is directly linked to the high demand for consumer products such as edible CBD oils, which are used to manufacture a wide range of health products.
There is also a high demand for hemp fibers and cannabis seeds, which are used in the manufacture of textiles, paper, biofuels, and cosmetics.
While cannabis companies must understand the rules and regulations guiding the business of cultivating and selling cannabis, there is also the need to protect their business from cyberattacks.
The rising media attention of the billions of dollars cash cannabis industry and the many other unique circumstances and vulnerabilities have made it one of the most vulnerable industries in terms of cyberattacks.
Some software solutions have emerged to help cannabis businesses. These threats include credit card theft, misuse of personal data from clients, ransomware, or leaking of trade secrets of the cannabis business.
The temperamental nature of cannabis means that it requires some significant attention in terms of production chain and schedules.
This is where AI and ML come, which help in the gathering of data and providing suggestions on how best to grow and distribute cannabis. ML enables cannabis businesses to collect, monitor, and track the growing cycle regularly.
For example, cannabis farmers can use sensors to optimally control the growing environment to boost production. AI is used to automate the processes to ensure the entire growing production chain is easy.
Some government regulations require cannabis companies to have real-time access to video surveillance of the production process or immediate footage of the same.
This data is significant in the overall growth and compliance of the industry players. It, therefore, follows that hybrid cloud-based data technologies help these cannabis companies to acquire real-time.
The cannabis industry has traditionally operated on cash-based transactions due to the banking restrictions that some banks have imposed. However, there is a new technology in the space that is bypassing centralized banking networks for cannabis businesses.
Blockchain is a new technology with great promise to revolutionize payments as it records and tracks all transactions. As a decentralized means of payments, blockchain transactions are more secure, fast, and affordable than the traditional centralized payment methods.
As more states and countries abroad push for cannabis legalization, investors, manufacturers, and researchers have taken notice and are now working round the clock to reap from the trend. The trend is prompting the adoption of cannabis technologies to enhance the production and distribution of cannabis products in the market. Every business is now working to leverage data and technology to gather and implement actionable processes. It has enabled them to optimize, strategize, plan, report, and identify problems associated with business data.