Updated: Apr 24
Growing cannabis at scale is easy . . . not
The average person believes that growing cannabis isn’t hard. Hell, it’s called “Weed” after all! Unless you’re on a polar cap, it’ll grow pretty much everywhere . . . it’s ridiculously hardy, and we all know someone with a hippie aunt that’s been growing for years. However, growing cannabis on a large scale - in a variety of environments - is a different beast . . . especially when there are millions of dollars riding on your cultivation decisions. So, the question is, “Are you willing to literally bet the farm?” Are you willing to go to management and investors armed only with cool marketing plans and new strains? Or would you rather know how your facilities are actually working, and more importantly . . . if they’re working for your crop?
Data . . . if you can’t measure it, you can’t harvest it
Luckily, there’s a useful by-product produced in every grow facility - every minute of the day, but it’s not being harvested in meaningful quantities. That product is DATA! Cultivars and facilities are spitting out DATA continually, but if you can’t measure it, you can’t harvest it. Traditionally producers have engaged in a frustrating game of “Whack a mole” regarding Temp, RH, pH, EC, PAR, CO2 air flow, nutrients, leaving them to twist knobs and levers of environmental settings, swap out lights, nutrients and environmental systems while waiting on multiple grow cycles to see what works. Worse, many producers invest prematurely in automation systems that “automate” the same poor outcomes.
Automating reliable poor results . . .
One of our customers was about to do just that, invest in an automation system to address poor performance in their facility. After a single grow cycle, Gro iQ identified the problem, showed the producer that a simple no cost modification would be beneficial and led to a 9% yield increase! Most master growers and cultivation experts are knowledgeable and know their plants. However, it’s a lot to ask that they can reliably predict yield given the impact of varying facilities and vastly different environmental systems and cultivars. It’s hard to be a plant whisperer and a facilities guru without the proper tools, however, many producers are asking their master growers to do just that . . . literally “Betting the farm.”
Know where you are . . .
No one buys a new phone or car without GPS, so why wouldn’t a producer harvest their own data to understand how their facilities, systems and cultivars work together so they can predictably increase their yield and reduce costs? Gro iQ is one of many tools that producers can now add to their arsenal . . . a way to harvest ecosystem and environmental data to understand the effects on cultivars and increase yield. If you don’t know where you are, it’s hard to get where you want to go. Your data is your GPS and your road-map . . . Harvest It!
VP Business Development, Orion Partners