COLUMN: Technology is shaping the future of the cannabis industry

A column by NICHE Canada

Like it or hate it, appreciate or abhor it, Canada’s legal cannabis industry comes with a lot of regulation and oversight.

We’re also in a time where the market is saturated with companies who are all looking to stand out from the crowd and figure out how to improve their operations.

And, the only way to effectively address these obstacles is through technology.

The challenges facing cannabis businesses are propelling technological innovation and progression in virtually every sector of the industry. The results will produce tremendous benefits for cannabis commerce and research, as well as create new brainpower and inventions that can be applied to many other industries.

From med-tech, ag-tech, enviro-tech and bio-tech, to ecommerce, data analytics and new software, big money is being pumped into finding the next best solution to create more effective ways to grow cannabis, study the plant and operate in today’s legal regime.

In fact, due to the complexity of the plant and the regulations that surround it, technological innovations are a “must have” for any cannabis company hoping to expand and grow.

Many will argue that we haven’t seen this type of investment in technology and business start-ups since the tech boom twenty years ago. Investors and companies see the potential – the global cannabis market is projected to reach an astonishing $60 billion by 2023.

But we won’t reach those levels without tapping into the rise of ancillary businesses that are taking growth and innovation to the next level.

There is significant potential to create ground-breaking advancements that will revolutionize the medical application of the plant and the science behind large-scale cannabis growing.

For example, in production facilities, technology is being used to capture real-time data about the plants and their environment to help minimize risk and increase efficiencies.

Information uncovered while studying plant sciences and the genes of the cannabis plant will unleash important knowledge that can be applied to a plethora of advancements, including addressing organic pest and fungus control issues in growing facilities.

When it comes to unlocking medical benefits and treatment options, plant science and new research data will improve patient care and outcomes.

We have so much more to discover about cannabis and we must harness new technology to gain the understanding of its full potential.

And, how do we cater to the needs of the new cannabis consumer that is looking for an exact, consistent experience to target specific medical ailments or to bring about a particular, desired effect?

It is through technology and the science of extraction that we will be able to procure these tailored experiences.

So, while the cannabis industry continues to face challenges, those issues are forcing innovation and creating important new opportunities that will have far-reaching benefits long into the future.

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