There is a common theme in cannabis right now. It’s a disease that finds itself everywhere.
The truth is, very few people know what great cannabis really is. It starts with great genetics and then it takes a great grower who understands every detail of the ecology surrounding the plants, whether sun grown or not. Regardless of the farmers knowledge, it takes a fair amount of luck and blessing and cooperation from your environment to get plants to really take off. Then comes harvest, knowing when to harvest, and then drying and curing properly... Many of the best growers get impatient here and settle for money for their half-finished weed.
To add to this, if you have grown just a few plants more than once, you know it’s fairly easy if you take the proper care everyday. The challenge is that growing 100 plants is a lot different than growing five. Even more, growing thousands is the difference between knowing how to walk down the street on the sidewalk and knowing how to drive a commercial semi truck on the freeway, sorry, but your walking knowledge is just not going to help you.
So what have we done in light of this? We have started an entire industry based around scaling something that we originally trained ourselves and the plants to do on a very boutique level.
This training was the gift of prohibition. It created very high prices which allowed a grower with just a small garage full of plants to be able to sustain a family. This, in an underground, free market resulted in thousands of farmers and growers which in turn, led to a wide variance in quality that the consumer could see clearly. After some time, the “stoners” expected nothing but the best and would turn their nose at “green buds,” which was better than brick weed but not the fire Cali Outdoor we would all get in December.
Through the seventies, eighties and nineties, the underground boutique growers just got better and better. They were seeing each others weed on Dead and Phish Tour as well as out on the Hip-Hop scenes, and they were sharing trade secrets with each other as well as seeds and genetics.
Then cannabis became legal. Ish. Suddenly it became many peoples dream to grow a hundred thousand plants. Or maybe that had been their dream and it finally seemed attainable.
One problem. No one had really done it before. Not in the US. Not with the feminized, flower focused growing that we do. So what happened was we had an onslaught of thousands growers who were pretty good at growing a couple hundred plants start trying to go legal and grow thousands, or sometimes tens of thousands of plants. Now we have companies trying to grow this style at the scale of hundreds of acres!
Along the way, these companies lost their mission. It used to be that all that mattered was who grew the best weed. Now, everyone is focused on who can grow the most. This leads us to mids. Green Buds. Borderline swag. When companies are focused on volume, quality usually suffers. It happens to nearly every product we make. Nike was originally a handmade shoe customized for each athlete. Now it’s mostly a bunch of generic Chinese plastic with a swoosh and a boatload of democratic design. Mids. Cannabis in America is following this model.
Here’s the kicker. There are valleys in the world who have been outgrowing the entire US cannabis economy for thousands of years. They don’t fuss with feminizing it. They open grow the plant in 3 million acre fields and turn it all into the best concentrate in the world. So while we are focused on building hundred million dollar facilities to grow mid flowers, they sungrow the best weed in the world for free and turn it into a product our flower can’t compete with.
Sorry, but the mid business is built to fail. It can’t last long enough to support much of anything except maybe a bit of a bubble that one can hopefully cash in on before it bursts.
So what is the way out? Learn from the best. Make concentrates the way the rest of the world does. Or, make the cheapest, shittiest, most average, most generic mids you can and put a swoosh on it, and if your swoosh is cool enough and you can tell people to “Just Smoke It” then you will be good to go.
Of course I recommend the former. If you aren’t on a mission to compete with the Bekkah Valley, stay small. Trim the fat. Scale down. Grow fewer, better flowers and charge twice as much for them.
People won’t pay that much? You aren’t good enough.
There are growers that get much higher prices for their product than you do. It’s going to become more common. The days of the thousand dollar ounce of flower in the face of overwhelming amounts of concentrated mids are coming, and the ones that hit the mark first are likely to have a sustainable strong, independent family business that lasts for generations.
So, whatever you do, don’t grow mids. There’s already enough and there will always be enough farmers who only care about money and they will always grow enough mids for the ignorant.
So get out there and grow some fire!
Love and peace,
January 29, 2020