Thinking Of Starting Your Own Marijuana Business?

The legalization of marijuana in various states has not an only paved way for its acceptance in mainstream culture, but also led to the emergence of a new industry. This is particularly true in regions where both recreational and medicinal consumption of cannabis is allowed. It’s in such areas that the growth of the marijuana industry has opened up plenty of opportunities for both investors and enthusiasts.

What a Time to Be Alive

Whether you want to switch careers or have always been interested in starting a pot business, there’s no better time to make your dreams a reality. Just imagine the kind of reaction this would have elicited less than a decade ago. Once considered black market territory, the marijuana industry is now one of the most lucrative sectors in states where the product is legal. Just take a look at some of the channels you could use to cash in on the cannabis boom.

Cultivation

Of course, all products derived from cannabis wouldn’t exist if there were no growers in the first place. This makes the farming of marijuana a viable business opportunity, and one that could grow into something bigger as long as you’re in the right location. From a business perspective, marijuana cultivation can include:

-Breeding seeds and selling them to other growers

-Supplying harvests to processors for edibles, concentrates and other products

-Harvesting and selling flowers

-Supplying cannabis clones to clinics

Although cannabis farming has grown to become one of the most popular routes for entrepreneurs, it’s worth stressing that it isn’t as easy as it sounds. For starters, cultivation requires a bit of skill, and the process itself can be rather expensive. Succeeding in this crowded space will thus require plenty of knowledge and experience on your part.

Retail

Ever dreamt of owning your own marijuana store? Venturing into retail is a worthwhile consideration with a handful of opportunities of which you could take advantage. Whether it’s a traditional brick-and-mortar establishment in a storefront setting or it’s web-based alternative, you can make a decent income for yourself by catering to the needs of consumers.

Like is the case with other products, running a marijuana store is a risky proposition. That said, the fact that it’s a new industry means it might just be the perfect route for those looking to achieve their entrepreneurial dreams. Just make sure to educate yourself, look for support staff, and establish a network with suppliers before getting started.

Edibles

This is one of the fastest-growing sectors of the larger marijuana industry. Although most users still prefer to smoke cannabis, a good number of them have switched to edibles because they’re discreet and can be consumed anywhere, anytime. Besides, the fact that cannabis has made its entry into the mainstream means there are some individuals who wish to avoid smoking or just desire the long-lasting effects.

Back to the context of business, the numerous variations in this category mean there’s no limit to the products you could introduce. Without going too much into detail, edibles are just weed-infused alternatives of the foods you’d expect to find in a normal grocery store. On a separate note, expect to face an uphill battle when getting into edibles. This could be in the form of stiff competition or an inhospitable regulatory environment. Either way, make sure to do your homework properly before getting started.

Cannabis Florist

This is just like it sounds; becoming a florist involves catering to the unique needs of a specific segment of the market within the larger cannabis industry. This includes flower enthusiasts, individuals who like to discover and share floral arrangements for the individual, group and/or event sales. What makes this option worth your consideration is the fact that it’s still an untapped niche that’s forging its own path. It’s also the ideal outlet for you to monetize the creative genius within you.

Accessories

Besides the plant itself, the growth in marijuana consumption has also fueled demand for other products. Such include vessels, bongs, trays, pipes, grinders, plus a myriad of other items that could improve the cannabis experience for consumers. Perhaps the biggest reason for you to consider selling accessories is the fact that this option allows you to bypass the potential bureaucratic challenges of cultivation and distribution. In other words, you get to cash in on the boom without having to deal with the licensing and banking hiccups that other businesses are currently facing.

What Does The Landscape Look Like?

Now that you have a few ideas to think about, it’s only natural that you’ll want to know what it’s like to be a marijuana entrepreneur. Given that the trend of legalization only kicked off less than a decade ago, only time will tell how this industry will shape up in time to come. On the flip side, scanning the early trends in legalized states has revealed several challenges that are unique to cannabis businesses:

High startup and operational costs: Equipment and licenses will cost you more than what you’d incur as standard. You’ll also have to fork over a tiny amount of your earnings in taxes. Not to forget that you won’t be eligible for the tax breaks normally afforded to other businesses.

-Limited financing options: Don’t even bother to seek funding from any bank that operates on a federal scale. You’re better off turning to their local counterparts and credit unions instead. Even so, don’t expect an easy ride here either.

-Challenges in compliance: The same laws that paved way for the legalization of marijuana have placed a huge compliance burden on both consumers and users. Needless to say, it’s only by following local and state regulations to the letter that you’ll be able to stay out of trouble.

Setting Up Your Venture

Regardless of the sector, starting a business always requires the right combination of management and investment skills, as well as market differentiation. While the presence of shifting regulations could make things more complicated for you, the basics of setting up your business will not be much different. As such, there are some steps you’ll need to follow when starting your cannabis venture:

-Outline a business plan: This should include your company’s startup costs, goals, timelines, and other crucial information. Besides helping you stay on track, your business plan will also serve as a resume when you’ll be pitching to other investors.

-Find a suitable location: Depending on the local zoning regulations and licensing requirements, this is likely going to be the biggest roadblock you’ll encounter. Your location will be determined not only by these 2 factors but also by local real estate prices and proximity to clients.

-Structure your business: This will involve forming your business within the relevant laws and regulations.

-Get licensed: This typically takes a few months, or even longer if there are any inconsistencies/errors in the application forms. So stay slow but sure when filling these documents.

-Get started: Once you get the green light, make sure to follow the terms of your license application when commencing operations.

-Get the word out: Just because you’ve opened your doors doesn’t mean clients will start flowing in. Fortunately, there’s a handful of advertising channels you could use to target the right audience. Just remember to allocate funds for this exercise when drawing up your budget.

While there’s still progress to be made in educating the public and dismantling the old stigmas, the marijuana industry is bursting with business opportunities. It’s worth pointing out that this is still an uncharted territory, so keep your expectations realistic when getting started. Overall, consulting a lawyer and understanding your obligations as a proprietor of a marijuana business will save you lots of headaches in the long run.

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