CALIFORNIA – More than one month has passed since California allowed marijuana agriculturists to grow and cultivate cannabis and only a handful of individuals have applied for licenses to grow legally.
Naturally, these statistics are causing concern for California’s transmission into the legal and regulated cannabis market. The tax income is predicted at a tantalizing $1 billion.
Only one percent of the more than sixty-eight thousand marijuana farmers in the golden state have received this new permit to grow legal weed. This latest statistic is according to the California Growers Association.
The reasons for the farmers to remain in the black market can only be speculated about at this point in time however this report from the California Growers Association declares a couple of causes for this lack of licenses. Even though it is now legal on the state level to cultivate marijuana, there are a couple reasons that seem to be keeping farmers and entrepreneurs away from obtain the license to perform this legally.
According to the California Growers Association, the two main reasons for the lack of licenses are the following:
——> The first being that many farmers are failing to meet the qualifications and stipulations set out by the local rules.
—-> The second being that the provincial government have fees for the farmers and entrepreneurs to pay in order to obtain these specific licenses. These fees are unaffordable for some growers and start-up businesses.
The California Grower’s Association report also comes with the statement that without the joining of the majority of farmers and growers, the legalization will still resemble the times of prohibition with many still operating out of the illegal market.
In addition to these statements, the report admits that a few issues need to be addressed if success is intended to be attained. At the current rate, the goals that have been placed will not be attained. Alterations need to favor small and independent entrepreneurs, businesses and growers. These changes will allow these smaller individuals and/or business to actually become a part of the regulated marijuana market and system.
By bringing the market that is currently thriving in the shadows out into the legal, regulated market, an increase in income, harvest, businesses, etc will be evident.
In 2017, some research led by the Californian Agricultural Center delved into this very subject and the issues that are being witnessed now. Studies revealed that the sales of recreational marijuana within the regulated municipal market could hit an annual mark of $5 billion.
In order for an effective system to be run, including the policing of the new law and violations thereof, the program needs to be raking in money. Without the income of tax from legal and regulated businesses, the resources are limited.
Within the report it is also stated that these farmers are growing their cannabis crops on small pieces of land, only 1/20 acres of 2,500 square feet of land in total. It is these small, local and/or independent farmers that are suffering the most. These farmers have the greatest challenges in abiding by the legal stipulations.
Currently the newly regulated market seems to be favoring the larger businesses and corporations while the small and local farmers and business owners struggle to legalize their businesses or cultivations. Without a change in the current regulations, the marijuana market could face a corporate take-over which will flush out any independent or local businesses. If this is allowed to happen, it will be a gravely disappointing result on what is one of the most promising economic potential for small and local communities.