Industry experts weigh in on business management tactics and sustainable strategies for the future.
Denver (October 19, 2017) – Environmental longevity and implementation of better business practices were among the topics discussed this week at the Cannabis Sustainability Symposium hosted by the Cannabis Certification Council with support from Denver Environmental Health. Cannabis industry veterans held the Symposium to explore how to reduce negative environmental consequences and ‘grow taller’ – the event’s slogan – in an industry accused of being an energy glutton.
“As we move forward in the cannabis industry we’re starting to see differentiation,” said Amy Andrle, co-owner, L’Eagle Services. “People are looking for how their businesses are doing business, and evaluating them both on their products and their impact on the community.”
Given that the cannabis industry has no federal oversight to guide operations, business leaders have been looking for ways to create robust regulations that will provide a solid foundation to the industry without hindering growth or creating confusion in their implementation. Among the various proposals for the new regulations were standard wage and insurance practices, improved energy efficiency and revised waste management techniques.
“It doesn’t matter what type of product or service you’re providing,” said David Bronner, keynote speaker at the symposium and CEO of the top-selling soap brand Dr. Bronner’s. “That product and service can and should be delivered in a way that is ethical and fair, and respects the earth and workers who are involved. And with cannabis – one of the safest plant-based medicines – it’s important to cultivate industry regulations that value and embody this sense of sustainable and ethical consciousness.”
At the Symposium, the department of Denver Environmental Health’s Cannabis Sustainability Work Group released a Cannabis Environmental Best Practices Guide as a resource for marijuana companies eager for direction. The manual, which offers a comprehensive overview of environmental best practices for energy, water and waste management in indoor facilities, is intended and shaped for use by companies in the Denver-metro area, but is also broadly applicable to other locations.
“As we oversee the process of the legalization of marijuana, our mission has been to maintain Denver’s quality of life, and a huge part of that links to environmental policy,” said Ashley Kilroy, executive director of Denver’s Department of Excise and Licenses. “Sustainability and environmental quality issues have always been at the forefront of Mayor Hancock’s administration, and it’s exciting to see the cannabis industry’s progress in terms of environmental ethics since 2013; we have the Best Management Practices guide and are at the second Cannabis Sustainability Symposium – the industry is in a new period of growth.”
In addition to better management practices and increased sustainability efforts, topics discussed at the Symposium included high-efficiency lighting, social responsibility, greenhouse design and the launch of resource-comparison tools such as the Resource Innovation Institute’s Cannabis PowerScore™.