It may be illegal in many parts of the world, but marijuana is famous for its medical and recreational uses. Like blockchain, the Cannabis industry is rapidly growing. Now imagine having the green light lit on Mary Jane for a state or country you’re in. With all that money to be made you may be itching to get your hands green. The thing is, working in the regulated marijuana industry isn’t very easy.
As the industry is relatively new, there are a number of harsh regulations put on the Cannabis industry. It isn’t simply about growing, packaging and getting paid, there is a lot of data to be recorded in the process and there may be many parties involved that need to review this data. If only there was a technology that was capable of helping…..
Well, there’s blockchain! Ok, let’s look at a few ways that blockchain can help the Cannabis industry.
1. Tracking and sourcing information
Seed to Sale tracking is essential for regulators to oversee the Cannabis Industry. It involves the tracking of a plant and its by-products from seedling to the time it’s been sold. It acts as a closed-loop system that tracks all the plant’s information in a reliable form. Doesn’t this sound like blockchain’s domain?
Blockchain allows for the authentic transparency needed in the Cannabis industry. Every document can be saved on an international ledger, which cannot be tampered with. If a consumer is interested, they can simply scan a barcode and get access to the information of the Cannabis’ life cycle.
2. Auditing medical records
In the medical field, patients can actually own their records that are saved on the blockchain. This allows for them to authorize who gets to see their records. It also helps medical marijuana dispensaries with filling out prescriptions and avoiding duplicates.
3. Tracking consumption
Normally it is also difficult to track how much of the substance anyone one person possesses, despite scanning IDs. If states have a restricted amount of marijuana someone is allowed to carry, how do we flag their purchasing habits? If someone purchases enough marijuana, they can probably sell their excess and if that gets out of hand, the seed to sale cycle could be broken. With blockchain systems, dispensaries, and therefore government bodies, can keep records and statistics on how much marijuana any person has at a given time as well as begin to track consumption rates in different locations.
4. Monitoring supply chains
It’s difficult for marijuana products to cross state lines. Therefore in order to expand, the supply chain in different states may need to change. For instance, different seeds, different pesticides, different fertilizers. You, as the proprietor, need an efficient way to track what’s going on throughout your operations.
Blockchains can be extremely useful. The immutability of Blockchains makes it easy to automatically report transactions to the relevant authorities. The transparency of a blockchain will track everything that happens within the seed to sale process.
5. Financing and Banking
It’s not easy being a marijuana dispensary. Imagine making a lot of cash and having nowhere to store it. If you take it to one of the big banks and tell them the source of the funds, they’re most likely not going to touch it.
To remedy this, companies can use a digital-linked currency they’ve marketed themselves. The coins created can be traded on crypto exchanges to become liquid. Or better yet, their value can increase with the increase in users. This is a viable option until traditional banks figure out how they can handle Cannabis money better.
The properties of blockchain make it great for tracking data, maintaining medical records, monitoring supply chains and financing the Cannabis Industry. While both industries are rapidly growing, there will be many more inventive and transferable methods to use the technology.
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