February 24, 2017

My Experience at the Cannabis Collaborative Conference in Portland

February 24, 2017
cannabis collaborative conference

This past week I attended the 3rd annual Cannabis Collaborative Conference (CCC) at Portland’s Expo Center.  The CCC is a gathering of businesses whose primary clients are other business, and includes exhibits and classes.  There is no actual cannabis, cannabis extract, or edibles with THC allowed at the Expo Center; this is all about the realities of cannabis as a business, not a recreation.

Each day at the Cannabis Collaborative Conference began with a keynote address followed by two sets of classes/panel discussions/presentations before lunch.  After lunch there were three sets of presentations.  Wednesday’s Keynote Speakers included Farmer Tom, Amy Margolis, and George Zimmer.  I learned quite a bit from them, including the fact that George Zimmer smoked his first joint in 1966, two years before I smoked my first doobie.  Go figure!

For me, the first day saw me attending:

  • Regulation of Marijuana in Oregon
  • Herbonomics: An Economic Update of the US Cannabis Market
  • Art, Pain & Cannabinoids: Results from Research
  • Tissue Culture and Research: Setting up the standards
  • Federal Policy Update – De-scheduling & Re-Scheduling

A couple of the things I learned from Wednesday:

  • In Herbonomics I learned that Oregon is expected to see year over growth of 36!
  • In Tissue Culture I learned that we can keep stem cells of a particular plant and reproduce that plant at any time in the future.  I wish I still had a bud of that Amnesia Haze that I found last spring!
  • It makes a big (HUGE!) deal if Cannabis is de-scheduled or re-scheduled.  I never knew that without major revisions, either of these choices can be catastrophic to the cannabis business as it exists today.

Thursday, four folks shared the Keynote stage and Congressman Earl Blumenauer gave some video remarks.  Afterward I attended:

  • Growing
  • Social Media and Consumer Data
  • The Future of Cannabis Distribution
  • Edible Expertise

Some of what I learned Thursday include:

  • There is a whole lot involved in commercially growing cannabis.
  • There are some tips and tricks I should consider when I blog.  I hope I can remember them.
  • CannaGuard has really spent time thinking about streamlining and securing the route between cannabis farms and retail dispensaries.  And, at least to my non-business brain, it really makes sense.
  • There are many differences between creating some infused snacks for myself and what the commercial kitchens must do to consistently produce quality products that meet dosage and food guidelines.

In addition to the sessions, there were more than a hundred exhibitors at the Cannabis Collaborative Conference.  I talked with quite a few, mostly just to learn what they do and how they see the market.  My favorite, of course, was Grön whose chocolate covered strawberries kept me well fed for two days.


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