By John Kagia, Chief Knowledge Officer, New Frontier Data
In August, the quietude of a typical summer morning in California’s Humboldt County was interrupted with a rousting by military vehicles rumbling through its remote rural byways. It was the start of a four-day, joint effort between the local sheriff’s office, the California National Guard, and other state authorities targeting unlicensed cannabis growers throughout the county’s 4,000-some square miles, an effort which yielded approximately 40,000 plants, and over 2,300 pounds of processed cannabis.
It marked the latest instance of the state’s escalating initiative to tamp out California’s rampant but unregulated cannabis supply as it furthers development of the state’s recently legalized adult-use market. Hindered by slow licensing procedures, high taxes, and local government bans on cannabis-related businesses, the statewide enterprise has struggled to compete against the Golden State’s deeply entrenched gray market.
In Humboldt – widely considered the country’s most iconic cannabis-growing region – the transition to fully legal cannabis has been tumultuous. Despite representing the forefront of American cannabis cultivation and advocacy as popular support and political reform seem bound for an inflection point …