US (UT): Utah selects company to run its seed-to-sale tracking program

Akerna Corp. has been awarded a new contract from the Utah Department of Health and Department of Agriculture to implement its seed-to-sale tracking platform, Leaf Data Systems for Utah’s new medical cannabis program. Akerna also announced the launch of the next generation Leaf Data to combine a closed-loop platform with advanced tagging technology that evolves the category of government track-and-trace products, which first launches in Utah.

"To create a closed-loop system, MJ Platform technology is the core of next generation Leaf Data and will be used by all Utah licensees as their primary cannabis tracking system at retail, wholesale, cultivation and manufacturing," the team with the company explains. "MJ Platform, a cannabis industry ERP, tracks cannabis at the gram and item level, as well as by-products and waste—from seed to product to shelf to patient/customer—through the complete supply chain. Leaf Data provides licensees initial exposure to MJ Platform and creates opportunities for further integration of MJ Platform’s richer functionality as business needs evolve."

To advance tagging technology, Leaf Data and solo sciences, inc, have partnered to launch solo*TAG, a cryptographically-secure, cannabis product authentication system, exclusively for governments and only available with Leaf Data. This alternative to RFID tags is cheaper, more secure and more flexible for diverse packaging application.

“Closing the data loop and elevating tagging technology sets a new standard for government regulation with greater transparency and accountability, while providing cannabis licensees an affordable, secure and intuitive supply chain compliance framework,” stated Akerna Chief Executive Officer Jessica Billingsley.

“The inventory control and electronic verification systems are absolutely critical to the success of Utah’s medical cannabis program. Leaf Data provides the transparency and security to successfully launch Utah’s first program in cannabis,” commented Rich Oborn, director of the Center for Medical Cannabis at the Utah Department of Health. “We look forward to implementing the advanced system for the safety of all Utah residents.”

Evolved Leaf Data Systems differentiators include:

  • Faster to implement – Leaf Data provides governments their requested data points and implements a working system quickly without lengthy and resource-intensive customization. As the only viable commercial-off-the-shelf (COTS) solution for cannabis traceability, Leaf Data can easily accommodate what are today large variances in the data points governments request for collection.
  • More transparency and accountability – The evolved Leaf Data product closes the loop between governments and licensees to eliminate alternate data collection sources, which reduces error, improves security and increases accountability. Data is also available within 15 minutes for real-time compliance.
  • Less cost to licensees – Current traceability tagging technology is costly and outdated. Solo science’s patented technology delivers an advanced solo*TAG as a unique digital fingerprint that eliminates the need for expensive technologies like holograms and RFID. The solo*TAG can also cost a fraction of the cost of current tagging technology, reducing some of the compliance cost burden for cannabis licensees.
  • Branding for export markets – As a government traceability product, solo*TAG has the unique ability to remain a secure digital fingerprint, while also authenticating a country’s product in a highly customizable, branded graphic. Unlike other authentication technologies, the solo*TAG can be applied to pre-existing products without the need for packaging redesign.
  • Mobile app – solo*TAG is mobile-app enabled, and Leaf Data is now the first mobile-enabled, seed-to-sale government traceability platform for cannabis businesses and for regulatory bodies.

“By partnering with Akerna, Utah will now have a first-of-its-kind, closed-loop intelligent authentication system to build consumer trust, and empower governments and brands with a 360° seed-to-self ecosystem to fulfill regulatory and compliance needs,” said Ashesh (Alex) Shah, CEO and founder of solo sciences. 

The Utah solution also includes a partnership with MicroPact, provider of adaptive, COTS solutions to the public sector, to process patient and caregiver applications, renewals and payments while ensuring efficient registration and enforcement.

"The evolved Leaf Data product gives governments a solution that’s faster to implement with reduced operating costs and less cost burden for licensees, while improving traceability and accountability," they further explain. "Globally, MJ Platform has adapted to 14 countries and the system operates in four languages and multiple currencies. Leaf Data currently supports state cannabis program operations that generate $722-million in taxes. Akerna currently has two bids pending for Leaf Data with growth opportunity into three additional states and 10-20 countries in the next two years."

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