As the cannabis industry is well aware, regulation can be a double-edged sword. Regulation of cannabis has led to so much positivity in every state that has seen the light, the success of which influenced the lifting of the federal prohibition on hemp. While the industry may be over-regulated in some ways, the good has outweighed the bad. One area where our industry could really use more regulation—or at least a certification mechanism—is in organic labeling. We are a ways off from USDA organic certification in the cannabis industry, but some industry players have noted the need and stepped up to fill the void, such as California’s OCAL and the Cannabis Certification Council (CCC). The requirements to be certified as an organic producer with these bodies are substantially similar to those of the USDA, with strict limitations on fertilizers and pesticides in particular, as well as GMOs.
The way the industry cultivates cannabis (with some obvious regional exceptions) is largely in controlled environments. Interestingly, this method of cultivation can benefit plant growth and health to such and extent that limitations associated with organic certification are far less impactful. This makes it easier to produce the yields associated with inorganic processes while still obtaining organic certification.