Jobs in Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower

What kind of jobs you may find in the legal cannabis industry and a little bit more about them.
30 April 2021
20 min read
Jobs in Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower

Contents:

The “green revolution” has been growing quite fast thanks to the legalization of cannabis in many parts of the world. Despite still being illegal in most places, cannabis jobs have become more accepted and are growing at an impressive rate, becoming amongst the highest pays in several places. These jobs include not only working directly with cannabis plants such as growing or breeding but also cannabis-related jobs such as chef, legal support, electrician, designer, or even marketing!

 

So for those of you who are interested in entering the legal cannabis market and want to know a little bit more about the common positions and requirements, read along!

1. Legal Cannabis-Related Jobs

Cannabis enthusiasts from all places and all backgrounds are looking to get into the cannabis industry, it doesn’t matter why you want to get into it, the cannabis industry is growing very fast and there are lots of good opportunities for everyone thanks to the rapid rate the market is growing at.

 

Jobs in Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Cannabis industry stats.

Cannabis industry stats.
 

When talking about legal cannabis, there are jobs for every kind of workers and professional; As said before, there are several ways of entering the cannabis industry, and there are a lot of cannabis-related companies that focus on package design, delivery or distribution but do not grow the actual plants, so there’s space for everyone, it’s just a matter of learning what you need to be able to do it properly and most important of all, following the local regulations.

Despite cannabis still being illegal, the industry is growing at an impressive 120% and is now worth more than $24billion so if you want a new alternative to what you’re already doing or just want to work with cannabis because it’s your passion, there are several positions in the industry that work directly with cannabis such as growers, extractors or edibles maker or that work indirectly such as designers, providing legal support or electricians. So for those of you that are looking for a little bit more information, here are the most common jobs you can find in the legal cannabis market.

2. Cannabis Production

Do you like growing cannabis and would like to get paid to work with cannabis legally? The jobs in this category allow you to work with cannabis plants directly and since most cannabis companies are relatively new, doing a good job will allow you to get promotions quickly.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Jobs in cannabis production.

Jobs in cannabis production.
 

Now, a few of these careers require specific skills, or if you already have the knowledge needed, a way to prove that you have what it takes to get the job done; Also, depending on where you live, you may need a license or permit to be able to work with cannabis directly so make sure you get informed before!

Master Extractor

One of the most high-paying cannabis careers is the master extractor; Master extractors usually get paid very well because it’s a relatively new career and very rare to become an expert in the field. 

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Find all about being Master Extractor

Find all about being Master Extractor

 

This job consists of checking the quality of the final product and ensuring the products have the exact amounts of THC and CBD, also, making sure the production is safe, respects safety standards, government regulations and managing the laboratories facilities so, in order to be eligible, most companies will require a biochemistry background, some engineering knowledge or at least have a lot of knowledge in extractions and a way to prove it.

Extraction Technician

Extraction technicians usually work under the supervision of a master extractor; Technicians are the ones who operate the extraction equipment that produces cannabis concentrates while also controlling that lab's inventory and making sure that everything is clean and safe.

Master Grower

Without healthy cannabis plants there are no cannabis products so the master growers get a good pay because they’re responsible for managing big cannabis crops, being responsible for planting, cloning, feeding, controlling pests if necessary, and controlling the grow equipment. 

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Are you experienced in cultivation? Then try becoming a master grower!

Are you experienced in cultivation? Then try becoming a master grower!

 

These types of jobs usually need to communicate with law enforcement and compliance inspectors but for the most part, will work with cannabis plants hands-on so it’s required to have a botany or horticulture background or a lot of experience with cannabis.

Trimmer, Harvester or Cultivator

Beginner harvester and cultivator are related to the trimming jobs because they help growers take care of the crops and harvesting the cannabis plants before they’re touched by the trimmers; This kind of job are usually offered to people who have a landscaping or gardening background and are relatively easy knowledge-wise because you won’t have to operate the equipment but rather water, feed, defoliate and perform plant-training if needed.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Are you suitable to be a trimmer, harvester or cultivator?

Are you suitable to be a trimmer, harvester or cultivator?

 

Trimming jobs are the most common opportunity in the cannabis industry because it’s relatively easy to do and are needed by every grow operation; This job consists of removing the buds from the branches of harvested cannabis plants and after, trimming off the leaves on the buds so they have a good appearance to the customers. Despite seeming fairly easy, trimming jobs require speed, precision and attention to minimize waste and make sure the buds are trimmed to the company’s liking so you will have to learn how to trim based on what the company wants.

Cannabis Tester or Quality-Control Inspector 

Testers or quality-control inspectors are professionals that make sure the cannabis products comply with health, safety and potency regulations in each state;

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Becoming a cannabis tester is probably every stoner's dream.

Becoming a cannabis tester is probably every stoner's dream.

 

These positions are usually offered by cannabis companies but also by government agencies where you will have to inspect and enforce cannabis laws and regulations so depending on what you’re aiming for, you may need to have a background in biology, agronomy or chemistry in order to work with the government or know a lot about cannabis and about cannabis regulations in order to work with a cannabis company.

Edibles Chef 

People who’ve had worked with gastronomy can adventure into the cannabis market very easily, this is because cannabis companies that produce edibles need skilled workers not only to cook but also develop, create and help in the production of all the food items such as candies, chocolates, brownies, cookies, coffee, tea and every other thing that can be infused with cannabis.

3. Cannabis Retail

Just like the jobs mentioned above, these positions also work with cannabis but after the cannabis plants have been grown, harvested, dried, cured and processed in the case of extractions and edibles.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Check out the different cannabis retail positions.

Check out the different cannabis retail positions.

Dispensaries

In most places where cannabis is legal, either recreational or medical, cannabis flowers and other products are most commonly sold in dispensaries, so if you want to get in the cannabis retail market, here are the most common jobs you will find.

Dispensary Manager

Cannabis dispensaries represent an enormous part of the cannabis industry and just like any other retailers, they need good management; This is why most dispensary managers are actually the owners and already have professional experience with other types of stores. Apart from that, some medical cannabis dispensaries need an expert to guide their consumers and workers so will most likely need someone with a background in pharmacology.

Budtender

Budtenders are like bartenders but instead of helping you choose your beer, they help you find the best strains for your specific needs so a budtender not only need to know basic differences such as Sativa, Indica, Hybrids, THC, and CBD but also be a good listener, and have good sales and customer service skills.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: A budtender will guide and recommend the best strains for you.

A budtender will guide and recommend the best strains for you.

Packager 

Just like trimming and harvesting jobs, packaging jobs are a good way to get into the cannabis industry because you are working with cannabis or cannabis-infused products directly and, after acquiring a little bit of experience, you may be able to move into better-paying positions.

Dispensary Receptionist or Cashier

Apart from the budtenders, dispensaries also need people for the front end to greet customers, answer phone calls and handle transactions while also verifying prescriptions or ID. This job is usually an entry-level position so if you do a good job it’s very likely that you get promoted very quickly, making it a great choice for those wanting to enter the legal cannabis industry and work in a dispensary.

Cannabis Delivery

In some places where cannabis is legal, there are cannabis delivery services that, obviously, consist of delivering the cannabis products to the clients; This kind of jobs are usually very easy and you can definitely migrate to trimming or harvesting if you know the right people but there aren’t many ways to get a promotion because, in most places, you will be working for a third-party company.

3. Other Cannabis-related jobs

In the same way as other industries, the cannabis market generates a lot of jobs that don’t involve working hands-on with cannabis or cannabis products. These positions make it possible for you to work with cannabis even in places where cannabis is illegal so it’s a huge opportunity for those who want to make a living with cannabis.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: The cannabis jobs options are wider than you thought!

The options in cannabis jobs are wider than you thought!

 

As you will see in the text below, the cannabis industry is very diverse and you don’t necessarily need cannabis knowledge, as long as you have expertise in a specific area, you will be able to work in cannabis-related companies with no problem at all.

Online Content Management

Cannabis companies need a blog, webpage, online store, and every other thing that you could think of just like any other company so the online area (aka IT) is on high demand. If you are already working with IT, here are a couple of jobs that you may be able to get in the cannabis market.

IT Manager

Most cannabis companies use advanced technology in order to comply with the cannabis regulations and to work as efficiently as possible; For example, companies need from tracking software to quite complicated systems to control the growing equipment so this position consists of basically implementing, maintaining and supervising this software.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Almost every company today needs people in the IT area.

Almost every company today needs people in the IT area.

Software Developer

In some cases, cannabis companies need to create their own software to deal with a specific problem or to make its resolution more effective. There also are start-ups that try to enter the legal cannabis market by providing an existing problem or to improve how cannabis companies do certain things, so if you’re a software developer with a bit of experience it may be quite easy to get this position.

Web Developer

Just as in every other business, cannabis businesses need a well-made website that contains their menu or catalog as well as information about their products so web developers are usually in high demand in the cannabis industry.

Digital Media Manager

A digital media manager is usually someone with knowledge in internet marketing, communications or digital media design and is responsible for interacting with existing or potential customers, either via email, social media or other platforms; Working directly with the marketing director to make sure that the company is following the marketing strategy and that the customers have a way to communicate with the company effectively, and that the company is effectively communicating what they want or need to.

Graphic Designer

The visuals are what attracts a customer at first sight so a graphic designer is vital in order to attract a customer to certain product, this is why designers are highly coveted in the cannabis, especially those who know how to create unique and attractive logos, product labels, interfaces and other essential materials in order to effectively advertise their products.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Almost every company today needs designers!

Almost every company today needs designers!

Writer 

All cannabis businesses including producers, magazines, dispensaries, and manufacturers need to promote their brands or products through their platforms, either websites, blogs or printed publications so you will surely find lots of jobs for cannabis-related writers.

Legal Area and Accounting 

Due to cannabis still being illegal in most places, cannabis companies need to keep a good record of everything that goes in and out, money-wise and product-wise; Also, companies need to follow laws and regulations always, this is why the following positions are extremely valuable and in high demand in the cannabis industry.

Lawyer

As you may know by now, the cannabis industry is quite tricky due to not being legal in most places, so lawyers need to get a grasp on the constantly changing laws and regulations. Lawyers can also work in advocacy organizations that help companies to deal with legislation and prohibitions.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Many fields are open for legal professionals.

Many fields are open for legal professionals.

Paralegal

The process of starting and operating a legal cannabis business requires a lot of complex paperwork so paralegal professionals are highly required to work along with the lawyers, not only to help fill the paperwork but also help in all other matters related to the legal side of a cannabis business.

Accountant

Due to most banks not working with cannabis businesses, cannabis accountants must manage cash, obtain credit, handle taxes, and processing payments with expertise because cannabis-related businesses are often presented with inspections of all types so keeping financial records is essential.

Marketing

It goes without saying that any brand needs to advertise its products and cannabis is the same. Due to lots of new companies appearing every year, cannabis companies need to stay on top of their game and not only advertise their products but do it in a way that will reach the clients that they aim to. For example, moon rocks will not be of much appeal for medical cannabis users and CBD products will not appeal the average recreational user, this is why those working in the marketing area can definitely find any of the following jobs with ease.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Accountants, lawyers and marketing directors are also needed!

Cannabis:Accountants, lawyers and even marketing directors are also needed in cannabis companies!

 

Marketing Director

A marketing director helps develop, launch and expand a brand; Every cannabis company needs good marketing strategies in order to be able to sell their products successfully so as a marketing director you’ll have to learn, understand and predict what the market wants by doing market research, advertising and developing relations with other professionals in the industry.

Human Resources Manager

A human resources manager is extremely important because not only finding but also retaining good employers is super important because the industry is relatively new and most workers are always looking to get better job offers; So basically, the human resources manager must ensure that everyone is doing their job and are happy with their pay, benefits and workplace.

Production Manager

The production manager basically manages the whole cycle of cannabis production and distribution from seed to sale, helping plan budgets, operations and timelines, making this position fairly easy to get if you have had experience with other businesses before. Cannabis companies have strict regulations so they’re always looking for people who can better manage their production process and make it more efficient so this type of job is definitely easy to get if you have enough experience.

Sales Representative

Cannabis producers and manufacturers need to build a good relationship with stores or dispensaries that will eventually sell their products; This is why a lot of companies hire sales representatives to visit cannabis businesses and make sure they follow the local cannabis regulations while also checking how they work before making a deal.

Facility Construction

As you may know, indoor cannabis operations are huge, companies spend millions of dollars to get everything right and get a consistent product so construction workers are extremely valuable in the industry, especially if you know how to get a grow room running as it should so this are the areas that may land you a job in the cannabis market easily.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Technicians always come in handy!

Technicians such as electricians or plumbers always come in handy!

Electrician or Plumber

Indoor grow operations need special equipment s that needs to remain turned on up to 18 hours a day; In places where it’s allowed to grow cannabis indoors. The installations need to be thoroughly inspected and prepared for light fixtures, extractors, and automatic irrigation equipment, for example, this is why qualified electricians are in high demand and can easily get a job in the cannabis industry.

HVAC technician

Just like electricians or plumbers, HVAC technicians are those who specialize in cooling, heating, and ventilation and are in huge demand in the cannabis industry because they’re vital when starting an indoor grow operation.

4. Top Tips For Finding a Job In The Cannabis Industry

You don’t necessarily need to consume cannabis for most of the positions, as a matter of fact, you won’t be smoking weed while you’re working, what really matters are your professional skills; Now, you will definitely have an advantage if you consume cannabis because it will help you identify a good product but it’s not obligatory.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Tips to find a job in the cannabis industry.

Tips to find a job in the cannabis industry.

 

You also need to have in mind that the cannabis market is very competitive so a lot of people are moving to where cannabis is legal, resulting in too many applications and not as many jobs so here are a couple of tips that will surely help you get that job you’re looking for:

1. Research

Spend as much time as possible researching, get to know how the company works and make sure you will be happy working at the company you’re trying to get in; You should also attend conferences, expositions and talk to the representatives. Even a cannabis-related job can have a bad working environment so ask a lot of questions and try to find out how the people working there like it.

2. Make sure you are qualified

Depending on the position you’re looking for, it may not be easy because most cannabis companies look for specific skills so make sure you’re always studying and reading the latest information on the cannabis industry. Go for a position that will allow you to show your abilities and make sure you do your best and always invest in education, the more qualified you are the better opportunities you will have.

3. Expand your knowledge

As mentioned above, the cannabis market is very competitive, and the more you know about the laws and regulations, the better chances you will have of finding a job so you should start learning all about cannabis and the cannabis industry, preferably finding courses that teach what you need and get certified.

4. Get a license or permit if necessary

Each country or state has its own laws and regulations so employers will prefer those who already have all or at least some of the requirements so it’s highly recommended that before you apply for a job, you understand what you need and if possible, get the permits or licenses before applying.

5. Present as a professional

All cannabis companies are companies, the stereotype that most people have about drug dealers or lazy stoners definitely does not translate to legal cannabis companies so you must present as a professional. Obviously, you don’t need to dress in a suit and tie but you won’t be giving off a nice impression if you have a lot of errors in your resumé or if you go to the interview super high so, despite being a cannabis job, treat it like if it’s a normal job.

 

Cannabis: From Bud Tender to Master Grower: Keep in mind canna-jobs are normal jobs!

Keep in mind that canna-jobs are just like normal jobs!

 

There are a lot of things to have in mind, you shouldn’t think that a cannabis job is different from a regular job; You will have to wake up early, go to an office and work just as you would in any other job so treat it as if you were looking for any other position, obviously, there is a difference because you’ll be working with something you love but there’s not much to do, as any other job, you need to get educated, be a professional and have a good resumé, and in most cases, smoking cannabis or growing it won’t make much difference.

5. In Conclusion

Due to the current state of cannabis across the world, there are lots and lots of opportunities so if you were trying to land a job in cannabis, now is the right time to start researching, try to get some certificates in the area you’re trying to enter and apply for as many jobs as you can once you’re ready, you will definitely find what you’re looking for!

 

If you work in a cannabis-related company please feel free to share your story and some tips in the comment section below!

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30 April 2021
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