This week’s announcement of job cuts at distributor Flow Kana (a WeedWeek advertiser) sent shockwaves through Humboldt County. The layoffs came in the wake of similar bad news from Grupo Flor and Cannacraft days earlier. Tally up earlier highly-publicized pink slips, and what’s afoot more than qualifies as an unsexy industry trend.

Then on Friday MedMen announced layoffs of its own.
Press Release

In the wake of cutting his company’s workforce, Flow Kana CEO Michael Steinmetz called the industry’s current shedding of positions “an epidemic.” 
Sacramento Bee/Redheaded Blackbelt/ MJBiz

  • Predictably, Steinmetz blamed regulatory problems. However, he also suggested that the industry should adopt a tiered system, a la the beer biz. “With craft beer, a small producer pays a smaller tax,” he said. Presently, weed growers pay about $150 per pound in taxation “whether the pound is sold at $200 or $2,000.”
  • Beyond the illicit market’s appeals of low-cost and easy access, California businesses are hampered by scarcity. Only one licensed REC retailer exists for every 34,256 Californians 21 and older, according to a BDS Analytics/ArcView Market Research survey.
  • Flow Kana’s CEO also called for creating an easier path to go legit for non-compliant growers, since if they started paying taxes the state would be better off.