Building a Craft Cannabis Industry in Minnesota

Last week, Stigma Hemp and Modist Brewing unveiled their CBD collaboration, Dream Oil at an event that showcased what a craft cannabis industry can look like in Minnesota.

Much like Minnesota's craft brewing industry, cannabis has an opportunity to flourish as a local, innovative, inclusive, community-first craft industry of its own. At the event last week, for example, there was representation from far beyond cannabis and craft beer including industry associations, advocacy organizations, and elected officials.

To build a successful craft cannabis industry in Minnesota, there needs to be:

  • Businesses interested in how they can integrate into communities (similar to how taprooms have revitalized unused areas of cities, retail cannabis locations can think about the ways they offer education opportunities, gathering spaces, community events, etc.)

  • Businesses committed to providing truly craft products that contain local elements, individuals, and partnerships

  • Strong advocacy efforts that take into account the legal, business, and municipal aspects of supporting a new and growing industry

  • Ongoing advocacy and lobbying efforts that ensure the industry can continue to grow and thrive

  • Education and financial support for first-time business owners looking to establish, learn, and grow

  • Support for ancillary and supportive businesses that can amplify the growth of a new industry

With 6,500 acres approved by the MN Department of Agriculture for outdoor hemp growth, the number of hemp growers steadily on the rise, marijuana legalization advocacy on an upswing, and an industry that's growing exponentially, now is the time to think about the kind of craft cannabis industry we want to see in Minnesota. Businesses like Stigma and Modist are already thinking about what's next -- are the rest of us?