The state of California hosted a cannabis licensing workshop in Monterey on Monday.
About a thousand people showed up at the Marriott to talk to representatives from state cannabis licensing agencies about their business ideas.
The sale of recreational marijuana became legal in California on January 1, 2018 and the industry is continuing to blossom.
Alex Traverso with the Bureau of Cannabis Control said since the beginning of the year California has issued 1,700 licenses to businesses wishing to sell cannabis for adult use.
“We are cautiously optimistic, things are going smoothly so far,” Traverso said about the past 22 days.
In April the state is expected to release data on revenue generated from the first quarter of recreational sales.
In Monterey the big topic of discussion Monday was cultivation. Many living in the salad bowl of the world are wondering if marijuana could be the next big cash crop.
Monterey County has prohibited outdoor commercial cannabis cultivation allowing only for cultivation within existing greenhouses and industrial buildings. Not everyone is happy with the new county ordinance.
“I need the county to say yes to outdoor growing,” said Ondine Gorton with Big Sur Farmers Association.
Gorton represents marijuana growers in Big Sur who want to grow their pot outdoors as some have been doing for years prior to legalization.
“We are not asking to be ginormous, we still want to be small cottage industry style growers — we already grow without pesticides, we already consider our water, we already consider what kind of energy we use,” she said.
Gorton was at the workshop to collect information to bring to future Monterey County Board of Supervisor meetings in hopes the Association will be able to shape future county policy.