"Professor of Cannabis" Is Ready to Teach Medical Marijuana Entrepreneurs in Florida
Did you do a lot of research?
I personally have traveled extensively through Colorado, California, Massachusetts, and D.C. talking to people in both the legitimate and black markets about best practices. Twenty states have some degree of medicalization or legalization.
Tell me about these classes you offer.
We advertised, and within 24 hours, the February slots sold out -- we're taking preregistration for March. The syllabus is on our website. Classes start every four weeks -- they're an intensive deep dive. You meet two times per week for four weeks -- 16 hours of instruction. You come in the classroom, led by the professors of cannabis, and there's outside work in grow spaces to learn to grow your own crops. Of course, we're very, very sensitive that's it's not a legal environment [for growing marijuana], so we have peppers and tomatoes, so people can get comfortable using hydroponic and aeroponic systems. We're preparing for medical-grade product -- it's far more difficult than putting a seed in the ground.
How much is the class?
Where is all this medical weed going to come from? Won't it take a while for crops to grow after legalization? Is there enough to import from Colorado at first?
We won't be able to buy from other states -- that would fall under interstate commerce, which is regulated by the federal government. We're relying on our growers, and each of our retail shops will be able to cultivate.
So you're saying that there are people in the shadows already growing weed who will be ready to sell on Day One?
Anecdotally, pot is being grown everywhere around the world. We won't be working with the black-market growers. Everything we want to do is professional and transparent. I feel very strongly that product will be available. [Growers will do what they need to do to meet the law], patients will follow steps to becoming registered, caregivers will have to go through that step of licensing concerns -- [and part of what my company does is] prepare people [for all of this].
What about concerns that medical marijuana will be abused? Are there standards developed in other states that Florida is likely to follow?
[This was addressed in] the controversy the Supreme Court just settled. One of the major oppositions to the ballot language was that it was very lenient -- doctors can prescribe it for patients with debilitating conditions for whom the benefits outweigh the risks. Certainly, this covers a lot of different people -- elderly, people in palliative care conditions. [There are different standards in different states and] a lot of gray area. A lot of this is being written as we go.
Can I get some for my insomnia?
That's not up to me. You'll have to talk to a physician. A doctor can prescribe anything -- he has morphine to give you, if that is [appropriate], in the doctor's opinion.
Did you smoke a lot of pot to prepare for this? Is there a "best" strain?
I'm not a smoker -- this is purely an entrepreneurial play for me. It's professional -- there's not going to be a Willie Nelson vibe, no Bob Marley posters on the wall.
How much will medical marijuana cost?
[There are a lot of variables with] pricing in medical care. The insurance system is a big one. Prices in other states tend to be slightly above black-market rates -- but this is the highest-quality product. If you purchase on the black market, you have to consider, has the grower used pesticides, what percent of this is beneficial compounds? We bring that type of testing or quality assurance -- at a premium but [worth it].
Can you give me a ballpark dollar amount?
Low quality costs about $250 an ounce, high quality about $400 an ounce; that's approximately what you see on the street. Part of what drives up the cost on the black market is [sellers factoring in associated risks of doing business]. We'll do everything in a well-regulated and brightly lit environment.