Every decision you make in your grow, from the lighting you choose to the medium you plan to grow in, will have a variable impact on your spending over time.
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The commercial cannabis business is booming right now. With many cannabis growers looking to expand their facilities in 2018, this is a good opportunity to evaluate your current equipment and operations to make sure you are scaling up correctly.
To help, we’ve put together the commercial cannabis growing equipment guide. Here are the 17 must-have tools for your marijuana business:
1. Ventilation System: Choose an open ventilation system that uses carbon exhaust filters to control odors for the best airflow in your indoor grow operation. Phresh is currently the industry leader due to their longer lasting carbon filter.
2. pH and TDS Measuring Equipment: Getting accurate pH and TDS measurements quickly and frequently is key to keeping an eye on the development of your cannabis plants. Choose measuring equipment that is accurate and doesn’t require frequent calibration, which can slow down operations or result in inaccurate readings.
3. Indoor Plant Lighting: For indoor cannabis growers, there are many different options with regards to lighting. Your choice of lighting option will greatly depend on your region’s electrical rates and the layout of your indoor grow setup. Certain lighting, like double-ended HPS bulbs require extra cooling costs which should be factored in.
4. UV Light Protection: For outdoor workers exposed to the sun and for indoor workers exposed to UV grow lights, protection from these harmful rays is critical. Make sure your employees have sunscreen, hats, sunglasses and clothing that covers their skin if they are going to be exposed to UV rays for extended periods of time.
5. Temperature Control: HVAC equipment is extremely important to keep your plants at the proper temperature. As stated above, your choice of lighting could increase cooling costs. For greenhouses, this will especially require a very precise temperature control system.
6. Humidity Control: Not only do your plants need the proper humidity to reach their full potential, but having the wrong environment could lead to the growth of mold which could ruin your entire grow.
7. Trimming Equipment: Trimming can often be a bottleneck for commercial grow operations. Using commercial trimming equipment can help make the trimming process more efficient.
8. Gloves: For any employees handling your cannabis plants, gloves are a must for the protection of your workers and your grow. A cannabis industry study found that 18% of cannabis workers report skin irritation. Bacteria from your employees hands can also affect your plant health.
9. Antibacterials: Another way to prevent bacteria from infecting your grow or harming your employees is to set up wash stations with antibacterial soap or gel.
10. Magnifying Glass: Being able to see your cannabis is crucial for determining the quality and potency of your marijuana. Having a magnifying glass with LEDs is also very useful for spotting contaminants such as mold, mildew, hair and bugs.
11. Eye Protection: Protect your employee’s eyes from harmful particles and vapors that are present during the commercial cannabis growing process. Eye protection is especially important for anyone working with chemicals that could cause damage or irritation to the eyes.
12. Coveralls: Other safety gear to protect your employees and grow include shoe covers, beard covers, sleeves, hairnets, aprons and coveralls. This helps prevent any contaminants from entering your cannabis grow operation or from infecting your employees.
13. Pesticide: Pests can be a major problem for cannabis cultivators. However, before using any chemicals to treat your plants, make sure you understand the federal and state legislation for using pesticide for cannabis plants in your state.
14. Respirators: During the use of harmful chemicals such as pesticides, respirators are a no-brainer, but most cannabis growers aren’t aware of the air contaminants that are always present during the grow cycle. Getting a full idea of the level of contaminants in your facility requires an inspection from a certified industrial hygienist who will check for levels of carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, odor, oil and water.
15. Security Cameras: Most commercial cannabis growers understand the risk of theft from outside forces. However, you are just as likely to be robbed by your employees. Make sure security cameras and other security measures are set up throughout your grow facility to catch any potential theft or loss.
16. Vault: A secure storage area is another key piece of equipment for protecting your marijuana plants from theft. Set up a locked vault or secure room to house your product before it is delivered and when it is most valuable.
17. Safety Gear: Choosing safety gear can also be another form of security. Clear aprons or gear without pockets can prevent employees from pocketing valuable cannabis product undetected.
This article was first published on https://www.cannabisimp.com.