Over the past few years, there has been a surge in cannabis legalization across the globe. From the United States to Spain, much like alcohol, cannabis has become somewhat of a ‘common’ commodity, as demand for the leafy product continues to rise. Forbes statistics indicate worldwide cannabis spending will hit in excess of $57 billion by 2027. With a newfound demand for both medicinal and recreational cannabis, suppliers must find effective warehouse tracking, and transport systems to ensure their customers receive the product on time and in good condition. Among others, 1SHIFT Logistics, Wayv, and Sovereign Port, are all companies doing their level best to service the newly created and legalized cannabis industry in a transparent and regulated manner, working with authorities to ensure nothing is left unclear. The one challenge many cannabis producers face is a lack of logistics companies willing to associate with a product still deemed ‘illegal’ in many nations. In this article, we will explore the world of cannabis logistics and which companies are stepping up to service this new and lucrative market while understanding the challenges they need to face in order to be successful.
1SHIFT Logistics In The Game
On October 4th, 2019, an MOU was signed between LiteLink Technologies and Segra International to set up their pilot software called 1SHIFT LOGISTICS designed to track and transport Cannabis. Segra International is a well-established cannabis agriculture technology company that grows, packages, and ships premium cannabis plants across the globe. With this latest MOU in place, Segra and LiteLink are set to disrupt the cannabis industry, ensuring real-time tracking, monitoring, and data collection is in place as their products are moved around the globe. Cryptocurrency News states, “It is clear the cannabis industry will only continue to grow exponentially over the near term,” said LiteLink CEO Ashik Karim. “With growth only comes the demand for real-time product location awareness and logistics coordination. With our deep relationship with Segra, we intend to deliver an automated suite of applications that drive down the dependency on manual follow-ups, reducing the blame game for issues with delivered goods, and arm all parties with information to ensure partner relationships are kept honest and profitable. We could not think of a better time to kick off this initiative.”
Wayv Finds Logistics Solutions
Due to a number of legal requirements Governments have in place to oversee the transportation of cannabis, the likes of FedEx and UPS are unable to distribute the popular product. Wayv, however, is looking to shift the way business is done in the cannabis industry, setting up a dynamic platform connecting cannabis suppliers and retailers, giving all parties the opportunity to support each other’s growth and distribution, while abiding by local and international laws and regulations. Techcrunch states, “For the past year, Wayv’s platform has helped power logistics among several cannabis brands. Today, Wayv hosts over 70 brands — High Style Brewing Company and GoldDrop, to name a few — as well as more than 85% of licensed retailers.”
Challenges For Cannabis Supply Chain
As stated previously, the major problem facing the cannabis industry is legalization in certain states and countries versus those places that don’t want a bar of it and prosecute anyone found in possession of the herb. Imagine for a moment you have a truckload of cannabis in one state of the US, but in order for it to get to its destination state elsewhere, it must travel through a state where it isn’t even legal, putting workers in serious danger of violating state laws. “It’s a dilemma more and more truckers face. Increasingly, it means troublesome run-ins with highway patrol authorities — and in some cases, everything from major fines to time in a jail cell. Every mile in a state with cannabis prohibition is a roll of the dice”, states NVision Global.
Sovereign Port Supports Cannabis Market
Whenever challenges are identified, it means there are also solutions on the horizon. Sarah Yetman is a prime example of an individual working to solve shipping and supply chain woes in the cannabis distribution market. Yetman started her shipping company, Sovereignport, to take on the difficulties growers and distributors are facing in the industry and push for further transparency. According to Health Europa, “Sovereign Port is already the go-to for shipping and receiving for many publicly-traded canna companies, a list growing weekly. Out of all of the canna materials moving internationally, Sovereignport has yet to have a package held or confiscated.” Yetman emphasizes how regulations change daily and how her company keeps on the pulse of these ever-evolving laws and policies to ensure her global customers receive quality service year-round. “This industry is not easy to navigate – regulations, tariffs, and even shipping codes seem to change daily when dealing with hundreds of countries,” she says. “We updated our internal list less than two weeks ago, and it’s already changed drastically,” states Health Europa.
It’s evident the green market is buzzing with possibility and opportunity for anyone willing to take a few risks and enter the new arena. Many logistics companies have witnessed the rapid growth of the industry over the last years and are eager to jump on board and find solutions to tackle varying supply chain obstacles. According to Freight Waves, “The standards in Canada are slightly different than in the European Union and slightly different than standards in Australia,” Whitney noted. “It’s similar to what’s occurring in the U.S. – you have legal state experiments, and each one is unique and different, and each one has its own regulatory body.” According to logistics software company CartonCloud, cannabis transportation will improve overtime as legalities become clearer, and more companies employ better tracking and data management systems, ensuring the process is transparent and properly regulated by all parties involved. Overall, among numerous operations, it’s clear that 1SHIFT Logistics, Sovereignport, and Wayv have taken on a considerable challenge as they enter the thriving market. With numerous legal restraints aside, these companies are the first of their kind pushing the boundaries in this space. As the popularity of the herb continues to increase, more companies will be called upon to support this blossoming industry well into the future.