Why does the cannabis industry need GPS tracking?
Though marijuana has been legalized for medical and/or recreational use in states across the US since 1996, its federal Schedule 1 status makes the cannabis industry one that relies heavily on physical assets. Since banks are federally prohibited from handling money made from the sale of illegal substances, cannabis businesses rely heavily on cash. Between large quantities of cash and the marijuana crops and products themselves, which are often difficult to insure and transport especially across state lines, the cannabis industry has historically relied on GPS services to keep a close eye on shipments and deliveries.
As outlined in an article by Insurance Business America, theft is far from rare in the cannabis industry, so developing a plan for keeping a cannabis business’s assets safe and secure is a necessary part of the enterprise. A particular concern of cannabis industry experts is the large number of employees that are required to grow, cultivate, dry, and package marijuana products, any of whom could abscond with valuable product at any time. The ability to track a bag or vehicle allows cannabis businesses to know where their assets are at all times, and the ability to share that information with trusted individuals is crucial to making sure that no matter how large the business gets, every asset is accounted for. Features such as geofencing ensure that shipments leave and arrive at locations and facilities in a timely manner, and that if something goes wrong, the right people are immediately notified.
Compliance & GPS Tracking
Another way in which GPS tracking can be used in the cannabis industry is for ensuring compliance with complex federal, state, and municipal laws that require cannabis businesses to verify where their product is going and who is taking it there. Having reports on hand that prove where the marijuana shipments went and what time they arrived can help cannabis companies keep up with the legal requirements of the industry.
In the US, state and federal (FDA) regulations require the implementation of “track and trace” programs, which record each drug’s journey from manufacturer to patient. From growers to wholesalers to packagers to distributors, marijuana enterprises must comply with “track and trace” regulations. In most states where marijuna is legal, “track and trace” means some combination of GPS tracking and other security requirements, like serial code tracing.
As more states continue to legalize marijuana, cannabis businesses' need for GPS tracking will only grow. A way in which the cannabis industry has already expanded is through the legalization of other hemp products such as CBD, as explained in Good Housekeeping' Beginner's Guide to CBD. CBD products are now shipped to nearly every state in the US as well as internationally. Like marijuana, CBD is derived from plants that are grown, cultivated, and shipped in large quantities, and if a shipment were to disappear, companies could incur major losses. GPS tracking offers an unobtrusive way to monitor employees and third parties, without the expense and invasion of privacy that could be caused by hired security or camera surveillance.
Demand for marijuana products shows no signs of slowing, especially as low-THC products like CBD become popular not just for human use, but according to the Preventative Vet, household pets as well. The cannabis industry will have to meet this demand while ensuring the safety of its employees and assets, and GPS tracking is the first step on that journey.
Want to learn more about how GPS tracking can help your business? Contact a Spytec GPS account executive today.