As a wave of cannabis legalization sweeps the United States, more and more entrepreneurs are launching commercial grow operations. Recent estimates peg the value of the recreational cannabis market in the U.S. at $55 billion. Before you start a cannabis business of your own, you should think carefully about the equipment to grow commercial quantities of cannabis indoors– large growrooms with a controlled environment. Here’s a quick checklist of the required gear to guide your purchasing decisions moving forward.
Containers for Your Growing Medium
Whether you’re opting for a super soil setup or a hydroponic arrangement, sturdy containers for your plants are a must. Everything from standard ceramic plant containers with matching saucers to steel troughs can work depending on your circumstances. Regardless of the container type that you settle on, the key to getting the most from your equipment is finding products that are made to last and easy to maintain.
High-Quality Soil and Supplements
Commercial growers go through literal tons of growing medium every fiscal quarter if their operations are big enough. Locking down reliable providers of soil, liquid fertilizers, trace minerals, coco coir and rooting cubes is a must. Doing so will ensure that you can drastically reduce overhead while improving the quality of the finished product. Find well-established vendors with solid reputations and establish relationships with them before getting started.
An Appropriate Lighting System
While cheap CFLs will get the job done for home growers with a handful of plants, they won’t cut the mustard for larger commercial operations. Warehouse-sized grows require a lighting system that uses either LEDs or a combination of high-pressure sodium (HPS) and metal halide (MH) bulbs. What’s more, a viable commercial cultivation facility will need a dependable electrical system with the right wiring to avoid potentially disastrous malfunctions.
A Superior Ventilation System
The temperature and air quality within a self-contained indoor growing pod need to be controlled carefully to produce great buds. Dissipating the heat produced by HID bulbs requires a reliable HVAC system that can pipe out the hot air around the clock. Bringing in fresh, filtered air from the outside is equally important since plants require consistent CO2 levels to thrive. Likewise, high-volume fans that can circulate indoor air properly are vital.
Measuring Equipment for pH and TDS
A quality cannabis crop can’t be produced without keeping a close eye on the chemical makeup of the growing medium. Consequently, testing equipment that can accurately measure the pH and total dissolved solids (TDS) concentrations of soils and hydroponic fluids is crucial. Paper strips and electronic testing gauges that deliver precise results as far as pH and electrical conductivity monitoring go will guarantee a far better product.
A Dependable Humidity Control System
It’s no secret that high humidity levels are a great way to ruin an entire crop through mold development. A humidity control system that allows users to fine-tune the performance of humidifiers and dehumidifiers will greatly reduce the odds of a contaminated crop. What’s more, an automated humidity control system that works around the clock to maintain adequate moisture levels will save a commercial grower a ton of time and money.
An Emergency Backup Power Supply
A commercial grow operation looking to turn a healthy profit can’t afford to lose power for more than a few hours. While a minor disruption in a plant’s light cycle won’t induce flowering, it will unduly stress the plants and potentially impact the final product. Having a backup generator at the ready on the premises that kicks on immediately in the event of a power outage is essential.
A Comprehensive Security System
Even the smallest commercial operations represent a substantial investment for business owners. Unsavory characters who can gain access to your operation will be just as interested in stealing your equipment as they are in pilfering your product. As such, virtually impervious security doors and access controls are a must if you want your business to thrive. A fault-tolerant surveillance system is equally important and likely required by law.
Personal Safety Protection for Employees
While a commercial growroom is nowhere near as dangerous as a West Virginia coal mine, it still poses certain health risks to workers. Employees that are exposed to UV light should always wear protective hats and sunglasses to avoid skin and eye damage. Furthermore, respirators are a must if workers are handling chemicals like pesticides and cleaning agents. Having appropriate HAZMAT gear handy will protect your business from costly lawsuits.
Cleaning Supplies to Control Contamination
If you don’t want to run afoul of your jurisdiction’s health inspectors, you’ll have to maintain an incredibly clean growroom at all times. As such, you’ll need to stock up on enzymatic cleaners and mildewcides to prevent mold and bacteria from building up. What’s more, you’ll need plenty of anti-bacterial soap for your employees to prevent cross-contamination from tainting everything from growrooms to cloning rooms to curing spaces.
Creating a Great Indoor Growing Environment the Easy Way
While the items detailed above aren’t the only tools you’ll need to grow cannabis commercially, you simply can’t achieve superior results without them. At PodTronix, we specialize in designing and manufacturing customizable commercial growrooms that take the hassle out of producing large quantities of high-quality cannabis. Call us today to see what our cannabis growrooms and products can do for your existing or future commercial cannabis cultivation business.