The cannabis industry is one of the fastest growing job sectors today, and there are several well-paying entry-level jobs within it. The global legal marijuana market is reportedly worth 17.7 billion dollars, and in the United States, legal cannabis operations employ five times as many people as the coal mining industry—a historic barometer for the health of the blue collar job market.
Economic tensions are on the rise as more and more working and middle class jobs disappear due to automation and the Covid-19 pandemic. These days, many Americans are struggling with unprecedented unemployment rates, and may be looking to make a career change. If you’re on the job hunt, the booming cannabis industry just may be the perfect fit for you. After all, our parents always did encourage us to do what we love.
Here’s a list of some of the best paying, entry-level, cannabis related jobs for those looking for a green new gig.
Before those beautiful buds can be packaged and smoked, they have to be trimmed. Trimmers are responsible for manicuring cannabis, and pruning away all the excess leaves. Historically, trimmers were hired seasonally, but these days many cultivators keep trimmers on year round to help manage other tasks around the grow.
If you’re someone who likes to work with their hands and doesn’t mind getting a little sticky, bud trimming may be the best option for you. Starting off as a trimmer is a great way to get you foot in the door, learn valuable skills, and gain relevant experience that will help you launch your cannabis career.
Budtenders are the friendly face of the cannabis industry. New dispensaries are opening up all over the country everyday, and they need people to work behind the counter. Being a budtender is more than just operating a cash register and handing people their weed—budtenders are cannabis experts who can help guide consumers to the product that’s perfect for them.
If you’re an outgoing person, with vast cannabis knowledge, look into becoming a budtender for your local dispensary. These jobs are extremely coveted, and dispensaries often receive hundreds of applications when spots open up. Having past experience in sales, retail, or the hospitality industry can be extremely helpful, and a passion for cannabis is a must.
Marijuana delivery is totally a thing now! Oftentimes, suppliers of medical marijuana need to hire drivers and couriers to bring cannabis to their patients who are unable to physically make it to the dispensary. In certain locations, recreational dispensaries also offer delivery services to simplify things for their consumers. Grow facilities also hire couriers to deliver their harvest to the dispensaries.
You’ll need a valid driver’s license, insurance that’s up-to-date, a working vehicle, and a clean driving record to land one of these gigs.
Transforming cannabis flower into a concentrated liquid or wax is one of the most vital jobs for modern cultivators. Working under the tutelage of a master extractor, extraction techs are responsible for helping create tinctures, oils, shatter, and anything that falls under the umbrella of cannabis concentrate. In a way, they’re the alchemists of the cannabis industry.
If you’re someone with previous lab experience or a background in science, then you may be the perfect candidate for the position of extraction tech. If you can work your way up to master extractor, you’ll have one of the highest paying jobs in the industry!
Despite the fact that cannabis has become an above board industry, the need for security hasn’t disappeared. Due to federal prohibition, cannabis businesses are barred from working with banks. This means that for now, cannabis is a cash only endeavor. Wherever there are large quantities of cash, there are thieves looking to steal it.
Cannabis security jobs can range from standing guard at a dispensary, to making sure product makes it safely from the cultivators to the sellers, to installing and monitoring surveillance equipment.
This post was originally published on August 3, 2020, it was updated on August 5, 2020.