When it comes to the cannabis industry the more creative and steadfast you are, the further you will go.
This week we had the opportunity to sit down with Carter Casad of Sugarfire Farms LLC, out of Colorado. Sugarfire Farms is a new consulting company and Mr. Casad has over 12 years of experience in the cannabis industry. Mr. Casad offers help to startups in the Medical, Recreational, and Hemp cannabis markets. He has multiple specialties with his primary focus being crop improvement, and seed production breeding techniques. He can also help with product development, cultivation, building design ,ventilation, and compliance.
Sugarfire Farms is owned and operated by Mr Casad and once you check out his resume and some of his answers below I know you’ll want to consult about your cannabusiness with him.
“The ultimate goal of Sugarfire Farms is to help other companies here in Colorado, as well as in other states, in navigating this budding industry. I’d like to help companies develop the best practices based on sound science while keeping in mind that cannabis cultivation is an art.” Carter Casad.
AS: How long have you been in the industry?
CC: I got my official start in the industry around 2009 with some friends making infused hard candies and tinctures for the medical market. I did everything from cultivation, extraction, manufacturing, packaging and sales at that company.
Around 2010, I got a cultivation position at “The Farm” in Boulder CO. After a few years managing on the cultivation side I ended up creating my own position there focusing on genetics and product development /crop improvement. So, I’ve been doing this professionally for about 12 years.
Before that I was pretty involved with cannabis activism in the Denver /Boulder area. I worked on the 2006 initiative 44 and with SAFER, was on the Board of Directors for NORML at CU, and helped unofficially organize the old 4/20 celebrations at CU Boulder.
AS: Tell us about your industry credentials.
CC: I’ve been fortunate to have been able to work on many interesting projects over the years. In 2014, I was able to work on studies and research at The University of Colorado, Boulder.
Basically we were gathering very baseline genomic data on plants I was growing, and cross strains I was developing. I’ve been acknowledged in a few published peer reviewed research papers done by
The Kane Lab and Cannabis Genomic Research Initiative.
AS: What do you love about the industry?
CC: So many things, first, the industry community, all the people that work the frontlines of the cannabusiness. The people that work with passion for the plant, that have been doing well before the laws caught up, and the sense of pride that brings now.
Also, all the research being done, and the innovation being done from that research. We keep finding new things about this plant, and it’s changing everything from construction materials to medicine.
AS: What don’t you like about the industry?
CC: So many things, The environmental impact of indoor cultivation is something to be concerned about. The average cultivation facility uses massive amounts of water and electricity.
Luckily, these environmental concerns are starting to be addressed with upgraded technology like LED lighting and more efficient automated irrigation.
Microbial contamination and residual pesticides are a huge issue right now. It gets tough to cultivate clean cannabis, and education on the best practices isn’t always shared due to the competitive environment. I’d like to see this change for everyone’s benefit.
Also I think that overall consumer education has a long way to go. There is a lot of complex science that needs to be distilled down a little so it is more easily understood. This would really help consumers make more educated and confident choices at the bud bar. There is way more to weed than THC potency.
AS: Have you ever won any awards?
CC :As for awards, I’ve helped The Farm team win a second place Sativa award at the 2012, Denver Medical High Times Cannabis Cup. Plus multiple Grow Off awards over the years.
After all his accomplishments Mr Casad is still a humble guy and states.
“But what makes me feel better than winning awards is watching folks and other dispensaries grow seeds I’ve created. I get pictures all the time from folks growing and loving cultivars and crosses I developed and that is the most satisfying thing about working in this industry.”
When Carter Casad is not helping you start your dream cannabusiness you can catch him on the drums with the Diabolics as they play in the Denver area regularly and you can follow them online at diabolicsmusic.com make sure to check out his instagram @mr.carter.man