The cannabis industry generates a lot of waste, especially with packaging materials. We need to do better. And there’s a brand we like – both for their products and their practices – that’s setting the example for others.
A Golden State was born in Northern California under the watch of the Cascade Mountains. The brand has blossomed into one of the state’s leaders in high quality cannabis flower.
They’re not like other cannabis brands
A Golden State (AGS) is an innovative, pioneering brand that doesn’t follow everyone else. They take risks and pursue their beliefs, specifically when it comes to sustainability.
For example, they’re the first vertical operation to become carbon-neutral as it relates to cultivation and distribution. The cultivation infrastructure is entirely powered by hydro-electric power. And the plants are watered with glacier snowmelt from Mount Shasta, the purest water source in California. AGS packaging is both FSC or SFI certified, and they recycle their used growing mediums.
These are all practices that aren’t even on the radar of most cannabis operators. Yet, A Golden State has been incorporating them.
“To be honest, at first I used to get annoyed when I’d notice our peers starting to copy the things we were doing,” says founder Nishant Reddy. “But now I’m flattered that we are having a positive impact on the industry.”
The advantages of being carbon neutral
For Reddy and his team, the most obvious reason to be carbon neutral is to counter the devastating effects the human race is placing on the planet. Lowering our carbon footprint is one way to positively impact climate change. We have to do our part.
Carbon neutrality provides cannabis businesses with other advantages such as:
- Increased revenue
- The ability to recruit the best talent as climate change and sustainability are becoming important
- Attract new customers who want to align with brands focused on sustainability
- Lower expenses
- Long-term savings
Have you ever wanted your beliefs to align with a brand you like? Carbon neutrality can also provide cannabis businesses with positive marketing messaging since more consumers want to align with the brands they buy from. Environmental sustainability is on many people’s lists, including my own.
A Golden State are doing good things for the cannabis industry
The AGS team relies on alternative energy sources to power their cultivations and recycle old growing mediums to help local community gardens. They reinvest their sustainable efforts both locally and internationally. They’ve funded forest conservation programs in Brazil, tree-planting efforts in India, and animal conservation efforts in Africa.
From packaging to energy, A Golden State tries to be sustainable in everything they do. They continue to push the envelope in their sustainability efforts.
Other cannabis businesses must address sustainability
When it comes to addressing environmental sustainability, Reddy has this to say:
“Every company and individual must start somewhere, and I just encourage my peers to start focusing on incorporating sustainability within their businesses. It doesn’t initially matter the size of the impact; doing something positive for the environment and investing in any measure of sustainability is a fantastic start.”
Most people would agree it would be great to see cannabis brands explore alternative energy and invest in creating less packaging waste. A Golden State is already doing this, holding themselves accountable for continuing to find cleaner, better practices as the industry evolves.