What Jobs Make The Most Within The Cannabis Industry?

So I’m going to community college next year and I was wondering what makes the most money within the industry? I was considering becoming an extraction tech and becoming one of the people who purge the stuff or extract it BUT I hear the money isn’t too great in that area and I hear a botanical science degree helps one enter the extraction field. I recently thought to myself what if I went to college for mechanical engineering and then try to join the ASME and figure out how to become a safety inspector for extraction systems. I was also thinking about going for business and marketing and maybe opening a store that sells a variety of parts for botanical extractions because it’s a growing market and people need parts that are reliable and affordable. All input is valuable. I like hands on work.

Being CEO and founder.


Sounds like you have a lot of great ideas. Apply for jobs in the industry, gain some experience with something. It usually leads to something you didn’t expect. Ask labs if they need help. Even if it is free help to start. try to come up with a product or service that is an asset to the industry on your free time. If you want to do extraction, skip community college and go to extraction school. I have a 4 year business degree, and it doesn’t mean a whole lot starting out in the cannabis industry. Unless you are applying for some corporate cannabis job.


From my experience… take your eyes off the money. If you only look for a job that has good pay you will never enjoy what you do and also will not find a job to start. I have been in the business for a few years now and own 3 companies and all are successful. I got into the business because i wanted to do what i love and the money coming in now is just a bonus. I wake up every day happy to start my work day. It took me over a year to start putting money in my pocket and i did not care because of my job. So if you take your eyes off the money you will most likely be more successful then you ever thought.


I agree with @hempicated.com.

focus on what makes you happy. The money will come with time


I would look into chemical engineering. Be the guy that designs the extraction equipment, rooms, facilities, etc. As others have said though stick to your strengths and what you love to do, but if this sits in your wheelhouse it is a pretty lucrative side of the business.


For me, a niche membership group that caters to the cannabis processor industry has easily been my most lucrative position in the industry. It doesn’t make as much money as consulting or slinging packs, but it requires a fraction of my time and makes more than enough for me to be able to separate how I make money and how I spend my time.

Anything requiring overhead, especially purchases that can’t be written off, is going to be tough as a business owner due to 280E tax issues. I’ve seen far more losing CEO/Founders than winning ones. I’d rather be a lab director than an owner.

If starting a business is your goal, I strongly suggest looking for unfilled niche positions, especially ones focused around “waste” streams.

Repurposing spent biomass, material you can get paid to come pick up, is gold.


So much so that @precisionnick posted WTB - Waste biomass to get R&D done in that sector :joy:

Scam artist


Debateable. Maybe up front, but it would be difficult to run a long standing, profitable scam. Unless you were selling co2 machines i suppose


Or 12 liter short paths lolololol


A 12L SPD has an ROI of like 3-4 runs for most people… Pretty solid investment imo.


Regulators and enforcement.

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I genuinely laughed at that.



The folks behind METRC

Selling radios one tag at a time…


In general, skilled labor pays more. Which really means, what do you bring to the table to help the company succeed?

If you are looking for people to teach you everything, then you will get paid minimal until typically you quit and provide these new skills somewhere else (definitely not always the case).


Vertical integration is what it takes

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That’s key. Making it so you can’t wait to get out of bed the next day and get at it!



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Be extremely careful about who is giving you money in a startup and what strings are attached to that money, or you’re gonna have a bad time. Be equally as careful about who you choose to partner up with. Think of it like a strategic marriage and have all your t’s crossed and i’s dotted in the operating agreement. I have witnessed first hand very successful and profitable cannabis companies fall apart because the founder didn’t take these important factors into consideration.

If you’re going to have a partner(s), retain majority ownership at the very least. This is especially important with sweat equity partners, as there are too many parasitic garbage humans who will talk a big game about their skill set and then leave you in a horrible legal battle when the company starts making money and they expect to just sit on their ass collecting a draw.

The above reasons are why I am trying to self-fund as much as I can in order to get my business off the ground. I realize that I will eventually need outside capital if I want to meet my scaling goals before the 2019 harvest season, but if you have a company that is already making money, it is so much easier to get loans rather than investment money. Loans can be paid back quickly. Get too many investors on board the wrong way, and its easy to end up making less than some of your employees.

I got a university degree in sociology figuring all I needed was some kind of degree, but this might be my biggest regret. I would have served myself so much more to at least attempt a chemistry degree and fail but have some background in it than go for a comparatively much easier degree just to say I finished college. Granted, I never seriously considered going into this field until after college, but chemistry has always been something I have had a lot of interest in and was my original plan until I got discouraged after failing calculus.

Anyway, if you do go the entrepreneur route, just keep a very guarded eye on who you choose to start your business with. This world is full of snakes, but it unfortunately seems to be especially true in the cannabis industry. Lots of lazy greedy fucks out there who just see this industry as easy money, and they’ll promise you the moon just to sink their teeth in.