Not long ago, recreational cannabis and robotics both seemed like distant dreams. Now we are witnessing a merging of the two. The relationship between robots and cannabis complements each other in perfect, and utterly surprising, ways that are so 2019.
The Robot Trimmer
Until recently, all weed was trimmed by hand. This is a long and expensive process. To top it off, the results often lead to an imperfect product. Humans just aren’t as quick and clean as machines are. Most growers budget one week for a single worker to trim 15 pounds of marijuana by hand.
Ez Trim Harvesting has developed a machine that does 15 pounds in an hour. Take that, humanoids.
While these aren’t exactly robots, the newest iterations of grow lights are able to modulate the plant’s energy source to perfection. In the past, most operations were using high-pressure sodium (HPS) lamps as growing lights, but they just weren’t as efficient. Now, with light emitting diode (LED) technology, the energy efficiency has increased while overall cost has decreased. LEDs can provide a full spectrum of light that mimics what plants get from the sun. This includes the kinds of UV light that causes the plant to secrete lots of trichome-producing resin. The next generation of LED grow lights will be connected to smart devices with apps that help monitor the plant’s nutrient needs and store complex information, like light recipes. Robots will helping to grow your cannabis.
Marijuana crops are valuable and their safety is paramount. This has lead many producers to employ robots made by hi-tech security services. The robots aren’t designed to entirely replace human security teams, but they do offer extra-sensitive modes of discovering intruders. Once detected, armed human guards can respond.
The medical marijuana industry has been using telehealth for a while now. This service offers patients to meet with doctors over VOIP calls for check-ins and prescriptions. But recreational cannabis can take that a step further with chatbots that receive and process marijuana orders. The really intelligent ones will also be able to answer information about products and make recommendations.
Many industries are reluctant to put machines to work. It takes a lot of capital to implement and there’s pressure to keep citizens employed. However, the cannabis industry is new enough that facilities can integrate a robot workforce with a human right from the start.