The Future of Cannabis is Sungrown
The future of cannabis cultivation is bright. The long-awaited legalization of cultivating this contentious genus represents a new era of commercial Cannabis cultivation, marking the advent of one of the most significant social shifts of our generation. The gravity of specialized teams being able to legally grow Cannabis in quality-controlled environments; while extracting data, honing operations, and analyzing new cultivation strategies at the forefront of agricultural science, has not yet set in for the average Cannabis user. This plant, and it’s place in society, are on a path of radical change over the next 10 years.
Cannabis production has traditionally been undertaken largely indoors in North America. As much as 3% of the State of California’s energy usage, for instance, is attributed to indoor Cannabis production. Understandably, it is far easier to keep black market production covert in a bunker than in a glass box. The problem with indoor cultivation at a commercial scale, however, lies in two core deficiencies:
- The conditions of indoor operations are less than ideal for cultivating plants.
- The cost of indoor production is not environmentally nor economically sustainable.
At Tantalus Labs, we fight for the idea that modern Greenhouse technology is the future. We believe that Greenhouses will push commercial indoor Cannabis cultivation into obsolescence; ultimately forcing indoor and black market production into technology-driven, legitimate, Sungrown systems.
What Do Plants Need to Grow?
Plants need light, water, and nutrients. Evolving the way nature delivers these three inputs is what 10,000 years of agriculture boil down to. The ability to manipulate an environment to achieve higher productivities or more robust plant health is both a science and an art. The process of designing, testing, revising, and analyzing systems tailored to particular plants has spawned countless branches of science and engineering.
Modern greenhouse technology enables systems that hone the cultivation environment in an optimal way. For critical factors such as light penetration, humidity minimization, and environmental monitoring, there is simply no better system than a high-tech Greenhouse. We grow and evolve as a species by adapting our environment to meet the needs of our agriculture, and the plants that we nurture grow and evolve as well within the systems that we innovate.
Cannabis, for the first time in modern history, is on the cusp of a dramatic agricultural shift. We have a new opportunity to study it with the added benefit of formalized scientific research and understanding. While this is just a piece of the puzzle in terms of its normalization in our society, the most dramatic evolution will manifest in the plant itself.
What are the Advantages of a Greenhouse?
The core advantage of Greenhouse cultivation is that there is simply no better lighting environment in which to grow plants than Sunlight . Cannabis is a plant with a highly efficient photosynthetic process. It will consume as much light as is available, and convert that light into growth at 60X the speed of a Douglas Fir.
* Based on an estimate of optimal spacing of HID lamps in an environment with no natural light (i.e. warehouse etc.) Light Integral data from Fisher, P and Runkle E (eds) 2004
Humidity is the primary enemy of the Cannabis grower looking to avoid mould and disease. Mould is a common adulterant in black market and commercial Cannabis alike, and the more humid the environment, the greater the mould risk. The way that we at Tantalus Labs accomplish humidity minimization is largely through facility design. A central galley way divides the greenhouse facility in two. The galley way functions as a space for work and logistics, but it also serves as a substantial air intake for supplying each bay of the greenhouses on either side.
Air cooled by specialized pads is pulled through the length of the greenhouse via (6) 18in HAF fans. These fans move an ocean of air, beginning above the plant canopy and eventually through it on the back end toward the rear of the greenhouse. Here is located another set of electronic dampers and two 48in exhaust fans mounted just above crop height. Each are rated at
27,000 Cubic Feet per Minute (CFM) for a total of
54,000 CFM per bay. This exhaust air is then dumped into an odor filtration bay, scrubbed, and exhausted into the atmosphere.
Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) only systems function differently, and CFM is much lower. In a top of the line HVAC environment, the range of 15-1800 CFM would be likely. Compare this to Tantalus’ 54,000 CFM. HVAC necessitates a system of supply and return air ducts to feed Air Conditioning units and fans, moving the cooled air around.
Modern Greenhouses enable the tightest degree of environmental control in agriculture. Systems monitor and record data on a range of granular environmental parameters, from temperature and humidity all the way to soil pH and CO2 levels. These sensors signal mechanical changes when parameters fall outside of optimal ranges. For instance, if the Greenhouse gets too hot, the system will automatically vent through cooling pads, keeping the cultivation environment at the ideal temperature to allow plants to thrive.
The same sensors that trigger environmental adjustments in Greenhouse record data. This data helps growers better understand the relationships between the environment and trends in productivity, plant health, and potency. Tantalus Labs uses this data in predictive models, helping us refine our practices and learn more about what our plants need to thrive.
Tantalus Labs exists to advance the frontier of cannabis. We designed and built the first facility of its kind on Earth – a completely environmentally controlled greenhouse, engineered specifically for cannabis. We call it SunLab¹.
SunGrown Products: Better for the environment = Better for you
What is SunGrown Certified?
SunGrown Certified ensures consumers can select cannabis products that have been farmed sustainably in healthy, natural environments.
All SC products are grown using the Sun as the primary source of power, not our electrical power grid. As Elon Musk, CEO of Tesla Motors, recently said:
вЂњWe have this handy fusion device in the sky, it just works.вЂќ
Better for the environment.
Better for you.
When a product carries the SunGrown Mark, it means the growing of the cannabis was done in a way to help enhance not degrade our natural resources. All SC products are grown without the massive electrical consumption associated with producing cannabis under indoor lights, or any synthetic pesticides and fungicides, many of which are commonly used in marijuana production
All SC farmers are required to have sustainable sources of water that will not adversely affect the environment or local watersheds. SunGrown products were not produced with harmful pesticides and our farmers do not clear-cut and destroy the land, or contribute to the pollution or sedimentation of watersheds.
Craft Business and WorkersвЂ™ Rights
SunGrown Certified supports artisan businesses and family farms, which comprise the bulk of the craft cannabis produced and contribute to the rich heritage of the industry. Artisan farmsвЂ”be it tomatoes or cheeseвЂ”connect consumers not only to the highest quality products but directly to the process that created them. SunGrown Certified farms comply with the highest universally recognized standards for labor and workers rights.
What marks are used to designate SunGrown products?
The SunGrown marks are the distinctly recognizable symbols of the SunGrown organization. The SunGrown marks are registered trademarks owned and licensed by the SunGrown Certified Committee. When you choose products bearing these marks, you are supporting farmers and workers who have adopted practices devoted to achieving the highest level of sustainable cannabis farming.
How can I find SunGrown products?
Look for the SC mark on packages in your dispensaries and retail outlets. If there are none, ask the store why not. ItвЂ™s the easiest way to know that the product you are buying comes from farms that are focused on supporting the highest standards of cannabis farming possible.
We are a 501c3 with the goal of educating consumers on how the cannabis they purchase was produced and providing support to sustainable cannabis farms.
Our mission is to connect consumers with sustainable, responsible cannabis growers and products to promote better growing practices and to raise awareness of environmental issues related to marijuana farming.
All cannabis and cannabis infused products bearing the Certified SunGrown mark meet the following requirements.
Lighting required to grow cannabis in warehouses or other artificial environments is a huge waste of energy and an unnecessary strain on our already burdened electrical grid. Certified SunGrown farmers use the sun instead of high powered synthetic lights to grow our plants, creating a healthier, superior product under natural full spectrum sunlight. Meeting the following criteria ensures the healthiest, tastiest product reaches patients and consumers and is grown in a way everyone can feel good about, including the planet.
No artificial or supplement lighting shall be used during the flowering stage of plant growth. Supplemental lighting to maintain seedlings and vegetative plant growth may only be used to extend the amount of natural daylight available and may not be used when ample natural light to maintain vegetative stage plant growth is present.
Recent news stories have exposed the unpleasant truth that many indoor growers rely on chemical and synthetic pesticides to maintain their crops. With only artificial light and no natural predators many pests and molds thrive in the warehouses where indoor cannabis is produced. The strong full spectrum rays of the sun and gentle breezes that our farmerвЂ™s plants enjoy helps mitigate many of these issues. If a problem does arise Certified SunGrown farmers are required to use only natural and organic pest control products which ensures you will never have to worry about what chemicals are in your cannabis. While resting assured what you are consuming is healthy means allot to all of us, this is especially important for those of us who use concentrates or may have compromised immune systems.
Only products certified and listed for use in Organic food crop production by OMRI or WSDA may be used applied to all Certified SunGrown crops in the prevention or control of pests.
With the continued drought along the entire West Coast itвЂ™s more important now than ever that we all work to safeguard this precious natural resource. Letting you as the customer know that your cannabis was grown without taking water from our rivers, communities and wildlife when they need it most is important to us. Our farmers strive to act as leaders in the water conservation movement with many capturing excess rainwater during winter storms and storing it for the hot dry summer months. Others who rely on wells to irrigate their crops are only allowed to do so in areas with sustainable groundwater levels and supply. Our farmers regularly host and participate in Best Management Workshops that help spread knowledge and growing techniques that lower water use.
All Certified SunGrown farms must submit detailed information on all water sources, storage and use. This information is carefully reviewed by an expert in watershed resource management and must be approved in order to become Certified SunGrown.
Poor land management and in many cases illegal grading and clearing activities degrade the natural environment leading to many problems including our rivers having too much sediment in the water.
Our farmers work closely with local land use and planning departments for any work that needs to be done on the properties they own. Only projects that meet all local and state requirements are allowed to move forward. This helps ensure our rivers and shared natural resources are being protected.
Sungrown marijuana SunGrown Products: Better for the environment = Better for you What is SunGrown Certified? SunGrown Certified ensures consumers can select cannabis products that have