Cannabis / Marijuana, EDITORIAL
How To Benefit When Colombia Becomes the Saudi Arabia of Cannabis Oil
By Ron Holland - March 06, 2015

Forget about ISIS, OPEC, the problems with hydraulic fracturing or fracking, Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Iran as well as wars for oil and gas reserves and pipeline routes now going on throughout the Middle East and the Ukraine. The next oil rush will be cannabis oil for medical use and the winner will be the nation of Colombia, with its perfect climate for year-round outdoor medical marijuana production. In Colombia, the cannabis outdoor grow facilities cost of production is around 10% of the cost of present expensive indoor grow facilities where massive electricity requirements and high labor costs will eventually make this route uncompetitive and unprofitable.

Imagine if you could go back in history and have the opportunity to invest in a startup oil company in 1938 when oil was first discovered in Saudi Arabia? Think about the millions that could have been made over the period with just a tiny investment. Saudi Arabia is the world's dominant oil producer and exporter and although accurate details on its reserves are hard to come by it is probably second in petroleum reserves in the world.

My name is Ron Holland and I have followed this exciting new industry for a few years now. Regardless of your personal views on the recreational use of marijuana or the substantial medical benefits, the US and other nations are moving quickly now to legalize at the very least medical cannabis.

Now, some advocates will claim the growing research into medical benefits as one reason behind the new, more enlightened view by politicians on cannabis but I question this viewpoint. The medical benefits might be the cover story but the bottom line for all politicians in Washington, DC as well as every state capitol is seldom what is good for the population but rather what is best for the politicians. In the case of medical or recreational cannabis the reasons are the twin benefits of more government revenue and more political contributions to guarantee re-election.

After all, the prisons are already filled with generally innocent, non-violent offenders who have drug possession charges against them. After legalization, these mostly poor and minority offenders should be released but they won't be because of the prison lobby. Many in law enforcement at all levels have been corrupted by drug payoffs and confiscated properties now make up a large part of their official and off-the-books revenues.

The court system and lawyers have become fat, corrupt and wealthy because of the War on Drugs and they don't feel the need to make political contributions like they formally did. Finally, criminal elements have historically controlled all illegal drugs and they will continue to do so but marijuana is a free growing plant not a drug and never should have been classified as such or made illegal in the first place. Legalization will remove cannabis profits and control away from criminals and make it a revenue generator for government.

It's All About the Money

Yes all laws, legislation and government actions are usually all about the money regardless of the false public packaging to the voting public. The politicians are tired of watching other special interests benefit from the War on Drugs and now they want in on the substantial gravy train of government revenue to counter historic funding deficits at the federal, state and local levels. Second, they want more legal political contributions and cannabis legalization for medical and eventually recreational benefits will hopefully generate a new source of political contributions.

So the much public Washington War on Drugs over the last few decades failed but only if the real intent was to reduce drug crime and consumption. While this was the goal sold to the gullible American public, in fact, like most legislation the real intent was to generate funding for special interests such as the prison industry, lawyers and court system and criminal efforts thus creating the need for more funding, graft and corresponding growth in law enforcement. The goal was to exponentially expand this once respected local institution into a federalized police force controlled by the state and federal political establishment with the aim of people control rather than crime control.

Today if you look around in America, this goal has been achieved with a local police force in name only ready at a moment's notice to be federalized into shock troops with corresponding military weaponry, helicopter assault teams and armored vehicles.

The Old Cheech and Chong Stoner Analogy Will Not Work With Medical Marijuana

First, forget the growing body of hard evidence showing the tremendous medical and health benefits of marijuana and how that might transition into smoking a joint to alleviate health problems and reduce pain and other symptoms. This is how it is today because cannabis has been an illegal substance for decades but in the future smoking anything will become as outdated as buggy whip manufacturers after the advent of the automobile.

You have to be smoking something to really think most physicians are going to write you a prescription for a joint to smoke marijuana with all the medical studies and public awareness about the harmful effects of smoking? This is a very short-term phenomenon because of the history of smoking marijuana and nothing more.

Every marijuana bud is different in terms of THC levels, how strong it is, what type works best for which illnesses and pain or epilepsy symptoms. Cannabis flower buds might be what my generation grew up with but there is a new day coming for medical marijuana and it is based on extracting the active elements in cannabis (at least 85 cannabinoids have been identified so far) as pure oils where standardization can be as specific as prescription drugs and targeted to what is best for specific individual health problems and conditions. Remember, the real drug epidemic together with harmful and deadly side effects is created and promoted by Big and Bad Pharma at your nearest pharmacy but this is a discussion for another day.

So Forget Buds and Remember Oils Are the Future of Medical Cannabis

Although cannabis flower buds and smoking marijuana for medical benefits might be here today it will be gone in a few short years. Of course, the stoner lifestyle will likely continue forever but only for recreation and not where health issues are involved and my discussion here only pertains to legal medical cannabis. Cannabis oil is cheap to ship globally, very inexpensive to produce when grown naturally outside and will become just another pharmaceutical drug in the near future. The lowest cost producing countries and companies will become real winners while the non-competitive, indoor producers will slowly die out.

How Many Oranges Are Grown Commercially in Alaska, North Carolina or Canada?

You know the answer is zero as well as the reasons why. It is simply too darn cold to grow tropical lemons, grapefruits, pineapple or oranges in non-tropical regions. Yes, they could be grown indoors but just as for cannabis the costs are prohibitive with all the water required, heat in the winter, air conditioning in the summer and grow lamps year round. While one crop of cannabis can be grown annually in much of the world during the summer season outdoors, complete a growth cycle and then die in the fall, this really isn't a solution in an increasingly cost competitive world.

Today, in most non-friendly climates indoor grow facilities are all the rage for now but the grow facilities cost millions up front to build, remodel and turn into a grow facility. But note that growing indoors is almost ten times as expensive as growing outside in a perfect climate where sun, water and fresh air are free and there is no electricity required for grow lamps, heat in the winter, air conditioning in the summer and high power needs year round to drain the heat from the grow lamps.

This is why Colombia will become the Saudi Arabia of Cannabis oil. It has the perfect outdoor climate where cannabis can grow 365 days each year with multiple crops grown and harvested annually rather than only one crop a year in the summer in most temperate climates. More importantly none of the expensive energy requirements of artificial indoor grow facilities are involved.

Imagine if magically some country could produce a high quality automobile for $3,000 instead of $30,000. Can you imagine the company profit potential? Would you like to know more about the world's coming low cost producer of cannabis oil? Click here to learn more.

Ron Holland can be reached with comments or questions at Ron@haim.li.

Posted in Cannabis / Marijuana, EDITORIAL
  • Impending Sky

    The High Alert group is absolutely right to focus on hash oil. Pure extracts are the last word for smoking, vaporizing, or producing edibles. In today’s legal climate, there is no need to fuss with dangerous solvents in the home. Extracts made with inferior grades of butane will soon be a thing of the past. Likewise, reports of idiots injuring themselves with flammable gases in enclosed areas will come to an end.

    I expect standardized extracts will become the most marketable form of cannabis. Even for recreational users, the health benefits are clear. Inhaling all of the tars found in the average joint is a waste of lung capacity. This applies doubly for all of those nasty bongs, pipes, glassware, etc. This is especially relevant for frequent users and those who enjoy participating in athletic sports.

    A word about vaporizers: although you can use those e-cigarette things with hash oil, I find them inadvisable. The propellant (propylene glycol) is not something people should be inhaling. The reports are mixed, with some claiming it is harmless, but why risk it? Go ahead and get yourself something nice from Storz & Bickel. It is made in Switzerland, so you know the quality behind it. I am fully satisfied with their product. In my view, nothing tops the Volcano digital w/hash oil.

    When you are on the go or outdoors, I don’t think you can beat plain rolling papers. If you like tobacco occasionally, hash oil mixes well. However it is a bit of a mess to carry around, so you are better off preparing a few in a cigarette case beforehand. Maybe there have been some new developments in portable vaporizers (not e-cigs), but the bulky batteries always discouraged me.

    Although I will not be attending the conference or investing, I wish the High Alert group the best in this new venture.

    • The Volcano digital is unrivalled. A much less expensive, almost as good option is the Arizer Extreme Q.

      • william scott

        And Storz & Bickel’s (the German inventor of the Volcano vaporizer) recently released two portable vapes (the Crafty and Mighty) that are PORTABLE with very similar vaporization results… and some of the other “best of class” units are the Ploom Pax, Firefly, Arizer Air, Alpha, etc. Vape Portables are the FUTURE (is now) tool of cannabinoid comsumption, for BOTH recreational and (preventative / treatment) medicinal use, in conjunction with home units such as the Volcano, Extreme Q, etc.

        My votes for “dry herb:” http://www.storz-bickel.com/shop_us/en (Crafty, Mighty and / or Volcano.) and: http://www.Ploom.com (PAX vape.) And: oils, waxes and “concentrates” are increasingly, what is being consumed. (Often away from home, via a portable…)

    • william scott

      Vaporizers and eCigs are two totally different things. A VAPE doesn’t COMBUST the material… a “vape pen,” is a glorified PIPE… and an eCig uses man made liquid chemicals (typically infused with nicotine) and has nothing to do with CANNABIS… and everything to do with NICOTINE… in the absence, of tobacco. A “portable vaporizer” is now the leading choice among “recreational users” worldwide…

  • I strongly favor drug legalization — especially MJ. And I’ve never so much as smoked a cigarette — and dislike being around people high on drugs (or booze).

    But this “tax revenue” pitch is fundamentally flawed. So is the claim that growing MJ will be a wildly profitable endeavor once legalized.

    Once widely legalized/decriminalized, the price of this forbidden fruit will plummet 90% or more. Like any illegal drug, the price mostly reflects the risks of trafficking in an illegal substance. Unlike pharma drugs, there is no “patent profit” to rely on — it’s just a commodity like tobacco. Take that illegality away, and this weed will lose its price premium.

    Taxing the legalized commodity will bring in little revenue. Tax it at too high a percentage and a smugglers black market ensues. Plus, MJ can be grown (inefficiently) at home or work, bypassing the tax man.

    We may end up switching the “War on Drugs” from chasing drug dealers to chasing “tax cheats.” At least it will keep the police, courts and prison industries humming along.

    • Voluntarism-google-it

      That’s why the state is just a criminal enterprise writ large (Rothbard) and needs to be put to the dustbin of history. THe free market is much better at solving all problems than inefficient socialist institutions like the US Gov..

      • Ronald Holland

        Of course I agree.

    • kenvandoren

      took the words out of my mouth.

    • william scott

      Excellent points… And once states / provinces et al “legalize” cannabis (and hemp?) within the current nearly import duty free, globalized environment, many WILL indeed opt to “grow their own…” and in today’s (internet reformation) “better educated” marketplace, people will increasingly AVOID big pharmacology and rather opt to attend to their own well being, “preventatively…” This will in turn soon have a notable IMPACT on the pharma / medical industries at large (especially in Oncology) because it won’t play- out the way the elites planned. Furthermore, the wealthy and their failed “system” will soon be in retreat… as things begin to unravel, across the board. 😉

  • kenvandoren

    Not sure I see that Columbia will be the Saudi Arabia of pot. It grows well, and in many places wild here in WI. so even if productivity is less, some farmers may switch to it if it proves more profitable than corn. But legalization will drive price down, so the ultimate price and profit potentional is anyone’s guess, and yes, best left to a (more or less) free market.

    The biggest benefit I can see is that legalization will help defund the drug cartels and reduce corruption and violence.

    • Ronald Holland

      Yes, let the free market decide the price rather than criminals and the government which are identical in how they work using force.

  • Brilliant analysis. My hat is off to you sir!

  • william scott

    Well it looks as if you guys either took heed to my point months ago about how Canada (i.e. Nova Scotia) was neither the place to grow outdoors, nor do so competitively for long… or did the math?

    For “recreational use” (and also increasingly for “preventative medicine”) cannabis flowers and even leaves will remain a viable and popular part of the THC and THCa markets in their “raw” and dried forms… while the “oil market,” will be two- fold. Cannabis oils: for medicinal use and Hemp oil for food stuffs, to bio fuels. I don’t think that the market for “flowers” will decrease much on the recreational side, and VAPORIZATION is the new “method” for both recreational and medicinal consumption of both THC and CBD, etc. cannabinoids. Then of course there’s textiles to building materials for hemp… but that’s a broader topic for another discussion. Medical use cannabis oils will certainly regain their place in pharmacopeia soon… and many will simply “grow / source their own” in it’s RAW and DRIED forms, as well… where / when they can, anyway.

    • Ronald Holland

      Yes vaporization in addition to edibles is more of the future for medical cannabis than smoking a joint.

  • “…but marijuana is a free growing plant not a drug and never should have been classified as such or made illegal in the first place…”

    I agree. Like papaver somniferum.

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