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NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo in Oakland: Day One

Photo Gracie Malley for Cannabis Now

Industry Events

NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo in Oakland: Day One

The National Cannabis Industry Association kicked off its annual mega-conference in Oakland to the backdrop of Game 5 of the NBA Finals and lots of great cannabis.

Once again, professionals from around the globe converge on the Marriott conference center in Oakland, California for the fourth annual NCIA Cannabis Business Summit & Expo to get their view on the next year in cannabis, embrace the latest tech and chum it up with colleagues.

In this microcosm of America’s fastest growing industry (from $6.7 billion in 2016 to an expected $22.6 billion in 2021 according to a recent Arcview Group report) people are either refining their processes or trying to figure out how to tie themselves to the rocket.

Arcview’s Editor-in-Chief Tom Adams pointed to concrete figures illustrating just how fast that rocket is going.

“The explosion in the number of brands and products is dizzying,” Adams said. “When the number one concentrate brand in Colorado grows 84 percent but its market share percentage remains constant, it becomes clear we are in a remarkable business boom.

He also noted similarities between the “green rush” and other major economic booms in recent history.

“It reminds me of 1998, when Google was just one of dozens of search engines, or 1988 when Blockbuster was just one of dozens of video store chains” he said. “Future market leaders are just now being launched.”

With these kind of expectations for the growing industry, it’s easy to see why folks are pouring into town this week.

Things officially started an hour before Game 5 of the NBA Finals tipped off: The hype levels on the streets were thick, be it the Oaklanders moving south in waves of blue and gold towards Oracle or the pot pros jumping out of their Uber — also technically for a world championship.

Other events may be bigger, but they simply can’t match the ethos of NCIA’s annual festivities.

People filed in quickly for a peek at the big names up front. The staff at the booth for Gavita — the best lights in the game — were troubleshooting for folks not 10 minutes after the doors opened. The Mills Nutrients booth had the game on, which quickly made it one of the most popular stops on the expo floor.

As the Warriors clinched their second NBA title in three years, the party moved to West Oakland. The International Cannabis Grower’s Association held a fantastic soiree featuring some of the finer outdoor cannabis California has to offer: Humboldt’s Finest showcased an exceptional Sunset Sherbert, while the folks at True Humboldt brought out their first batch of OG Kush light dep that stank of gasoline.

The official first day of festivities is tomorrow — Cannabis Now will have full coverage of the week’s activities.

TELL US, have you been to an NCIA expo?

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