Jenny Bloom

November 5, 2019

Things are going great in California cannabis-wise. Recreational and medical marijuana both have been legalized, businesses are popping up everywhere, and potential employees are getting their resumes together to start working legitimately in the marijuana industry. It’s time for you to get your foot in the door to begin building your cannabis career in California. Keep reading for some useful information before you start applying.

Entry level marijuana jobs in California

Entry level marijuana jobs in California
Entry level marijuana jobs in California – Image powered by Ktla.com

Budtenders are the face of the store, helping customers pick out the proper strain and method that will work best for them. They need to be good with technology (as they will have to learn the system used at their dispensary) as well as having deep knowledge of the fine details of the strains their dispensary provides. If you enjoy helping people and are passionate about learning more about marijuana, this is likely a great place to start.

The other main side of the industry is cultivation. If you have (unofficial) growing experience and already know you’re very much into cannabis cultivation, you will probably have to start at the “bottom,” which means beginning as a trimmer. Trimmers are the ones trimming the buds from the branches, and sometimes they even help with the care or harvesting of the plants. From here you could become an assistant grower and then a lead grower if you work hard and have a passion for this part of the marijuana industry.

Legal requirements to become a trimmer or budtender in California

Anyone working in the cannabis industry in California needs to be 21 years of age or older, as is required by California law. Employees will also need to be able to pass a background check done by California’s Department of Justice, and they will have to adhere to any state guidelines and requirements for correctly packaging or labeling orders (which your employer should educate you about). Those with felonies related to cannabis will likely still be able to get hired by a cannabis company.

Tip: make sure to download my free Grow Bible for more information

Besides these small legal requirements, there is no special license or certification required for those working in the marijuana industry in California. In general, the dispensaries and other cannabis businesses themselves have to deal with getting licensed, while workers are more or less free to work anywhere. If you search online, you might find some kind of a budtending course, but remember that their quality could be questionable (as everything is still pretty new), and unless it is specifically required by your employer it could be a waste of money.

Legal requirements to become a trimmer or budtender in California
Legal requirements to become a trimmer or budtender in California – Image powered by Noozhawk.com

If you are serious about impressing your employers and doing things by the book (a really important aspect of the marijuana industry in these early years of legality), it would be a good idea to self-educate yourself about the rules, policies, regulations, and procedures that the state (and perhaps even your local city) have.

Knowing these before getting hired would be a huge plus for any company, and it’s a good idea for yourself if you want to work your way up the ladder. Plus, any regulations set forth by the state or local governments are going to be accessible publicly, and for free, so you won’t have to pay any fees for specific training or qualifications. If you have no experience in the cannabis industry whatsoever, it’s essential that you do some research to learn at least some basic, fundamental knowledge before applying and interviewing for a job in this field.

Marijuana legislation can be complicated, but Jenny Bloom is always up for the task. Although not a lawyer, her experience as a reporter and PR specialist helps her understand legalese – especially when it relates to growing marijuana. A passionate supporter of legalization and home... [read more]


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  1. By Melinda ,18 Aug 2020
    I would love to start as a beginner in the Cannabis industry.
  2. By Charlie ,03 Nov 2020
    Where do start? Sign me up for job in the Cannabis industry!

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