Schedule of Events

Exhibit Hall Hours

Wednesday, August 16 - 10:00 AM - 6:00 PM
Thursday, August 17 - 10:00 AM - 5:30 PM

Times, sessions and speakers are subject to change. Sessions may be categorized under more than one topic. When selecting topics, please note that you may need to deselect your previous selections or choose "ALL" as multiple selections can be made at once.

Event Takes Place In









08:00 AM – 05:30 PM

Registration Open
Paris Ballroom Foyer

10:00 AM – 05:00 PM

VIP Cultivation Roundtable (VIP Pass/Cultivators Only)
Champagne I/II

A first-time event at Cannabis Conference 2023, the Cultivation Roundtable is a daylong educational and networking event for cultivation professionals only.* This VIP opportunity — co-chaired by longtime cultivators David Holmes, founder and CEO of Clade9, and Scott Reach, owner of Rare Dankness and House of Dankness — will be limited to 150 attendees and offers an exclusive forum for growers (indoor, greenhouse and/or outdoor) to expand their peer networks and their knowledge of advanced cultivation techniques and practices, solve the most crucial problems facing cultivators today, and find new opportunities and potential partnerships.

The Cultivation Roundtable is available as an add-on ticket to any Cannabis Conference pass type. Don’t wait to register, as seating is limited to ensure the ultimate educational and networking environment for attendees!*

*This is a special educational event for leaders and managers of growing operations. Limited to 150 attendees and to those who own or work for a company that cultivates cannabis. Registrants will be vetted by show organizers.

CLICK HERE for more information.

Lindsey Renner
Speaker Lindsey Renner Owner Native Humboldt Farms View Bio
Kevin Kuethe
Speaker Kevin Kuethe Chief Cultivation Officer Lume Cannabis Co. View Bio
Scott Reach
Speaker Scott Reach Owner Rare Dankness/ House of Dankness View Bio
David Holmes
Speaker David Holmes Founder/CEO Clade9 View Bio
Josh Malman
Speaker Josh Malman Vice President of Cultivation Operations Jushi View Bio
Nicole Leitner
Speaker Nicole Leitner Breeding and Genetics Manager Revolution Cannabis View Bio
Shane McKee
Speaker Shane McKee Co-Founder Shango Cannabis View Bio

10:00 AM – 05:30 PM

How to Launch a Cannabis Cultivation Business Workshop (add-on)
Versailles I/II

A successful operation depends on much more than high-quality and high-volume yields. Key decisions made early on in a cultivation business will have long-lasting impacts on your chances of success.

In this workshop, experienced and successful cannabis business leaders will share essential considerations when mapping out your start-up, along with some of the key lessons they’ve learned along the way when it comes to:

  • Early-stage decisions, from determining your long- and short-term goals, site location to cultivation methods and genetics sourcing options;
  • Financial modeling, fundraising and unexpected costs;
  • The application process;
  • Regulatory and compliance requirements;
  • Hiring an all-star cultivation team;
  • Other critical team members and outsourced services to have in place;
  • Building relationships with dispensary customers; and
  • Packaging and wholesaling.

...and much more!

CLICK HERE for more information.

Christina Betancourt Johnson
Speaker Christina Betancourt Johnson Owner & CEO Standard Wellness Maryland and Rooted Therapeutics View Bio
Jorel Decker
Speaker Jorel Decker Owner Ramshead Cannabis View Bio
Will Bowden
Speaker Will Bowden Founder and Owner Grasshopper Farms View Bio
Richard Yarber
Speaker Richard Yarber Co-Founder/Partner Ramshead Cannabis View Bio
John Mueller
Speaker John Mueller Co-Founder & CEO Greenlight View Bio

10:00 AM – 05:30 PM

How to Launch a Cannabis Dispensary Workshop (add-on)
Versailles III/IV

As dispensary competition continues to stiffen in nascent and established markets, getting your dispensary off to a good start is critical to your chances of success. From site selection to ensuring you have enough capital to sustain your business through common project delays that could otherwise derail your opening plans, the success of your dispensary launch hinges on many factors.

In this in-depth workshop, learn from experienced dispensary operators about:

  • Site selection and market analysis;
  • Start-up budgeting and unexpected costs;
  • How to work with municipalities and regulatory committees;
  • Critical team members, partners and vendors to hire; and
  • Keys to product selection and pricing.

...and much more!

CLICK HERE for more information.

Hope Wiseman
Speaker Hope Wiseman Owner Mary & Main Dispensary View Bio
Anna Shreeve
Speaker Anna Shreeve President Urban Paragon, Inc. View Bio
Sean Hope
Speaker Sean Hope Co-Owner and Founder Yamba Market and Yamba Boutique Dispensaries View Bio
Sequoah Turner
Speaker Sequoah Turner Vice President of Retail The Source+ View Bio
Nick Jack
Speaker Nick Jack Director of Operations All Good Collective (Colorado) View Bio

09:30 AM – 06:00 PM

Registration Open
Paris Ballroom Foyer

10:00 AM – 10:30 AM

Networking Refreshments in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

10:30 AM – 11:15 AM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: Create a Winning License Application
All Access
Champagne III/IV

Securing a cannabis business license is one of the most critical—and perhaps one of the most daunting—first steps in launching a business in this increasingly complex and competitive industry. Make your application stand out from the crowd with takeaways from this can’t-miss session for any new or expanding business. In this session you’ll learn:

  • How to navigate the most important aspects of application writing;
  • Strategies for finding team members that can win over regulators;
  • How to establish relationships with local and state officials; and
  • Best advice from experts with proven track records of success.
Mackenzie Ditch Wilcox
Speaker Mackenzie Ditch Wilcox Director - Compliance/Legal PharmaCann, Inc. View Bio
Jay Czarkowski
Speaker Jay Czarkowski Founding Partner Canna Advisors View Bio
Mark Collins
Speaker Mark Collins Chief Financial Officer Grupo Flor View Bio

10:30 AM – 11:15 AM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: Cultivators’ Profit Killer: HpLVd and the Next Viruses Coming to Cannabis
All Access
Versailles I/II
Hop Latent Viroid is still the most prevalent yield and profit killer from coast to coast, according to many growers, and for many, it is not under control. What can you do internally to protect your crops and operation from this widespread industry challenge – from sanitation to isolation and tissue culture/propagation (breeding it down to imperceptible levels)? And beyond HpLVd, what is coming next that could have a major impact on your cannabis crop – will it be cucumber mosaic or the curly beet virus – and when?
Dr. Shouhua Wang
Speaker Dr. Shouhua Wang Plant Pathologist Nevada Department of Agriculture View Bio
Dr. Zamir Punja
Speaker Dr. Zamir Punja Professor, Plant Pathology/Biotechnology Simon Fraser University View Bio

10:30 AM – 11:15 AM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: Built to Last: Shifting From Reacting to Planning Ahead to Withstand Market Volatility
All Access
Champagne I/II

There is no question that these are volatile times in the industry. To some operators, this does not come as a surprise; rather the inevitable market evolution. Be it wholesale price compression, shifting regulations, supply chain pressures, inflation, or consumer behavior and spending – there are organizations that are ready and eager to tackle anything.

The key premise is understanding all of the major drivers and impacts to your business; control what you can, and plan for the rest. It is a fundamental shift from reaction to executing on a plan. In a sense moving from surviving to thriving. In this session, learn how to look for the interdependencies in your business, to create a living budget, how to evaluate your fixed and variable costs, and how to streamline your production, post-harvest, procession, packaging, labeling, (and so much more).

Colin Kelley
Speaker Colin Kelley Operating Partner Merida Capital Holdings View Bio

10:30 AM – 11:15 AM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: Crop Steering Intensive: Latest Cultivation Research on Flushing, Height Control and Photoperiod Strategies for Desired Outcomes and Cost Goals
All Access
Versailles III/IV

Flushing, or applying clear water and restricting nutrients during the final weeks of flowering, is a common practice among cannabis cultivators, but many approach it differently. Some believe flushing improves smoking quality, and others may use it as a strategy to prevent excessive fertilization or to save on fertilizer costs. But how does flushing affect yield, nutrient levels, and cannabinoid content? How many weeks should you flush? Should you bother flushing at all? These are some of the guiding questions Clemson University researchers asked themselves when designing experiments to understand the plant’s physiological responses to flushing. In this session, Ph.D. student Michael Alden will present exclusive findings on flushing as well as studies testing other common cannabis cultivation and crop steering practices, including the 12/12 photoperiod schedule in flower and how altering the plant’s shape and controlling height impacts production. In this session, you’ll learn:

  • How to adjust flushing schedules to meet specific, desired cultivation goals, including increased yield, decreased nutrient costs or increased cannabinoid content
  • How to apply poinsettia production practices to cannabis production, i.e. the “cann-settia” method, and the potential benefits of controlling height, including improving irrigation efficiencies and maximizing space
  • Why growers may want to consider a different photoperiod schedule than the 12/12 industry standard
Michael Alden
Speaker Michael Alden Graduate Research Assistant Clemson University View Bio

10:30 AM – 11:15 AM

New Research Supports Cannabinoid-Based Treatments for Parkinson's Disease, Chronic Pain, Inflammation, and More
Medical Research Track
Concorde C
Cannabis medical research has long been limited and more difficult to perform because of its federally illegal status. In the federal government’s eyes, cannabis is a Schedule I drug, on par with heroin, with no medical benefit. Gb Sciences, a plant-based research and biopharmaceutical drug development company, has been working to change that by getting U.S. Food and Drug Administration (U.S. FDA) approval for human trials on prescription drug formulations to treat specific ailments. Dr. Andrea Small-Howard, president and chief science officer at Gb Sciences, says this work is an important step in demonstrating medical value, which helps with the destigmatization of cannabis. Dr. Small-Howard will discuss the company’s journey and latest research validating the efficacy of different cannabinoid-containing formulations designed for the treatment of Parkinson's disease, chronic pain, and inflammation.
Dr. Andrea Small-Howard
Speaker Dr. Andrea Small-Howard President, Chief Science Officer GB Sciences, Inc. View Bio

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: Cannabis Market Predictions for the Year Ahead … and Marketing and Product Selection for an Evolving Customer Base
All Access
Champagne I/II

As macroeconomic conditions such as price compression continue to present significant challenges for operators, questions remain about what lies ahead for the cannabis industry. In this session, industry experts will share valuable insights and predictions for the cannabis market in the upcoming year to help you survive and thrive in today’s dynamic market. You’ll gain access to crucial information such as what products are trending up and what products are trending out to help you boost sales and maximize revenue potential, forthcoming industry trends and consumer behavior shifts to help you stay ahead of the curve and expand your market share, how economic pressures shape marketing strategies and product selection to help you make informed decisions, and much more.

Here are a few topics to be covered in this session:

  • The most significant challenges for the cannabis industry in 2023;
  • What products are trending up, and what products are trending out;
  • Cannabis marketing trends to look for in 2023;
  • A look at emerging markets and their impact on the industry.

... and more

Madeline Scanlon
Speaker Madeline Scanlon Cannabis Insights Manager Brightfield Group View Bio
Noah Tomares
Speaker Noah Tomares Senior Research Analyst New Frontier Data View Bio

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: The Keys to Cannabis Quality: Findings From The Latest Research On Lighting And Nutrition
All Access
Champagne III/IV

Bruce Bugbee, Ph.D., of Utah State University, calls his recent research yielding a new definition of photosynthetically active radiation (PAR) the most significant finding of his career to date. Although Bugbee and the USU team are well-known for their cannabis lighting studies, they also investigate other areas of cultivation, including how cannabis responds to different nutrient concentrations and how to optimize temperature at different phases in the plant lifecycle.

Bugbee will once again share his latest research with Cannabis Conference attendees in this back-by-demand, highly anticipated session, which will include key findings on:

  • Bugbee’s new definition of PAR, how cannabis responds and how growers can adjust their cultivation practices to maximize light penetration without stretching plants;
  • the relationship between light intensity and cannabis yields;
  • the ideal rates of phosphorus and other cannabis nutrients to maximize growth;
  • how the micronutrient copper plays a role in disease control;

… and more!

Dr. Bruce Bugbee
Speaker Dr. Bruce Bugbee Professor of Crop Physiology Utah State University View Bio

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: The Funding Conundrum: Your Best Options (and Pros and Cons) for Raising Capital for Your Cannabis Business -- From Equity to Debt Financing, Crowdfunding and More
All Access
Versailles I/II

Raising capital remains one of the greatest challenges many plant-touching business owners face. In this session, attendees will learn from experts the ins and outs of the search for funding, how to decide which options are best for their businesses and how to increase their chances for securing capital in the highly competitive and under-funded cannabis industry. The expert panel will share insights into:

  • how to find sources of capital
  • how to evaluate various paths to financing – from “traditional” paths such as equity or debt financing to less traditional means such as crowdfunding, and the risks and benefits of each type
  • how to increase your chances of success whichever path you choose

… and more.

David Kram
Speaker David Kram Founder and Principal Spring Leaf Capital View Bio
Wendell Orphe
Speaker Wendell Orphe CEO Eastcoasterdam Gardens View Bio
Michael Mitgang
Speaker Michael Mitgang Managing Director WGD Capital View Bio

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

ALL-ACCESS PASS: The Great Balancing Act: Genetic Selection to Give Your Business an Edge in the Competitive Cannabis Market
All Access
Versailles III/IV

More and more breeders are doing licensing deals with cultivation operations, though many growers continue to develop and introduce to the market their own, unique cultivars. Regardless of your approach to genetics, common questions and challenges plague growers:

  • How do cultivators decide whether to work to develop a partnership with a breeder or create their own breeding program? What are the pros and cons?
  • How do you carefully balance market trends (re: high THC, for example) with creating unique genetics to differentiate yourself in the competitive market, as well as avoid chasing the newest cultivar trends only to find that by the time you get the trendy cultivar to market, the trend is either over or too many others are flooding the market with the same cultivar?
  • How do you reconcile consumer demand/trends with a cultivars’ agriculturally preferable traits?
  • Will agronomic traits — such as ease of growth, flowering time/time to market, disease and pest resistance — play a larger role in the future?
  • Attendees to this session will gain key insights into successfully balancing the agronomic and business/market aspects of genetic selection.

Mojave Richmond
Moderator Mojave Richmond Co-Founder BioAgronomics Group Consultants View Bio
Daniel Adler-Golden
Speaker Daniel Adler-Golden Founder Node Labs View Bio
Dr. Matthew Indest
Speaker Dr. Matthew Indest Technical Director of Agronomy and Plant Improvement Curaleaf View Bio
Nicole Leitner
Speaker Nicole Leitner Breeding and Genetics Manager Revolution Cannabis View Bio

11:30 AM – 12:30 PM

The Path to Prescription: One Company's Journey to Bring a Cannabinoid-Based Treatment to Market
Medical Research Track
Concorde C
In order to bring an FDA-approved drug to market, companies must clear the highest bars for approval, and it requires years of dedication, research, not to mention millions of dollars in funding. Cannabinoids biopharma company RS BioTherapeutics, Inc. has formulated a first-in-class alternative to corticosteroids for the treatment of respiratory diseases characterized by pulmonary inflammation, including COPD, Asthma, Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome (ARDS), Pneumonia, and Cystic Fibrosis.. Dr. Michelle L. Shuffett, Senior Vice President of Medical and Scientific Affairs for RS BioTherapeutics, will share the company's journey to developing its novel cannabinoid-based treatment, RSBT-001, including what inspired the company to explore anti-inflammatory properties of cannabinoids, what makes the patent-pending formulation unique, steps required to get animal and human trials approved, what the findings have shown so far, and the timeline and costs expected to finally deliver the prescription to patients. She'll also share partnerships required to produce the treatment, and where there might be opportunities for cultivation companies to work with pharmaceutical companies in the future, and the cultivation and quality parameters necessary to create pharmaceutical-grade products. Dr. Shuffett will also share why clinical trials with cannabinoid-based medicines demonstrating the positive benefits of the plant are crucial to promote more widespread acceptance of cannabis, especially among the physician community.
Michelle L. Shuffett, MD
Speaker Michelle L. Shuffett, MD Chief Medical Officer RS BioTherapeutics View Bio

12:30 PM – 02:00 PM

Networking Lunch in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

01:15 PM – 02:00 PM

Revolutionizing Cannabis Cultivation with Aloe Vera
Technology & Solutions
Versailles I/II
Sponsored By

For thousands of years, the Aloe Vera plant has been revered for its natural medicinal and herbal qualities. Now, for the first time in history, this miraculous plant is being used in agriculture and has been proven to be a powerful bio stimulant for use in horticulture.

Coats Agri-Aloe is the developer and manufacturer of GroAloe as well as Aloe420 for the cannabis market. This is a 100% Aloe Vera natural horticultural product that has been awarded two patents, one for usage in all agriculture, and the other for the unique whole-leaf process. This process concentrates the complex mixture of compounds, macro, and micronutrients already found in Aloe Vera to provide maximum health and growth for plants.

The benefits of using this patented whole leaf Aloe Vera in agriculture are numerous. In addition to boosting plant growth and immunity, the soil health is also improved by increasing microbial activity and nutrient retention. This, in turn, leads to healthier and more nutrient-dense crops. No matter what grow medium is used (coco coil, etc..), the same benefits can be achieved through foliar spray and/or feed systems.

Here are a few topics to be covered in this session:

  • The Science behind agricultural Aloe Vera and how it was discovered.
  • Explanation of natural compounds, macro, and micronutrients, found in agricultural Aloe Vera which combine for effective growth stimulation, insect repellant, and anti-fungal properties.
  • Overview of the research and completed studies on agricultural Aloe Vera and its effects on plant and crop growth.
  • Agricultural Aloe Vera reduces reliance on chemicals and provides an organic product that leaves no residual harmful chemicals.
  • Why Aloe Vera & Cannabis are meant to work together to help heal our planet.
Ross Garrity
Speaker Ross Garrity CEO Coats Agri-Aloe (Manufacturer of Aloe420 & GroAloe) View Bio

02:10 PM – 02:15 PM

Welcome Remarks
Champagne I/II
Noelle Skodzinski
Speaker Noelle Skodzinski Editorial Director Cannabis Business Times/Cannabis Conference View Bio
Michelle Simakis
Speaker Michelle Simakis Editor-in-Chief Cannabis Business Times/Cannabis Conference View Bio

02:15 PM – 02:45 PM

State of the Industry
Champagne I/II
Eric Sandy
Speaker Eric Sandy Digital Editor Cannabis Business Times/Cannabis Conference View Bio

02:45 PM – 03:45 PM

KEYNOTE ADDRESS: Chris Ball: What I’ve Learned in Cannabis
Champagne I/II

Chris Ball, CEO of Ball Family Farms, knows the hardships of the cannabis industry. From his experience with the painful repercussions of the failed war on drugs to his transition from a legacy cultivator to a bootstrapped social equity founder in the newly legal landscape in California, Chris knows the challenges of succeeding in cannabis. Even today, as new economic pressures hammer away at legal cannabis businesses, Chris knows that this is not an easy place to work—but he knows it’s a worthwhile endeavor. He shows up every day at Ball Family Farms with that conviction. With his entrepreneurial spirit and passion for the cannabis plant, Chris knows the value of building something for the long term in this industry.

In this candid Keynote Address, Chris will share:

  1. how cannabis entered his life and embedded itself in his future,
  2. details about his incarceration for selling cannabis at a young age and its impact on his life,
  3. his transition and journey into to the legal market as one of the first Social Equity licensees in Los Angeles,
  4. the steep learning curve he faced as a CEO of a startup cultivation operation in the world’s largest cannabis market (California … As some say, if you can survive in LA, you can survive anywhere!),
  5. how he built a team while balancing family dynamics and professional relationships as the business grew rapidly,
  6. his evolution as CEO as he worked to manage revenue and profit, costs and spending decisions,
  7. his experiences and innovations in cannabis genetics, cultivation and the value of a brand,
  8. lessons he has learned from the market downturn and how to adapt, and
  9. his predictions for and insights into the cannabis industry’s future.

Don’t miss this heartfelt, inspiring story about the realities of the cannabis industry, from prohibition to profit … and how the most passionate and persevering can succeed.

Chris Ball
Speaker Chris Ball Owner and CEO Ball Family Farms View Bio

03:55 PM – 04:55 PM

The Untraditional M&A Deal: What You Can Learn From a Craft/Small Business Merger and How It Could Save Your Business
Versailles I/II

Faced with a turbulent market, continually plummeting prices amid widespread inflation and long-term uncertainty, two craft companies (East Fork Cultivars and Peak Extracts) decided to merge to benefit from each other’s strengths while gaining major cost and operational savings, among other advantages. East Fork acquired Peak in late 2022, and many other small and mid-sized businesses can benefit from this uncommon story.

In this candid session, East Fork CEO Mason Walker will share how the merger enabled both companies to reduce overhead by sharing costs for compliance, insurance, payroll, legal and other administrative and professional services, which come at a premium for cannabis companies. As Cannabis Business Times reported, “[Katie] Stem, [founder of Peak Extracts,] and Walker estimate these costs together run each company about $200,000 each per year—including $13,000 in adult-use licensing fees, $10,000 in hemp licensing fees and $14,000 in banking fees to carry checking accounts for each entity. They estimate these costs eventually will be cut by at least 40% with the merger.”

Walker will also share the details of the entire process, from finding the right partner to setting deal terms to the cost and logistics of merging the company (legal fees, regulatory approval process, etc.) and important lessons he learned along the way. Attendees will take away a deep understanding of the M&A deal and whether a similar arrangement would be a viable opportunity to breathe new life into their businesses.

Michelle Simakis
Moderator Michelle Simakis Editor-in-Chief Cannabis Business Times/Cannabis Conference View Bio
Mason Walker
Speaker Mason Walker Co-Owner/CEO East Fork Cultivars View Bio

03:55 PM – 04:55 PM

Mastering Post-Harvest: Drying and Curing
Champagne I/II

The post-harvest process is one of the most important in cultivation, and many seasoned cultivators even call it an art form. Whether you’re a small-batch producer or a larger commercial grower, it’s critical to fine-tune your process to protect your cannabis moisture levels and terpene and cannabinoid expressions to come away with a desirable and compliant product. In this session, you’ll take away valuable insights to help you:

  • Properly build-out your space for drying and curing, while avoiding common pitfalls;
  • Understand the drying and curing methods today’s operators are using to achieve their product goals;
  • Establish climate-controlled temperature, humidity, and airflow set points to avoid over- and under-drying your cannabis flower; and
  • Develop a plan for continual fine-tuning and improvement to your post-harvest process.
Dr. Allison Justice
Speaker Dr. Allison Justice Founder and CEO The Hemp Mine View Bio

03:55 PM – 04:55 PM

Management Boot Camp: Helping You Become a Cultivation Leader
Champagne III/IV
Many cultivators accept positions with cultivation operations because they want to pursue their passion of cultivating cannabis and do what they do best: grow quality crops, often even at some scale. But as their careers advance or their operations expand proportionately to square footage of grow space, their role shifts away from being as hands on with the day to day, from being engrossed in plant-touching responsibilities to managing teams, delegating tasks, making sure team members have the right training and tools they need to perform their jobs successfully, and making sure they are performing those tasks to achieve the team’s collective goals and producing the highest quality, consistent crops with the maximum yield. Cultivators should attend this boot camp to learn how to develop effective strategies for managing teams, ensuring goals and pace are being met, motivating team members to ensure low turnover/keep those valuable employees … and how to ensure they are successful in their expanding role.
Kevin Kuethe
Speaker Kevin Kuethe Chief Cultivation Officer Lume Cannabis Co. View Bio

03:55 PM – 04:55 PM

The Latest Research on How Ploidy Manipulation Can Be Used to Improve Cannabis Breeding
Versailles III/IV
In this ground-breaking session, Plant Molecular Biologist Richard Philbrook will explore the paradigm-shifting breeding applications in Cannabis possible through modifying ploidy levels. Plant scientists use the manipulation of ploidy (the number of copies of each chromosome in a genome) to drastically improve the performance of countless agricultural crops. Triploids are used to create seedless plant varieties, polyploids are often associated with larger yields, and haploids are used to quickly create stable F1 hybrid lines. Breeding programs of top global crops like corn, potato and sugarcane take advantage of these ploidy concepts to generate billions in added value yearly. For Cannabis to compete on a global scale with these crops, it is important for scientists to apply state-of-the-art techniques like ploidy manipulation to supplement traditional breeding work. Session attendees will gain valuable insights into the current and future research in Cannabis ploidy.
Richard Philbrook
Speaker Richard Philbrook Scientist - Molecular Biology Dark Heart Nursery View Bio

04:30 PM – 06:00 PM

Networking Reception in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

06:30 PM – 09:00 PM

Official After Party
Pool a Paris
An exclusive networking reception poolside at the Paris Las Vegas (included in VIP and All-Access Passes, and as an add-on ticket for others).

08:30 AM – 05:00 PM

Registration Open
Paris Ballroom Foyer

09:00 AM – 10:00 AM

Affecting Cannabinoids and Terpenes: New Research on Regulating Cultivation Conditions for Controlling Secondary Metabolite Production in Cannabis
Champagne III/IV

The medical potential of cannabis (Cannabis sativa L.) is based on its complex chemical profile, comprising hundreds of secondary metabolites including cannabinoids, terpenes and flavonoids. Environmental and cultivation conditions affect plant function and biosynthesis of the secondary metabolites in cannabis. Understanding regulation of plant response to environmental conditions is key for development of optimal chemical profile for modern cultivation. Little science-based knowledge is available regarding regulation and responses of 'drug-type' cannabis plants to cultivation practices. Such information is essential for the optimization of agri-high-tech cultivation for production of high-quality standardized material, as well as for development of plant products containing specific desirable phytochemical profiles.

In this ground-breaking session, Professor Nirit Bernstein will share her team’s recent discoveries concerning the potential of physical and chemical effectors imposed during cultivation to regulate plant development and the profile of active secondary metabolites in ‘drug-type’ cannabis. She has recently uncovered an interaction between plant structure, function, and chemistry in cannabis, and demonstrated a longitudinal variability in secondary metabolites. Mineral nutrition has a large effect on secondary metabolism in cannabis. Under controlled conditions, she demonstrated induction of changes in the cannabinoid and terpene profiles by nutritional supplements. For the key macronutrients, N, K and P, required supply for optimal yield quantity is higher from the levels needed for optimizing yield chemical quality; while a similar supply of Mg supply is required for best yield quality and quantity. Findings from Prof. Bernstein’s lab also characterized effects of plant architecture manipulation (pruning and leaf removal practices), planting density, and light quality on yield quantity and secondary metabolite production in cannabis.

Dr. Nirit Bernstein
Speaker Dr. Nirit Bernstein Professor of Plant Physiology and Head of the Cannabis Physiology and Agronomy Lab ARO, Volcani Research Center View Bio

09:00 AM – 10:00 AM

Special Fireside Chat: Top Lessons From Planet 13 On Experiential Marketing and Creating An Immersive Dispensary Environment In A Competitive Market
Versailles I/II

Dispensary owners and marketers across the country are tapping into the psychology of sensory marketing and making their bricks-and-mortar locations not just pit stops on customers’ cannabis journeys, but destinations. Planet 13 is perhaps the most well-known dispensary destination, prioritizing engaging, interactive and immersive buying experiences with its flagship Las Vegas Superstore. The 110,000-square-foot retail facility, which includes a cafe, launched in 2018 just off the Strip--an enticing and convenient stop for tourists. With another Superstore in California, cultivation facilities in both states and licenses in Illinois and Florida, vertically integrated Planet 13 is taking its experiential retail model to other big cities. In this session, Planet 13 VP of Sales and Marketing David Farris will provide the behind-the-scenes story of Planet 13's journey to becoming an adult-use cannabis entertainment complex, how they built the Planet 13 brand and product line, while also ensuring that returning and new customers have a seamless shopping experience. He will also share take-home action items to implement in your own store to increase customer engagement and loyalty.

Laurie Parfitt
Moderator Laurie Parfitt Principal LKP Impact Consulting, LLC View Bio
David Farris
Speaker David Farris VP of Sales & Marketing Planet 13 View Bio

10:00 AM – 10:45 AM

Networking Refreshments in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Growing Up: Best Practices for Building And Operating Vertical Grows (And Making It Worth Your Investment In Time And Money)
Champagne III/IV
According to Cannabis Business Times’ 2022 “State of the Cannabis Lighting Market Report,” more than a third of growers use vertical rack systems in vegetation (37%) and more than a quarter in flowering (26%), up 6% and 13%, respectively, from 2017. As cultivators are pressured to lower costs of production and get more out of their existing assets, vertical cultivation has become an increasingly intriguing option. This session will walk attendees through the key considerations, common challenges and best practices for building and operating vertical grows, from determining the number of tiers ideal for your goals and space; vertical cultivation’s impact on genetic selection, lighting, HVAC and additional environmental needs; labor and other equipment requirements and more. And, industry experts will weigh the costs of lighting and HVAC for vertical tiers (and how those vary with vertical tiers) vs. the increase in crop production to ensure a positive return on investment.
Jerry Kieran
Moderator Jerry Kieran Co-Founder Clarity Gardens View Bio
Brent Barnes
Speaker Brent Barnes Co-Founder and VP of Breeding and Cultivation Claybourne Co. View Bio
Phil Niles
Speaker Phil Niles Executive Vice President GreenSeal Cannabis Co. View Bio

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Your Extraction Game Plan: A Guide to Winning the Long Game
Versailles III/IV

Building an extraction lab before understanding what is relevant and sustainable long-term in your market(s) is like putting the cart before the horse, and you risk going to market with products that are irrelevant and won’t sell. If launching an extraction business or expanding into extraction is in your sights, they are key things you should consider at the outset. In this session, you will:

  • Gain an understanding of different extract products on the market and the methods used to create them (e.g., CO2, hydrocarbon, ethanol, solventless extraction)
  • Learn how to evaluate product demand, price points, trends and opportunities in your market
  • Understand your goals (to produce CPGs, wholesale to other CPG brands, diversify your revenue channels) and whether it makes business/financial sense for you to build your own lab
  • How to use a data-driven approach and market analysis to determine the business case (market/consumer demand analysis) for which products
  • you will create and what equipment you will need

… and more.

Claudio Miranda
Moderator / Speaker Claudio Miranda Co-Founder Guild Enterprises View Bio
Ron Gershoni
Speaker Ron Gershoni Co-Founder and Chief Executive Officer Jetty Extracts View Bio
Noah Keller
Speaker Noah Keller National Director of Manufacturing Columbia Care View Bio

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Growing Organically Outdoors at Scale From a Pharmaceutical Standard
Versailles I/II

In this session, Tom Forrest, the Co-Founder and Cultivation Director at Puro New Zealand, will deliver a presentation on how the company is growing organically outdoors at scale while meeting pharmaceutical standards for New Zealand-made prescription medicine. The largest medical cannabis operator in the country, Puro NZ has multiple cultivation sites, including a 25-acre, Good Agricultural and Collection Practice (GACP)-certified farm. This multimedia presentation will cover Puro’s site selection and integrated pest and disease management processes, as well as how the company germinates seeds and produces clones organically; fertigates and manages crops; and harvest, processes and packages 40,000 plants at GACP-accredited standards.

The lessons learned from this cultivation approach—which embodies a unique crossover of sustainable agriculture, permaculture, biodynamics and modern production horticultural science—will provide the knowledge needed for growers interested in going this route, and whether it holds an economically viable future.

Tom Forrest
Speaker Tom Forrest Cultivation Director Puro New Zealand View Bio

11:00 AM – 12:00 PM

Tips and Tricks for Home Grow Design and Equipment (And Other Essentials)
Home Grow Track
Concorde C
You’d like to begin growing at home, but you’re unsure where to begin... While the B2B market has plenty of guidance for large-scale licensed cultivation businesses, the intricacies of growing cannabis at home will prompt plenty of questions—especially when it comes to controlling costs throughout the process. What are the benefits to using a startup grow kit or making individual equipment purchases? Should you run a tent or an open-air grow? How about carbon filters? What about proper air flow in a small space? Hot soil and potting mixes vs. hydroponics? Where does one begin with the litany of nutrients needed to grow cannabis? We’ll get into all of those questions (and answers!) and much more, like pH testing, water usage, temperature controls, trellising, low-stress training and the great genetics question: Seeds or clones? Make sure to bring your own questions, too!
Scott Reach
Speaker Scott Reach Owner Rare Dankness/ House of Dankness View Bio

12:00 PM – 01:30 PM

Networking Lunch in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

12:45 PM – 01:30 PM

Lessons Learned: Best Practices for Multi-Tier Cannabis Cultivation
Technology & Solutions
Versailles I/II
Sponsored By
Pipp Horticulture is a leader in vertical mobile racking systems for multi-tier indoor cannabis cultivation. Over the last 6 years, Pipp has installed vertical racking systems in hundreds of facilities worldwide, totaling over 2,500 grow rooms and millions of canopy square feet. This experience has allowed the Pipp Horticulture team to be on the cutting edge of the burgeoning vertical farming field and learn valuable insights along the way. During this presentation, our team will share some of the most valuable best practices we have learned about the successful design and operation of multi-tier cannabis cultivation facilities.
Michael Williamson
Speaker Michael Williamson Director of Cultivation Pipp Horticulture View Bio
Anders Peterson
Speaker Anders Peterson Cannabis Operations Specialist Pipp Horticulture View Bio
Del Rockwell
Speaker Del Rockwell Product Manager Pipp Horticulture View Bio

01:30 PM – 02:20 PM

Federal Cannabis Legalization or Rescheduling in the United States: What Will It Mean for Your Business and the Industry?
Champagne I/II

In this can’t-miss session, experts with an intricate understanding of federal regulatory and financial structures will provide valuable insights into:

  • An overview of the temperature and recent efforts from the White House and Congress;
  • Possible rescheduling impacts;
  • The relief that could come for cannabis operators in a federally legal market;
  • The potential market slowdowns and new business challenges under federal regulations;
  • How federal oversight (including the U.S. Food and Drug Administration) would impact compliance and related costs;
  • How plant-touching businesses can influence decision-making in D.C.;
  • and more.
Amber Littlejohn
Moderator / Speaker Amber Littlejohn Of Counsel Ice Miller LLP View Bio
Shanita Penny
Speaker Shanita Penny Senior VP of Public Affairs Forbes Tate Partners View Bio
Debbie Churgai
Speaker Debbie Churgai Executive Director Americans for Safe Access View Bio

01:30 PM – 02:20 PM

Facility Design - Greenhouse
Champagne III/IV

Building (or retrofitting) a greenhouse structure for cultivation provides tighter environmental control than an outdoor operation, but also maximizes the use of natural resources, like sunlight. Learn from seasoned cannabis greenhouse operators the intricacies of building a structure that is highly efficient yet keeps production costs low.

In this session, you’ll take away tips on:

  • Climate location factors;
  • Materials selection (e.g., glass, polycarbonate, aluminum, galvanized steel, etc.);
  • Designing for tight environmental controls and workflow efficiency;
  • Automated equipment and technologies to consider (e.g., HVAC, odor control, supplemental lighting);
  • and much more.
Dr. Nadia Sabeh
Speaker Dr. Nadia Sabeh President & Founder Dr. Greenhouse Inc. View Bio

01:30 PM – 02:20 PM

Growing Pains: The Most Valuable Cultivation Lessons I've Learned, Expert Panel
Versailles I/II
When it comes to cultivating a thriving cannabis crop, there are many factors to consider, from sourcing genetics and implementing an integrated pest management system to dialing in and managing environmental controls, water and nutrient levels, and harvesting schedules and practices. Missteps can occur and unfortunately have a significant negative impact on plant health, yields and quality. Equipment malfunctions and even failure, plant diseases and pests, nutrient deficiencies and a myriad of other unpredictable stresses can compromise your grow. Learning from the hard lessons of seasoned cultivators can help ensure you and/or your teams avoid serious pitfalls and plant loss and plan for the unexpected. In this session, experienced cultivation professionals will share the most important cultivation lessons they have learned during their careers.
Michelle Simakis
Moderator Michelle Simakis Editor-in-Chief Cannabis Business Times/Cannabis Conference View Bio
Dustin Shroyer
Speaker Dustin Shroyer President and COO Revolution Enterprises View Bio
Jonathan Spadafora
Speaker Jonathan Spadafora President and CEO Veritas Fine Cannabis View Bio

01:30 PM – 02:20 PM

20 Ways to Stand Out from the Competition
Versailles III/IV
What do you do when three other dispensaries open within a six-block radius from you? What about when you’re a “bordertown” retailer that is used to drawing customers from across state lines, and that neighboring state legalizes and a dispensary opens up just across the border? There are keys to standing out in a crowded market, keys to engaging and creating loyal customers and keys to ensuring your long-term success. Experts will share implementable strategies with you on everything from creating the ultimate customer experience to inventory management to serve demand and keep customers coming back, pricing, experiential marketing, creative marketing tactics and loyalty programs, and more.
Laurie Parfitt
Moderator / Speaker Laurie Parfitt Principal LKP Impact Consulting, LLC View Bio
Jerry Millen
Speaker Jerry Millen CEO Greenhouse of Walled Lake View Bio
Lilach Mazor Power
Speaker Lilach Mazor Power CEO Mazor Collective View Bio

01:30 PM – 02:20 PM

The Top Mistakes For Home Growers To Avoid
Home Grow Track
Concorde C
Your cannabis plants are showing signs of leaf discoloration or curling, or they are no longer standing erect, and you quickly search the web for an answer. All of us home growers know the feeling. But the solutions you find on the internet aren’t always so clear-cut. Maybe you’re watering too much. Or maybe not enough. Maybe you’re feeding your plants too much nitrogen or micronutrients. Or maybe not enough. You end up posting a photo of your struggling plants on social media, but whose answer are you to believe? This session will teach you about diagnostic methods to trust yourself and your investigation techniques so you can identify symptoms before irreversible damage occurs. Notably, this session will cover the most common problems home growers face and how to avoid these costly pitfalls.
Dr. Brian Whipker
Speaker Dr. Brian Whipker Professor of Floriculture North Carolina State University View Bio

02:30 PM – 03:20 PM

Got Pests? Learn the Best Strategies for Preventing and Mitigating Them for Good
Versailles I/II

Cannabis growers across the country report that pest management continues to be a top cultivation challenge, according to Cannabis Business Times “State of the Industry” research data. Despite stringent protocols and dialed-in integrated pest management (IPM) strategies, fungus gnats, russet mites, spider mites, thrips and aphids continue to plague even the most careful cultivation businesses. Raymond Cloyd, Ph.D., professor and extension specialist with Kansas State University’s Department of Entomology, works with growers to remediate outbreaks and get successful IPM approaches in place. Cloyd will return to Cannabis Conference this year to detail the challenges growers are facing throughout the U.S. and how they both addressed pests and implemented programs to prevent them from coming back. In this session, attendees will walk away with:

  • strategies for successful biological control programs to combat the most prevalent pests,
  • various solutions to control pests, including biopesticides and their viability in managing insect and/or mite pests in cannabis.
Dr. Raymond Cloyd
Speaker Dr. Raymond Cloyd Professor/Extension Specialist Kansas State University - Department of Entomology View Bio

02:30 PM – 03:20 PM

Facility Design - Indoor
Versailles III/IV

Indoor cultivation provides growers with a major advantage: the ability to control nearly every aspect of cannabis cultivation—from temperature, to humidity, lighting, airflow, odor control and more. However, a poor indoor design could cause expensive bottlenecks in workflow and/or be severely detrimental to plant health. In this detail-rich session, experts share tips and pitfalls to avoid when designing indoor cannabis cultivation facilities, including:

  • Site selection;
  • Utility considerations and sustainability in design;
  • Personnel and resource efficiency;
  • Important equipment considerations and how to properly size equipment for your needs;
  • Designing for workflow efficiency and scalability;
  • Pest and disease prevention strategies;
  • and much more!
Chris O'Ferrell
Speaker Chris O'Ferrell Senior Director of Cultivation Deep Roots Harvest View Bio
Marlon Mallas
Speaker Marlon Mallas General Manager, Cultivation Lume Cannabis Co. View Bio

02:30 PM – 03:20 PM

Strategies To Help Growers, Retailers And Brands Succeed In Falling Markets
Champagne I/II

Even in an up market, it can be challenging for cultivators, retailers, processors and brands to succeed. Competition continues to peak, and in a down market with major price compression, even the most savvy and skilled businesses owners and managers can struggle. According to Cannabis Business Times’ 2023 “State of the Cannabis Cultivation Industry Report,” more than half (53%) of cultivators reported that they are not profitable; yet, nearly four in ten (39%) said they are making a profit.

What are those who are profitable doing that others aren’t? What can plant-touching cannabis owners/CEOs/businesses do to increase profit margins and turn their businesses around to profitability, especially in down markets?

In this crucial session, Dennis O’Malley will share proven, step-by-step strategies that have helped turn unprofitable businesses into profitable ones. You’ll leave with tactics you can apply immediately to your business to begin the transition to increased margins and profits.

Dennis O'Malley
Speaker Dennis O'Malley Principal Echtrai View Bio
Yung Tan
Speaker Yung Tan CEO & Co-Founder MFUSED View Bio
Jennifer Chapin
Speaker Jennifer Chapin CEO and Co-Founder Kikoko View Bio
Jerome Crawford
Speaker Jerome Crawford Chief Legal Officer Pleasantrees View Bio

02:30 PM – 03:20 PM

University Research Roundup: The Latest in Cultivation Science
Champagne III/IV
Ensure your team is up to speed on the latest agronomic research emerging from Utah State University and Southern Illinois University-Carbondale, and learn how these studies can impact your cultivation operations. This is the second year we’ve presented this esteemed panel discussion, and we’re excited to share fascinating new results on important topics like the impact of temperature on indoor yield and the weed suppression properties of outdoor cannabis crops.
Mitchell Westmoreland
Speaker Mitchell Westmoreland PhD Candidate Utah State University View Bio
Dr. Karla Gage
Speaker Dr. Karla Gage Associate Professor of Weed Science and Plant Biology Southern Illinois University Carbondale View Bio

02:30 PM – 03:20 PM

Small-Scale Environmental Control: What Home Growers Need to Know to Stabilize Humidity and Temperature in Order to Maintain Healthy Plants and Maximize Yields
Home Grow Track
Concorde C

The main inputs that lead to maximized yields for any grow cycle are primarily three-fold: environmental control, lighting, and watering or fertigation. While investing in purpose-built commercial HVAC equipment allows large-scale growers to focus less on their indoor environment and more on tending to their plants, home growers don’t have that luxury, making environmental control a leading challenge. But does it need to be?

In this session, attendees will learn how to set up a retrofitted space that accounts for temperature control, relative humidity and other environmental elements, both during lights on and lights off, with accuracy and efficiency. This equation often comes down to ensuring various controls work in unison to benefit the greater ecosystem. But finding consistency between day and night conditions as well as throughout various growth stages isn’t always easy, and drastic fluctuations can stunt plant growth, affecting yield and quality, and even create ideal conditions for harmful molds and fungus to grow. Mitigating these environmental variances will take you from novice to pro in no time.

Kerry Bennett
Speaker Kerry Bennett Director of Operations Stem Holdings View Bio

03:30 PM – 04:15 PM

Expanding Your Cultivation and Retail Operations: Making Sure Your Infrastructure And SOPs Are Repeatable Across Facilities And States
Versailles III/IV

Developing standard operating procedures (SOPs) in both commercial grows and retail stores is crucial when expanding to multiple facilities to streamline processes, improve efficiencies, ensure compliance and establish brand and product consistency. When done well, consistent infrastructure and detailed SOPs can improve company culture by helping team members know what’s expected and how to excel in their roles. SOPs also create more opportunities to negotiate bulk rates for supplies and technology. When expanding to new states, having a framework in place can make the transition more seamless. With standard systems, companies can be more prepared for the unexpected complications that can arise in any cultivation facility or dispensary.

Whether you operate a cultivation facility, dispensary, or both, this session will provide insights on how to design build a mechanical infrastructure that is repeatable no matter who’s running the operation, which is essential to ensure success in cultivation. You’ll also learn areas that are critical to keep consistent in dispensaries, including inventory and technology, and what decisions can be left to individual managers to help stores have some autonomy and better represent different customers and neighborhoods. 

Trevor Longmore
Moderator Trevor Longmore Founder CannaX Consulting View Bio
Ryan Cook
Speaker Ryan Cook Executive Vice President of Operations Jushi View Bio
Laura Jaramillo Bernal
Speaker Laura Jaramillo Bernal COO nuEra View Bio

03:30 PM – 04:15 PM

Marketing 101: A Step-By-Step Guide To Building A Cannabis Brand
Champagne III/IV

Everyone creates brands—but few companies are successful in creating brands that cultivate staying power with consumers. Many entrepreneurs, not just in the cannabis industry, but in all consumer segments, get excited about the idea of creating a brand, and jump straight to designing a logo. But that’s a big mistake, according to experts, especially as brand power becomes increasingly important in the ubercompetitive, rapidly expanding cannabis industry.

This session will help determine what your ideal customer should look like, how to build out the demographic, and how to conduct important research. Presenters will also outline how to determine your company’s points of parity and/or differentiation in the marketplace, what your brand stands for, and what types of emotions you want to evoke. Then, they’ll provide building-blocks for design and more traditional branding ideas. They will also dive into how to evaluate these concepts for both medical and adult-use markets (as these applications should be handled differently).

Nicole Buffong
Moderator Nicole Buffong National Brand Manager Black Buddha Cannabis View Bio
Roz McCarthy
Speaker Roz McCarthy Founder/CEO Black Buddha Cannabis View Bio
Salpy Boyajian
Speaker Salpy Boyajian President & Chairman Cana Nevada Corp. View Bio

03:30 PM – 04:15 PM

Environmental Control: Proven Best Practices From Seed to Harvest
Versailles I/II

Environmental Control: Proven Best Practices From Seed To Harvest What are the elements of a thriving indoor or greenhouse environment for cannabis plants? There are several crucial environmental control factors that cultivators must consider, from managing heat loads, temperature swings and dehumidification, dialing in vapor pressure deficit, optimizing air flow, and more. In addition to the extreme heat and moisture loads within a cultivation facility, growers must also combat external elements such as airborne dirt, pests, mold spores and disease, which have a greater chance of affecting an indoor grow without the proper environment in place to help mitigate them.

In this session, experts in climate control will provide key takeaways on how to avoid missteps in managing your grow environment, which can lead to costly mistakes related to labor, powdery mildew, plant loss and more. Whether growing indoors or in a greenhouse, you’ll learn how to create a thriving crop environment that maximizes plant health and yield while minimizing pests and pathogens.

Michael Zartarian
Speaker Michael Zartarian Principal Zartarian Engineering and Precision Ag View Bio
Alexandre Gauthier
Speaker Alexandre Gauthier Vice President, R&D and Director of Cultivation Origine Nature View Bio

03:30 PM – 04:15 PM

Surviving the Market Crash
Champagne I/II
Running a plant-touching business has never been considered easy, but doing so during the most challenging time in the legal market’s history, is even more trying. Nearly every business is looking for ways to adjust their operations to streamline and significantly cut costs to help improve their margins. In this session, experts will take a deep dive into strategies for everything from saving on labor costs to how and when automation can be a saving grace, evaluating operational structure and weighing your products vs. your costs of production, and more. Attendees will leave with insights into multiple options for helping them evaluate many aspects of their businesses and how to set themselves and their operations up to survive the market downturn and thrive over the long term.
Tony Lange
Moderator Tony Lange Associate Editor Cannabis Business Times View Bio
Lex Corwin
Speaker Lex Corwin Founder/CEO Stone Road View Bio
Autumn Shelton
Speaker Autumn Shelton Chief Financial Officer and Partner Autumn Brands View Bio
Jonathan Spadafora
Speaker Jonathan Spadafora President and CEO Veritas Fine Cannabis View Bio

04:00 PM – 05:30 PM

Networking Reception in the Exhibit Hall
Paris Ballroom

05:30 PM

Close of Conference