Oregon Marijuana Growers Scrambling For Real Estate
When I first started consuming marijuana in the mid-90’s (I’m 33 years old), there were tons of consumers for every marijuana grower in Oregon. I don’t have an exact ratio because obviously no one kept track of such things. However, marijuana was not nearly as easy as cheap and available as it is now in my home state. I remember there being dry spells quite often, and a dank ounce of marijuana cost $300+ on the black market. Times have changed quite a bit since then.
Now almost everyone I know has a garden or is trying to start a garden. The ratio of growers to consumers is like nothing I thought I’d ever see in my lifetime. I haven’t heard of the marijuana scene in Oregon being ‘dry’ for several years now, and I can buy an ounce of dank for $100 just about anywhere in the state. With dispensaries flourishing all over the state, and recreational marijuana coming online soon, there are even more people trying to become growers for commercial purposes, and those that are already growing are trying to grow more. This has led to a real estate rush of sorts in Oregon. Per Oregon Live:
The Oregonian’s analysis of 2014 state grow site data identified 64 large-scale medical marijuana grow sites in the Portland area – a whopping 178 percent increase since 2012. Data revealed 282 grow sites across Oregon serving 11 or more medical marijuana patients – a 129 percent increase since 2012.
Two factors have spurred the rapid expansion of marijuana growers: Oregon’s newly regulated medical marijuana dispensary industry, which includes nearly 213 retail outlets where cardholders can purchase medical cannabis, and anticipation of legalized marijuana, which Oregon voters approved last fall.
“The legal marketplace has been limited to 70,000 (medical marijuana) cardholders and now it’s about to be every adult and every 21-and-older tourist who passes through the state,” said Matt Walstatter, a medical cannabis grower and owner of Pure Green, a Northeast Portland medical marijuana dispensary. “It makes sense for production to ramp up.”
People forking out big bucks for real estate and warehouses need to be careful. They need to realize that they are far from the only people with this idea, and that there is a slim margin between success and failure when it comes to growing commercial marijuana. The price for marijuana in Oregon is basically at an all-time low, and considering that every household can start growing in July, I would expect that trend to continue. Unless you can grow world class marijuana in a cheap and efficient manner, you may end up losing your shirt if you go all in on an expensive property. Food for thought.