Yolo's infrastructure, natural resources and workforce make it a great place to grow...

******** Update 8/1/2017 **********

Yolo County supervisors voted today to move forward with the development of a nursery pilot program. We still have a long road ahead, but this was the first step. Thank for all of your support; we will keep you posted as we move toward the next milestone

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It’s no secret to farmers in Northern California that Dark Heart clones aren’t easily accessible. Farmers might find themselves standing in dispensary lines for hours to snag a few cuts. Much of this is due to expansion limitations of our current 20,000 square foot production facility in Oakland. To solve this problem, we hope to construct a new high-tech greenhouse facility somewhere in California. We’ve explored opportunities throughout California, and we now hope to make Yolo County the home of our new facility. 

We were initially drawn to Yolo County because it is one of the most diverse farming regions in the nation and has always been a leader in California’s agricultural economy. Now it has an opportunity to become a leader in the Cannabis Industry’s agricultural economy. 

California’s cannabis economy has been predicted to grow to $10 billion by 2021, and a recent study by the University of the Pacific’s Center for Business and Policy Research projected that the greater Sacramento area stood to gain more than 19,000 jobs and $4 billion in economic stimulus all resulting from cannabis industry growth.

Of course, cannabis farmers, producers, distributors, and resellers are part of that number. But so too are the local businesses that support them. These are the contractors, engineers, book-keepers, consultants, fertilizer suppliers, fuel suppliers, marketers, and more who make up the fabric of our communities. Not only that, but it includes the restaurants, grocery stores, and retailers where cannabis industry employees.

In fact, of the $4 billion, which stands to come to the area, fully half represents the value generated outside the cannabis industry. That’s a $2 billion benefit to businesses that don’t even touch the plant! The employment numbers are similarly rosy. The industry could generate more than 19,000 jobs in the area. Two-thirds of those jobs – or 13,000 – are expected to be outside the industry.

A Nursery In the Community - What to Expect

But we believe that cannabis can be more than just a new industry. We believe it can be a new kind if industry. That’s why we’ve focused so much over the years on community engagement. In fact, we just got done with our annual Team Cannabis effort at the San Francisco AIDS Walk through which we have now raised more than $200,000 to combat HIV / AIDS!

So it should come as no surprise that we’ve spent a lot of time this last year getting to know the Yolo community. Yolo doesn’t isn’t yet a household name in cannabis, but it will be soon! There are now dozens of permitted cannabis farmers in the county growing up to an acre of canopy, and they’re putting out some top shelf crops. As with most jurisdictions in California, Yolo is just getting its footing with regard to local regulation. The Board of Supervisors has been judicious in their efforts. There have been several changes in the last year, and there’s likely to more on the horizon. Eric Gudz and the Yolo Cannabis Coalition have been driving the effort to bridge the gap between the cannabis industry and county government. We recently had an opportunity to partner with YCC to help keep Meals on Wheels running on weekends in Yolo County. Thanks YCC!

We’ve been getting to know the rest of the county as well. Earlier this month we eagerly broke bread with aspiring sustainable farmers as sponsors at the Center for Land Based Learning’s Summer Dinner on the Farm. CLBL’s mission is to “[inspire, educate, and cultivate] future generations of farmers, agricultural leaders, and natural resource stewards.” But we were the ones that left inspired when we heard about CLBL’s efforts to incubate young farmers by granting them access to farm plots around the county. Plus, the food was delicious, thanks Nugget Market!
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Back in Woodland we shared an evening Rhythm & Ribs at a benefit for St John’s Retirement Village. We may not have walked away with the grand prize ATV but we did walk away fully belly and sore dancing feet! Across California there are more new seniors coming into medical cannabis dispensaries than any other demographic. As the EB Times recently reported, seniors are looking for alternatives to pharmaceuticals, and they’re finding great solutions in cannabis. This community was so kind to welcome us in, and we had a really fun time!
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With great soil, sun, water, and farmers, what else could Yolo possibly have to offer? How about, the best agricultural minds in the world. Since its inception, UC Davis has been the world leader in agricultural research and development. Whenever there has been a breakthrough in ag science, UC Davis and Yolo County have been there to lead the charge. As most of our customers know, cannabis R&D is a passion area for Dark Heart Nursery. We pride ourselves on developing a deeper and deeper understanding of this plant, and we’ve eagerly lead the industry into new processes like tissue culture. But there’s so much more work to be done. Since the beginning of the agricultural revolution it’s been forbidden to research cannabis. We have 100 years of work to catch up on, and we’re eager to get started.

Next Tuesday the Yolo County Board of Supervisors will consider changes to the existing cannabis ordinance. While various changes are likely needed to improve the effectiveness of the program and protect quality of life in the county, we hope that the board will continue to support the development of the county’s newly licensed cultivators and that it willadd new license categories such as nursery to the program. We also hope that after refining their ordinance, they will once again begin accepting conventional cultivation applications. The Board of Supervisors has been wise in acting slowly and deliberately in developing its program. This is a new industry; it takes time to get it right. Now is the time to take the next step.

If all goes well on Tuesday and in the coming months, we hope to move forward with development of up to 2 acres of new state of the art greenhouse production space. The buildout will generate jobs and revenue for local architects, engineers, contractors, and suppliers. In addition, we will be hiring up to 100 full time employees who will eat, work, play and live in Yolo county.

Perhaps most importantly for you readers: we’ll finally be able to get all the clones you want. In fact, we’re so excited about this opportunity we’ve already started drawing out some design concepts. We even penciled in some space to make flower-ready teens!

DHN Team Planning New Production Space

 

Recent press Coverage

Dark Heart Nursery’s engagement in Yolo County has been in the news lately. Check out these recent clippings. 

Meals on Wheels receives $10,000 from Yolo Cannabis Coalition

Supervisor Don Saylor argues for sensible cannabis policies in Yolo County

Yolo County Supervisors to Discuss Future of Pot Business

Yolo County Is Primed for Cannabis Agriculture

Cannabis economy works well with Yolo County agriculture

Yolo County is primed for cannabis agriculture

 

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