In this latest in our series of insider interviews exploring how Maximum Yield, Sunlight Supply and their anti-marijuana allies are working against openness and progress in marijuana nutrients and supplies, we interview a leading hydroponics scientist and consultant….
Big Buds: Start by telling Big Buds readers about your job and qualifications.
Hydroponics Scientist: My academic training is in agronomy, horticultural science, and engineering product development. I am a currently a consultant for hydroponics manufacturers doing research and design to make hydroponics products specifically for marijuana.
Big Buds: Why should marijuana growers be concerned about hydroponics manufacturing and retailing?
Hydroponics Scientist: Marijuana produces dozens of compounds, including THC, that no other plant produces. Because of that, it has nutritional input and environmental needs that no other plant has. It needs a plant-specifc program of handling and feeding. You can’t just use any nutrients and expect good results.
Big Buds: OK, but what does that have to do with hydroponics manufacturing and hydroponics retailing?
Hydroponics Scientist: Look at the progress in the development of computers. Forty years ago one computer took up the size of an entire room and you used paper cards to put data into it. Now you can carry a much more powerful computer, and it fits in your hand. Someone has been blocking that same rate and scope of progress in the hydroponics industry. Hydroponics gear and nutrients are mostly borrowed from other industries. They’re not the result of specialized research on marijuana plants. They’re not optimized for marijuana.
Big Buds: How about some examples of what you mean…
Hydroponics Scientist: Most hydroponics lighting is nothing more than street lighting and similar lighting hardware put into a hydroponics setting. Most hydroponics nutrients are nothing more than fertilizers for corn, tomatoes and other food crops, repackaged and sold at highly-inflated prices to marijuana growers.
Big Buds: If it works for hydroponics marijuana growers, what’s the problem?
Hydroponics Scientist: Why should there be rapid and fantastic improvements in computers, phones, cars and other technology, but the hydroponics industry gets left behind? Why should marijuana growers pay premium prices for dinosaur technology?
Big Buds: Surely there has been at least some progress in hydroponics technology in the last 40 years, right?
Hydroponics Scientist: Some, but not as much as there could have been.
Big Buds: So you do admit that hydroponics technology has improved?
Hydroponics Scientist: Yes, in these ways: hydroponics lighting designed to deliver light wavelengths that trigger marijuana to produce more THC. Aeroponics, NFT, DWC and dose-controlled sub-irrigation systems. Cooled lights. Light movers. C02 generators. Computerized grow room monitoring and climate control. Hydroponics nutrients made for marijuana. That’s about it.
Big Buds: What’s holding the hydroponics industry back?
Hydroponics Scientist: Monopolies in hydroponics distribution and retailing. A lock on hydroponics information. Monopoly effects that discourage hydroponics retailers from selling hydroponics nutrients and hydroponics equipment designed for marijuana growing.
Big Buds: How did things get this way?
Hydroponics Scientist: Companies that dictate to the industry have been around the longest so they’ve built a network of covert control and monopoly. When a new hydroponics manufacturer comes in with modernized products specifically for marijuana growers, the monopoly tries to keep those new products out of the marketplace.
Big Buds: What can marijuana growers do about this?
Hydroponics Scientist: Vote with your dollars. Only buy from hydroponics companies that engineer for your marijuana plants. Boycott the monopolists. Reward the innovators by spending your money with them.
Big Buds: Have you talked to the monopolists?
Hydroponics Scientist: Of course. I told them they remind me of prohibitionists, and the federal government.
Big Buds: How so?
Hydroponics Scientist: The feds refuse to allow clinical research into marijuana’s medical uses. The monopolists refuse to allow market access to hydroponics scientists and manufacturers who design products for marijuana growers. It’s all part of a war against this plant. I’ve asked them to stop buying into the war. Help us show the world just how energy efficient, horticulturally precise and creative the hydroponics industry can be.
Big Buds: If you were king of the hydroponics world and could change this situation, what good would it do marijuana growers?
Hydroponics Scientist: Marijuana growers would love the new and improved gear and hydroponics nutrients we could bring to the market if the monopolists would embrace marijuana instead of pretending it’s not the most important plant that hydroponics growers grow. Growers would see advances in hydroponics nutrients, equipment and technology that allow them to produce higher THC percentages and control cannabinoid profiles to make marijuana more useful, and more pleasurable. These changes could happen virtually overnight if we had a free and fair hydroponics marketplace dedicated to what’s best for marijuana growers!