Look in the sky — it’s a bird! It’s a plane! It’s… a drone carrying 10 pounds of dank, three ounces of concentrates, and a few hundred vape cartridges?
If you’re hanging out in Seattle this spring, that could be the situation in the skies above, as local tech company GRN Holding prepares to debut a fleet of drones for business-to-business cannabis deliveries in Washington.
"It has been hard for me to keep this project a secret, because it is so cool,” GRN CEO Justin Costello said in a press release announcing the unmanned pot robots. “This is the boldest move yet in the industry we have gotten involved with, and we anticipate that we will be working diligently with state regulators to make sure the technology meets the regulatory standards and requirements set forth in various states. We anticipate the entire industry will adopt this where applicable."
According to local Seattle news station KIRO, when the cannabis drones first debut, GRN is adamant that they will be used only for transportation between wholesale distributors and dispensaries, and will not be available for direct-to-customer delivery.
And with a payload limit of more than 80 pounds and a tether of nearly 6 miles, experts are hopeful that the high flying delivery drones could save money and lighten the industry’s environmental burden. To assure compliance, each drone will be outfitted with an iPad featuring a state-approved CannaTrac digital payment system and e-signature software.
"It's awesome that our company can be part of something so groundbreaking while helping to create cashless safety standards for the hemp and cannabis industry,” Tom Gavin, CEO of CannaTrac, said in a press release. “This hits all the needed elements for a true market disruptor. In speaking with Justin, basically the cost to run and operate a drone is 1/10th of a van or sprinter, so this is not some move to change an industry on just policy or technology, this will change an industry based on safety and cost savings, as well."
It’s unclear what the drones will look like, but GRN is currently hiring drone pilots and experts to operate the robot deliveries remotely from the company’s office in Seattle.
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