As laws surrounding the consumption and cultivation of marijuana have relaxed, many canna-preneurs have emerged to stake a claim in the burgeoning legal weed business, including tech startups aiming to make homegrown marijuana as simple as clicking a few boxes and handing over a credit card, including Israeli-based firm Seedo.
The promise is certainly alluring; while growing primo buds isn’t uncharted territory, growing quality weed still takes more effort and knowledge than most consumers have the time and aptitude to invest in, despite interest in grow-your-own highs.
The dream of an all-in-one, set-it-and-forget-it mini-grow system is one certainly worth chasing, and while your stoner friend had enough time on their hands to tend to their herb, people with things like careers and families are ready to trade money for expertise and convenience. Aspiring lazy green thumbs may actually be at a bigger disadvantage than bud growers of yore, as capital invested in these startups have clearly gone into funding marketing like SEO and online reputation management which cast a heavy haze on the veracity of online research.
Shallow digging into Seedo and their competitors will result in mostly PR releases and positive references to products that have only just started to ship with many pre-orders still waiting for fulfillment. Those seeking a more balanced view would have to look past big name endorsements like Snoop Dogg’s and messed with Google results, and dig deep into the less traveled threads on message boards and Reddit posts to see beyond the search engine manipulations for a more balanced appraisal.
Are these next-gen grow systems that promise plug-and-play marijuana worth the investment? It’s probably too early to know, as both the technology behind the products and the rules around growing are still in early days. Traditional grow setups are tried-and-true, and communities devoted to home grow have sprouted more and more as attitudes around cannabis consumption relax.
Those interested in DIY would perhaps be better served investing time in understanding how to grow weed indoors in order to better evaluate the promises made by gilded tongued marketers with big advertising warchests.
Ultimately, celebrity endorsements and online strategies are no substitute for an informed consumer. Investing in nascent technology can result in having the next big game changer like the iPhone or a Juicero-like reminder to not chase every grand promise made by smooth-talking tech entrepreneurs.