How to find a job in the cannabis industry: 7 job openings

As medical and recreational marijuana is legalized in more states, more and more people are wondering how to find a job in the marijuana industry. As this booming industry continues to evolve, now is the time to find out. think about it:

  • The use of medical marijuana is Legal in 37 states and Washington DC, Recreational use is legal in the following countries 17 states.
  • According to a 2021 study by Kisi Security Access, there are 7,490 cannabis dispensaries nationwide. (This is more than 7,000 taco bells in the country.)
  • According to the latest annual report from Leafly, a leading cannabis website, the legal cannabis industry has created 33,700 new jobs in the United States in the past 12 months, making it one of the fastest growing industries in the United States.
  • The report found across the country that as of January 2020, cannabis companies had 243,700 full-time jobs, compared with 122,800 in 2017.

Many jobs at marijuana companies pay much higher than restaurant or retail positions. More importantly, some do not require years of experience or training. Many employers in the cannabis industry are young companies. They are open to hardworking employees and they can grow like them.

The following are the needs of cannabis jobs.

Alexander Karol, chief chemical engineer at Knox Medical, tests the cannabis oil extracted from CO2 to ensure that the product meets high purity standards.Photo courtesy of Knox Medical

7 jobs in the legal cannabis industry

1. Chief grower/main grower

Head planter Responsible for plants, crops and grower teams. You will need to establish a growing program for the cannabis business and track the plant throughout its life cycle to create the best product possible. The main grower is responsible for many factors that affect plant health and value, such as nutrient application, humidity, ventilation, temperature, light, fertilizers, herbicides, pesticides and fungicides.

Salary range: USD 58,000 to USD 153,000.


  • Usually requires a degree in horticulture or equivalent
  • Years of growth experience
  • Understand plant nutrients, soil, planting techniques, pest control and harvesting methods
  • Comprehensive knowledge of strains: alfalfa, indica and hybrids
  • Advanced knowledge of cannabis plants, genetics and cloning
  • Management experience
  • Some states may require a professional license
  • Some companies may require Master Grower certification

2. Gourmet chef

Food chef Produce cannabis food and beverages for medical and recreational consumption for cannabis companies. In addition to any local and state certifications required for cannabis work, they usually receive cooking training.

This profession is not as simple as sprinkling a few buds in a chocolate cake. Food chefs must create products that contain a uniform proportion of cannabis in each serving to achieve the promised effect. The product must also taste good, look good, meet legal requirements, and be safely packaged.

Salary range: US$50,000 to more than US$100,000


  • Thorough understanding of cannabis strains and concentrates
  • Excellent cooking skills
  • Professional cooking and kitchen experience

3. Bidder/pharmacy agent

Knox Medical Dispensary is located near the village of Ivanhoe in Orlando, Florida.Photo courtesy of Knox Medical

bidderSometimes called a pharmacy agent, it is an intermediary between the customer and retail and medical marijuana sellers. They must understand the wide range of cannabis plants, medicinal uses, products, dosages, and methods of consumption.

This entry-level job is very sought-after because it can help workers in the cannabis industry step through the door and learn the skills of other cannabis jobs

Salary range: USD 25,000 to USD 85,000


  • Excellent customer service skills
  • Thorough understanding of cannabis strains and products
  • No criminal records
  • Ability to build trust and rapport with customers

4. Bud trimmer

Cannabis plants are like many other plants. They grow best when they are kept neatly trimmed and trimmed.

The trimmer keeps the cannabis buds on the plant and cuts and weighs them when they are ready to be sold. The trimmer often takes a long time to trim the flower buds for maximum bag attraction. When trimmers can learn other aspects of the business (such as budgeting, development, or filling out paperwork), they may have downtime.

Bud trimmer It is also an entry-level job and a great way to learn about different types of cannabis plants and how they grow.

Salary range: USD 23,000 to USD 46,000


  • Accuracy and consistency of pruning
  • Learn about cannabis plants and strains
  • Able to weigh and measure accurately

5. Extract the engineer

Concentrates derived from cannabis are another growing market in the legal cannabis industry.

Extraction manager Remove valuable compounds from plants and produce a range of concentrate types, including distilled oil for consumption or terpene paste for cannabis connoisseurs. They prepare the factory for extraction and operate highly complex equipment. They also strictly record all plants, chemicals and equipment used in the laboratory.

Salary range: USD 29,000 to USD 80,000


  • Most positions in cannabis companies require two or more years of laboratory extraction experience, preferably in cannabis, drugs or nutrition.
  • Have a bachelor’s degree in organic or inorganic chemistry or related fields.

6. Cannabis Company Compliance Manager

Compliance is essential to ensure that cannabis companies comply with all laws and agreements.

Typical duties include overseeing state and local regulations, developing and maintaining records, policies, and procedures to ensure that there is no illegal or unprofessional behavior among employees.

Compliance manager It also regularly audits the inventory, finances and facility operations of cannabis companies.

Salary range: USD 23,500 to USD 128,000

Work requirements:

  • At least 1-3 years of compliance experience in a highly regulated industry.
  • Strong preference is given to specific experience in cannabis cultivation/manufacturing operations.
  • Requires experience in seeding to selling software programs (BioTrack, METRC, MJ Freeway, etc.).
  • Experience the leader to check and complete the corrective action plan.

7. Business-to-business salesperson

You may have sales experience that can be used in a cannabis business. Salespeople call on new potential customers and existing customers to highlight growers’ products to entertainment and medical pharmacies and to distinguish these products from others. They identify potential customers, build relationships, set sales goals, monitor competition, create sales materials and conduct live demonstrations.

Salary range: $35,000 to $60,000 plus commission


  • At least six months to one year of sales experience in the cannabis industry is preferred, not required
  • At least one to two years of business-to-business sales track record
  • In-depth knowledge of cannabis and cannabis-related products
  • Excellent interpersonal skills
  • Bachelor degree is preferred, not required

There are various Online resources Provide the cannabis education required for certification that some of these jobs may require.

A paid training program for completing entry-level jobs in the legal cannabis industry may or may not affect your employability. Be sure to do your homework first, and then spend money to go to class, you may learn something for free at work.

Katherine Snow Smith is the senior writer of The Penny Hoarder. Former staff writer Lisa McGreevy contributed to this report.

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About the Author: Agnes Zang