Massachusetts marijuana jobs and cannabis careers are on the upswing. As the East Coast’s first adult-use weed market, the state is seeing promising growth. With recreational and medical pot both legal in the state, the state’s market has expanded and created a wealth of new full-time jobs.
Industry Snapshot: Massachusetts
Massachusetts became the first state on the East Coast to legalize adult-use pot in November 2016. The state had approved medical weed laws in November 2012. Today, the state's market is one of the fastest-growing in the nation. If you’re looking for a career in this industry, this state is a good place to start.
In 2018, the state made $156 million in sales. It quickly grew that amount to $404 million in 2019. Experts predict that the state could reach well over $700 million in sales in 2020. In 2019, the state had 13,255 full-time weed jobs. This job number is set to grow with the expansion of the adult-use market over the next few years.
Requirements to Work in the Industry
If you want to work in the state’s industry, you need to be at least 21 years of age or older. Some companies may require you to have a high school diploma or GED. Previous work experience in a relevant field is preferred.
Applicants may be required to undergo a criminal background check. You must have a clean criminal record with no drug-related felonies. Automatic disqualifiers include the failure to register as a sex offender and a conviction for distributing drugs to minors.
The state has over 300 different dispensary facilities across the states. The massive growth of pot shops means that you have more choices of workplaces. Retail jobs range from budtenders to security guards. These entry-level jobs can be a good start toward management roles.
Budtenders provide customers with outstanding customer service. Budtenders are knowledgeable about the state laws and the products for sale. As a budtender, you must assess a customer's needs and provide them with the information and products they require. You’ll use the point-of-sale systems, check inventory, and update tracking databases. Budtenders can earn between $12 and $15 an hour.
The state has a high need for inventory specialists. As an inventory specialist, you maintain an accurate and compliant inventory of products. You'll organize the vault and know where each item is located. You need to order supplies when they are low, process defective items, and come up with ways to reduce theft and loss. Inventory specialists can earn between $14 and $16 an hour.
Security guards help maintain safe shopping environments. You’ll be in charge of checking IDs and appointment times. You'll also need to reduce loitering and prevent on-site consumption. You’ll check electronic surveillance and alarm systems, greet patients, and monitor traffic and parking. Security guards in the state can earn between $14 and $17 per hour. Supervisor roles can earn up to $20 per hour.
As an administrator, you must perform a wide range of administrative tasks. These tasks include setting up meetings and recording information or taking notes. You’ll answer phones, screen calls, copy, fax, and receive and send mail. You’ll greet guests, manage documents, and handle other clerical duties. Administrative assistants in the state can earn between $15 and $16 per hour.
Commercial grow operations require a full staff of growing assistants. A master grower oversees all operations. Entry-level jobs can be a stepping stone toward higher-paying jobs on a weed farm. Growing jobs just require a deep knowledge of weed growing practices.
As a trimmer, you’ll process dry flower by hand or with machinery. You’ll assist in the packaging of products in a safe and speedy manner. You may need to assemble pre-rolls and package other whole flower products. You may need to package concentrates, edibles, and other infused products. You'll have to label and weigh each product properly. Weed trimmers in Massachusetts can earn between $13 and $16 per hour.
Growing assistants help out a master grower through all stages of the plant production process. You’ll be caring for mother plants by transplanting, pruning, and watering them. You may need to take cuttings to create clones. You’ll monitor plants through the vegetative growth phase and ensure proper plant health through the drying and curing process. Growers assistants can earn between $15 and $17 per hour.
Kitchen jobs range from entry-level dishwashers to head edibles chefs. These jobs help produce edibles in a traditional kitchen setting. Entry-level jobs will need to maintain the facility clean and organized. As a kitchen worker, you’ll need basic knowledge of kitchen equipment and weed.
As a kitchen technician, you’ll perform traditional culinary duties. You’ll help prepare baked goods, candies, and pastries. You’ll measure ingredients and knead the dough. You'll place the edibles in the oven and on the cooling racks after baking. Previous experience as a baker, chef, or in a kitchen environment is preferred. Kitchen assistants can earn about $14 an hour.
Extraction companies are responsible for removing the resin from the plant. The process is performed in a laboratory with lab-grade equipment. Extraction processes vary in solvents, equipment, and refining processes used. Companies may prefer applicants who have a bachelor’s degree in a science discipline.
Extraction technicians create a range of weed extracts. You’ll have to produce multiple batches of oil a day. You'll have to ensure the machine performs flawlessly. Knowledge about lab processes is important. An extraction technician can make between $40,000 and $50,000 a year.
Ancillary jobs are critical to the growth of any pot company. Companies need a wealth of outsourced services to remain compliant and competitive. For instance, marketing is a big need for pot companies trying to gain a competitive edge in the state. With all that growth, weed companies are going to need banking, technology, HR, and other business solutions. That’s where you come in.
Massachusetts Cannabis College
Are you ready to join thousands of other career professionals? Sign up for CTU’s online cannabis college. Our courses teach you about every aspect of the industry. That includes weed extraction, pot cultivation, cannabis laws and so much more. Our training prepares you for nearly any job in the industry. Sign up here.