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Cannabis job opportunities are on the rise all over the country. In today's fast-growing cannabis markets, you can choose from a wide range of entry-, mid-, and upper-level positions in retail, manufacturing, cultivation, and ancillary segments.
If you are looking for the hottest marijuana industry jobs, you have so many to choose from. Whether you are just starting out or have many years of experience under your belt, you can land any of these 5 marijuana industry jobs.
Join the Fastest-Growing Industry
Despite cannabis being illegal on the federal level, marijuana in America is big right now. American cannabis companies are creating thousands of new cannabis jobs and bringing in tax revenue for local governments to fund community programs. Legal cannabis is, by far, the fastest-growing job market in the U.S.
As of September 2021, medical cannabis use is legal in 37 states and recreational cannabis use is legal in 18 states plus Washington D.C. Today, most states have legalized cannabis for medical or recreational use. The legalization trend is not slowing down anytime soon.
There are tons of job opportunities in cannabis. However, some states are experiencing faster and bigger growth than others. According to Leafly’s latest 2021 cannabis jobs report, these are the top 10 states in terms of revenue and the number of marijuana industry jobs added in 2020:
- California – 23,707
- Colorado – 4,338
- Florida – 14,891
- Arizona – 5,648
- Washington – 524
- Michigan – 9,216
- Oregon – 687
- Illinois – 8,348
- Oklahoma – 6,237
- Pennsylvania – 7,188
In November 2020, every single initiative related to cannabis passed. Measures in Mississippi, Montana, South Dakota, Virginia, New Mexico, and New York were approved by voters. Despite an overturned approval by the Mississippi Supreme Court and a pending legal battle in South Dakota, support for cannabis legalization continues to grow.
With so much support for legal weed, it is no wonder why the industry is seeing the fastest growth. Marijuana industry jobs range from entry-level product packagers to C-suite executives who take care of the bigger-picture business problems.
No matter what your skill level is, you can start working toward any of these top five hottest cannabis careers.
Top 5 Marijuana Industry Jobs
Marijuana industry jobs vary in pay, responsibilities, and qualifications. In addition, job requirements for cannabis workers vary by state. Some states require getting a cannabis worker's permit and a background check.
Around the country, these are the top five most coveted cannabis industry jobs.
1. Edibles Chef
Edibles chefs get to try out their creative and culinary skills while coming up with new sweet and savory recipes infused with cannabis. Start out as a kitchen assistant if you have previous kitchen experience and/or a culinary degree to work toward managing a production facility.
Cannabis chefs can work in a variety of capacities including cooking for private dinners, writing cookbooks, posting recipe videos on social media, or making an edible product/line, including gummies, chocolates, beverages, and other edible treats.
Average edibles chef salary: $30-60k/year
- Culinary arts degree
- Kitchen management experience
- Experience cooking large volumes of food in a commercial kitchen
Budtenders are the helpful, outgoing, and friendly salespeople who guide recreational and medical consumers through the wide range of cannabis flower and infused products at a dispensary. Budtenders must check-in patients, check IDs, and answer any of their questions in order to find the right cannabis strain, delivery methods, and dose for them.
Once you have helped the customer select the right products, you must check them out using a point-of-sale system, handle cash, provide the right change, and ensure they are not exceeding the state’s possession limit.
How much do budtenders get paid?
Average budtender salary: $14/hour
- High school diploma or GED
- Retail, customer service, or Hospitality experience
3. Master Grower
Out of all the cannabis industry jobs available, master grower jobs are one of the most coveted and high-paying jobs for stoners who are dedicated and hard-working. You can work your way up toward the head grower position by starting off as an entry-level cannabis trimmer or grower’s assistant.
A master bud grower is responsible for hiring staff, delegating tasks, and ensuring that the entire crop is well cared for. They must know about every aspect of the cultivation and breeding process. Head growers may work in an indoor or outdoor setting with a variety of grow mediums. Understanding the optimal conditions for each strain is essential.
How much does a master grower make?
Average master grower salary: $120-150k/year
- Cannabis cultivation experience
- Commercial cultivation experience as a head grower
- Agriculture, botany, or a related degree in the science field
Check out our blog post on how to become a legal grower.
4. Extraction Technician
Extraction technicians are one of the most exciting and in-demand marijuana industry jobs. Technicians operate equipment that processes raw cannabis material into an extract. Solventless processes produce rosin, kief, and ice water hash. Solvent-based processes produce shatter, live resin, distillate, and more.
In solvent-based operations, extraction operators may work with flammable and explosive chemicals such as butane and ethanol. Extraction technicians are responsible for ensuring that the final product does not have any contaminants such as residual solvents, pesticides, and heavy metals.
Average extraction technician salary: $17/hour
- High school diploma or GED
- Bachelor's degree in chemistry, or related science field
- Lab experience (preferred)
5. Cannabis Trimmer
Weed trimming jobs are some of the most in-demand entry-level cannabis cultivation jobs on the cannabis market. Cannabis trimmer jobs are entry-level positions that require workers to quickly and methodically harvest cannabis plants by chopping down the branches and trimming the buds of their leaves and stems.
As one of the best jobs for stoners, the trimming position is an excellent starting point if you want to move up in a cultivation facility toward a grower’s assistant and a master grower job.
Average bud trimmer salary: $14/hour
- High school diploma or GED
- Prior trimming experience (preferred)
Enroll in Cannabis Training University
Ready to start a new career or make a career change to the weed industry? Enroll in Cannabis Training University to start your new journey.
Our online cannabis college can take you through every step of the job search process from showing you where to find work and how to network to creating a resume and cover letter to succeeding in the interview.
Whether you want to earn a cannabis career or start your marijuana business, we've got you covered.