MJBizMag April 2022 - 40

Calibrating Quality
that is happening at the state level on a
granular basis, " she said.
Deutsch added that her team is
" completely connected with every state
and regulatory agency. "
" We monitor all of their
communications, know when the
hearings are and plan to execute on
any changes, " Deutsch said, adding that
staying on top of compliance is " a daily
initiative. "
Changes in labeling rules are a
particularly common headache.
Acreage employs state-level general
managers and regional managers to
handle those issues. " We try really hard
not to be surprised, " Deutsch said.
Gary Santo, chief executive officer
of marijuana MSO Tilt Holdings, based
in Massachusetts, takes a similar
approach.
" It's hard to run a centralized
program when you have so many states
and each state almost needs its own
company, " Santo said. Establishing
a centralized quality-control team
has helped Tilt to ensure consistent
products across different states.
Tilt works with third-party
manufacturers for products in some
markets, and the company's goal is to
make sure that consumers have the
same experience with their products,
no matter which state they're in. To
help with that, his quality-assurance
team makes sure the products are
manufactured with the same equipment
and the same process in each state.
" Our kitchen in Ohio is going to be
virtually identical to our kitchen in
Massachusetts, " Santo said. That takes a
lot of the guesswork out of it, he added.
TESTING, TESTING
Each of Cresco's locations has a
laboratory with high-performance
liquid chromatography equipment to
test products in-house for qualities
such as potency and impurities.
West said the company is constantly
testing all product types, including
flower, edibles and vape products.
40 April 2022 | MJBizMagazine
Staff members arrange infused chocolates before packaging at a Tilt Holdings
manufacturing facility. Courtesy Photo
Batches of products also go through a
signoff process as they make their way
through facility checkpoints.
A plant manager and a quality-control
team will stop the production line, and
senior management will evaluate a
product if something is not quite right.
For example, if the color of the oil
in a vape product seems off, it will get
flagged, and the team will decide if
releasing it would impact the brand
perception or customer satisfaction.
Deutsch said her team at Acreage
also watches test results very carefully.
" That goes for every batch we produce, "
she said.
At Tilt, Santo said every harvest is
analyzed, and plants are tested as they
are growing, drying and curing.
BY THE BOOK
Written standard operating procedures
(SOPs) are crucial for maintaining quality
as a company navigates the different
regulatory requirements in each state,
cannabis executives told MJBizMagazine.
Deutsch said Acreage compiles SOPs
for each state and that quality control
is imbedded in those documents. " We
keep our own bible of all of this, " she
added. " SOPs are part of the tools
to succeed. "
West said Cresco has an entire
department tied to working with SOPs,
including developing the documents
and using them to train employees.
Having all the company's quality
standards spelled out in this way helps
Cresco expand into more states and
secure new licenses, he said.
West said Cresco sends its SOPs to
state regulators when applying for
business licenses in new markets " to
show we're serious " about quality
and safety.
At Tilt, Santo said the company's
SOPs will have target numbers such as
THC potency, which the quality-control
team will compare against test results.
For example, the SOP for a flower
strain might indicate THC levels should
be at least 20%. That guideline helps
the company work with other providers
and product companies, so everyone
knows what to expect.
" We wouldn't bring it to market unless
it met our quality standards, " Santo said.
Bart Schaneman covers
cultivation and extraction
at MJBizDaily. Reach him
at bart.schaneman@
mjbizdaily.com.

MJBizMag April 2022

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of MJBizMag April 2022

MJBizMag April 2022 - 1
MJBizMag April 2022 - 2
MJBizMag April 2022 - 3
MJBizMag April 2022 - 4
MJBizMag April 2022 - 5
MJBizMag April 2022 - 6
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