It occurs to me that for years, decades in fact, nearly ALL Ganja cultivation was done with the intention of harvesting a yield quickly and cutting down the crop for fear of the “Man” and the helicopters overhead so eloquently described in the music of Marlon Asher and the legendary Peter Tosh. That fear should be completely mitigated soon enough, which opens up a plethora of new farming techniques to be introduced into growing communities like Orange Hill in Jamaica. Orange Hill is arguably, the mecca of Cannabis farming in Jamaica.
Arguments aside, one cannot dispute the fact that the relaxing of national laws, the growing public knowledge about the plant and the introduction of new farming techniques, Jamaican farmers are at the precipice of what will be an in-demand skill-set shortly.
Outdoor farming is clearly optimal for Jamaican farmers. Land is available, sunlight is a plenty and we have a number of communities that can directly get involved and benefit directly. The only mitigating factor is to ensure the right end-points of the distribution chain are appropriately in place. We’re not talking about the boys on the corner, we’re talking about the laboratories and factories and local outlets.
One community in particular, the Rastafarians, will embrace the change and the learning opportunities it will offer. For many, their lifelong labour and often cause of persecution, incarceration, abuse and dislocation from society, will reverse itself to a more appropriate place in the minds and spheres of the Jamaican society. For far too long Jamaicans have placed paramount emphasis on economic values while forgetting the inherent humane values that construct a civil society. If stature is limited by economic access, then let those chains be lifted. Cannabis offers economic inclusion for many more Jamaicans. It can and should be the bedrock of the Jamaican economy, with access for all.