February 2018: Riverview Farms
Michelle Hackett President of Sales and Marketing, Riverview Farms and Satsuma Farms
Tell us about your company(s) and your role? "We are a family owned, fully integrated farm specializing in naturally grown cannabis. We work to provide California compliant materials to our customers throughout the state."
What was your very first introduction to the cannabis industry? "My very first introduction to the industry was two years ago, when my family and I had a conversation about converting our nursery of 20 years to cannabis. We were growing poinsettias and now we're growing a new kind of flower."
What is the biggest lesson you’ve learned since you’ve been in the industry? "Ag Science is the answer! We run our farm as we would an agricultural operation. We hire plant scientists and California compliant pest control advisors who know their stuff."
What has been your biggest risk you’ve taken in your career? "Truthfully – starting in this industry has been a risk in itself."
What is your proudest moment since you’ve started down the path as a cannabis entrepreneur?
"Receiving our licenses for cultivation, distribution and manufacturing."
10 years ago, what did you think you’d be doing now? "I thought I would be starting my own business possibly. In a way I have. Working with my family is a once in a lifetime opportunity."
How would you describe the cannabis industry in Monterey County? "I would say Monterey County is the ideal location to grow the finest flower. We have an ideal climate, fertile land in which to plant, and natural sunlight. This is the Silicon Valley of agriculture and cannabis."
From your experience, are there similar traits that those working in the cannabis industry share? "Taxes! Too high!"
How do you think people in the cannabis industry should think about the value of marketing and where should they focus their marketing budget? "I would say social media has played such a large role in the success of cannabis farms and brands. Every company should stay true to their core values and share their story with their customers and the consumer."
What is your advice for hopeful cannabis entrepreneurs?
"Do your research! Work with honest people who share the same values as you do. Always stay true with California rules and regulations and if you’re ever unsure, double check before assuming."