A Letter from Maggie Philipsborn, Nevada County Cannabis Alliance

The Nevada County Cannabis Alliance would like to thank SYRCL for the important work of assembling the cannabis impact study which has provided valuable policy recommendations for the community to consider.  

The Continuing Work of Legalization

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Diversity in the garden Photo Credit: Sierra Sol Farms

An important theme that we continue to hear is the significant impact from egregious unpermitted farms. The majority of survey respondents would like to see greater enforcement on these sites and our organization agrees. These large unpermitted farms have a significant environmental impact that may be dangerously affecting our Yuba and Bear River Watersheds.  

With a pathway to become a licensed cannabis farmer in Nevada County, the process boils down to regulation and taxation. The California cannabis industry has actually set itself apart from any other industry in the nation, as the most over regulated and over taxed industry that has ever been created. As SYRCL’s survey noted, continuous effort to streamline the permit process will help to continue encouraging people to seek a local permit.  

Historically, over-regulation and taxation lead to a race to the bottom when it comes to quality of goods. What is different about the cannabis industry, and small farms typically across agricultural sectors, is that quality prevails. In Nevada County, we are home to some of the smallest licensed cannabis farms in the state, and our region continues to be known for its high-quality cannabis products and the Best Management Practices (BMP’s) that go into producing such reputable farm products.  

Best Management Practices for Cultivators, Big and Small

We are grateful to SYRCL for partnering with us on their Growing Green for the Yuba Program which highlights many different BMP’s. We thought we’d share some favorites that every commercial and home cultivator can incorporate into how they care for their gardens and our watersheds.  

  • Cultivate Healthy Soils: continue to build your soil health year upon year, adding local resources you have available to you (manures, compost, prunings, etc). Healthy soils are amazing at retaining moisture, and can reduce your water needs dramatically.  
  • Polyculture: by definition, a polyculture is the raising at the same time and place of more than one species of plant or animal. Diversification! Whether its borders of flowers for pollinator habitat and to reduce pesticide use, growing vegetables for your family and others, or raising animals for manure or sustenance – biodiversity creates a healthier overall ecosystem for your plants to thrive in.  
  • Testing: cannabis has the highest testing standards of any product across all industries. You can learn A LOT about your growing medium and your cultivation practices from getting your cannabis tested. 

We hope Nevada County will continue to be known for its unique health and wellness culture, the amazing farmers and artisans crafting these products, and the care and consciousness that goes into stewarding this place that we all love and are privileged to call home. And if you purchase cannabis, ask how and where it’s grown, support small farms, and support #nevadacountygrown. 

Sincerely,

Maggie Philipsborn
Director of Membership and Education
Nevada County Cannabis Alliance

Polyculture in action. Photo Credit: Down Om Farms
Photo Credit: Leaf and Land
Photo Credit: Nevada County Cannabis Alliance
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