Over the weekend, cannabis businesses and employees interested in the industry gathered at the Mendocino Cannabis Job Fair in Willits, California. The event was the second annual job fair to be hosted by Mendocino Cannabis Resource, a local trade organization. In northern California, a hot spot for cannabis cultivation and production, “job fairs” are more often just for snatching up a bunch of seasonal pickers and trimmers to work the harvest. But this year’s job fair in Mendocino county brought much more to the table for prospective employees in the cannabis industry. And that’s a sign of the industry’s ongoing normalization and legitimization.
Cannabis Job Fairs Are Finally Offering More Than Seasonal Work
On Saturday, the Mendocino Cannabis Job Fair had something to offer anyone in attendance. For local professionals looking for a career in the cannabis market, the fair offered workshops on transferring skills and building résumés. For those already working in the industry but looking for something new or ways to advance, there were ample opportunities to network and make new contacts. And local cannabis business owners benefitted from a room full of qualified candidates and the chance to increase their brand awareness.
And that’s what made this year’s cannabis job fair different in Mendocino County. Usually, businesses have only seasonal, manual labor jobs to offer in production. But this year, the focus was on recruiting talent to successfully operate a business.
So not just pickers and trimmers. But accountants, HR staff, management, environmental scientists and extraction techs, to list just a few.
Most of the event was free. But attendees could pay ten bucks for early admission, giving them a couple extra hours for more personal interaction with employers and business owners. Last year, more than 500 people attended the job fair. And this year, numbers exceeded even the organization’s expectations.
More Job Seekers Are Pivoting To Cannabis From Other Careers
Now that California has fully implemented its state-regulated legal cannabis industry, businesses that operated without those regulations for many years are still in the process of figuring out how to get above board. There are all kinds of additional requirements and costs to becoming a fully legit cannabis business.
And that need is an opportunity savvy job-hunters from other business areas can take advantage of. Business expertise is something that’s in very high demand at the moment, especially in California. So as businesses emerge and existing ones adapt to the rapidly shifting regulatory environment, expect events like the Mendocino Cannabis Job Fair to continue casting a wide net for diverse talent.