Drought, wildfires create new challenges for California cannabis growers
HUMBOLDT COUNTY, Calif. — Driving through a dense canopy of towering redwood and old growth fir trees in southern Humboldt County, Ryan Hale’s rental car bucked and bounced as he laid out the rules of the day.
The first point of contact, a veteran cannabis grower who asked not to be identified, would lead the way to a secluded compound deep within the Emerald Triangle, a widely known cannabis-growing region comprising Humboldt, Mendocino and Trinity counties in northwest California.
It is the first time reporters have been allowed to tour this small corner of the Emerald Triangle, Hale said, and discretion is paramount.
“We’ve basically built our own version of Fort Knox,” he said.
Hale, partner and chief sales officer of Operational Security Solutions, a cannabis security and compliance company, has deep ties to many of the legal cultivators operating in the Emerald Triangle. His team of former military, law enforcement and federal service personnel work closely with the growers, ensuring that they meet state regulations and helping them secure cash and crops.