When I reviewed last year’s results from the “State of the Cannabis Lighting Market” report, the world was in a very different place. At that time, I was writing to you all from the comfort of my office at the Fluence headquarters in Austin, Texas. Today, I’m working remotely and calling upon my 9-year-old to show me how to use Zoom.
I would be remiss if I didn’t acknowledge the collective, global struggle we’ve all faced amid the COVID-19 pandemic. My team and I spoke daily with growers throughout the world facing unpredictable instability and uncertainty while all struggled to balance and adapt to a new working standard.
But through it all, one unwavering truth rang clear: Cultivators were and are responsible for growing and delivering the world’s livelihood—our food and medicine. Our vision to help them grow smarter and our commitment to providing research-backed, advanced technology never felt more crucial than during the early moments of the pandemic.
I am amazed every day by the steadfastness of today’s innovative cultivators. As cities shut down, dispensaries, grocers and other essential businesses doubled down for their communities—producing, shipping and delivering goods to quarantined families, patients and citizens who needed critical assistance. Cannabis growers and operators adapted to changing consumer shopping patterns—some experiencing upswings in sales and others adjusting to life without revenue from tourists.
In last year’s report, I touted how thought leaders and policymakers were contributing to the growth of cannabis markets. I discussed how a fervent commitment to research and an investment in the most advanced cultivation technology would propel the industry into its next phase of maturity. Despite the global upheaval in our food and medical supply chains due to COVID-19, those factors have not changed. In this year’s report, you’ll see that LED adoption continues to rise and that more growers are placing greater emphasis on scientific research to support product development. Fluence is meeting that demand through our own in-house scientific research program. You’ll be hearing from us in the coming months about our global cannabis projects, where we’re exploring the interaction between light and plant quality with some of the world’s most innovative cultivators.
As we approach the end of a challenging, strange year, I am inspired by the growers who persevered and went above and beyond to serve their customers and patients. I saw the same perseverance in my own team, and I applaud those who found comfort in a new normal, balance in an unfamiliar routine and the determination to deliver the highest-quality products to customers throughout the world.