Cannabis is 'Greatest Growth Opportunity in Our Lifetime,' Vertical Wellness CEO Says

Cannabis is about to experience its biggest year yet, according to the CEO of Vertical Wellness ー but 2020 promises even more growth for the industry.

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By Amanda Weston  ~ Cheddar

"2019 is going to be the biggest year in history, until we get to 2020," Smoke Wallin, CEO of Vertical Wellness, told Cheddar Tuesday. "When you're on an exponential growth curve, every year is going to be giant. But this year is going to be bigger than any year before."

2018 saw major strides in the cannabis industry. Michigan became the 10th state to legalize recreational marijuana, and Congress passed the 2018 farm bill, which legalized recreational hemp.

But Wallin said this is just the beginning for the industry, likening it to another substance that rocked the country.

"We're in the greatest growth opportunity in our lifetime," Wallin said. "Not since the repeal of Prohibition was there a category at this kind of scale that was illegal that became legal. So we're in the midst of that process and we're in the very early days. People say, 'what inning is it?' I say it's maybe first inning of preseason training."

Vertical Wellness is putting itself at the forefront of the hemp market. The company has lined up 5,000 acres for growing, which it says could produce an estimated $1 billion in CBD oil. Vertical Wellness is also gearing up for an Initial Public Offering.

Another major industry growing opportunity came when Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D-N.Y.) said he would push for recreational marijuana legalization this year.

For Wallin, it's a good start ー but ultimately not enough.

"We were really excited that the governor decided to push forward on his agenda, but I have to say I'm a little disappointed in his numbers," Wallin said. "He came out publicly and said $300 million in tax revenue. It's going to be at least $1 billion for the state and communities here."

For full interview click here.

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