Optimising cannabis video monitoring systems with intelligent event-driven analytics
- Physical security
- Security for businesses
Over the last two decades, public opinion and laws around marijuana have shifted dramatically. A Pew Research study from earlier this year found that nine out of ten adults in the United States were in favor of some type of cannabis legalisation. As public opinion grows in approval, the cannabis industry is growing to meet demands.
An industry on the rise
From decriminalisation, to medical-use and ultimately to recreational-use, the path to legalising cannabis has been long, but the end may be near. Earlier this month, the Senate Democrats announced they’re working on a bill called the Cannabis Administration and Opportunity Act, which would remove cannabis from the list of Schedule 1 drugs, effectively legalising it at federal level.
While this would be an extremely significant change, cannabis has been legal in states like California and Colorado since the early 2000's and is currently approved for medical use in 36 states. In 2021 alone, Virgina, New Mexico, New York, and Connecticut all approved recreational-use cannabis for adults. The combined sales from these four states are projected to eclipse $4.5 billion in annual sales by their fourth year of operation. As cannabis industry sales continue to show profound levels of growth, economists are constantly adjusting their projections. Even in spite of a global recession, legal cannabis sales in the US hit $17.5 billion in 2020, showing no signs of slowing down. However, as the legal status of cannabis continues to change, so do the requirements for growers and production facilities.
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Federal law complicates growth
Regulations around growing, producing, and selling cannabis products vary dramatically from state to state. However, as this article in the Atlantic points out, as long as it remains illegal in some states, there will still be incentives for illicit cannabis activity. Criminals have the option to sell cannabis in cash for higher rates in states where it’s illegal and harder to come by.
Because cannabis is still illegal on the national level, federally backed banks aren’t allowed to conduct transactions with cannabis businesses. Many operations are forced to run their business entirely in cash, which brings about its own crop of problems. Being a cash-heavy business makes it more challenging to take inventory and pay taxes, and even more importantly, it brings about more opportunity for crime.
State requirements for cannabis video monitoring
Fortunately, video surveillance monitoring can ensure safer cannabis practices. Many states require some form of video monitoring, but these regulations can differ. For example, some of California’s requirements include that cameras must record 24 hours a day, a minimum camera resolution of 1080 X 720p, recordings must be kept for 90 days, and all entrances, exits, and any place where marijuana is cannabis or transported must be in view.
Additionally, it makes a difference which segment of the cannabis supply chain is being taken into consideration. Edgeworth Security provides a wide array of security services for cannabis clients in multiple states. Direct Sales Manager, Brian Bucholtz, said that “store fronts typically are not as detailed as the growing and processing operations where there’s just much more product and area to cover.”
He added, “The biggest need at the dispensary level is to protect the employees and the product. Not only that, they want to monitor their people as well to make sure everything is done properly.”
While these stipulations set out strict guidelines for cannabis video monitoring services, if they’re used in an efficient manner, they can also help prevent and catch crime.
Securing the cannabis supply chain with intelligent video analytics
Once cannabis businesses have satisfied their state requirements for video monitoring systems, the most effective way to utilise it is with event-based monitoring. Instead of draining time and resources to monitor cameras all day, intelligent video analytics allow security personnel to only be alerted by true alarms. Calipsa’s intelligent video analytics platform processes over 90% of false alarms, saving operators hours of their time and allowing them to focus on the alarms that matter. Calipsa’s AI-powered analytics can help any type of security operation make the most out of their video monitoring setup.
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