Republished with permission from Cannabis News Florida
As the cannabis industry has evolved, so has the need for technology to keep track of everything from seed to sale. Depending on the state, the reporting requirements and the types of information that need to be kept can differ widely, which is why it’s so important to have a secure, comprehensive, customizable software product to stay compliant.
BioTrackTHC offers cannabis licensees all of this and more. For the past 10 years, the company has been helping growers, manufacturers, and dispensaries track the lifecycle of each plant, simplifying record-keeping, and in turn optimizing future yields and sales. It also provides software tracking solutions to government clients, ensuring that law enforcement agencies can enforce requirements, collect taxes and prevent illegal activities.
According to BioTrackTHC COO Dr. Moe Afaneh, there are many advantages for businesses that use the software, which covers cultivation operations, processing and manufacturing, and dispensing at the point of sale.
“Our flexible software accommodates all different types of workflows, tracking all seeds, clones and tissues until the inventory is transformed into oil or another final product,” he explained, adding that the technology was created by growers for growers.
“Our software is designed for the way that growers think,” added Dr. Afaneh, who traveled to Colorado to research the industry before launching the product. “We not only have a true insight and understanding of the growing process itself, but also the regulatory side, compliance, enforcement, and everything that goes into the business side of the license.”
The software program assigns a unique 16-digit identifier to each plant or clone that records and archives plant phases, additives and employee interactions to ensure accountability. After the plant is harvested, the batched material receives a new 16-digit identifier that contains the plant’s history since propagation. Test results, including potency, are automatically assigned and printed on product labels, and a detailed manifest is created before the product is transported, displaying the entire chain of custody. Each sale is also tracked to the patient or customer.
In addition to tracking the evolution of plant-to-product, the software also helps growers improve their operations by providing comprehensive reports, data-driven marketing tools, and integrated hardware for minimal data entry.
Different states require different types of information, so the software is designed to follow customized workflows. “In some states, they follow a pharmacy workflow, for example, so that software needs to track disease states and physicians’ recommended amounts,” said Dr. Afaneh. “That’s why we created a very robust system—it can accommodate everyone from small mom-and-pop operations with three stores to massive multibillion dollar companies with 100 different locations.”
While state-level tracking wasn’t such a big deal five years ago, Dr. Afaneh says that today’s growers understand the need for technology that can help streamline their workload. “Some markets, like New Mexico, Illinois or New York, absolutely require commercial-level software—the amount of manpower that is needed to do the manual work simply isn’t cost-effective,” he said. “The product’s functionality saves time and money, and reduces repetitive tasks and activities. It also integrates and scales with different systems, including state monitoring systems.”
An added advantage is that the software is built around a set of controls that protect licensees from making mistakes. “It is geared to drive a licensee down a specific workflow in order to keep the data clean,” said Dr. Afaneh, adding that security controls also prevent the addition of dummy data or others breaching the system.
Dr. Afaneh first came up with the concept of the monitoring software after working in the pharmaceutical industry. There, he partnered to launch the company’s original venture, BioScriptRX , working on the development of a product to track prescription drugs and methamphetamine precursors. While demonstrating the software to lawmakers, the concept of tracking cannabis was raised, and in 2010, BioTrackTHC was born.
The software provides a secure, online traceability portal that provides detailed analytics for regulatory agencies and law enforcement, who can track cannabis transportation and inventory in real-time. Lawmakers also receive detailed financial reports, ensuring compliance and adherence to industry standards and state laws.
“We work in a consultative role with state clients, addressing potential issues in advance and guiding them with best practices,” said Dr. Afaneh.
As for the future, since merging with Helix TCS this year, BioTrackTHC is in the process of building the next generation of software, which will include a security grade camera system, access control system, and an analytics dashboard. To learn more about BioTrackTHC, visit www.biotrackthc.com.