You could spot the line from blocks away: a huge aggregation of professionally dressed folks ran down the length of one city block, around a corner, and down another. Though the age of the people in the line was fairly young--folks mainly in their 20s and early 30s--this line was not for tickets to an upcoming concert.
These people were waiting to get into the Cannabis Career and Job Fair.
The second of its kind held in the last 12 months, the enthusiasm around the event, type and variety of companies that attended--along with the sheer number of applicants who showed up--is a clear testament to how fast this industry is growing.
The first event of this kind in the Bay Area was held almost a year ago at a small rock club in the SoMa section of San Francisco. There were about five companies represented, and attendance was a mild but steady stream of curious job seekers.
Saturday's event was hosted by Bloom Farms in a much larger club in Oakland. Sixteen companies were represented, including local dispensaries (Harborside, Bloom Farms CA Collective, Berkley Patients Group), delivery services (Meadow, Eaze), vape manufactures (VapeXhale, Open Vape), edible bakeries (Auntie Dolores, Madame Munchie) and tech companies (Leafly). They were hiring for dozens of available positions, ranging from bud tenders, lab technicians, operations coordinators and drivers, to brand ambassadors, graphic designers, marketing and sales representatives. Attendance was said to be near 1,000 hopeful job seekers.
We stopped to say hello to one attendee, Angelica Webster, to try to get a sense for why she had come.
It's incredible to see that this industry is not only supporting the public by allowing patients to more easily get the medicine they need, but is now also supporting the community by creating jobs.
Seeing how fast this industry is growing and how attendance has exponentially grown in the past 12 months, the next of these events might just have to be in a larger venue.
Next stop: Moscone Center!