Green Flower announces launch of GF Institute and Founding Member Brands


Green Flower has announced the newly formed GF Institute, an entity designed to promote professionalism and employee development.

“For the first time, the top thought leaders and brands in cannabis have come together to create a standardized, industry-accepted set of job credentials that ensures every worker has the skills, knowledge, and credibility necessary to succeed in cannabis today,” said Max Simon, CEO and Co-Founder of Green Flower. “GF Institute, or simply GFI, will solve many of the problems we’ve been hearing about for years around properly training and developing the cannabis workforce, resulting in much higher quality talent and retention, better service to customers and patients, added safety and consistency to cannabis products, and increased confidence, sustainability, and value to our industry as a whole.”

Green Flower says that while the U.S. cannabis industry is worth $61 billion with sales increasing 67 percent in 2020, companies have not had an industry-accepted set of guidelines and credentials to develop and grow the combined workforce of more than 321,000 full-time workers. This need is made more acute by the fact that the vast majority of talent being recruited to this quickly-growing industry has little or no cannabis experience or baseline knowledge.

GF Institute’s professional credential program will launch with three certificate courses focused on developing the largest sectors of people growth in the industry.

  • Dispensary Associate Certificate (DAC)
  • Cultivation Technician Certificate (CTC)
  • Manufacturing Agent Certificate (MAC)

Each program is designed to ensure that, for each specific job role, program graduates are prepared to succeed with a fundamental, functional knowledge of what they are being asked to do and why.

Each credential is 15 hours long, 100% online, and consists of two units with exams at the end of each unit.

  • The first unit is cannabis health, safety, and compliance — and covers everything you need to satisfy mandatory training requirements in cannabis.
  • The second unit is skills-based training, designed to give people a foundational level of knowledge and skill in each target job area of the cannabis industry.

On successful completion of a credential, an individual is automatically granted membership to GFI, will receive a certificate representing their success, a digital badge for LinkedIn, as well as a wearable enamel pin that shows their co-workers, customers, and clients that they have successfully completed the credential. The GF institute will offer its members exclusive access to continuing education content, networking and career development opportunities.

To encourage industry-wide adoption, GF Institute invites every Licensed Cannabis Operator across the United States to join this historic push to bring credibility, equity, and professionalism to our industry and become Founding Members of GFI.

More information on GF Institute or the GFI Cannabis Credential program can be found at the GF Institute website, where visitors can download complete program documentation, review course syllabi, and find answers to Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs).


GF Institute has worked with the industry’s leading subject matter experts and instructional designers to create 100% online, outcome-driven training courses consisting of written, audio-visual, and interactive content tailored specifically to each cannabis-industry job category.

Three independent Steering Committees, consisting of more than 30 of the cannabis industry’s leading companies and voices, have validated and approved the program’s overall learning outcomes.

“The explosive growth seen in the cannabis industry in recent years underscores the critical need for the establishment of real, powerful, research-tested standards like this for our workforce as we move toward the inevitability of federal cannabis legislation,” said Gil Christie, the inaugural chairman of GF Institute, adding, “we are now working with ANSI National Accreditation Board (ANAB),  the largest multi-disciplinary accreditation body in the Western hemisphere, for both federal and international accreditation to provide a robust and sustainable corporate training solution created by the industry, for the industry.”

GF Institute’s Steering Committee Founding Members represent a diverse range of companies who share values aligned with GF Institute’s overall mission; these individual leaders were invited over many months to join and guide the inaugural curriculum content through each stage of its development, from providing input on learning objectives to approving actual exam questions.

“Cannabis continues to evolve and, as it does, GF Institute is leading the effort to establish a new level of professionalism, reliability, and a common language for communication in the cannabis industry,” said Graham Farrar, President of Glass House Group and GF Institute Steering Committee Founding Member. “GF Institute’s Standardized Certificate program places a cornerstone in the effort to help build an expanded cannabis industry by providing standardized training and educational benchmarks that can be respected by insiders and consumers alike.”

GF Institute will soon be making a significant announcement, in coordination with all Steering Committees and Founding Members, regarding an initiative that will power the cannabis education efforts of social equity applicants at an unprecedented scale.


The Founding Member brands currently represented on GF Institute’s Steering Committee are:

  • Ayr Wellness
  • Ascend Wellness Holdings
  • Berkshire Roots
  • Blue River Terps
  • CannaCraft
  • Canndescent
  • Conception Nurseries
  • Connected
  • Cresco Labs
  • Curaleaf
  • Eden Labs
  • Flower One
  • Flow Cannabis Co.
  • Glass House Group
  • Goodness Growth Holdings
  • Heylo Cannabis
  • Jushi Holdings
  • Kiva Confections
  • Ilera Holistic Healthcare
  • Natura
  • NorCal Cannabis Company
  • Parallel
  • Papa and Barkley
  • Revolutionary Clinics
  • Slang Worldwide
  • Synergistic Technologies & Associates
  • The Parent Company
  • The Evergreen Market
  • Wana Brands
  • Wonderland Nursery