Imagine a future in which you walk into a dispensary and rather than place an order with a budtender, you place that order with a robot.
That future is a sticky one, but it could be coming sooner rather than later. While the ethics behind purchasing bud from a vending machine (there’s plenty of those already) versus a living, breathing human being may be dicey, the firm Potbiotics is ready to unleash its robot budtenders on the cannasphere with three unique, automated products:
Founded in 2013, the biotech company aims to help change how medical marijuana patients across the country are treated using three new revolutionary products. The first is called Brainbot, which lets doctors use EEG (electroencephalography) helmets to measure patients’ neurological reactions to different kinds of cannabis in order to accurately prescribe a particularly helpful strain. Next is the Potbot app, a virtual budtender—basically a marijuana sommelier—that comes in app and in-store kiosk forms, and recommends strains and strengths based on a patients ailments and previous cannabis use. Finally, Nanopot scans the DNA of marijuana seeds to help growers optimize the growth of their plants for desired levels of THC and other active ingredients. [Fortune]
Essentially, the company is banking that technology can better tell you what medicine you need than a doctor or your budtender. The only potential problem with that?
As we know from dealing with thousands of patients every week, no human body reacts to cannabinoids in the same manner. While these technological advances can certainly supplement and aid the industry, you can’t take the literal heart out of the industry and expect it to go smoothly.