Cooperative Cannabis Economy Group

The Emerald Triangle is home to innumerable ‘mom and pop’, small family cannabis farms who have been contributing to the human and ecological community for decades. Since ‘legalization’ in 2016 there has been a growing tide of corporate cannabis players who aim to extract value from cannabis, the people and the land on which it has made a name.

The Cooperative Cannabis Economy Group is a joint project of Cooperation Humboldt and the Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy (CASP)

The Cooperative Cannabis Economy Group works to catalyze, educate, and facilitate cooperation and cooperative research and decision-making among farmers and operators. Our goals are to protect the local cannabis economy on the North Coast of California from unethical wealth and resource extraction by conglomerates and corporations, and to promote regenerative, values-driven cannabis business.


In August 2021 we are launching a survey to cannabis cultivators on the North Coast of California to ask what services would be of value.

In short, we want to know who you are, what you do and what services that we offer that you want to advance your economic success. An initial analysis will be published on September 1, 2021 and willing participants will be contacted for follow-up discussions.

Meeting Facilitation

In order to move the cannabis economy forward, we recognize that farmers and other operators and community members need to cooperate with each other and have effective meetings where different people have different views and meaningful decisions are made.

We envision distribution cooperatives that eliminate the middle-man, and we hope to support the development of county-wide appellations through cooperative decision-making.

We can support this process with meeting facilitation, facilitation training, and technical support for the development of cooperative business and communication models. 

If you have Trellis funding, it can be applied to our training and support services.

Contact Cara Cordoni for more information.



In the rapidly evolving cannabis industry of 2021, Humboldt County counts more than 800 individual cannabis cultivation license holders, the most per capita in the world. These are the users for whom the project is designed. The challenges of a
well-capitalized competition and industry expectations of maximized production demand that the farmers develop meta competences to organize collectively.

In collaboration with the Center for the Study of Cannabis and Social Policy (CASP), we are conducting a study of our Human Centered Design Process. The case study explores Human Centered Design in action, a problem-solving methodology that is of growing interest not just in product design but also in social innovation. Human-centered design is often defined as an “approach to innovation that puts the observation and discovery of often highly nuanced, even tacit, human needs right at the forefront of the innovation process.”2 It is particularly suited to areas of high uncertainty and complex causal relationships for which a linear and data-driven approach fail to solve problems because existing data is inadequate for decision-making.

Contact Nicole Riggs for more information.