The hemp plant has come a long way in popular culture and policies. With emerging studies regarding CBD for wellness and the different innovations in products, CBD development is only getting started.
If you're looking for a career change and considering a job title in the CBD space, we've got good news for you—the CBD industry is only getting started, which means there are a lot of in-demand job opportunities in this marketplace for many more years to come.
It's the perfect niche for people who deeply care about the impact that the hemp plant has to offer. However, because the CBD industry is in its green-rush period, there are a lot of CBD brands out there with less than moral intentions.
In this article, we'll guide you through the top CBD market jobs that are in high demand and how to weed out the good companies from the bad.
CBD Industry Facts In A Nutshell
Within the last five years, the CBD has been the biggest headline in the health and wellness space.
Besides the recent medical research surrounding the cannabis plant and its derivatives, the CBD market is one of the most lucrative industries in the United States.
Let's get into some fast facts about CBD.
- The global CBD market was estimated to be $2.8 billion in 2020, and it's forecasted to reach $13.4 billion by 2028 .
- Hemp-derived CBD products are federally legal as long as they're made abiding by the US Farm Bill (2018)—they can't contain more than 0.3% THC
- In 2019, the top states for CBD sales were California ($730 million), Florida ($291 million), and New York ($215 million) .
- CBD is considered safe and well-tolerated in pets. The global CBD pet market is valued at $27.9 million in 2019 .
- With the passing of the Farm Bill in 2018, The United States hemp farmland increased from 25,713 acres to 78,176 in one year .
Why Is The CBD Industry Growing So Rapidly?
There are several reasons that are driving THC's no-buzz cousin's growth.
Everyone's familiar with the euphoric high associated with marijuana use, but CBD—most abundant in hemp plants—has been extensively researched for its potential health benefits. Recent interest in the potential medical properties of CBD piqued public interest after a young girl, Charlotte Figi, was using medical marijuana to manage her chronic epilepsy.
And as public sentiments slowly shift towards embracing the cannabis plant and its many uses, CBD was the first cannabis compound to make it out of the United States' list of controlled substances.
At this point, cannabis use had been slowly becoming more mainstream, and researchers have already been testing cannabis-based cannabinoids for therapeutic use. When CBD first hit the market, lawmakers quickly saw this industry's economic potential, which led to the legalization of hemp-derived CBD containing up to 0.3% THC for legal sale federally in 2018.
On top of this, many public figures including athletes and politicians have endorsed the benefits of CBD, which launched CBD into the mainstream and drove the demand for CBD.
Job Alert: High Demand Jobs In The CBD Space
CBD sales have been at an all-time high, despite the COVID-19 pandemic, and full-time CBD jobs have also been on the rise as the compound makes its way into the mainstream of health and wellness products.
Let's discuss some of the most popular CBD jobs, how much they can earn, and what you need to be a successful candidate.
1. Hemp Extraction Technicians
CBD is found in the resin trichomes speckled on mature hemp buds, leaves, and stocks. To remove the CBD and other cannabinoids and terpenes from the large plant material, it undergoes a special extraction process. The most popular extraction method is supercritical CO2 extraction.
A hemp extraction technician prepares the plant and equipment for extraction and maintains strict government regulation practices regarding record keeping and chemical handling.
Successful candidates for this job will have a Bachelor's Degree with a major in chemistry, biology, engineering, and lab technology. The salary for hemp extraction technicians ranges from $33,000 – $75,000, according to ZipRecruiter, and will be dependant on the company and the requirements of the job.
2. CBD Sales Representative (Wholesale)
CBD manufacturers seem to be always on the lookout for star sales reps who can find and maintain wholesaler relationships.
This job is ideal for candidates who are goals-driven as the amount of money you can earn in this position can hit the six-figure mark, according to Indeed job postings.
CBD companies are typically looking for sales representative candidates with a Bachelor's Degree and B2B (business-to-business) sales experience with a passion for hemp products.
3. CBD Lab Analyst
Third-party lab testing is becoming a highly sought-after qualification when shopping for CBD products on the market, and while it's not an FDA requirement, many reputable brands invest in this extra step to provide their customers with transparency.
A CBD lab analyst is in charge of validating a company's CBD extract.
They look to see that the extractions contain the advertised CBD content, maintains the legal limit of 0.3% THC, and are free from harmful contaminants from the growing and extraction processes.
According to ZipRecruiter, the average CBD lab analyst salary is $60,098/year, but you can earn as much as $120,000. An employer may look for candidates with a Ph.D. or a Master's in analytical chemistry or previous experience testing cannabis in a lab setting.
4. CBD Marketer
Marketing roles can be CBD work-from-home jobs ideal for digital nomads. There are a lot of different job types under the umbrella of CBD marketers from social media marketing coordinators, copywriters, public relations coordinators, SEO strategists, and product designers.
Because CBD is a cannabis health product, it can't be traditional pay-per-click advertising methods or in print, which means many brands rely on digital content marketing strategies to build brand recognition and put their products in front of the right audience.
Email, blog writing, and social media posting for CBD brands can be rewarding and lucrative job opportunities if you're digitally savvy and are passionate about cannabis. Employers are looking for marketers with clear communication skills and extensive knowledge about the CBD industry.
According to Glassdoor, the average CBD marketer's salary is $52,000 – $55,000/year.
Right now, the regulations surrounding hemp marketing are murky because the industry is so new, but it's your job to ensure the campaigns are compliant to avoid fines and potential shutdowns.
As a CBD marketer, your role is to represent the company and inform customers how to use the product safely.
Not All CBD Companies Are Legit
We always urge caution when shopping for CBD products online, but the same can be said when job hunting in this space—not all CBD companies operate with integrity.
Some of the common checks apply when deciding what CBD company you should apply with as when shopping for CBD:
- Transparent hemp manufacturing
- Excellent customer service
- Compliant marketing practices
- Shining customer reviews on third-party websites
Navigating the CBD jobs can be tricky because there are a lot of companies out there that are misrepresenting their products or behave in shady ways to carve out larger profit margins. If they don't care about the industry, there's a high chance they're not going to have the best employer.