Tissue culture is one of the most popular techniques to reproduce and obtain plant clones. Over the years, it has been tested with many agricultural crops like rice, tomato, wheat, maze, and flowering plants such as orchids, African violets, and even roses.
But, what makes this technique stand out from others?
- It allows producing disease-free plants.
- It allows plants to grow on a commercial scale and fulfill the required market demands.
- It’s an effective technique to observe endangered plant species.
- It’s easier to produce stable varieties or even clones of plants using the technique.
- It allows an easier way to conserve a plant’s genome.
- It’s effective when it comes to increasing the yield of plants or introducing a specific characteristic.
Some of these advantages are either not possible to obtain by using conventional techniques or highly difficult, time taking, and laborious to achieve.
In cannabis cultivation, pathogen attacks pose a serious threat to the production, yield, and profitability of the plant.
In this article, we review the progress in cannabis cultivation, challenges, and how a tissue culture is an effective tool and solution to most of its problems.
Cannabis Cultivation and Market Demands
Not many people have understood the potential of Cannabis cultivation through tissue culture. However, scientists now believe that the technique will benefit on a huge scale to the challenges in cannabis culture, whether it's achieving true-to-type plantlets, generating clean stock, or producing disease-free plants.
The cannabis industry has grown rapidly in past years and not only in the U.S but globally. It’s estimated that the current cannabis sales, which is $13.4 billion, can increase up to $33.6 billion by 2025. However, legality and regulations will remain key factors in deciding the growth and development of the cannabis industry.
The application of cannabis in the alcohol, tobacco, and pharmaceutical industry can transform the cannabis industry into a new face. For example, according to studies due to the toll on people’s mental health during the COVID-19 pandemic, a 91% increase in the consumption of medicinal cannabis has been observed among people.
Despite the situation, the high-interest rate, legalization in the states, and strict regulations will always be a major challenge in expanding the cannabis industry. This also affects the research and cultivation practices of cannabis, which eventually impact the search for an effective solution for the better growth of cannabis plants.
The potential benefits of Cannabis cultivation through tissue culture
The tissue culture has the potential to benefit the Cannabis industry and licensed producers in several ways. Some of them are:
- You can order healthy, young tissue culture plants for the propagation process, irrespective of maintaining mother plants
Traditional cannabis cultivation is an inefficient, expensive, and risky approach. It often leads to producing diseased plants or diminishing a particular cultivar. In the future, there’s a possibility of outsourcing young tissue culture plants, rather than obtaining them directly from the mother plant.
There are three ways in which tissue culture plants can generate values for cannabis cultivators. It includes:
- Increased efficiency: It produces healthy cultivars and reduces the risk of pathogen attacks and eliminates the associated cost with it.
- Achieve clean stock: Directly purchasing your stocks from a verified source will enhance the reproducibility and profitability in the plant production. Further, it also breaks the pathogen cycle.
- Reliability: The method allows you to collect plants for your tissue culture process whenever it’s required. This prevents all/any challenges associated with mother plants and cloning.
However, even after getting clean stock, you’re required to maintain a clean and sanitized environment to tissue culture your plants
- Achieve desired genetics and engineer desired THC and other novel cannabinoid profiles using the tissue culture technique.
- Plant tissue culture has the ability to eliminate around 99% of pathogens from the cultivars. After production of the plant, you gain the surety after performing viral tests for your plants.
- Studies have shown that tissue culture has been an efficient technique in increasing cannabis yield. It has led to around a 30% increase in dry flower production and around a 15-20% increase in cannabinoid content.
- While working with tissue culture, you can also outsource clean stock from a verified source. This reduces the need for a room required to maintain the mother plants. You can redirect the investments made into mother plants into creating another capital resource.
If you are looking for approaches to eliminate pathogens from your cannabis plants, then check out PCT consultation services for the help you want in your Cannabis culture. It can range from viral detection, pathogen elimination, or educating your staff to the advanced tissue culture technique in the use of cannabis plants.