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State to hire full-time cannabis connoisseur

Marijuana plants being grown in Washington state.
Marijuana plants being grown in Washington state.(David Deardorff via AP)

Help wanted: Pot inspector.

The Massachusetts Department of Agricultural Resources posted a listing on the state’s career site Friday for an agricultural inspector who will specialize in a new crop in Massachusetts: cannabis.

“This Inspector position will enforce the laws and regulations involving hemp and overlapping laws and regulations that impact the cultivation of marijuana,” the listing says.

Other duties of the job include providing “education and outreach to stakeholders relative to the enforcement of pertinent laws and regulations,” and reporting and summarizing inspections, the listing says.

The job pays between $42,391 and $57,762 yearly.

The applicant’s qualifications must include a bachelor’s degree or higher in fields such as agriculture, biology, chemistry, or other related fields; “experience or knowledge about Cannabis and how it is regulated in other states”; “field experience in a biological setting”; and technical experience in control of pests and use of pesticides.

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The position falls under the Crop and Pest Services division of the state agency.

The department has been tasked with establishing health and safety standards regarding “cultivation processing, manufacturing and distribution of marijuana.” In addition, the department is expected to develop regulations on the use of pesticides in growing cannabis.

The law also calls for the department to oversee production of hemp, a nonpsychoactive strain of cannabis whose fibers are used to make rope, clothing, and nutrition products.

Valerio Romano is a lawyer who focuses on helping marijuana-focused businesses. Romano, who has offices in Massachusetts and California, said he is glad the position falls under the Department of Agricultural Resources, as opposed to the state’s Cannabis Control Commission.

“This goes along with what other jurisdictions are doing,” he said. “It’s really a positive thing. These inspection/field agent types are critical parts of any one of these programs.”


Samantha J. Gross can be reached at samantha.gross@globe.com. Follow her on Twitter @samanthajgross.

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