Paragon Coin — Revolutionizing All Things Cannabis with Blockchain
Paragon Coin will revolutionize the cannabis industry
Bitcoin gets all of blockchain’s glory, but there are other innovative uses for blockchain that stand to transform the way we do business over the internet.
Companies are beginning to see the value of using the open source technology to change the internet from a distrustful, covert operation to a transparent set of processes that give customers the chance to check the validity and authenticity of products bought through online shops.
Some of the most exciting and innovative uses of blockchain are happening in the cannabis industry. As cannabis is legalized, consumers and governing bodies are looking for ways to ensure that the products for distribution are both safe and authentic. Blockchain technology can solve this problem.
Before we delve into its applications in the cannabis industry, let’s take a quick refresher on how blockchain works.
Blockchain was invented as a way to keep cryptocurrency above board. It’s a decentralized public ledger that cannot be altered once information is recorded.
A network of servers provides a repository of public information. Basically, every time a product changes hands, a record is created and then verified by the system. When the data is deemed accurate, a new “block” is added to the chain of information for that product.
The code is entirely open source, so consumers who wish to check the public record have complete access. Information is never overwritten, so the entire transaction history of the product is available.
This technology allows consumers to authenticate the product and the user who is claiming to “own” the rights to the product.
It prevents cryptocurrency from being counterfeited, but other applications have arisen. Companies such as Wabi have used the blockchain to prevent the fraud that happened with counterfeit baby products in China. Others have used the technology to decentralize loans and other financial transactions.
Cannabis has been illegal for a long time, and although restrictions have eased, the industry is struggling to keep up with a patchwork of laws and regulations. In the US, there are no consistent regulations, and although the industry is worth billions of dollars, major logistical obstacles are preventing businesses from taking advantage of its full potential.
This inefficient system puts the consumer at risk because this kind of roughshod regulation means fewer protections for consumers and more danger. It also means that the industry itself struggles with ever-changing regulations.
Some of these obstacles include obsolete classification laws that misidentify cannabis. It also means that traditional banking solutions are practically nonexistent for businesses, making it challenging to scale companies to a sustainable model.
There are no established standards for purity or for identifying precisely what kind of product the consumer is buying. Consumers and regulators also have trouble tracking CBD versus THC amounts and percentages.
At the very least, consumers need to be able to verify that the products they are purchasing are legal, clean, and certified. The fear surrounding the cannabis industry doesn’t inspire confidence, and officials frequently work with outdated or erroneous information that leaves consumers lacking in quality products, access to their medicinal needs, and the stigma of purchasing illicit products from unproven sources.
Legalizing and Standardizing the Industry
Public opinion has mostly tipped in favor of legalization, leaving governing bodies the task of unifying rules and regulations. As the industry transitions to legal economy, the door is open for businesses to flourish.
Blockchain technology allows ordinary citizens to push for logical regulations and standardized laws across borders. It also provides an avenue for businesses to bypass traditional financial institutions to save profits generated from business and to reinvest in the business without the financial middleman.
This push is one of the most exciting applications of blockchain technology yet. An organization could easily replicate the success Wabi coin had in creating a transparent and consumer-driven product authentication in which consumers have access to both the initial stamp of authenticity and the entire history of the product they are purchasing.
Paragon is an organization dedicated to the legalization, standardization, and distribution of cannabis. Their mission is to remove the stigma of using cannabis, allow businesses to build and scale their operations in a way that provides a future for business operations, and to advocate for the areas involved in cannabis across the board.
Paragon supports businesses as they build a reliable operations model. They also support consumers who wish to have a logical regulatory process and a way to know for sure that the products they are purchasing are safe and ethical.
Paragon uses as little fiat currency as possible in order to support the broader blockchain community. Moreover, Paragon will exclusively accept their token, PRG, as a means of payment for services in their Paragon Spaces. The platform is open source so businesses can build their own public ledgers and incorporate their business mission and model into Paragon’s cannabis community.
The long-term goal is to create a transparent seed to sale verification system, closing loopholes in the patchwork of regulatory bodies. They also understand the need for a better ID system, and for certifications for other specifications such as organic growing conditions, and eco-friendly operations.
Other long-term goals include uniting members in a common advocacy goal and giving members a voice in an ever-evolving industry. Members can count on transparent and audited operations and full support.
Business Model: Advocacy and Transparency
At its core, Paragon is a check and balance on what is still a rogue industry. It plans to introduce a public ledger for businesses and all industry-related data through Paragon Chain.
Members have complete freedom to scale and contribute without getting blocked due to outdated legislation. Users can access data on products through the Paragon app — which is directly linked to the Paragon Chain solution of smart-contracts. Businesses within the industry can contribute by participating in the project and storing their data through Paragon’s supply chain solution.
An innovative part of the company is the introduction of niche workspaces for industry professionals via Paragon Space. The use of physical space allows businesses to congregate in relative freedom to organize, advocate, and exchange ideas. They also want to unite various legalization efforts through Paragon Online.
Paragon also plans to put to rest the often opposing forces of patchwork legislation and offer consumers an effective certification system, a standardized lab system, and a way for consumers to check those certifications through Paragon’s platforms.
The Smart Contracts concept unites an industry that is fragmented and still disordered. It makes it easier for the consumer to verify the product, but also for dispensaries and medical professionals to verify prescriptions.
For example, an individual downloads the Paragon app and verifies their identity. They make an appointment with the doctor who then prescribes the cannabis product and signs the prescription. The MMJ ID is also approved by the doctor and records are sent to the dispensary.
From there, the dispensary creates a record. The consumer selects and verifies a product, including the entire supply chain, and pays in cash (until the laws change.) From here the record is closed. Inventory at the dispensary is updated automatically.
It uses Ethereum’s advances on the original blockchain technology to create this system of smart contracts. It’s decentralized, anonymous, but still open source and verifiable.
It adds an extra layer to Ethereum to help solve problems that are unique to the industry. It allows for anonymous identity verification for example, or for doctors to sign prescriptions and MMJ IDs that go directly to the dispensary.
Also, as conditions and regulations change, contracts can be continuously updated without the headache.
Uses of Paragon Coin
One of the most significant industry obstacle is the financial portion. Businesses struggle to find real estate or even an institution willing to house profits from cannabis sales and distribution.
While PRG does not operate as a substitute for fiat when it comes to cannabis sales, it can be used for business to business transactions for non-cannabis products such as fertilizers, compost and lighting equipment. Advantageously, transactions can always be traced back and reviewed for auditing purposes.
In addition to the above, PRG is the exclusive method of payment for all services and solutions housed within the Paragon Space ecosystem, from renting a desk to seeking in-house legal counsel. PRG is also the exclusive method of payment for business seed-to-sale tracking solutions — and a fee is required for verification and data publication, so as to prevent network attacks.
Creating Physical Work Spaces: Paragon Space
Another innovative feature of Paragon is the creation of brick and mortar workspaces within districts where such space is legal.
This gives start-ups in the industry access to workspaces in which Paragon has done the heavy lifting of acquiring and contracting the space. As the spaces grow, the ability for small businesses to meet, discuss, and advocate grows easier.
It further facilitates the exchange of information and organizing. The plan is to expand these spaces across the globe, reducing the stigma associated with the cannabis trade and further reducing districts where consumption and distribution are still illegal.
It will be the first large-scale cryptocurrency backed, physical workspaces. The spaces further support the value of Paragon coin by only accepting the coin in payment for access to spaces and other office activities such as printing and other services, snacks, and anything else members need to function.
To have access to the spaces, members pitch their startup ideas to the Paragon community, and members up-vote pitches they like. Winners of up-voting have access to private spaces within the physical spaces. Others will still have access to the shared areas.
Members will scan a door code, and, provided a wallet has at least one active Paragon Coin, they will gain access to the space. Other services are payable as needed, but only in PRG.
The online community is where the real magic happens. Paragon seeks to create an equalized space for members of the growing cannabis industry to gather to make democratic decisions based on the needs of the community. It’s business with a social conscience.
Community members vote on the direction of Paragon’s business ventures, advocacy projects, and directly influence the project, Paragon goals and much more.
It’s a place for members to exchange ideas and information in pursuit of destigmatizing and supporting each other and the industry. It will be a place where the foremost advocates gather and use collective effort to enact real change.
The space will reward active members with physical spaces and other perks. Paragon wants to be a genuinely democratic institution as members move forward to build the industry from the ground up.
This space also increases trust for new consumers as they interact directly with other users and the businesses distributing various cannabis products. It’s a way for everyone to come together to build a transparent economic model with a social conscience.
Each member will have his or her own dashboard to monitor activities and hold their tokens. Paragon believes that the best way forward is for networking and open, honest activities. It’s the only way to create an industry that remains human in the world of cyberspace.
Members can build their businesses with the support of the community and have access to a network of business partners and supporters. Paragon hopes that growing the industry autonomously will maintain best interest practices for consumers and encourage continual innovation.
Paragon Smart Apps
First, users can track plants by identifying things like mothers and clones without risking mixing up IDs. The Paragon app also allows users to track which plants were grown under which conditions, which died and why, and why plants were moved.
Apps can also track the creation of products including oils, edibles, and others. Users can record relevant information that the consumer can check before purchase.
The app could also remove the 24-hour quarantine associated with moving plants across state lines. It can track delivery, and the final tag includes the historical record of each plant and product associated with it.
These services can be integrated with common other apps included in the cannabis industry with little effort on the part of businesses and distributors.
The CEO and Founder: Jessica Versteeg
The creator of this new blockchain partner is Jessica Versteeg. She got started in the cannabis industry through her upscale marijuana subscription box located in the San Francisco Bay area, AuBox. The delivery service was featured in many major magazines and publications including Marie Claire, Vogue, and Forbes.
She is dedicated to the cause of legalizing and standardizing the cannabis industry because she lost someone very close to her to an overdose of painkillers. She has devoted her life to pursuing cannabis as an alternative to pain management and an answer to the growing medical opioid addiction crisis.
She believes that the community of Paragon can revolutionize the industry through advocacy and transparency. She is a former Miss Iowa, a current model, and a former participant in the Amazing Race.
The Bottom Line
Paragon stands to be one of the most innovative solutions to come out of blockchain technology and is virtually ensured success based on the already billion dollar cannabis industry.
As societies begin to open doors to legalization, Paragon stands to help business owners set up and scale operations in ways that ensure a future, and help users become more confident consumers and advocates.
Participating in Paragon’s new systems is a logical decision for anyone wishing to become a part of the growing cannabis industry. The best solutions come from a close network of advocates and Paragon wants to facilitate this multi-billion dollar industry with a heart.