California State Fair to return in 2022, features new cannabis competition

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KTXL) After being canceled two years in a row, the California State Fair will return in 2022.

The fair is a yearly celebration of all things California, including the state’s agriculture, craft beer, cheese and wine.

“California’s been on the cutting edge in a number of ways, in fact, California State Fair’s wine competition is the oldest in America,” explained California State Fair CEO Rick Pickering.

But the next cutting edge in the Golden State is cannabis.

“The concept was a competition at State Fair, but the competition would be tied to the chemistry of cannabis — so the purity of the product. The cannabinoids, the terpenes that are there, lab tested,” he said.

The competition will be the first-ever of its kind inviting licensed marijuana producers from around the state with the ultimate goal of educating the public.

“There’s almost 100 different varieties of cannabis, so much like wine grapes, some grow in better climates than others. And then there’s a lot of chemistry that goes into cannabis just like there is into wine and craft beer. So, there will be an opportunity to learn about that. And then there’s an entire medical side,” Pickering explained.

People won’t be able to purchase or use cannabis products at the fair, but officials say they plan to start small next year and grow the competition alongside an already booming industry.

“There’s predictions that cannabis will be the largest cash crop produced by the state of California. So, it makes sense that we’re involved as the state fair,” Pickering said.

Licensed cannabis growers can register for the 2022 state fair competition starting Nov. 1 through March 30.

Next year’s state fair will run from July 15 through July 31.

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