Sachin Barot, founder of CERESLabs, began his mission in 2016 when he left his 20-year career on Wall Street to pursue his interest in cannabis in California. After investigating and working in all facets of the industry, Sachin focused his attention on the cannabis analytical testing and research space. This area dovetailed nicely with his belief that the cannabis plant has enormous potential to help people in their everyday lives. So he started his company with a vision to ensure safe and appropriate cannabis products for all end-users.
To aid in his mission, Sachin enlisted two key executives to sit on the Advisory Board – Bill Stephenson and Dr. Charlyn Belluzzo. Bill was previously Global Head of Trading at Franklin Templeton Investments and is now a financial technology entrepreneur and the founder of the AIR Summit, an exclusive technology conference for financial professionals. Dr. Belluzzo is an internationally recognized corporate and non-profit leader in global public health. She is the Clinical Director at xRapid and Global Health Initiatives Director at DrInfo.
Next came the question of what to call this new company. Sachin enlisted the help of Pam Keehn, a marketing strategy specialist, to ideate on positioning and naming. With thought starters like ValidityLabs and BeaconTesting, many focused on the analytical side of the business.
But one stood out above the rest – CERESLabs – based on the Roman goddess and protector of the harvest. She turns our attention to the land yet also reminds us to plant figurative seeds of character that will mature in us. Ceres was a kind and benevolent goddess and Romans had a common expression “fit for Ceres,” which meant splendid. While others gods occasionally “dabbled” in human affairs when it suited their personal interests, the goddess Ceres walked among humans and was truly a nurturer of mankind. She fits in nicely with the team’s vision.
Next, the big question – where to open our first lab. We knew it would be in California, but it’s a big state with tremendous opportunity throughout. We also knew that we wanted an area densely populated with cultivators, manufacturers and distributors. Moreover, we needed a place that had easy access to transportation routes, low laboratory penetration and great harvest conditions. Enter Greenfield, CA!
Greenfield is just south of Salinas in beautiful Monterey County. The rolling hills are spectacular, the weather is ideal and harvests are bountiful. It met all of our criteria, but what we didn’t expect was the wonderful nature of its community. We are now happily integrated into the Greenfield community. Sachin has joined the board of MCCIA (Monterey County Cannabis Industry Association), a well-connected and vital organization committed to the local community. We frequent the local eateries, hike at Pinnacles National Park and enjoy the fabulous wineries. We have found our first home.
And we are very close to opening! We are putting the finishing touches on our beautiful state-of-the-art laboratory. Karen Graham, our Director of Project Management, heads up our Greenfield operations team and has done an incredible job on the buildout, licensing and keeping us all on schedule.
And as our team grows, we continue on our journey to ensure that every product that leaves our lab is exactly what we say it is and is exactly what the consumer wants – a safe, reliable product from a brand they love.
We look forward to working with you. We truly are, all in this together.