Cannabis Cargo Theft Real Threat to Cannabis Related Businesses

Most any business that has some form of retail merchandise to sell, likely relies upon cargo, transportation, and/or warehouses. Retail goods need to be moved from one location to another and cannabis related products are no different. Where the cannabis related businesses are different is that if that if cargo or merchandise gets stolen, the black market is very extensive and the products are virtually untraceable once stolen. Cannabis cargo theft is a legitimate risk to marijuana related businesses and their ability to turn a profit. A lost shipment of paraphernalia would be a set back and could cause serious financial problems, but even worse would be the loss of a shipment of marijuana related products such as edibles, flowers, plants or oils. If you’ve already paid for merchandise and become a victim of cargo theft, how do you recover  your loss? Cannabis cargo insurance is the best way to protect business against cargo theft once all other precautions are taken.

S2S insurance, Eric Rahn, cannabis cargo theft, dispensary insurance, who insures the marijuana industryCargo insurance provides coverage against physical damage or loss of goods during shipping, whether by land, sea or air. There are a number of inherent dangers involved in shipping, therefore the cannabis insurance specialists at S2S Insurance suggest using a cargo insurance as a staple in your cannabis related business portfolio to protect against cargo theft while in transit or while in storage. Cargo theft is becoming more advanced and requires cannabis businesses to stay ahead of would be thieves. Thieves will create fraudulent businesses to arrange for non-existent pickups and will find other ways to exploit gaps in supply chains by leveraging technology to do so.

Ringleaders Roberto Santos-Gonzalez, 37, and Carlos Enrique Freire-Pifferrer, as well as commercial truck drivers Juan Perez-Gonzalez, 44, and Eduardo Hernandez, 55 were sentenced. They were named with nine others in a 23-count indictment that charged them with participating in a conspiracy that operated from August 2012 to May 2015 and stealing $30 million in high-value merchandise carried by semi-trucks.

Members of the group would reconnoiter warehouse distribution centers run by national companies that distributed products including electronics, clothing, pharmaceuticals and cigarettes. The crooks would watch a center, then follow a semi-tractor and trailer leaving the building. They would steal the tractor and trailer when the driver stopped at a truck stop.

The crooks typically abandoned the tractor less than 20 miles from the truck stop and hooked up the trailer to another tractor driven by a member of their gang. The load would be driven to Louisville, Ky., where plans were made to resell the goods.

s2s insurance, eric rahn, cannabis insurance specialists, cannabis cargo theft, insurance for marijuana“Knowing the tactics that cargo thieves use can help businesses recognize their unique vulnerabilities as cannabis related businesses and prevent potential cargo theft,” explains Eric Rahn, an S2S Insurance specialist. Some of those tactics include identity theft, fake pick ups, misdirected loads, theft of trailer/container, hybrid theft scams and of course any combination of those previously mentioned. In order to help prevent cargo theft, cannabis businesses should conduct their due diligence on all third parties responsible for shipping their cargo, but also take additional safety and security precautions. Even taking the best precautions may not be enough and in those instances. S2S Insurance can help your business before disaster strikes. Working with a S2S Insurance agent before cargo theft, a fire, product liability, or even a workman’s comp claim hits, can save you money and prevent your business from becoming another failed start up.


Protecting Cannabis Cargo Shipments Protects Cannabis Revenue

The cannabis business is no different than any other industry in the United States when it comes to moving goods across the country. The cannabis industry will have to rely on shipping goods by truck, train or plane from one destination to the next. Cannabis businesses owners will need to think about how they will protect those cannabis cargo shipments. Stealing truck shipments is big business in the black market. Given the nature of cannabis and the ease of which the product can quickly become untraceable, thieves have been and will continue to look for ways to intercept cannabis cargo before the shipment reaches it’s destination.

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Whether cannabis businesses are shipping produce, electronics, automobiles, industrial materials or cannabis related products, business owners want to protect themselves from the risk of loss in transit. The good news is that cargo theft is on the decline, but the bad news is the value of what is being stolen is on the rise. What this means is that criminals looking to disrupt the supply chain are less worried about quantity and more concerned about the quality of what they steal. Criminals want to steal cargo that is hard to trace and easy to move and exchange for cash or other resources. Marijuana is hard to trace, holds a high value (which is why a business owner is in the cannabis industry) and can be moved and exchanged quickly.

An annual report compiled by SensiGuard’s Supply Chain Intelligence Center (SCIC) indicates that the number of recorded cargo thefts in the U.S. dropped to 649 in 2017, a 15% decline in volume from 2016 – roughly averaging out to 54 thefts per month in the U.S. or about two per day last year. However, the average value of cargo thefts increased slightly in 2017 – up 0.01% – compared to 2016, the group noted, with the U.S. still ranked “high” on the SCIC five-point risk scale, which ascends from “low” through “moderate,” “elevated,” “high” and finally “severe.”

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“While 2017 continued the downward trend in reported U.S. cargo thefts, this does not indicate a decline in risk, but rather that organized cargo thieves are honing in on shipments that they know can be fenced easily,” the group stressed in its report. “Coupled with the average loss value remaining steady, this points to thieves refining their methods to reduce chance of capture or the need to abandon the shipment due to law enforcement pursuit.”

Due to the Schedule 1 classification of marijuana, business owners may have concerns about their risk management options. It is important that owners work with experienced insurance companies and agents that can help review their options and make the right decision based on their model of operation. The type of cannabis cargo insurance that will work best for your company will depend on how involved you as a business owner are in the transportation of cannabis. It is also important to remember that there are other risks involved in transporting cargo including accidents, crashes, and acts of nature to name a few. It’s important that business owners are aware of coverage limits and review their policy with their agent and their attorney.