I wrote this a while back to explain to someone why Canopy was growing different strains in their indoor facility than Aphria was growing in their greenhouses.
When growing cannabis, water and light requirements must be kept within certain ranges at different stages in the grow process. Unlike crops we’ve cultivated for centuries, we haven’t selectively bred cannabis for stable growth traits required in industrial scale cultivation. Instead, we’ve bred the plant to produce the most THC/CBD with the greatest number of trichomes. You can picture the scenario as a human growing hair, if we breed a human to grow hair at 3x the normal rate, the human wouldn’t grow normally if their internal systems haven’t adapted to the change in nutrient allocation. We’ve selected strains with the most THC/CBD content, without regard to the potential consequence to the internal system. The changes to the internal system are different for each strain, this is why Aphria can grow strains with the same THC/CBD content as Canopy, but choose not to grow the ‘popular strains’. Some of these popular strains can be finicky because they got very unlucky in the selection process.
Aphria chose strains that grow well in greenhouses due to the plants better internal growth controls. You can grow all of Aphria’s strains indoors but you’d have to grow all the finicky strains in a greenhouse with much more attention. You would have problems growing the finicky strains on mass in a greenhouse because they would take too much individual attention from the growers. Their metabolite profile could be the same, but your yields would probably suffer due to suboptimal conditions stunting biomass and/or the amount of THC/CBD. Your growers would also be really pissed off because finicky plants don’t like to cooperate. At the end of the day you’d still harvest and process the same finicky strain others grow indoors.
In a much simpler way of putting it, those finicky strains and other ‘indoor strains’ are the dumb cannabis plants. They’re horrible at growing so you have to baby them all the way because you’ve bred dumb plants that barely know how to grow properly anymore and would quickly die if reintroduced into the wild. Not all our cannabis plants are dumb at growing, Aphria picks plants that aren’t dumb at growing because they don’t want to deal with the excessive needs of the dumb plants. They could, but at what cost to their profits and sanity.