The latest set of marijuana regulations was unveiled on Thursday in California. This time round they have given the rules that will direct the legalised recreational market in Jan 1 when it opens. They were published by three bodies; Department of Food and Agriculture, Department of Public Health and The Bureau of Cannabis Control. The regulations were created by early on draft proposals and legislation enacted this summer. They cover testing, growing, packaging and potency requirements for both the medical and recreational sectors but in future they are expected to change. Cannabis Advisory Committee has been created by the state which comprises of growers, retailers, union representatives among others parties that have interest in the marijuana industry, to take into legalized consideration the regulation and suggest changes if need be. Here are a few crucial points that emerged from regulations presented to the committee on Thursday.
As at now, everything is temporary. Regulators will be served with a four month temporary license to get the market rolling on Jan 1. In order to obtain the short term permits, applicants will be required to show that they have been authorised to operate from their local government agencies. That may not be readily available, as some cities and counties are still struggling with how to handle recreational enterprises. The regular licensing is expected to start in 2018.
Six month transition will operate in the state while that happens. It will allow operators to move and allow retailers that might not meet regulations on packaging or potency caps.
It is going cost a lot of money to make money. Everyone in the marijuana industry license fee will be different. This fee will vary depending on the size and type operation business will be carrying out. A fee of $500 will be levied to persons who will be transporting marijuana only without performing any kind of quality control. In a year, biggest distributer doing product testing will be charged $125,000 for a license. This excludes the $500 to $1,000 that is paid by license seekers for just application of a permit or the costs for entrepreneurs who need multiple legalized licenses. Those watching have questioned the California’s fees added to a 15 percent excise tax and local charges, will cost so much that small businesses will be squeezed out and the black market will continue to operate. On Thursday, Lori Ajax, bureau chief of Cannabis Control said that agency consulted the economists to help them set the fees so that they can only cover state costs. He further said that in the matter of the effect those fees might be, there is still a lot of work that need to be done on the regulations.
California is almost entering the edibles shape and packaging debate. The emergency regulations ban edibles that appeal to children. At the moment, the shape of human beings includes no munchables in either realistic or caricature animals, fruit or insects. Edibles must be covered in an opaque packaging, which can’t duplicate any products that are marketed to kids. Colorado has grappled with how to regulate edibles for years, a struggle greater than before in 2014 when the chief medical officer called for an absolute ban on consumable marijuana. Oregon approved recreational marijuana use in 2015 but did not allow the edibles sale until strict rules went into effect in 2016. An assistant deputy director at the California Department of Public Health, Miren Klein, approved on Thursday that they have already made up their minds on what packaging legalized and products appeals to kids is a subjective endeavour. He also said that they have tried to outline as much as they could in this regulation package .in addition to that he claimed that if the committee has any other ideas or suggestions that they could consider for a permanent package the California Marijuana Rules could definitely welcome that.
Klein said pre-approving each product is not practical in regards to pointing to California’s physical and market sizes. She also said if one thinks that their licensing fees are expensive for now, they will definitely drive up the licensing fees.