Soon enough the sale of cannabis will be legal in the state of California with others perhaps to follow, but it won’t be easy.
With the passing of Proposition 64 recently, the cannabis retail marketplace is one of the biggest growth industries of the year. Or it will be when licences go into effect as of January 1st anyway. These new regulations and fresh legislation are all put in place to make it possible for cannabis businesses to operate legally. They do not however make it in any way easy for a cannabis business to do so. Whether you are a new cannabis business or one that has been operating legally for years, these new regulations may make it a challenge to enter this exciting new marketplace.
So finally the Bureau of Cannabis Control have released their online application forms for cannabis businesses to join the marketplace on January 1st. The licences that are currently being applied for are temporary with the state only offering permanent licences later in the new year. This licence will allow distributors, retailers, microbusinesses, testing laboratories and other types of cannabis business to join this growing market.
There are however a fair few problems to be faced first, as well as a few hoops that these businesses will have to jump through before they are issued one. These new regulations may offer a legal freedom, the likes of which have seldom been seen within the marijuana industry, but they also ask a lot. This new freedom comes with a wealth of responsibilities; responsibilities that are going to cost these budding businesses quite a lot of money. You see, while they are making it possible to legally operate a cannabis business, they are by no means going to make it easy or cheap. There are varying reasons for this.
Like any good prohibition story, the newly legalised product will be subject to much taxation. Such was the case of alcohol in the twenties. There will also be new laws that regulate the places that sell cannabis or allow cannabis or cannabis products to be consumed on their premises. Old cannabis businesses will have to renew their permits and licences and there is no guarantee that they will be accepted either. Old and new are in this manner, all in the same boat.
The cost of entering this market will rise and rise as each of the required hoops is jumped through. The cost of the licences a cannabis business needs to operate themselves is likely to be well over $100,000. Then there are all the other costs involved. These businesses will see themselves having to meet high standards when it comes to things like disability accessibility, sustainable business management and ecological business practices. Costs collect so when you are having to pay for everything from signage to staff it will be just as costly as any other business venture, only in this case there will be more to take into account.
There has always been, is now and will probably always be a fair few amongst the general population that have a bias against the cannabis industry. This bias can stretch to those who use it, those who sell it or even just those who work with businesses that are in the cannabis industry. Many cannabis companies have been refused loans by banks or have found it hard to find companies to work for or with them within certain sectors. This bias can have a small effect on your costs or ability to obtain a licence, for example finding a security firm or bank to represent you. It can also however have a much larger effect though if your local government decides that they want to ban the use of marijuana then they can. You will not have your application for a state licence approved if you operate within a county or a city which does not allow the growth, sale or distribution of cannabis.
The route from here to open doors and marijuana products passing over their counters is a long one for these cannabis businesses. A long one and also a somewhat twisted one, however as with most things; the wait and the work will be well worth it.