Marijuana Regulations Consulting, & Provisional Licenses
Higher Yields Cannabis Consultants offers a full range of cannabis consulting services in the state of Massachusetts. With Massachusetts marijuana regulations ever-changing, our vertically integrated consulting system offers a path to business success. From winning a provisional license to startup to scaling and expanding your business, our team of industry experts can help! If you have any questions please contact us online or call (844) HI-YIELD.
Questions on cannabis
Important Compliance Considerations
for Massachusetts Marijuana Regulations for METRC
As part of the most regulated industry in history, owners of conventional or provisional licenses for cannabis operations face intense scrutiny from local and state governments. METRC, a seed-to-sale tracking system, helps operators stay compliant by creating an easily identifiable chain of custody for each cannabis product. Using METRC makes recalls easy and ensures accountability.
Mandated in 15 states plus Washington D.C., METRC is similar everywhere. However, from provisional licenses to tracking details, there are nuances specific to each state. In order to remain compliant, businesses must be aware of and adhere to specific Massachusetts marijuana regulations.
Another heavily regulated state, Massachusetts manages cannabis in a logical way. Overseen by the Cannabis Control Commission (CCC), the state offers plenty of resources to guide operators through the process of integrating METRC.
Additionally, Massachusetts has been working diligently to make sure every owner of a conventional or provisional license has at least one trained METRC admin and allows businesses to get multiple employees trained if they want.
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Licenses in Massachusetts
If you are looking to attain a license for hemp or cannabis in Massachusetts Higher Yields Cannabis Consulting can help. Our team of cannabis licensing consultants and technical writers has had great success helping newcomers and experienced operators attain licenses all over the world.
Current Massachusetts Marijuana Regulations & Provisional Licenses: Dispensaries, Cultivation, Processing, & Manufacturing
In 2016, following a statewide vote on Massachusetts marijuana regulations, The Regulation and Taxation of Marijuana Act legalized the non-medical purchase and use of cannabis in the state. In 2017, The Act to Ensure Safe Access to Marijuana introduced certain amendments to the 2016 law. These acts established the Cannabis Control Commission, a state agency created to regulate adult-use cannabis procedures and provisional licenses for growers, manufacturers, and sellers of cannabis. Should it see fit, the commission is also empowered to cap cannabis cultivation in the state.
Under the 2016 and 2017 acts, adults who are at least 21 years of age can use, possess, purchase, process, and manufacture cannabis. In terms of personal use, an adult may possess up to one ounce of cannabis (or five grams of cannabis concentrate) without any specialized licensing.
Until very recently, the state of Massachusetts offered four types of licenses to adult cannabis industry participants. This set of conventional and provisional licenses is distinct from the licensing that applies to medical marijuana establishments, or Registered Marijuana Dispensaries (RMDs), which must grow, manufacture, and market their own products for medical purposes. In contrast to RMDs, adult-use cannabis businesses can limit their work to one part of the industry. The types of conventional and provisional licenses break down according to the main legs of the Massachusetts cannabis industry: Marijuana Cultivator, Marijuana Retailer, Marijuana Product Manufacturer, and Testing Laboratory.
A Marijuana Cultivator can grow cannabis within a limited area and transfer it to another establishment with a provisional license. The exact square footage of the legal cultivation area, or canopy, depends on the tier of license that the licensee selects. A Tier 1 license authorizes a canopy of up to 5,000 square feet. A Tier 11 license, the highest tier available, authorizes a canopy of up to 100,000 square feet. Marijuana Cultivators can hold up to three separate licenses, but cannot operate a combined canopy that is larger than 100,000 square feet total. Cultivators can also apply to change the tier of a conventional or provisional license, pending proof of need for expanded production.
A Marijuana Product Manufacturer is authorized to manufacture, process, and transfer marijuana products within the industry, but not sell to consumers. A Marijuana Retailer license allows an establishment to purchase marijuana from other establishments and to sell marijuana products to consumers. A provisional license may be issued to a Testing Laboratory to test marijuana products as the state Department of Public Health allows, but may hold no other marijuana industry license.
There is a $3,000 application fee for cannabis operators to win a conventional or provisional license in Massachusetts. If an application is approved, cultivation, retail, and manufacturer licenses all include an additional $15,000 fee. A testing license comes with a $10,000 fee.
On May 28, 2020, the Cannabis Control Commission opened up applications for Delivery-only Marijuana Establishment licenses. For at least two years, this provisional license application process will be open only to Social Equity Program Participants and Economic Empowerment Applicants. The 2017 marijuana act established these programs to encourage and prioritize the industry participation of persons whose communities had been harmed by past cannabis laws. If successful in the application process, winners of delivery-only provisional licenses will be able to deliver to addresses located in the same municipality as their business, provided that the municipality has officially approved the delivery of adult-use products within its borders.