Michigan, like the rest of the country, is slowly starting to relax its marijuana laws, bringing them into line with other states in the union with more libertarian policies, like Nevada.
As we head into 2020, we’re going to see some profound changes in marijuana availability, which will, in all likelihood, enable businesses in the sector to begin selling cannabis products to customers finally.
Michigan Is Now Accepting Marijuana Business Applications
On 1 November 2019, the state of Michigan began accepting marijuana business applications. Marijuana retailers, growers, and what the state calls “marijuana event organizers” are now able to apply for permits and licenses to operate and sell.
If companies want to get a license, they must go through a two-step application process,
The first part of the process is called “prequalification.” This is where the state conducts background checks on all the applications for a $6,000 non-refundable fee. Those wanting to set up cannabis businesses in the state must prove that they are law-abiding citizens and do not have a history of drug trafficking in the United States. The money they pay goes towards funding the Marijuana Regulatory Agency.
Applicants who make it through prequalification then move onto the second part of the process. The purpose of this stage is to make sure that the business is both legitimate and viable. An MRA will vet the proposed company, checking whether the owners are financially responsible, are compliant with labor and fire safety laws, and have a sustainable business plan.
People May Be Able To Buy Cannabis In Michigan Stores From March 2020
While its best to get the application process underway as fast as possible, most people looking to set up a marijuana business in Michigan want to know when they’ll be able to start selling to consumers.
Currently, that’s anyone’s guess.
Right now, David Harns, the spokesman for the Marijuana Regulatory Agency, says that sales might start in March 2020, though that is by no means guaranteed.
Harn’s reasoning for this has to do with the length of time that it takes to set up a marijuana business. Michigan insists that all marijuana products in the state come from licensed growers, processors, and retailers. The marijuana plant takes several months to grow, test, and harvest, so he believes that spring next year will be the earliest point any business in the state will offer cannabis at retail. Some might be able to get products on shelves before this, but it will be a stretch.
You Cannot Sell Marijuana From Home
Cannabis legalization in Michigan isn’t carte blanche for buying and selling it, however, and whenever you want. You can give away your cannabis to somebody over the age of 21, as long as you don’t receive any payment for it. You cannot sell marijuana without a license, even privately to a friend.
Not All Communities Allow Commercial Marijuana Activities
So far, more than 1,200 communities across Michigan have informed the state’s Marijuana Regulatory Agency that they have banned the commercial sale of cannabis. Those considering setting up a business should check, therefore, that their proposed sale location is legal. It may not be.