What Types of Medical Marijuana Business Licenses Exist?
The Medical Marijuana Regulation and Safety Act introduced seventeen types
of licenses. The list below explains the types of licenses created, along
with what limitations are placed on holding that particular license. While
some license types allow the same business entity to have another license
type as well, others do not. Also, a medical cannabis business may not
hold any more than two permitted license types at one time, unless otherwise
explicitly (and rarely) permitted.
Finally, the MMRSA prohibits partial ownership or financial interests in
any entity beyond those expressly stated below. This means that, if you
have a license that prohibits any other licenses, or if you have two licenses
that are simultaneously permitted, you may not have investments or any
other financial connections with any state-licensed cannabis business, etc.
Important Additional Information on Certain Licenses
Type 6: Manufacturer 1
This license is for manufacturing sites that produce medical cannabis products using
nonvolatile solvents. This license type is regulated by the State Department of Public Health.
Type 7: Manufacturer 2
This license is for manufacturing sites that produce medical cannabis products using
volatile solvents. This license type is regulated by the State Department of Public
Health, and the number of licenses allotted are limited by that department as well.
Type 8: Testing
Testing licenses must have their facilities licensed according to regulations
set forth by the State Department of Public Health.
Testing licensees cannot hold a license in another license category, and
they cannot own or have ownership interest in any licensed medical cannabis
or cannabis product facility. In fact, it is required by law that the facility be independent from all
other people and entities involved in the medical cannabis industry.
Testing Facility Protocol
- The testing laboratory must adopt a standard operating procedure, which
must use methods consistent with general requirements for the competence
of testing and calibration activities. This includes sampling.
· The laboratory must use standard methods established by the International
Organization for Standardization (specifically ISO/IEC 17020 and ISO/IEC
17025) to test medical cannabis products approved by an
An agent must obtain samples according to a statistically valid sampling
method for each
- Samples must be analyzed in accordance with one of two ways:
The most current version of the cannabis inflorescence monograph published
by the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia;
Scientifically valid methodology that is demonstrably equal or superior
to the American Herbal Pharmacopoeia, in the opinion of the
- If a test result falls outside of the authorized specifications, the testing
facility must follow an established standard operating procedure to confirm
or refute the original result.
- Once analysis is complete, the testing lab must destroy the remains of
the sample of medical cannabis or medical cannabis product.
In addition, testing facilities face a number of other restrictions and
requirements regarding operation and reporting under the new laws.
Type 10: Dispensaries
While there are two types of licenses for dispensaries - Type 10 is the
general license, and Type 10A is for dispensaries with a maximum of three
licensed facilities - many of their requirements are the same. For example,
both may deliver cannabis and products to qualifying patients or caregivers, provided
the standards for delivery are met.
Both dispensary licenses also must implement sufficient security measures
that deter and prevent unauthorized entrance into areas containing medical
cannabis or products, and both must ensure against theft of the cannabis
and products. Mandatory measures for dispensaries regarding these measures include:
- Preventing individuals from remaining on the premises if they are not engaging
in activity expressly related to the operations of the dispensary.
- Establishing limited access areas accessible only to authorized dispensary
- Storing all finished medical cannabis and products in a secured and locked
room, safe, or vault, and in a manner that prevents diversion, theft,
and loss. The exception to this is for limited amounts of cannabis that
are used for display purposes, samples, or immediate sale.
In addition, dispensaries must notify both the licensing authority and
law enforcement within 24 hours after discovering any of the following:
- Significant discrepancies discovered during inventory.
- Diversion, theft, loss, or any criminal activity involving the dispensary,
one of its agents, or one of its employees.
- The loss or unauthorized alteration of records related to cannabis, registered
qualifying patients, primary caregivers, or dispensary employees or agents.
- Any other breach of security.
Type 11: Distribution
This license is for the distribution of medical cannabis and products from
the manufacturer to the dispensary. In addition to this license, distributors
must hold a Transporter License (Type 12, below) and register each location
where distribution product is stored. A distribution licensee cannot hold
or have an ownership interest (aside from a security interest, lien, or
property encumbrance) in cultivation, manufacturing, dispensing, or testing
facilities. Finally, this license requires that the licensee be bonded
and insured at a designated minimum level.
Type 12: Transporter
This license is for the transportation of medical cannabis and products
between licensees. It does not include deliveries to qualified patients from a dispensary.
This license requires that the licensee be bonded and insured at a designated
minimum level. Furthermore, the Bureau will establish minimum security
requirements for commercial transportation licenses.
Medical Marijuana Deliveries under MMRSA
Under the MMSRA, dispensaries may deliver medical cannabis and/or medical
cannabis products to patients. However, deliveries can only be made
by a dispensary, and
they must be in a city or county (or both) that does not explicitly prohibit it. Counties may impose a tax on each delivery transaction completed by a licensee.
However, even in areas where dispensary deliveries are prohibited, local
not prevent medical cannabis or cannabis product delivery drivers from using
its public roads.
While delivering medical cannabis or medical cannabis products, dispensary
delivery employees must carry three forms of documentation: (1) a current
license that authorizes the delivery services, (2) government-issued identification,
and (3) a physical copy of the delivery request, which must comply with
state and federal laws regarding the protection of confidential medical
information. If requested, these documents must be presented to local
law enforcement, employees of regulatory authorities, or any other state/local
agencies involved with enforcement.
The qualified medical patient or caregiver receiving the delivery must
also maintain a copy of the delivery request. Similarly, it must be presented
if requested by law enforcement officers or licensing authority.
Labeling Requirements under MMRSA
All medical cannabis products must be labeled in a tamper-evident package
prior to delivery or sale at a dispensary. Furthermore, all packaging
and labels must not be made to be attractive to children, and only generic
food names may be used to describe edible medical cannabis products.
As of January 1, 2016, all cannabis products must have labels that include
the following information,
which must be prominently displayed on the packaging and in a clear, legible font:
- Manufacture Date
- Manufacture Source
The following statement,
in bold print:
KEEP OUT OF REACH OF CHILDREN AND ANIMALS
All of the following four (4) statements:
SCHEDULE 1 CONTROLLED SUBSTANCE
FOR MEDICAL USE ONLY
THE INTOXICATING EFFECTS OF THIS PRODUCT MAY BE DELAYED BY UP TO TWO HOURS
THIS PRODUCT MAY IMPAIR THE ABILITY TO DRIVE OR OPERATE MACHINERY, PLEASE
USE EXTREME CAUTION
- For packages that contain only dried flower, the net weight of medical
cannabis in the package.
- A warning if nuts or other allergens are used.
- A list of all pharmacologically active ingredients, including, but not
Other cannaboid content
THC and other cannabinoid amount in milligrams per serving
Servings per package
THC and other cannabinoid amount in milligrams for the package total
- Clear indication, in bold type, that the package contains cannabis.
- Identification of the source, date of cultivation, and manufacture.
- Any other requirement set by the bureau.
- Information associated with the unique ID (issued by Department of Food