California is gearing up for legalization on January 1. As of Thursday, state officials released a set of emergency regulations that govern everything from who can legally sell and deliver marijuana to how it must be packaged and transported. To help make the California cannabis regulations easier to understand, we’ve highlighted some of the main points you’ll need to be aware of.
Temporary licenses will be issued to qualifying businesses beginning on January 1. These licenses will allow cannabis businesses to engage in commercial cannabis activity for 120 days, with the option to extend. There will also be a ‘six-month transition period’ in which businesses will be able to adjust to the new market with a modified set of rules.
The state will limit the serving size of edibles to 10 milligrams of THC, with no more than 100 mg allowed in a single product package. Edibles will also be restricted by shape with no human beings, animals, insects or fruit being allowed. This is following concerns that these shapes will make edibles appealing to children. The packaging of cannabis products must also follow these rules as well, with no cartoons or animations that could appeal to children being permitted.
Tinctures, Concentrates, and Topicals
The California cannabis regulations set separate limits on medical and adult-use products. You can have up to 1,000 mg of THC per package for adult-use and 2,000 mg for medical use.
There will be limits on the amount of cannabis a consumer or patient can purchase from a single retailer within a single day.
For adult use, customers can buy 28.5 grams (one ounce) of non-concentrated cannabis, eight grams of concentrate and six immature plants.
For medical use, you will be able to get eight ounces of cannabis or the amount consistent with your doctor’s recommendation.
Cannabis retail stores will be allowed to operate between the hours of 6 a.m. and 10 p.m. and must be at least 600 feet from a K-12 school, day care center, or youth center in existence when the license was issued. Shops will also not be allowed to have window displays, nor will their indoor displays be allowed to be visible to the outside public.
Whilst the rules contain a lot about what cannabis businesses can’t do, there is one area where the rules are not as restrictive. The California cannabis regulations don’t include any size restrictions on marijuana farms and nurseries. This is a notable shift from the one-acre cap that the state’s Department of Goods and Agriculture had proposed in an environmental impact report published earlier this week. This means that cannabis is set to become a major industrial crop for the United States and California will be leading the way.
Unfortunately, California has pulled the plug on futuristic drone delivery. The cannabis regulations state that companies can only deliver weed in cars and trucks. Transport by “aircraft, watercraft, drone, rail, human-powered vehicle, and unmanned vehicles is prohibited”. That means no self-driving cars either which have stirred some debate on the topic of driving while under the influence of marijuana.
The Bureau of Cannabis Control has released a package of documents on its website to better guide cannabis business owners, workers, patients and consumers through the transition to legalization.