A Cannabis Retailers Quick Guide: CA, CO, OR & MA Regulations

The cannabis industry is booming, and many budding entrepreneurs are eager to open their own cannabis dispensaries. However, the legal side of opening a dispensary can be very complicated and requires a lot of research. 

The first step to opening a cannabis dispensary is to pick a location. Currently, cannabis is not legal in every state, nor is it legal on a federal level. This guide will give you a quick look at the requirements and fees for cannabis retailers in California, Colorado, Massachusetts, and Oregon.


California Cannabis Licensing

There are several cannabis licensing authorities in California. To open a retail cannabis location, you will need to obtain a license through the Bureau of Cannabis Control. California doesn’t have a flat rate for a cannabis license, and fees range between $500 to $300,000. 

To determine the cost of your license, you will need to estimate the expected gross revenue of your business during a 12-month period. Then, the cost of your license will be determined by a tier chart based on your expected revenue. 

Additional licensing information:

  • Everyone associated with the business must be 21 years old. 
  • You must prove you understand and can comply with local regulations.
  • A clean criminal record is not required but is preferred. 
  • California residency is not required.

Colorado Cannabis Licensing

Colorado has six types of retail cannabis licenses and seven medical cannabis licenses. All licenses cost a flat fee of $4,000 plus additional state and local fees. 

Additional licensing requirements include:

  • Everyone associated with the business must be a Colorado resident for two years before applying for the license.
  • Everyone must be 21 years old.
  • An understanding of local cannabis laws.

Massachusetts Cannabis Licensing

Massachusetts offers seven types of cannabis licensing, and one of them is retail. The cost of recreational retail licensing for cannabis businesses in Massachusetts is $5,000, with an additional application fee that ranges from $100 to $600. 

Additional licensing information:

  • License applications are through the Massachusetts Cannabis Industry Portal. 
  • Annual “Responsible Vendor Training” required. 
  • All employees and associates must be 21 years old. 

Oregon Cannabis Licensing

Licensing for cannabis retailers in Oregon can be obtained through the Oregon Liquor Control Commission. Oregon has seven types of cannabis licenses that range in price from $1,000 to $5,750. 

Additional licensing information:

  • Everyone must be at least 21 years of age. 
  • Understand local regulations.
  • Avoid dry counties that have banned cannabis.
  • You must have a building and proper security before applying for a license. 

Cannabis Financing and Banking

Banking and financing a cannabis business can be complicated because cannabis is illegal on a federal level. As a result, most banking establishments won’t do business with the cannabis industry, including credit card companies. 

Thankfully, the Bespoke Financial Dispensary Financing program is available to help retail cannabis dispensaries with all of their financial needs. Through this program, you will be able to increase your purchasing power, pay your vendors COD, and enjoy a low-interest rate. 

Contact Bespoke Financial today for more information.

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